The secret of outliers essay

Tim Knox for the Guardian Malcolm Gladwell is in his natural habitat — a cafe in New York's West Village, down the street from his apartment — engaged in a very Gladwellian task: The bestselling author of The Tipping Point and Outliers, who despite all appearances just turned 50, has a tendency to hoist both arms aloft like a preacher when a topic inflames him. And the topic of doping in sports does.

The secret of outliers essay

It takes more than talent to become outstanding Ed Smith And if so, how do you become one? Ed Smith looks for tips Do you want to be a genius? This book can tell you how to do it. First you need very good DNA.

Talent isn't enough on its own, though, you require threshold-level innate talent to stand any chance of becoming a genius. Sadly, as you can imagine, changing your DNA may not be easy.

The secret of outliers essay

Malcolm Gladwell at the Lyceum Second, understand that this gift of yours must be nurtured by the most extraordinarily propitious circumstances - a succession of lucky breaks out in the real world. So any wannabe genius needs a double dose of freakily good fortune: So marketing this book as a primer on becoming a genius has a certain irony.

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Gladwell is making the opposite argument - no one, no matter how gifted or determined, can make it on his own. Outliers is the anti-self-help book in extremis.

All those would-be geniuses who buy this book should expect to be The secret of outliers essay. The rest of us can enjoy a very interesting argument - especially if we avoid the term genius altogether. Gladwell makes three main points about elite achievers, or 'outliers' as he calls them.

First, in terms of usefulness, talent quite quickly levels off - a person with an IQ of isn't much more likely to win a Nobel prize than someone with an IQ of Second, every high achiever needs a great deal of luck.

Third, much of this good fortune resides deep in the outlier's 'cultural legacy', the stuff he inherited from the society that produced him. Of the three strands, the argument about luck is easily the most persuasive and important.

We learn, for example, that in the early days of the Beatles, while searching for their big break, the band made recurrent trips to play marathon music sets in Hamburg strip clubs. The clubs demanded music throughout the night, so the Beatles' Hamburg gigs often lasted eight hours each.

"A man's bookcase will tell you everything you'll ever need to know about him." -Walter Mosley

The band had been gifted a phenomenal chance to experiment and to find their sound. It was pure luck.

The secret of outliers essay

Bill Gates, an outlier of a different kind, experienced a succession of freak opportunities, the most important being that he lived near the University of Washington which allowed free computer time between three and six in the morning.

Gates admits he had 'better exposure to software development at a young age than anyone - and all because of an incredibly lucky series of events'.

The myth of the self-made man has long needed puncturing, and Gladwell is just the man for the task. Anyone exasperated by celebrity autobiographies - 'started with nothing Every outlier, no matter how talented or determined, needed the occasional leg-up.

But Gladwell is stronger on debunking myths than presenting alternatives. He drifts towards a soft determinism about human achievement - the importance of 'cultural legacy', as he calls it. Isn't there a danger here of over-schematising an innate mystery?

What makes an outlier? No one really knows. It is the chance interaction of qualities randomly thrown together: Outliers will doubtless attract plenty of detractors, some irritated by the mischievous inclusivity of the book's sales pitch, others merely jealous that Gladwell has been so successful at repackaging quite simple ideas into blockbuster books.

Sometimes my reservations were more trivial. The italics, liberally sprinkled throughout the book's pages, are absolutely maddening. One sentence runs simply, 'Angry!

The trick, surely, is to keep readers of all levels interested without talking down to the sharper ones. Gladwell's choice of subject matter also occasionally trips over into cheap thrills.

Analysis Paper on Outliers Essay – Free Papers and Essays Examples

It is one thing to use muscular and famous examples, like the Beatles, to buttress an argument - that is part of Gladwell's populist appeal.

But the thrust of one chapter consists of transcriptions of not just one 'black box' from a fatal plane crash but transcriptions of several fatal plane crashes my italics.

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This literature study guide is a helpful companion to the book Outliers: The Story of Success by Malcolm Gladwell. It includes a list of important people and important terms, an overall book summary, a chapter by chapter book summary and suggested essay topics.

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Next, we will read Malcolm Gladwell’s Outliers: The story of success and apply it as a lens to analyze a longitudinal, ethnographic study of 12 American children.

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Outliers: The Story of Success – Life of Chaz