[1][1][1] - Malcolm Gladwell's Blink: Reaction paper...

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Malcolm Gladwell's Blink: Reaction paper Malcolm Gladwell's popular book 'Blink' explains how unconscious rapid decision making can be more helpful and accurate than time consuming analysis. He also explains how rapid decision making can have dire consequences, and offers a way to avoid such situations. He explains, though briefly as he concludes his book, when to trust rapid judgments and how to refine them for greater accuracy. Gladwell presents a plethora of analogies, research studies, and examples, most of which has strong methodological standing and have been performed by recognized psychologists. Gladwell reports on the findings of psychologists accurately, uses their statistics and their theories. In that way the book demonstrates 'good psychology'. Some of the examples, he uses, however may seem contradictory to his conclusions and render his theories misleading or unclear. Despite the fact that it is grounded in significant research, the book only presents good psychology to a limited extent. Gladwell explains that snap decisions can sometimes be misleading or inaccurate. Statistics show, for example, that we are more likely to convict blacks than whites for the same crime and the sentences are more likely to be harsher. The experiment conducted by Ian Ayres illustrated that car dealers show an unfair bias against women and blacks while negotiating car prices. The Diallo case is other significant example where rapid cognition has gone wrong. Gladwell at the beginning of the book discusses the IAT test which demonstrates that racism and sexism can exist beyond our conscious awareness. This indeed is an effective explanation of the faulty snap decisions made in his analogies. Gladwell also explains that the IAT is more likely to show bias if the individual does not have a strong experience with females in the workplace or 'good' black figures, and thus relies on certain stereotypes. He thus explains how the subtle biases that we may display through the IAT can be eliminated. For example, studies have shown that students reading historical accounts of powerful and inspirational figures like Martin Luther King, Nelson Mandela or Colin Powell tend to eliminate their stereotypical tendencies on the IAT. He succeeds here, therefore, in pointing out that education can affect our cognitive
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This note was uploaded on 12/01/2010 for the course UNKNOWN s1s3 taught by Professor Asdas during the Spring '10 term at Central Washington University.

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[1][1][1] - Malcolm Gladwell's Blink: Reaction paper...

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