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Thinking Language Intelligence

Page history last edited by Xin Zhao, Graduate Student Assistant 11 years, 4 months ago







Dan Ariely (2009). Predictably irrational: the hidden forces that shape our decisions.

Predictably irrational: the hidden forces that shape our decisions

Dan Ariely explores the hidden forces that shape our decisions, including some of the causes responsible for the current economic crisis. Bringing a much-needed dose of sophisticated psychological study to the realm of public policy, Ariely offers his own insights into the irrationalities of everyday life, the decisions that led us to the financial meltdown of 2008, and the general ways we get ourselves into trouble.

Review by DAVID BERREBY, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/03/16/books/review/Berreby-t.html

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Roy Blount (2008). Alphabet Juice: The Energies, Gists, and Spirits of Letters, Words, and Combinations Thereof; Their Roots, Bones, Innards, Piths, Pips, and Secret ... With Examples of Their Usage Foul and Savory.

After 40 years of making a living using words in every medium, print or electronic, Blount still can't get over his ABCs. In this book, he celebrates the juju, the sonic and kinetic energies of letters and their combinations.

Review by Jack Shafer, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/16/books/review/Shafer-t.html

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Robert Burton(2008). On Being Certain: Believing You Are Right Even When You're Not‎

Neurologist Robert Burton challenges the notions of how we think about what we know. He shows that the feeling of certainty we have when we "know" something comes from sources beyond our control and knowledge. In fact, certainty is a mental sensation, rather than evidence of fact. Because this "feeling of knowing" seems like confirmation of knowledge, we tend to think of it as a product of reason. But an increasing body of evidence suggests that feelings such as certainty stem from primitive areas of the brain, and are independent of active, conscious reflection and reasoning.

Review by Jeff Orchard, Skeptic North: http://www.skepticnorth.com/2010/08/book-review-on-being-certain-by-robert-a-burton/

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Dorothy L. Cheney (2007). Baboon Metaphysics: The Evolution of A Social Mind.

Baboon metaphysics: the evolution of a social mind

Cheney and Seyfarth aim to fully comprehend the intelligence that underlies baboons' social organization. Written with a scientist's precision and a nature-lover's eye, the authors gives readers an unprecedented and compelling glimpse into the species.

Review by Frans de Waal, New Scientist: http://www.newscientist.com/article/mg19426041.500-review-ibaboon-metaphysicsi-by-dorothy-l-cheney-and-robert-m--seyfarth.html




Stanley Coren (2005). How Dogs Think: Understanding the Canine Mind.‎

How Dogs Think: Understanding the Canine Mind

Dogs are the oldest domesticated animal and our most common household pet. With all this time and intimacy, what have we learned about how our closest companion animal thinks? Coren, a professor of psychology and recognized dog expert examines what is known about how the canine mind works. 


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Stanley Coren (2005). The intelligence of dogs: a guide to the thoughts, emotions, and inner lives of our canine companions.‎

The intelligence of dogs: a guide to the thoughts, emotions, and inner lives ...

Psychologist and trainer Coren studies the psychological makeup of dogs in an attempt to answer many questions about canine emotions and intelligence. 

Review by By Kate Connick, Courteous Canines: http://www.kateconnick.com/library/corenintell.html




Janet E. Davidson, Robert J. Sternberg (2003). The psychology of problem solving.‎

The psychology of problem solving

Unlike typical books on problem solving that are organized by content areas, such as mathematics and natural science, this book is organized by factors that affect problem solving performance, such as motivation, emotion, intellectual abilities, and working memory. Its goal is to organize in one volume all that is known about problem solving and the factors that contribute to its success or failure.





Malcolm Gladwell (2005). Blink: The Power of Thinking Without Thinking.

Multitasking is much in demand, but the brain can really only focus on one thing at a time. Medina presents readers with knowledge on how the brain works and how we can use them to our benefit at home and work. 

Review by David Brooks, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2005/01/16/books/review/16COVERBR.html

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Malcolm Gladwell (2010). Outliers: The Story of Success.

Why do some people succeed, living remarkably productive and impactful lives, while so many more never reach their potential? Challenging our cherished belief of the "self-made man," he makes the democratic assertion that superstars don't arise out of nowhere, propelled by genius and talent: "they are invariably the beneficiaries of hidden advantages and extraordinary opportunities and cultural legacies that allow them to learn and work hard and make sense of the world in ways others cannot."

Review by DAVID LEONHARDT, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/30/books/review/Leonhardt-t.html

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Malcolm Gladwell (2002). The Tipping Point: How Little Things Can Make a Big Difference.

The premise of this facile piece of pop sociology has built-in appeal: little changes can have big effects; when small numbers of people start behaving differently, that behavior can ripple outward until a critical mass or "tipping point" is reached, changing the world.

Review by ALAN WOLFE, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/books/00/03/05/reviews/000305.05wolfet.html

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Malcolm Gladwell (2009). What the Dog Saw: And Other Adventures.

