Thursday, 18 May 2006

A Tipping Point

Via 3 Quarks Daily comes an article entitled "MY MALCOLM GLADWELL PROBLEM, AND YOURS" (all caps just like that) by Lee Siegel. Gladwell is one of those people you keep hearing about as he's spent a lot of words on a relativly simple theory, as I understand it, and it's a theory he uses his odd hair to promote. Seigel describes it thus:

In The Tipping Point, Gladwell turned a banal business-concept--that moment when an idea, trend or style of conduct "tips" into a craze--virtually into an explanation of how history unfolds and society works.

Neat, huh? I've been meaning to read The Tipping Point at some, er, point, but I've been put off by this article. My tipping point? Here:
In Blink, he argued that the artist's creative intuition is something everybody possesses, something that can be used for practical purposes in any situation. (The Power of Positive Blinking.) One of the book's central dramas is the role intuition played, according to Gladwell, in the battle between (successful) Pepsi and (failed) New Coke. Businessmen, Gladwell wants to tell us, have the instinct of poets. That was a thrill.

Just to repeat that Gladwell wants us to believe "Businessmen have the instinct of poets". What a revolting idea.

No comments: