- Jan 2022
He breaks off, looking anxious. “But I didn’t tell their stories, because I thought they were a better way of persuading people of an argument. It’s a book of stories about people, because I think stories are a fundamentally better way of thinking about the world.”
Stories are an important way of thinking about and explaining the world. They may also be a potential brain hack.
Note their use here just after Hari has mentioned that connecting with people (often by way of their stories) is a basic human condition and need. Also note that Hari was previously a columnist with a slant, has he realized that this is the better way to convince people of plausible sounding things? Particularly without source, attribution, research, and potentially cherry picking data.
Are we blinding ourselves by telling stories? Particularly without comparison or actual testing?
I saw a book about this topic months ago and need to find it and dig it up.
Hari puts his general air of unworldly distraction down to his dyspraxia, but it comes across as donnish.
Johnann Hari has indicated in an interview that he suffered from dyspraxia.
I wonder how this may or may not affect his writing about being distracted with respect to his book Stolen Focus. Cross reference: https://www.theguardian.com/science/2022/jan/02/attention-span-focus-screens-apps-smartphones-social-media
For that matter, he admits, “It’s struck me that, actually, polemic very rarely changes people’s minds about anything.” He says so as a former columnist? “A recovering former columnist, yes.” He laughs. “It’s not just that polemic doesn’t change people’s minds. It says nothing about the texture of lived experience. People are complex and nuanced, they don’t live polemically.”
Something to keep in mind about everyday life.
- ethical breaches
- brain hacks
- cultural anthropology
- lived experience
- tools for thought
- Johann Hari