 A collection of essays, most of which previously appeared in The New Yorker magazine. There are three sections of writings: stories about "minor geniuses," ways of organizing our experiences, and predictions we make about people.

Review by Steven Pinker, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2009/11/15/books/review/Pinker-t.html

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Stephen Jay Gould (1996). The mismeasure of man.‎

The mismeasure of man

How smart are you? If that question doesn't spark a dozen more questions in your mind (like "What do you mean by 'smart,'" "How do I measure it," and "Who's asking?"), then The Mismeasure of Man, Stephen Jay Gould's masterful demolition of the IQ industry, should be required reading. 

Review by By Christopher Lehmann-Haupt, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/11/09/home/gould-mismeasure.html

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Jerome E. Groopman (2007). How Doctors Think.

A physician discusses the thought patterns and actions that lead to misdiagnosis on the part of healthcare providers, and suggests methods that patients can use to help doctors assess conditions more accurately.

Review by Michael Crichton, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/04/01/books/review/Crichton.t.html

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Wray Herbert (2010). On Second Thought: Outsmarting Your Mind's Hard-Wired Habits

Our lives are composed of millions of choices, ranging from trivial to life-changing and momentous. Luckily, our brains have evolved a number of mental shortcuts, biases, and tricks that allow us to quickly negotiate this endless array of decisions. We don’t want to rationally deliberate every choice we make, and thanks to these cognitive rules of thumb, we don’t need to.  
Yet these hard-wired shortcuts, mental wonders though they may be, can also be perilous.   They can distort our thinking in ways that are often invisible to us, leading us to make poor decisions, to be easy targets for manipulators…and they can even cost us our lives.  

Interview by David DiSalvo, Psychology Today: http://www.psychologytoday.com/blog/neuronarrative/201010/interview-wray-herbert-author-second-thought





Chris McManus (2002).  Right Hand, Left Hand: The Origins of Asymmetry in Brains, Bodies, Atoms and Cultures.

Why are most people right-handed? RIGHT HAND, LEFT HAND uses sources as diverse as the paintings of Rembrandt and the sculpture of Michelangelo, the behaviour of Canadian cichlid fish and the story of early cartography. Modern cognitive science, the history of the Wimbledon tennis championship and the biographies of great musicians are also used to explain the vast repertoire of 'left-right' symbolism that permeates our everyday lives.

Review by William D. Hopkins, Nature: http://www.righthandlefthand.com/reviews/RHLH-Nature6thJune2002.pdf

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John Medina (2008). Brain Rules: 12 Principles for Surviving and Thriving at Work, Home, and School.

Multitasking is much in demand, but the brain can really only focus on one thing at a time. Medina presents readers with knowledge on how the brain works and how we can use them to our benefit at home and work. 

Review by Bruce Rosenstein, USA Today: http://www.usatoday.com/money/books/2008-06-08-brain-rules_N.htm

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David G. Myers (2004). Intuition: Its Powers and Perils.‎

Intuition: Its Powers and Perils

Myers (psychology, Hope Coll.) presents here accessible research findings on intuition that are a welcome change from obscure self-help guides on the subject. He holds that people often rely on hunches without factoring in personal backgrounds, scientific fact, and unperceived influences, such as random streaks of occurrence, making those hunches less effective than we might think. 





Irene Maxine Pepperberg (2008).  Alex & Me: How a Scientist and a Parrot Discovered a Hidden World of Animal Intelligence--and Formed a Deep Bond in the Process.

Alex & me: how a scientist and a parrot discovered a hidden world of animal ...

Alex, a parrot that would forever change the way science looked at the cognitive abilities of birds. In this highly readable, anecdotal book, Pepperberg describes the training techniques she and her assistants used with Alex, the breakthroughs he made, and his growing fame as word began to spread about the brainy parrot who could differentiate colors, count, and describe objects accurately and in human language. The flip side of Alex’s fame was the resistance Pepperberg faced from the entrenched scientific community.

Review by Elizabeth Royte, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2008/11/09/books/review/Royte-t.html

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Steven Pinker (2002). How The Mind Works.

Pinker relies on the computational theory of mind and the theory of the natural selection of replicators to explain how the mind perceives, reasons, interacts socially, experiences varied emotions, creates, and philosophizes. 

Review by Mark Ridley, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/books/97/10/05/reviews/971005.05ridleyt.html

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Steven Pinker (2002). The Blank Slate: The Modern Denial of Human Nature.

Pinker, a chaired professor of psychology at MIT, attacks the notion that an infant's mind is a blank slate, arguing instead that human beings have an inherited universal structure shaped by the demands made upon the species for survival, albeit with plenty of room for cultural and individual variation.

Review by Robert J. Richards, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2002/10/13/books/the-evolutionary-war.html

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Steven Pinker (2007). The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language.

The Language Instinct: How the Mind Creates Language

The world's expert on language and mind lucidly explains everything you always wanted to know about language: how it works, how children learn it, how it changes, how the brain computes it, and how it evolved.

