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Steven Poole - Author

About the Author

Steven Poole is the author of the books You Aren't What You Eat, Unspeak, and Trigger Happy and a journalist, cultural critic, broadcaster, and composer for documentaries and short films, including the award-winning EVOL. He writes for the Guardian, Edge, the New Statesman and the Times Literary Supplement.

Featured books by Steven Poole

Other books by Steven Poole

Rethink The Surprising History of New Ideas

Rethink The Surprising History of New Ideas

Author: Steven Poole Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 06/04/2017

`Clever and entertaining.' Sunday Times `Elegantly written and full of surprises.' Daily Telegraph `Always entertaining and often eye-opening.' Financial Times Old ideas that were mocked or ignored for centuries are now storming back to the cutting edge of research and informing the way we lead our lives. In Rethink, Steven Poole explains why today's chess grandmasters, quantum physicists and psychologists are mining the last 2,000 years of history for answers to the problems of the present. He explores how long-neglected thinkers could transform our everyday lives: from improving the way boardrooms operate, to inspiring grand projects for social and political change. And above all, he shows that by rethinking discarded ideas we can each gain a better understanding of the world - and perhaps be better equipped to change it. `A whirlwind of discovery ... Among the greatest compliments you can give a book is that it helps you to see things differently.' Guardian `When it comes to describing a complex idea clearly, Poole is one of the best writers around.' Sunday Times `Fascinating ... Poole confirms his standing as one of our liveliest and most thought-provoking writers on science and technology.' Spectator

Rethink

Rethink

Author: Steven Poole Format: eBook Release Date: 09/02/2017

A brilliant and groundbreaking argument that innovation and progress are often achieved by revisiting and retooling ideas from the past rather than starting from scratchfrom The Guardian columnist and contributor to The Atlantic.Innovation is not always as innovative as it may seem. This is the story of how old ideas that were mocked or ignored for centuries are now storming back to the cutting edge of science and technology, informing the way we lead our lives. This is the story of Lamarck and the modern-day epigeneticist whose research vindicated his mocked 200-year-old theory of evolution; of the return of cavalry use in the war in Afghanistan; of Teslas bringing back the electric car; and of the cognitive scientists who made breakthroughs by turning to ancient Greek philosophy.Drawing on examples from business to philosophy to science, Rethink shows what we can learn by revisiting old, discarded ideas and considering them from a novel perspective. From within all these rich anecdotes of overlooked ideas come good ones, helping us find new ways to think about ideas in our own timefrom out-of-the-box proposals in the boardroom to grand projects for social and political change.Armed with this picture of the surprising evolution of ideas and their triumphant second lives, Rethink helps you see the world differently. In the bestselling tradition of Malcolm Gladwell, Pooles new approach to a familiar topic is fun, convincing, and brilliantand offers a clear takeaway: if you want to affect the future, start by taking a look at the past.

Rethink The Surprising History of New Ideas

Rethink The Surprising History of New Ideas

Author: Steven Poole Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 30/06/2016

Think you know a good idea when you see one? Think again. Rethink is the story of how old ideas that were mocked or ignored for centuries are now storming back to the cutting edge of science and technology, and informing the way we lead our lives. It's the story of Grace Hopper, the programming language pioneer who allowed us to speak to computers; of Ignaz Semmelweis, the brilliant doctor who worked out how infections occur long before there was a proper germ theory of disease, and was committed to an asylum for his trouble; of Democritus, the laughing philosopher who inferred the atomic foundations of reality just by thinking about bread. Incorporating examples from areas ranging from epigenetics to value investing, from chess tactics to quantum physics, Rethink shows what we can learn by revisiting old, discarded ideas and considering them from a new perspective. From within the rich anecdotes of bad ideas emerge good ones, helping us find new ways to think about ideas in our own time - from novel proposals in the boardroom to grand projects for social and political change. Armed with this picture of the surprising evolution of ideas and their triumphant second lives, you will see the world differently - and perhaps be better equipped to change it.

You Aren't What You Eat

You Aren't What You Eat

Author: Steven Poole Format: eBook Release Date: 28/09/2012

We have become obsessed by food: where it comes from, where to buy it, how to cook it andmost absurdly of allhow to eat it. Our televisions and newspapers are filled with celebrity chefs, latter-day priests whose authority and ambition range from the small scale (what we should have for supper) to large-scale public schemes designed to improve our communal eating habits. When did the basic human imperative to feed ourselves mutate into such a multitude of anxieties about provenance, ethics, health, lifestyle and class status? And since when did the likes of Jamie Oliver and Nigella Lawson gain the power to transform our kitchens and dining tables into places where we expect to be spiritually sustained? In this subtle and erudite polemic, Steven Poole argues that we're trying to fill more than just our bellies when we pick up our knives and forks, and that we might be a lot happier if we realised that sometimes we should throw away the colour supplements and open a tin of beans.

You Aren't What You Eat

You Aren't What You Eat

Author: Steven Poole Format: eBook Release Date: 26/09/2012

Provocative, erudite, and hilarious - the first full-length broadside at food fetishism to be published in AustraliaWe have become obsessed by food - where it comes from, where to buy it, how to cook it, and, most absurdly of all, how to eat it. Our television screens and newspapers are filled with celebrity chefs, whose authority and ambition range from the small scale (what we should have for supper) to large-scale public schemes designed to improve our communal eating habits. When did the basic human imperative to feed ourselves mutate into such a multitude of anxieties about provenance, ethics, health, lifestyle, and class status? Since when did the likes of Jamie Oliver and Nigella Lawson gain the power to transform our kitchens and dining tables into places where we expect to be spiritually sustained? And why do we take seriously the often mindless prattle of food writers and purveyors?In this masterful polemic, Steven Poole argues that we're trying to fill more than just our bellies when we pick up our knives and forks, and that we might be a lot happier if we realised that sometimes we should throw away the colour supplements and open a tin of beans.

Trigger Happy

Trigger Happy

Author: Steven Poole Format: eBook Release Date: 07/11/2011

The Edge calls Trigger Happy a "e;seminal piece of work."e; For the first time ever, an aficionado with a knowledge of art, culture, and a real love of gaming takes a critical look at the future of our videogames, and compares their aesthetic and economic impact on society to that of film. Thirty years after the invention of the simplest of games, more videogames are played by adults than children. This revolutionary book is the first-ever academically worthy and deeply engaging critique of one of today's most popular forms of play: videogames are on track to supersede movies as the most innovative form of entertainment in the new century.

Unspeak Words Are Weapons

Unspeak Words Are Weapons

Author: Steven Poole Format: Paperback / softback Release Date: 01/02/2007

Unspeak is language as a weapon. Every day, we are bombarded with those apparently simple words or phrases that actually conceal darker meanings. 'Climate change' is less threatening than 'global warming'; we say 'ethnic cleansing' when we mean mass murder. As we absorb and repeat Unspeak we are accepting the messages that politicians, businessmen and military agencies wish us to believe. Operation Iraqi Freedom did more than put a positive spin on the American war with Iraq; it gave the invasion such a likeable name that the American news networks quickly adopted it as their tagline for reporting on the war. By repackaging the language we use to describe international affairs or domestic politics, Unspeak tries to make controversial issues unspeakable and, therefore, unquestionable. In this thought-provoking and important book, Steven Poole traces the globalizing wave of modern Unspeak from culture wars to the culture of war and reveals how everyday words are changing the way we think.