Malcolm Gladwell presents a readable and thoughtful view of underdogs in history. He offers insights into how they succeeded. Gladwell is a best-selling author and a New Yorker regular. He has a unique genius.

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Malcolm Gladwell presents a readable and thoughtful view of underdogs in history. He offers insights into how they succeeded. Gladwell is a best-selling author and a New Yorker regular. He has a unique genius. It is his skill to convert an interesting magazine article into a readable best-seller. His writing is so direct and conversational; it turns even small insights into thunderbolts. Consider, The Tipping Point. The book David and Goliath suggests practicing 10, hours to attain real skills in any area.

Give credit where you should. Gladwell built his niche. This remarkable collection of declarations and the examples illustrating them highlight an old yet modern theme. That is the victory of the underdog. Just by using a stone and a sling. But, he turns the normal meaning of that fight on its head.

He suggests that people see the triumph of David as far rarer than it is. Gladwell maintains that being an underdog has unrecognized benefits.

For example, it can open opportunities and make the unimaginable possible. Building on this thought, Gladwell digs through history for tales of strong-minded underdogs. He searches how they became victorious even in unbalanced fights. He was famous as the desert warrior Lawrence of Arabia. Lawrence was also an English scholar and had studied Middle Eastern history. During 1st World War, he was the most successful guerrilla strategist. The English put him into the Arab Revolt as an advisor to the Arab leaders.

He led his camel-mounted mobile army of Arabs against the Turks. The Turks had a considerable army. They also had a large mobile troop, mechanized forces, forts, and a railroad. They all had only one weapon. That is rounds of ammunition and 45 pounds of flour. On camels, the Arab troops could walk miles per day. Gladwell says the Arabs, despite being weak had some advantages. They could move fast and appear where their enemy never thought they would.

As typical underdogs, the Arabs did not have much power. But, between ferocity and surprise, they gathered more force. In one day tenure, they launched nine different attacks on Turkish posts.

This was a massive attack on a vast territory. But, they were held back by their resources. Their chain of command came in the way of immediate response. As they had forts, they lived in them. Their superiority in arms, men, and machine put them on the defensive. Here Gladwell states that lack of resources can be as good an advantage as their abundance. The ones who lack resources should outsmart their enemies. You may believe that some factors are helping when, in fact, they are hindering.

Also, you may see other factors as unhelpful, when, in truth, they offer help. This is the core lesson Gladwell plans to convey. Each chapter shows how clear disadvantages can turn into advantages.

The key factors in this change are courage and self-confidence. Plus, you should also have a clear idea of your fight. The same qualities that appear to give them strength are often the sources of great weakness. His mother started working in a garment sweatshop. She stitched hat brims and earned two cents on every hat. She worked 7-days a week and hours per day. Freireich is also a classic underdog as per Gladwell. He grew up on Chicago streets with no adult guidance. When he was 9, Freireich had his tonsils operated.

The doctor was the first neat adult in clean clothes he had ever seen. He moved Freireich to become a doctor. Surprisingly, a woman she hardly knew, lent her the money.

This made Freireich an optimist about life. He got drafted into the American Army in There, he offered his military services at the National Cancer Institute.

Children who have leukemia were his first patients. The Institute was unable to provide him enough blood for blood transfusion. So, Freireich started finding donors for them. He courageously faced every challenge, be it official or medical. Gladwell quotes J. MacCurdy here. He was the author of The Structure of Morale. Instead, we tend to be fearful of being fearful. Gladwell claims that people are not born with courage. Rather they develop it.

Living through tough times and learning that challenges do not end you, develops courage. What can he face as an adult who will be worse than his childhood? He narrates an interesting tale.

That is, Freireich becoming a clinical pioneer facing all odds. But, Gladwell pauses the biography to add details of London Blitz. His findings of the courage and determination that the Blitz nurtured are interesting.

It seems as if Gladwell did not have enough content. Hence, he was unable to make the whole chapter about Freireich. And that is why he decided to mix content about the Blitz. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man. That is, too much force overthrows the powerful and spurs defiance. Gladwell gives an example of this too. Led by their brave priest, Andre Trocme, the people hid Jews.

They made false papers for them. The villagers even took many Jewish children into their schools. They also helped Jews pass over the Alps and into Switzerland.

And, also to let this be known openly to the Nazis. The youth minister of the Vichy government visited their town. For him, the villagers held a welcome ceremony. And, you are not getting them. They even spent life-threatening time in camps. History says that later a senior Gestapo officer saved them. It has been a sanctuary for the tortured and oppressed. That is, regardless of the strength of influential people, you can fight them. The powerful are not as strong as they look.

Nor the weak as weak. The damaged and marginal people of the society turn out to be the kindest and bravest. Gladwell presents a striking collection of defiant heroes and heroines. They speak strongly to all those who seek inspiration.


Malcolm Gladwell: How David Beats Goliath

When underdogs break the rules. Why have so few adopted it? The first was that he would never raise his voice. The team was made up mostly of twelve-year-olds, and twelve-year-olds, he knew from experience, did not respond well to shouting. He would conduct business on the basketball court, he decided, the same way he conducted business at his software firm. He would speak calmly and softly, and convince the girls of the wisdom of his approach with appeals to reason and common sense. The second principle was more important.


What if you could read 3 books per day?

The L. He had a faraway look in his eyes. When an underdog fought like David, he usually won. In , the Peruvians fought the Spanish straight up and lost; in , the Georgians fought the Russians straight up and lost; in , the Pindaris fought the British straight up and lost; in the Kandyan rebellion of , the Sri Lankans fought the British straight up and lost; in , the Burmese chose to fight the British straight up and lost. The list of failures was endless. In the nineteen-forties, the Communist insurgency in Vietnam bedevilled the French until, in , the Viet Minh strategist Vo Nguyen Giap switched to conventional warfare—and promptly suffered a series of defeats. As a result, he was defeated time after time and almost lost the war.

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