Review by Robert J. Dickey, ELT: http://www.eltnews.com/features/elt_book_reviews/2008/02/the_language_instinct_how_the.html

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Steven Pinker (2007). The Stuff of Thought: Language as a Window Into Human Nature.

Language reflects our brain structure, which itself is innate. Similarly, the way we talk about things is rooted in, but not identical to, physical reality: human beings take the analogue flow of sensation the world presents to them and package their experience into objects and events. 

Review by WILLIAM SALETAN, New York Times: http://www.nytimes.com/2007/09/23/books/review/Saletan-t.html

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Mary Pipher (1999). Another Country: Navigating the Emotional Terrain of Our Elders.

"Pipher reveals that the greatest shame for today's elders--most of whom survived the Depression--is not being self-sufficient. The majority of them stoically prefer to keep their feelings to themselves, and this is why it's so difficult to convince older parents to accept or even discuss such issues as physical and mental health, finances, eldercare, or living wills. This directly conflicts with the openness of their children, who grew up in the era of "free love" and were influenced by society.





Mary Pipher (1996). The Shelter of Each Other: Rebuilding Our Families.

"Drawing on the fascinating stories of families rich and poor, angry and despairing, religious and skeptical, and probing deep into her own family memories and experiences, Pipher clears a path to the strength and energy at the core of family life."


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Mary Pipher (2003). Letters to a Young Therapist (Art of Mentoring).

"In Letters to a Young Therapist, Dr. Mary Pipher shares what she has learned in thirty years as a therapist, helping warring families, alienated adolescents, and harried professionals restore peace and beauty to their lives."






Mary Pipher (2010). Seeking Peace: Chronicles of the Worst Buddhist in the World.

"In Seeking Peace, Mary Pipher tells her own remarkable story, and in the process reveals truths about our search for happiness and love. While her story is unique, 'the basic map and milestones of my story are universal,' she writes. 'We strive to make sense of our selves and our environments.'

Review by Darold H. Morgan, Christian Ethics Today: http://christianethicstoday.com/CETART/index.cfm?fuseaction=Articles.main&ArtID=253

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Mary Pipher (2002). The Middle of Everywhere: Helping Refugees Enter the American Community.

"In cities all over the country, refugees arrive daily. Lost Boys from Sudan, survivors from Kosovo, families fleeing Afghanistan and Vietnam: they come with nothing but the desire to experience the American dream. Their endurance in the face of tragedy and their ability to hold on to the virtues of family, love, and joy are a lesson for Americans."


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 Barry Schwartz (2005). The Paradox of Choice: Why More Is Less.‎

If you have ever had difficulty making a choice, then this book is for you.  Learn why more choices is not always the optimal place to be.

Review by Deirdre Donahue, USA Today: http://www.usatoday.com/life/books/reviews/2004-01-20-paradox-of-choice_x.htm

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Robert J. Sternberg (2009). The essential Sternberg: essays on intelligence, psychology, and education.

The essential Sternberg: essays on intelligence, psychology, and education

In his current position as Dean of the School of Arts and Sciences at Tufts University, Sternberg is revamping their admissions process to include practical and creative abilities in the assessment of potential incoming freshman. By using Sternberg's broader, more eclectic, approach to admissions, Tufts hopes to identify and recruit a more diverse set of talented students--ones who may not have the best grades or test scores, but who have other, harder-to-measure abilities that can lead to success in college and life. 





Robert J. Sternberg (2002). Why smart people can be so stupid.‎

Why smart people can be so stupid

Why do intelligent people sometimes behave in ways so stupid that they destroy their livelihoods or even their lives? This volume investigates the psychological basis for stupidity in everyday life. Experts shed light on the nature and theory of stupidity, whether stupidity is measurable, how people can avoid stupidity and its devastating consequences, and much more.

Review by Keith S. Harris, MentalHelp.net: http://www.mentalhelp.net/poc/view_doc.php?id=1487&type=book&cn=21




Carol Tavris, Elliot Aronson (2008). Mistakes Were Made (But Not by Me): Why We Justify Foolish Beliefs, Bad Decisions, and Hurtful Acts.

Why do people dodge responsibility when things fall apart? Why the parade of public figures unable to own up when they screw up? Why the endless marital quarrels over who is right? Why can we see hypocrisy in others but not in ourselves? Are we all liars? Or do we really believe the stories we tell?

Review by David Newnham, The Guardian: http://www.guardian.co.uk/books/2008/may/24/booksonhealth.scienceandnature

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Phillip Zimbardo (2009). The Time Paradox: The New Psychology of Time That Will Change Your Life.

Time is our most valuable possession: we are obsessed with schedules and multitasking to save time, say the authors of this insightful study of the importance of time in our lives. Yet people spend time less wisely than money.

Review by Marilyn Elias, Air Force Times: http://www.airforcetimes.com/entertainment/books/gns_book_timeparadox_081308/

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