Let's read, meet and discuss Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman.
This group aims at creating an opportunity to exchange ideas and perceptions about the book, behavioral economics, psychology, logical fallacies and human thinking in general. This group should motivate to read the book carefully and ask questions of every day importance about human logic and reasoning. What is the point of human rationality? Can cognitive biases be overcome by systematic and repetitive practice? And is it actually a "good thing" to strive for logical soundness? Multiple cognitive biases and logical fallacies will be explored along the way (i.a. argumentum ad populum, Catch 22, outcome bias). The structure of the book club is rather loose and does not copy the outline of the book. Relevant chapters of the book and additional readings will be selecting for each session. Preliminary outline is:
1. Consciousness and unconscious biases
3. Anchoring Effect
4. Judgment under Uncertainty
5. Planning Fallacy
6. Choices, Values and Frames
7. Memory and remembering happiness
8. Prospect Theory
Language of this group will be English.
Content in brief: Human irrationality is Kahneman’s great theme, although Kahneman never grapples philosophically with the nature of rationality. He does, however, supply a fascinating account of what might be taken to be its goal: happiness. The book is like a colonoscopy of human thinking. It distinguishes between remembering and experiencing self and provides for an impeccable account of our introspective assessments of reality and experience.
Previously in this book club:
Sapiens: A Brief History of Humankind written by Yuval Noah Harari. This group aimed at creating an opportunity to exchange ideas and perceptions about the book, motivate each other to read carefully and ask dramatic questions about human life such as: what do we want to become? Or rather what do we want to want? As Harari puts it those who are not spooked by this question probably have not given it enough thought. Let's rectify this.
Content in brief: For the first half of our existence we potter along unremarkably; then we undergo a series of revolutions. First, the "cognitive" revolution: about 70,000 years ago, we start to behave in far more ingenious ways than before, for reasons that are still obscure, and we spread rapidly across the planet. About 11,000 years ago we enter on the agricultural revolution, converting in increasing numbers from foraging (hunting and gathering) to farming. The "scientific revolution" begins about 500 years ago. It triggers the industrial revolution, about 250 years ago, which triggers in turn the information revolution, about 50 years ago, which triggers the biotechnological revolution, which is still wet behind the ears. Harari suspects that the biotechnological revolution signals the end of sapiens: we will be replaced by bioengineered post-humans, "amortal" cyborgs, capable of living forever.