What the Dog Saw by Malcolm Gladwell


Malcolm Gladwell

  Economics, Insights

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A collection of 19 of Gladwells best articles


What the Dog Saw is essentially a collection of 19 articles that were all previously published on the pages of The New York Times. These are a collection of Malcolm Gladwell's best articles. 

Through these features, Gladwell seeks to showcase the world through the eyes of others, other business people, geniuses or even alcoholics or dogs. The collection is an interesting mix of finance, marketing, psychology, cultural history, and sociology. He covers a wide range of topics in this book which transforms readers into diverse individuals.


Here are a few examples of what you can explore in What The Dog Saw:

1. Pioneers, and Other Varieties of Minor Genius

This is the first section of the book and it includes six essays. In the words of Gladwell, this section is about “obsessives" and what he likes to call "minor geniuses". These are not Einstein, Winston Churchill or Nelson Mandela or the other prominent shapers of the world but people like Ron Popei and Shirley Polykoff.


2. The Pitchman:

The Pitchman narrates the tale of an excellent inventor. Malcolm explores who he is and what people like him generally tend to be like. He relates these characters to actors. A resolve is found between their similar personalities in the end.


3. The Ketchup Conundrum:

The Ketchup Conundrum illustrates how food and beverage commodities are researched, developed, manufactured, and sold. This section is about ketchup vs mustard. Ketchup emerges as one of the few products that sell without the need to diversify like mustard. The author looks into the significance of concentrating on a single objective instead of diversified objectives.


4. Blowing Up:

Blowing Up offers 2 methods of investing in the Stock market. He urges investors to discover patterns and always bank on chaos.


5. True Colors:

True Colors examines and reveals the marketing tools used by hair dye companies(Clairol and L’Oreal) to grab the American woman’s interest. It also describes how campaigns led by women throughout the decade were always crucial in the types of trends that dye companies gravitated towards. 


6. John’s Rock Error:

John’s Rock Error tells the dilemma of an inventor who is a dedicated Catholic but still went out of his way to invent a pill for birth control. This section explores his moral dilemma between science and religion.


7. What the Dog Saw:

What the Dog Saw explains how dogs are highly receptive to human body language. It goes further and highlights the relevance of training dog owners as a means to also train the dog.

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