Request Inspection Copy

If you are an Academic or Teacher and wish to consider this book as a prescribed textbook for your course, you may be eligible for a complimentary inspection copy. Please complete this form, including information about your position, campus and course, before adding to cart.

* Required Fields

To complete your Inspection Copy Request you will need to click the Checkout button in the right margin and complete the checkout formalities. You can include Inspection Copies and purchased items in the same shopping cart, see our Inspection Copy terms for further information.

Any Questions? Please email our text Support Team on text@footprint.com.au

Submit

Email this to a friend

* ALL required Fields

Order Inspection Copy

An inspection copy has been added to your shopping cart

Not Born Yesterday: The Science of Who We Trust and What We Believe

by Hugo Mercier Princeton University Press
Pub Date:
02/2020
ISBN:
9780691178707
Format:
Hbk 384 pages
Price:
AU$57.99 NZ$60.86
Product Status: In Stock Now
add to your cart
Why people are not as gullible as we think


 


Not Born Yesterday explains how we decide who we can trust and what we should believe - and argues that we're pretty good at making these decisions. In this lively and provocative book, Hugo Mercier demonstrates how virtually all attempts at mass persuasion - whether by religious leaders, politicians, or advertisers - fail miserably. Drawing on recent findings from political science and other fields ranging from history to anthropology, Mercier shows that the narrative of widespread gullibility, in which a credulous public is easily misled by demagogues and charlatans, is simply wrong.


 


Why is mass persuasion so difficult? Mercier uses the latest findings from experimental psychology to show how each of us is endowed with sophisticated cognitive mechanisms of open vigilance. Computing a variety of cues, these mechanisms enable us to be on guard against harmful beliefs, while being open enough to change our minds when presented with the right evidence. Even failures'when we accept false confessions, spread wild rumors, or fall for quack medicine'are better explained as bugs in otherwise well-functioning cognitive mechanisms than as symptoms of general gullibility.


 


Not Born Yesterday shows how we filter the flow of information that surrounds us, argues that we do it well, and explains how we can do it better still.


 


 


 

"This is an extraordinarily impressive book. Mercier demolishes one of our cherished beliefs, the idea that (other) humans are naturally gullible, an illusion that is entrenched in popular opinion and has been a mainstay of academic psychology for decades."'Pascal Boyer, author of Minds Make Societies: How Cognition Explains the World Humans Create
Hugo Mercier is a cognitive scientist at the Jean Nicod Institute in Paris and the coauthor of The Enigma of Reason. He lives in Nantes, France. Twitter @hugoreasoning