Google+

Underdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants

 

David and Goliath

41Cq1jff4wLUnderdogs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants

by Malcolm Gladwell

Little, Brown and Company

Hardcover, $29.00

320 pages

ISBN: 978-0-316-20436-1

 

Book Review by Kam Williams

 

“Three thousand years ago on a battlefield in ancient Palestine, a shepherd boy felled a mighty warrior with nothing more than a stone and a sling, and ever since then, the names David and Goliath have stood for battles between underdogs and giants. David’s victory was improbable and miraculous. He shouldn’t have won.

In David and Goliath, Malcolm Gladwell challenges how we think about obstacles and disadvantages, offering a new interpretationaf7c82a2021f0a7e9d9afe.L._V360657166_SX200_ of what it means to be discriminated against, or cope with a disability, or lose a parent, or attend a mediocre school, or suffer from any number of other apparent setbacks.”

— Excerpted from the Inside Book Jacket

 

In best-sellers like “Blink,” “Outliers” and “The Tipping Point,” Malcolm Gladwell has proven himself quite adept at breaking down complex psychological, scientific and political concepts in such a way that they are readily digestible for mass consumption. This popular public intellectual and veritable man of the people has done it again with “David and Goliath,” an earnest examination of why so many manage to flourish in the face of seemingly overwhelming odds.

He opens with a discussion of the classic showdown from which the opus borrows its Biblical title. There, he suggests that, contrary to legend, diminutive David might not really have been at a disadvantage to the giant Philistine at all. For, the author points out that even a muscle-bound soldier armed with a sword and a shield would probably still be no match for a civilian skilled at hurling rocks with a sling from a safe distance.

The balance of the book is basically an exploration of illustrative examples of the triumphs of real-life underdogs in supposedly lopsided conflicts. Again and again, in case studies ranging from the African-American fight for civil rights in the segregated South to the Irish Catholic struggle for freedom from the British, we learn that military might was no predictor of the eventual outcome.

Gladwell also relates the triumphs of several successful individuals as further proof of his central thesis, such as dyslexic David Boies who became one of the country’s leading lawyers, and orphaned Emil Jay Freireich who grew up to become a top medical doctor.

Persuasive, if counterintuitive, food for thought surmising that a child might be better off having to surmount a considerable life challenge rather than being born with a silver spoon in his or her mouth.

To order a copy of David and Goliath, visit:

http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0316204366/ref%3dnosim/thslfofire-20

 

,

Entertainment

Prodigal Daughter Tries to Reconcile with Estranged Dad in Haunting Parable of Biblical Proportions

  The Levelling Film Review by Kam Williams Prodigal Daughter Tries to Reconcile with Estranged Dad in Haunting Parable of Biblical Proportions It's not very clear whether Harry Catto's (Joe Blakemore) death was a murder or a suicide. One thing's for certain, though. It wasn't merely a mishap, because nobody accidentally sticks a gun in his own mouth and pulls the trigger. The cops suspect that he killed himself, but his father (David … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Books

The President’s Kitchen Cabinet

  The President's Kitchen Cabinet The Story of the African-Americans Who Have Fed Our First Families, from the Washingtons to the Obamas by Adrian Miller University of North Carolina Press Hardcover, $30.00 292 pages, Illustrated ISBN: 978-1-4696-3253-7 Book Review by Kam Williams “[This opus] vividly tells the stories of the African-Americans who worked in the presidential food service as chefs, personal cooks, butlers, stewards … [Read More its Good for You...]

Art

The Day After the Day Of

  The Day After the Day Of by Paul Ilechko   The sky sheds its tears. This morning is the morning of the day after. The day of mourning, the day after the day of.  I beseech the sky to shed tears in order to wash away the tears on my face.   This is the first day of the time after. This is the beginning of a new time, the days of pain, the days of sorrow. We are in mourning. The sky looks down and sheds its tears for … [Read More its Good For You...]

Real Estate

History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder

  History Being Sold to the Highest Bidder by Amy Lignor   For the longest time, scientists and archaeologists have been confused and bemused by various discoveries they’ve unearthed that offer little or no explanation as to the who, what, and why of the people who created these things or left them behind. Even now, in 2017, there are discoveries being studied; stories that were once legends now have actual bits of proof being found that … [Read More its Good for You.....]

Lifestyle

2017 Hobbies That Bring You Serenity

  2017 Hobbies That Bring You Serenity by Amy Lignor   Origami. Memory albums. Quilting. What do these have in common? Well, at one point or another in time, they have represented the “hottest” hobbies in the United States. Taking up hobbies are not only a fun thing to do for the “artistic/creative” type, but they also help to reduce stress. Even the AMA has cited the fact that taking up a hobby can produce a calming environment … [Read More its Good for You...]

Outdoors

Introducing the all-new Tidewater 320 CC Adventure

  Introducing the all-new Tidewater 320 CC Adventure By Craig Lamb Luxury appointments and the durability, toughness, and fishability required by serious saltwater anglers. Combining the comfort and style of a yacht into a boat designed for offshore fishing is a tall order. But the engineers and designers at Tidewater Boats did it all in the all-new 320 CC. From the premium upholstery to the highly refined seating and spacious storage, the … [Read More its Good for You...]

Sports

Will NASCAR Theatrics Bring Back Viewers?

  Will NASCAR Theatrics Bring Back Viewers? by Amy Lignor   For any of the millions who once watched ABC’s Wide World of Sports and heard the words “the thrill of victory and the agony of defeat,” they remember the footage of a skier’s crash when it came to the “agony” side of things. Everyone knew that sight was a fact – a video that was absolutely real. Nowadays, however, it seems that more and more sports are “making up” shots that … [Read More its Good for You...]

Business

How Are Retail Sales in 2017?

  How Are Retail Sales in 2017? E-Commerce Reigns by Amy Lignor   Despite consumer uncertainty, as well as a very sluggish beginning to 2017, the U.S. retail sales industry is projected to increase 4% this year. Headlines show that many retailers and companies posted “soft” holiday sales to end 2016, which caused some notable retailers to either cut jobs or close stores as a result. However, when it comes to 2017, the National … [Read More its Good for You...]

Travel

Where to Vacation? Go Big or Stay Home!

  Where to Vacation? Go Big or Stay Home! by Amy Lignor   We speak about luxury vacations, budget vacations, vacations that are fun for the kids, and many more areas of travel at this time of year. But there is also a category that many do not touch upon because they “assume” it is far too difficult for those on a budget to be able to enjoy these jaw-dropping wonders. However, whether you are a backpacker looking to “become a … [Read More its Good for You...]

Green Living

Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden

  Creating the Perfect Vegetable Garden by Amy Lignor   Many are still dealing with that wintery mix Mother Nature just loves to toss down from the sky this time of year. Yet, that gardener living inside the soul – the one just dreaming of the sunny skies and lazy rainy days that are must-haves in order to grow the best vegetables possible – is already jotting down the facts, tricks and tips they need to know in order to make that … [Read More its Good for You...]