November 5th 2018
Author, Malcolm Gladwell, in his novel, “Blink” expresses the importance of split second thinking and explains to his audience how giving great thought to something can actually do more harm than good. His goal is to “convince readers that our snap judgements and first impressions can be educated and controlled” (15). Gladwell uses an informal tone with lots of stories to keep readers engaged and interested.
Gladwell begins his novel with the first of many stories, giving us a deep dive into the world of statue buying by telling the audience how experts were wrong after months of studying a piece to determine whether it was real. While, experts back in Europe were able to decipher it correctly in a matter of seconds. He uses storytelling in order for his readers to feel at ease and intrigued.
“Blink” is filled with Gladwell’s opinion, to contrast he uses a great deal of outside sourcing to show credibility. He refers to work from educated individuals such as John Gottman, a psychologist from the University of Washington. He also comes with his own set of achievements as he is the author of the international bestseller, “The Tipping Point”. He also currently reports for the New York Times and has previously worked on The Washington Post. To add to his legitimacy, he includes scientific experiments throughout. Most notably he sat in on John Gottman’s experiments with couples and was able to decipher, with ninety five percent accuracy, if the couple will still be married in fifteen years by reading small emotional nuances (21).
Gladwell guides the readers mental process throughout by adding in rhetorical questions. The purpose of these questions is to keep readers thinking and helps them relate the experiments to their own lives. This also allows for connection with his audience. Examples include, “That was easy right?” (78) and “Wouldn’t that man make a great President?” (73).