Subliminal by Leonard Mlodinow


8 Critic Reviews

While many of his topics are fascinating individually, the author tries to cover too much ground in just over 200 pages.


Leonard Mlodinow, the best-selling author of The Drunkard’s Walk and coauthor of The Grand Design (with Stephen Hawking), gives us a startling and eye-opening examination of how the unconscious mind shapes our experience of the world and how, for instance, we often misperceive our relationships with family, friends, and business associates, misunderstand the reasons for our investment decisions, and misremember important events.

Your preference in politicians, the amount you tip your waiter—all judgments and perceptions reflect the workings of our mind on two levels: the conscious, of which we are aware, and the unconscious, which is hidden from us. The latter has long been the subject of speculation, but over the past two decades researchers have developed remarkable new tools for probing the hidden, or subliminal, workings of the mind. The result of this explosion of research is a new science of the unconscious and a sea change in our understanding of how the subliminal mind affects the way we live.

Employing his trademark wit and lucid, accessible explanations of the most obscure scientific subjects, Leonard Mlodinow takes us on a tour of this research, unraveling the complexities of the subliminal self and increasing our understanding of how the human mind works and how we interact with friends, strangers, spouses, and coworkers. In the process he changes our view of ourselves and the world around us.

About Leonard Mlodinow

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Leonard Mlodinow received his doctorate in physics from the University of California, Berkeley, was an Alexander von Humboldt fellow at the Max Planck Institute, and now teaches about randomness to future scientists at Caltech. Along the way he also wrote for the television series MacGyver and Star Trek: The Next Generation. His previous books include Euclid's Window: The Story of Geometry from Parallel Lines to Hyperspace, Feynman's Rainbow: A Search for Beauty in Physics and in Life, and, with Stephen Hawking, A Briefer History of Time. He lives in South Pasadena, California.
Published April 24, 2012 by Vintage. 274 pages
Genres: Other, Business & Economics, Health, Fitness & Dieting, Self Help, Parenting & Relationships, Science & Math, Professional & Technical. Non-fiction
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Critic reviews for Subliminal
All: 8 | Positive: 5 | Negative: 3


Below average
Mar 15 2012

While many of his topics are fascinating individually, the author tries to cover too much ground in just over 200 pages.

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Blog Critics

Reviewed by Dr. Joseph Maresca on Jun 03 2012

Subliminal is a carefully crafted book on the dynamics of human relations and the impact on our conscious and unconscious mind.

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The Economist

Apr 28 2012

The insights offered by modern science into the workings of the human mind are fascinating in their own right. But they also suggest that plenty of conventional wisdom about how humans behave may need rethinking.

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Oregon Live

Below average
Reviewed by Marc Mohan on May 05 2012

...I was somewhat underwhelmed by the book...Mlodinow hardly ever digs beneath the results of these studies to explore what exactly is going on in that gray matter or its implications for concepts like human free will.

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We Love This Book

Reviewed by Jade Craddock

Delivered in a refreshingly accessible and witty manner, this book and its findings encourage a complete rethinking of how we understand the unconscious and our behaviour.

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The Agony Column

Reviewed by Rick Kleffel on Jun 02 2012

Obviously, this is a powerful and enjoyable reading experience. It's exactly why you read — whether you know it or not.

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The Stranger

Below average
Reviewed by Paul Constant on May 08 2012

...a fascinating source of trivia...But readers looking for information on how to access their own subconscious, or how to be more aware of unconscious decision-making, will come away sorely disappointed.

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At Home With Books

Reviewed by Alyce on May 17 2012

...if you’ve ever wondered why it is that you do the things you do, this book will give insights into some of the possible ways your unconscious mind could be at work in your life.

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