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Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why (08 Edition)

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Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why (08 Edition) Cover

ISBN13: 9780307352897
ISBN10: 0307352897
Condition: Student Owned
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Synopses & Reviews

Please note that used books may not include additional media (study guides, CDs, DVDs, solutions manuals, etc.) as described in the publisher comments.

Publisher Comments:

It lurks in the corner of our imagination, almost beyond our ability to see it: the possibility that a tear in the fabric of life could open up without warning, upending a house, a skyscraper, or a civilization.

Today, nine out of ten Americans live in places at significant risk of earthquakes, hurricanes, tornadoes, terrorism, or other disasters. Tomorrow, some of us will have to make split-second choices to save ourselves and our families. How will we react? What will it feel like? Will we be heroes or victims? Will our upbringing, our gender, our personality-anything weve ever learned, thought, or dreamed of-ultimately matter?

    

Amanda Ripley, an award-winning journalist for Time magazine who has covered some of the most devastating disasters of our age, set out to discover what lies beyond fear and speculation. In this magnificent work of investigative journalism, Ripley retraces the human response to some of historys epic disasters, from the explosion of the Mont Blanc munitions ship in 1917-one of the biggest explosions before the invention of the atomic bomb-to a plane crash in England in 1985 that mystified investigators for years, to the journeys of the 15,000 people who found their way out of the World Trade Center on September 11, 2001. Then, to understand the science behind the stories, Ripley turns to leading brain scientists, trauma psychologists, and other disaster experts, formal and informal, from a Holocaust survivor who studies heroism to a master gunfighter who learned to overcome the effects of extreme fear.

Finally, Ripley steps into the dark corners of her own imagination, having her brain examined by military researchers and experiencing through realistic simulations what it might be like to survive a plane crash into the ocean or to escape a raging fire.

    

Ripley comes back with precious wisdom about the surprising humanity of crowds, the elegance of the brains fear circuits, and the stunning inadequacy of many of our evolutionary responses. Most unexpectedly, she discovers the brains ability to do much, much better, with just a little help.

The Unthinkable escorts us into the bleakest regions of our nightmares, flicks on a flashlight, and takes a steady look around. Then it leads us home, smarter and stronger than we were before.

Review:

"Ripley, an award-winning writer on homeland security for Time, offers a compelling look at instinct and disaster response as she explores the psychology of fear and how it can save or destroy us. Surprisingly, she reports, mass panic is rare, and an understanding of the dynamics of crowds can help prevent a stampede, while a well-trained crew can get passengers quickly but calmly off a crashed plane. Using interviews with survivors of hotel fires, hostage situations, plane crashes and, 9/11, Ripley takes readers through the three stages of reaction to calamity: disbelief, deliberation and action. The average person slows down, spending valuable minutes to gather belongings and check in with others. The human tendency to stay in groups can make evacuation take much longer than experts estimate. Official policy based on inaccurate assumptions can also put people in danger; even after 9/11, Ripley says, the requirement for evacuation drills on office buildings is inadequate. Ripley's in-depth look at the psychology of disaster response, alongside survivors' accounts, makes for gripping reading, sure to raise debate as well as our awareness of a life-and-death issue. 8 pages of color photos. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

About the Author

A senior writer for Time magazine, AMANDA RIPLEY has been extensively involved in the magazines “Person of the Year” cover stories and now writes about homeland security and risk in Washington, D.C. Her disaster reporting recently helped Time win two National Magazine Awards. For more information about Amanda and this book, go to www.TheUnthinkable.com.

What Our Readers Are Saying

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Average customer rating based on 3 comments:

jen in takoma park, October 1, 2008 (view all comments by jen in takoma park)
Everyone should read this book. Ripley does an excellent job of demonstrating how individuals and institutions need to think about "the unthinkable" rather than living in blind fear or naively accepting "conventional wisdom." It's a fascinating read, and it could save lives.
Was this comment helpful? | Yes | No
(3 of 4 readers found this comment helpful)
Marie Angell, August 25, 2008 (view all comments by Marie Angell)
The Unthinkable is the best place to start to begin preparing for disasters. Preparation is the key to survival and to quell fears.

The book is highly readable and informative from a practical standpoint as well as helpful in understanding human response to disaster and how to counter the natural reactions which could cost you time (and time is life) in an emergency.

Read this, then instruct your family in disaster preparedness. Pressure your workplace to implement emergency planning and drills.

Use this book as a stepping stone for further personal development. Someday, you'll be very glad you did.

Stay safe out there!
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(1 of 1 readers found this comment helpful)
Madam Pince, July 12, 2008 (view all comments by Madam Pince)
An excellent summary of natural & man-made disasters and the behaviors that prompted some to survive and others to perish. Amanda Ripley proves the Boy Scouts are right: be prepared! Should be required reading for everyone.
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(2 of 3 readers found this comment helpful)
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Product Details

ISBN:
9780307352897
Subtitle:
Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why
Author:
Ripley, Amanda
Publisher:
Crown Archetype
Subject:
General
Subject:
Mental health
Subject:
Disasters
Subject:
Disasters & Disaster Relief
Subject:
Personality
Subject:
Group Psychology
Subject:
Disaster relief
Subject:
Emergency management
Subject:
General Self-Help
Subject:
Stress Management
Publication Date:
20080610
Binding:
Hardback
Grade Level:
General/trade
Language:
English
Illustrations:
8-PAGE, 4-COLOR INSERT
Pages:
288
Dimensions:
9.37x6.46x1.06 in. 1.29 lbs.

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Related Subjects

Featured Titles » Science
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » General
Health and Self-Help » Psychology » Personality Disorders

Unthinkable: Who Survives When Disaster Strikes - and Why (08 Edition) Used Hardcover
0 stars - 0 reviews
$13.00 In Stock
Product details 288 pages Crown Publishing Group (NY) - English 9780307352897 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Ripley, an award-winning writer on homeland security for Time, offers a compelling look at instinct and disaster response as she explores the psychology of fear and how it can save or destroy us. Surprisingly, she reports, mass panic is rare, and an understanding of the dynamics of crowds can help prevent a stampede, while a well-trained crew can get passengers quickly but calmly off a crashed plane. Using interviews with survivors of hotel fires, hostage situations, plane crashes and, 9/11, Ripley takes readers through the three stages of reaction to calamity: disbelief, deliberation and action. The average person slows down, spending valuable minutes to gather belongings and check in with others. The human tendency to stay in groups can make evacuation take much longer than experts estimate. Official policy based on inaccurate assumptions can also put people in danger; even after 9/11, Ripley says, the requirement for evacuation drills on office buildings is inadequate. Ripley's in-depth look at the psychology of disaster response, alongside survivors' accounts, makes for gripping reading, sure to raise debate as well as our awareness of a life-and-death issue. 8 pages of color photos. (June)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
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