From Publishers Weekly
With humor and warm disinterestedness, Myers, professor of psychology at Michigan's Hope College, marshals cognitive research on intuition, or "our capacity for direct knowledge, for immediate insight without observation or reason" or what is sometimes called ESP. He finds that the mind operates on two levels, "deliberate" and "automatic." The nondeliberate mode (aka the intuitive) can be an effective way of knowing and doing, helping us empathize with others, intuit social cues or perform rote tasks like driving cars. It can also lead us astray: illusory correlations, self-fulfilling prophecies, dramatic anomalies and other misleading heuristics may feel like direct perception, but are not. Statistically random events may appear to have patterns, but "random sequences are streaky." The book treats scientific method as an attractive intellectual tool and shuns "truth is personally constructed" evasions; it is thus delightfully readable and deliberately provocative.
Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information, Inc.
From Library Journal
Myers (psychology, Hope Coll.) presents here accessible research findings on intuition that are a welcome change from obscure self-help guides on the subject. He holds that people often rely on hunches without factoring in personal backgrounds, scientific fact, and unperceived influences, such as random streaks of occurrence, making those hunches less effective than we might think. Covered here are intuition's general strengths and weaknesses and its relationship to investment, psychotherapy, and employment settings. While some would argue that trying to gauge intuition is futile, Myers argues convincingly that we can measure how we arrive at a conclusion. By and large Myers is not making a case for intuition so much as for logic: he invites us to sharpen our insights and self-knowledge so that when impulse strikes, we can make sounder and less costly decisions. For the psychology sections of larger public libraries and academic libraries. Lisa Liquori, M.L.S., Syracuse, NY
Copyright 2002 Reed Business Information, Inc.