Synopses & Reviews
From the best-selling author of Subliminal and The Drunkard’s Walk comes a groundbreaking look at the psychology and neuroscience of change, and at how tapping into elastic thinking will help us thrive in the modern world.
Drawing on cutting-edge research, Leonard Mlodinow takes us on an illuminating journey through the mechanics of our minds as we navigate the rapidly changing landscapes around us. Out of the exploratory instincts that allowed our ancestors to prosper hundreds of thousands of years ago, humans developed a cognitive style that Mlodinow terms elastic thinking, a unique set of talents that include neophilia (an affinity for novelty), schizotypy (a tendency toward unusual perception), imagination and idea generation, and divergent and integrative thinking. These are the qualities that enabled innovators from Mary Shelley to Miles Davis, from the inventor of jumbo-sized popcorn to the creators of Pokémon Go, to effect paradigm shifts in our culture and society. In our age of unprecedented technological innovation and social change, it is more important than ever to encourage these abilities and traits.
How can we train our brains to be more comfortable when confronting change and more adept at innovation? How do our brains generate new ideas, and how can we nurture that process? Why can diversity and even discord be beneficial to our thought process? With his keen acumen and quick wit, Leonard Mlodinow gives us the essential tools to harness the power of elastic thinking in an endlessly dynamic world.
"Timely and engrossing. Elastic is a fascinating exploration of one of the most important topics: how the human mind deals with change. If you liked Subliminal, you’ll love Elastic." Charles Duhigg, author of the best sellers The Power of Habit and Smarter Faster Better
"Incorporating the most recent developments in psychology and neuroscience, award-winning science writer Mlodinow...elucidates how the human mind evolved a cognitive style he names 'elastic thinking'....Fantastically accessible science writing....Of particular interest to those wishing to understand how to cope with the pace of change in the modern world." Library Journal (Starred Review)
"Ingenious...top-quality popular neuroscience." Kirkus Reviews
"Leonard Mlodinow will make you smarter." Seth MacFarlane
About the Author
Leonard Mlodinow’s previous books include the best sellers Subliminal (winner of the PEN/E. O. Wilson Literary Science writing award), The Drunkard’s Walk (a New York Times Notable Book), War of the Worldviews (with Deepak Chopra), and The Grand Design (with Stephen Hawking), as well as The Upright Thinkers, Feynman’s Rainbow, and Euclid’s Window. He also wrote for the television series MacGyver and Star Trek: The Next Generation.