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Descrição da editora
What makes a hit a hit? In Hit Makers, Atlantic Senior Editor Derek Thompson puts pop culture under the lens of science to answer the question that every business, every producer, every person looking to promote themselves and their work has asked.
Drawing on ancient history and modern headlines - from vampire lore and Brahms's Lullaby to Instagram - Thompson explores the economics and psychology of why certain things become extraordinarily popular. With incisive analysis and captivating storytelling, he reveals that, though blockbuster films, Internet memes and number-one songs seem to have come out of nowhere, hits actually have a story and operate by certain rules. People gravitate towards familiar surprises: products that are bold and innovative, yet instantly comprehensible.
Whether he is uncovering the secrets of JFK and Barack Obama's speechwriters or analysing the unexpected reasons for the success of Fifty Shades of Grey, Thompson goes beyond the cultural phenomena that make the news by revealing the desires that make us all human. While technology might change, he shows, our innate preferences do not, and throughout history hits have held up a mirror to ourselves.
From the dawn of Impressionist art to the future of Snapchat, from small-scale Etsy entrepreneurs to the origin of Star Wars, Derek Thompson tells the fascinating story of how culture happens - and where genius lives.
The alchemy of pop culture hits gets a little more scientific in this engrossing treatise on attention grabbing. Atlantic editor Thompson delves into a grab-bag of mysteries who decided which Impressionist painters were the greatest? Why did Cheers catch on? How did Fifty Shades of Grey become a megaseller? and finds a discernible (if not always replicable) formula. Part of the equation, he contends, is the brain's balancing of neophobia with neophilia: humans like to see familiar, comforting patterns emerge from novel (but not too novel) situations that pique our interest in media as different as screenplays and melodies. (Lab mice are captivated by the verse-verse-chorus-verse-chorus-bridge structure of Top 40 tunes.) The other factors he fingers are sheer exposure Seinfeld languished in the ratings cellar until it was rescheduled right after the hugely popular Cheers and finally found a viewership and our lemming-like tendency to like whatever is already popular. Thompson gives readers a blithe, entertaining tour of the cognitive and social psychology behind our preferences, bouncing from Joseph Campbell's doctrine of story archetypes to chaos theory, and frames it in a savvy analysis of how media technology (such as the laugh track and the like button) continually remakes tastes. This is a fun, thought-provoking take on the strange turns of cultural fortune.