Quiet: The Power of Introverts In a World That Can’t Stop Talking

The perfect word to describe this blog for the past few months (4 months?). Not to say I wasn’t reading. I found this book Quieton Goodreads on a “Best Books of 2012” list. Being a self-diagnosed introvert I was interested. Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World that Can’t Stop Talking by Susan Cain is fairly self-explanatory and Cain does a great job of initially breaking down the “types,” introvert vs. extrovert and exploring the “extrovert ideal” on which we have placed a premium in America.

I would say she started to lose me around Chapters 5 & 6 where the book becomes more specific to introverts in the business world and public speaking. Two areas which are very specific to Cain’s fields of interest. She funnels her research here so narrowly into one particular zone of stock markets and Wall Street that I found myself wondering, “Am I still reading the same book or did I fall into a history of recessions in America?”

By the time she returns to her the more general survey of research with which she started she seems to have lost some steam. In “Part Three: Do All Cultures Have An Extrovert Ideal” she doesn’t quite address “all cultures” so much as she addresses the Asian-American culture. I would like to see at least one other comparison. The first part of the book is the strongest. Cain is more meticulous in backing up her points with good research. By Part Four the final chapters seem to promise more than they give.

“Chapter 9: When Should You Act More Extroverted Than You Really Are?” shows some interesting examples of introverts coping in an extroverted world, but again she zeroes in on the business world. I guess it’s good that she’s writing what she knows and she’s probably speaking to a great majority of Americans. Overall, I did enjoy it and it was an interesting study. Her passion for the subject definitely shows. A companion book on extroverts would be interesting.

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