‘Counterintuitive,’ a Book That’s the Opposite of ‘Blink’

Malcolm Gladwell’s best-selling Blink provocatively asks, how is it the mind sometimes understands in a flash highly complex situations that seem to defy rigorous analysis. No question that’s true. But so is the opposite: Sometimes, our minds lie to us, just can’t believe conclusions science tells us to be true. Flip five heads in a row, the odds are not better of getting tails next. People with asymmetrical faces seem less trustworthy. No way a microbe could live in stomach acid, or a seemingly harmless wart virus could cause deadly cervical cancer. No way time can stretch and space can shrink or speed can have a limit in the universe. We’re horrible at estimating future feelings, according to Stumbling on Happiness. Optical illusions could be part of the discussion, too (no the image size of the sun and moon aren’t bigger when they rise and set), but they’re not the central point. The idea is to get a better understanding of why common sense is so often humbled by reality, and how better counterintuitive strategies could chart a better course for the world.  

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