by Kathryn Schulz
Ms Schulz casts an irreverent eye upon the profound meanings behind our most ordinary behaviors-in this instance, how we make mistakes, how we behave when we find we have been wrong, and how our errors change us. The author’s opinion is that ultimately wrongness, not rightness, can teach us who we are. Schulz writes with such lucidity and wit that her philosophical inquiry becomes a page-turner. Here’s a fascinating counterpoint to the notion that making a mistake somehow diminishes you as a person. We shouldn’t fear error, the author says; rather, we should embrace it because it’s our capacity for making mistakes that makes us who we are. (“To err is human” isn’t just an empty cliché.) Schulz explores the nature of error: are big mistakes fundamentally different from small mistakes, or are they all essentially the same? How much does peer pressure, or crowd response, affect our capacity to blunder? How and why do we remember relatively insignificant mistakes for the rest of our lives, long after they have ceased to be relevant to anything? And what role does “error-blindness”-our inability to know when we are in the process of making a mistake-play in our daily lives? Schulz writes in a lively style, asks lots of compelling questions, and uses plenty of examples to illustrate her points. A book comparable to Malcom Gladwell’s “Blink”.