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Saturday, December 14, 2013

David and Goliath: Underdogs, Misfits, and The Art of Battling Giants

Appearing on the Time Magazine’s 100 most influential people, Malcolm Gladwell is a Canadian journalist based in New York. In addition to being a bestselling author of four books, Gladwell is also a speaker and has been on job as a staff writer for The New Yorker since 1996. His books, The Tipping Point: How Little Things Make a Big Difference (2000), Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking (2005), Outliers: The Story of Success (2008), and What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures (2009) have all appeared on The New York Times bestsellers list. His works deal with research in the areas of psychology, social psychology and sociology. On June 30, 2011, Gladwell was appointed to the Order of Canada.

We all know that underdogs can win–that’s what the David versus Goliath legend tells us, and we’ve seen it with our own eyes. Or have we? In David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell, with his unparalleled ability to grasp connections others miss, uncovers the hidden rules that shape the balance between the weak and the mighty, the powerful and the dispossessed. Gladwell examines the battlefields of Northern Ireland and Vietnam, takes us into the minds of cancer researchers and civil rights leaders, and digs into the dynamics of successful and unsuccessful classrooms–all in an attempt to demonstrate how fundamentally we misunderstand the true meaning of advantages and disadvantages. When is a traumatic childhood a good thing? When does a disability leave someone better off? Do you really want your child to go to the best school he or she can get into? Why are the childhoods of people at the top of one profession after another marked by deprivation and struggle?
My Thoughts:
It has been quite some time since I read a book that I just did not care for...David and Goliath is one of them.  While the premise of the book is "okay", Malcolm desecrates the biblical story of David and his battle against Goliath.  He even refers to it as simply a "legend" and says, "the problem with that version of the events is that almost everything about it is wrong."  The book is nothing more than a collection of philosophical ideas and psychological assumptions about how to get the upper hand in any given situation.
David and Goliath is a man centered mantra about how to "fight your battles".  While the obligatory scripture is given at the beginning of each section of the book, not one time does Mr. Gladwell mention the name of Jesus or even entertain the idea that our strength is found in Christ and the good news of His gospel.  
I'm afraid I would have to suggest you pass on this one.
Thank you B&B Media for sending the complimentary copy of the book for the purpose of this review.
Happy Reading,


Dosti Shayari said...

I have been a fan of Gladwell since Outliers and Tipping point came out and this book also lives up to his reputation.

Using examples from different areas like Ireland-England conflict to Dyslexia to girls's basketball team, Gladwell makes us rethink about our definitions of advantages and disadvantages and its relevance in today's world.