Fyza Parviz Jazra's Reviews > Thinking, Fast and Slow

Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman
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'Thinking Fast and Slow' by the Nobel Prize-winning Economist Daniel Kahneman has been a top selling book quoted and recommended by many social scientists since its first publication in 2011. The book details Daniel's lifetime of research in the field of Decision Economics he conducted alongside his lifelong friend and colleague Amos Tversky-who died before their work was awarded the Nobel Prize.

The basic premise of their work is as follows:
The human mind is subdivided into two categories:
System 1: The part of the brain that is always turned on and relies on intuition, quick judgment, and irrational thought.
System 2: The part of the brain that is lazy but once brought about thinks probabilistically, rationally, cautiously, and logically.

People mostly use System 1 thinking, i.e., fast thinking. But the world would be a better place, as per Kahneman, if we used System 2 thinking, i.e., slow thinking.

Through a series of social experiments that account for the 400 pages of the book, Daniel reveals how people are quick to judge and make wrong decisions. He questions whether this superficial, lazy thinking is a flaw embedded in the construction of the human brain? He warns that we need to be wary of the way data is presented to us. There are many ways to influence human behavior through such tactics used predominantly by advertisers, politicians, etc., to manipulate people's decision in their respective favor. Daniel also mentions that there is no such thing as objective human reasoning, even the most rational can easily get steered. He showcases an experiment where Judges were told to roll the dice before giving out their decision of jail time to the accused, and the number of months in jail they prescribed matched closely to the rolled dice number. Hence many things affect our judgment, especially unconscious biases.

He spends half the book explaining how the world is chaotic and chance/luck plays a significant factor than otherwise acknowledged. Hence people should be wary of the pundits who so accurately try to foretell the future. Just as I was reading this, a New York Times notification came upon my phone; a detailed forecast of how Hilary had a 76% chance of winning the US election. Although I do want Hillary to win, I chuckled at how the Times was playing the exact game Daniel was condemning in his book.
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Reading Progress

July 5, 2016 – Started Reading
July 5, 2016 – Shelved
July 5, 2016 –
page 22
4.41%
July 6, 2016 –
page 70
14.03%
July 7, 2016 –
page 126
25.25%
July 15, 2016 –
page 157
31.46%
July 17, 2016 –
page 206
49.28%
July 19, 2016 –
page 269
53.91%
July 20, 2016 –
page 321
64.33%
July 21, 2016 –
page 374
89.47%
July 21, 2016 – Finished Reading

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