How Analogies Reveal Connections, Spark Innovation, and Sell Our Greatest Ideas
By John Pollack
Avery Publishing Group, Hardcover, 9781592408498, 256pp.
Publication Date: September 11, 2014
From the meatpacking plants that inspired Henry Ford's first moving assembly line to the "domino theory" that led America into Vietnam to the "bicycle for the mind" that Steve Jobs envisioned as the Macintosh computer, analogies have played a dynamic role in shaping the world around us and still do today.
Analogies are far more complex than their SAT stereotype and lie at the very core of human cognition and creativity. Once we become aware of this, we start seeing them everywhere in ads, apps, political debates, legal arguments, logos, and euphemisms, to name just a few. At their very best, analogies inspire new ways of thinking, enable invention, and motivate people to action. Unfortunately, not every analogy that rings true "is" true. That's why, at their worst, analogies can deceive, manipulate, or mislead us into disaster. The challenge? Spotting the difference before it's too late.
Rich with engaging stories, surprising examples, and a practical method to evaluate the truth or effectiveness of any analogy, "Shortcut" will improve critical thinking, enhance creativity, and offer readers a fresh approach to resolving some of today's most intractable challenges.
Praise for John Pollack’s books:
"He tells us, with a clarity unusual for the subject, how the mind works."
—The New York Times
"The best books on language are the ones that encourage us to reexamine what we think we know, and The Pun Also Rises . . . does exactly that."
—The Boston Globe
"Pollack’s . . . quest seems not merely charming but heroic."
—The New Yorker
"Written in a style of singular grace and impact."