How PowerPoint Makes You Stupid

How PowerPoint Makes You Stupid Cover

How PowerPoint Makes You Stupid

The Faulty Causality, Sloppy Logic, Decontextualized Data, and Seductive Showmanship That Have Taken Over Our Thinkin

By Franck Frommer; George Holoch (Translator)

New Press, Hardcover, 9781595587022, 262pp.

Publication Date: February 28, 2012


With over 500 million users worldwide, Microsoft’s PowerPoint software has become the ubiquitous tool for nearly all forms of public presentationin schools, government agencies, the military, and, of course, offices everywhere. In this revealing and powerfully argued book, author Franck Frommer shows us that PowerPoint’s celebrated ease and efficiency actually mask a profoundly disturbing but little-understood transformation in human communication.

Using fascinating examples (including the most famous PowerPoint presentation of all: Colin Powell’s indictment of Iraq before the United Nations), Frommer systematically deconstructs the slides, bulleted lists, and flashy graphics we all now take for granted. He shows how PowerPoint has promoted a new, slippery grammar,” where faulty causality, sloppy logic, decontextualized data, and seductive showmanship have replaced the traditional tools of persuasion and argument.

How PowerPoint Makes You Stupid includes a fascinating mini-history of PowerPoint’s emergence, as well as a sobering and surprising account of its reach into the most unsuspecting nooks of work, life, and education. For anyone concerned with the corruption of language, the dumbing-down of society, or the unchecked expansion of efficiency” in our culture, here is a book that will become a rallying cry for turning the tide.

About the Author
Franck Frommer worked as a journalist for a dozen years before joining an international company where he worked in the area of communications and the web. The author of a biography of Jean-Patrick Manchette, he lives in Paris. George Holoch has translated more than twenty books, including Eric Hazan's "Notes on the Occupation" and Alain Deneault's "Offshore" (both from The New Press). He lives in Hinesburg, Vermont.

Praise For How PowerPoint Makes You Stupid

An original and brilliant study . . . Frommer’s call to resist the powerpointization” of our souls carries in it the lucidity of a new social critique.
Les Inrockuptibles

To the executive who never dozed off after lunch in an atmosphere subdued by a PowerPoint meeting, who never experienced the desperation of trying to summarize
an entire year’s work in ten slides and fifty bullet points: throw the first projector at
Franck Frommer.
Le Monde

In an in-depth study, Franck Frommer has unearthed a new killer of brain cells.