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Book review

The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life

The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life
Read date: June 2018

The Elephant in the Brain: Hidden Motives in Everyday Life by Kevin Simler
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Very intriguing idea, clearly thought through, with great examples

I loved the core idea here – that actually we don’t know our true motives for many of the things we do, and that our brains are in fact set up so that this ignorance is reinforced. There are some great examples, small and large, of habits (at one end) and entire economic or social institutions at the other end, that illustrated these points. A!though the authors seemed concerned that readers would find some of the examples hard to swallow and too hard to believe, I found them all entire too credible. So perhaps for me the book’s only failing was in not being hard hitting enough, rather than going too far. Overall though an excellent read, with many Kindle highlights created.

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