Everything Bad is Good for You by Steven Johnson
How Today's Popular Culture is Actually Making Us Smarter

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Forget everything you’ve ever read about the age of dumbed-down, instant-gratification culture. In this provocative, unfailingly intelligent, thoroughly researched, and surprisingly convincing big idea book, Steven Johnson draws from fields as diverse as neuroscience, economics, and media theory to argue that the pop culture we soak in every day—from Lord of the Rings to Grand Theft Auto to The Simpsons—has been growing more sophisticated with each passing year, and, far from rotting our brains, is actually posing new cognitive challenges that are actually making our minds measurably sharper. After reading Everything Bad is Good for You, you will never regard the glow of the video game or television screen the same way again.

With a new afterword by the author.

Steven Johnson's newest book, Future Perfect, is now available from Riverhead Books.


About Steven Johnson

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STEVEN JOHNSON is the author of the bestsellers The Invention of Air, The Ghost Map, Everything Bad Is Good for You, and Mind Wide Open, as well as Emergence and Interface Culture. He is the founder of a variety of influential websites—currently, outside.in—and is a contributing editor to Wired. He lives in Brooklyn, with his wife and sons.
Published May 2, 2006 by Riverhead. 273 pages
Genres: Health, Fitness & Dieting, Political & Social Sciences, Computers & Technology, Science & Math, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for Everything Bad is Good for You

The New York Times

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Steven Johnson argues that video games and television are making Americans smarter than ever.

May 22 2005 | Read Full Review of Everything Bad is Good for Yo...

AV Club

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Everyone knows scolds who prattle on about the ways that pop culture makes us dumb and complacent, but does anyone take them seriously? As the...

May 10 2005 | Read Full Review of Everything Bad is Good for Yo...


But the effect isn't very well understood, and Johnson doesn't provide any sort of study or numerical data to back up his claim that television complexity explains rising IQ scores.

Sep 20 2012 | Read Full Review of Everything Bad is Good for Yo...

Bookmarks Magazine

Driven by a fervent desire to prove that today’s media are more beneficial to the human mind than they are damaging, Johnson, author of several books on science and technology (see Mind Wide Open, 4 of 5 Stars May/June 2004), fails to adequately define his agenda other than showcasing his research.

Jan 03 2008 | Read Full Review of Everything Bad is Good for Yo...

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