The book that started the Quiet Revolution
At least one-third of the people we know are introverts. They are the ones who prefer listening to speaking; who innovate and create but dislike self-promotion; who favor working on their own over working in teams. It is to introverts—Rosa Parks, Chopin, Dr. Seuss, Steve Wozniak—that we owe many of the great contributions to society.
In Quiet, Susan Cain argues that we dramatically undervalue introverts and shows how much we lose in doing so. She charts the rise of the Extrovert Ideal throughout the twentieth century and explores how deeply it has come to permeate our culture. She also introduces us to successful introverts—from a witty, high-octane public speaker who recharges in solitude after his talks, to a record-breaking salesman who quietly taps into the power of questions. Passionately argued, superbly researched, and filled with indelible stories of real people, Quiet has the power to permanently change how we see introverts and, equally important, how they see themselves.
Now with Extra Libris material, including a reader’s guide and bonus content
APPLE BOOKS REVIEW
Wall Street lawyer–turned–writer Susan Cain dives deep into the subject of her popular TED Talk: modern society’s bias against introverts. Using lively real-world examples and compelling research, Quiet provides an engrossing overview of different personality types—and explores the shortcomings of a culture that overvalues the gregarious and assertive over the thoughtful and measured. It’s a nonfiction book that will lead to revealing conversations.
While American culture and business tend to be dominated by extroverts, business consultant Cain explores and champions the one-third to one-half of the population who are introverts. She defines the term broadly, including "solitude-seeking" and "contemplative," but also "sensitive," "humble," and "risk-averse." Such individuals, she claims (though with insufficient evidence), are "disproportionately represented among the ranks of the spectacularly creative." Yet the American school and workplace make it difficult for those who draw strength from solitary musing by over-emphasizing teamwork and what she calls "the new Groupthink." Cain gives excellent portraits of a number of introverts and shatters misconceptions. For example, she notes, introverts can negotiate as well as, or better than, alpha males and females because they can take a firm stand "without inflaming counterpart's ego." Cain provides tips to parents and teachers of children who are introverted or seem socially awkward and isolated. She suggests, for instance, exposing them gradually to new experiences that are otherwise overstimulating. Cain consistently holds the reader's interest by presenting individual profiles, looking at places dominated by extroverts (Harvard Business School) and introverts (a West Coast retreat center), and reporting on the latest studies. Her diligence, research, and passion for this important topic has richly paid off.
Customer ReviewsSee All
Very insightful look into the world of introverts
I loved reading this book. It has helped me understand my personality better but more importantly, it helped my extroverted boyfriend understand my quiet ways and need for solitude.
I love pop science books, and when I saw this one was about introverts, I knew I had to check it out. I can't tell you how many times I was told as a child "people would like you better if you just talked more." Quiet explains the science of why introverts are the way they are, how to make the most of personal and business relationships if you are an introvert, or if you deal with one.
Susan Cain has an easy to read style, it reminds me of Mary Roach, though with a bit less humor. She uses personal stories and stories from her clients, and I appreciated the her references to scientific studies, which added validity to her observations. That said, you don't have to be a science buff to enjoy Quiet. I highly recommend it!
A must "read"...
A must "read"... for introverts and extroverts alike.
Insightful for extroverts to understand how introverts approach life's challenges.
Reaffirming for introverts to appreciate that their approach is OK, and more importantly that they are OK.