About this book
The Desire to Know and Why Your Future Depends On It
The latest from Ian Leslie, the author of Born Liars, a Globe and Mail Top 100 Book, is a fascinating look at the human characteristic of curiosity — our extraordinary capacity to take pleasure in discovering, learning, and understanding.
Curious shows how the practice of “deep curiosity” — persistent, self-reflective seeking of knowledge and insight — is key to the success of our careers, the happiness of our children, the strength of our relationships, and the progress of societies. But it also argues that it is a fragile quality, which wanes and waxes over time, and that we take it for granted at our peril. Ian Leslie proposes that the Internet is opening up a “curiosity gap,” by exacerbating the divide between those with a large cognitive appetite, and those happy knowing no more than they have to know; between the curious and the incurious. He draws on many sources and stories to illustrate his points: Benjamin Franklin at Portsmouth Harbour studying the effect of oil on choppy waters; a bored Galileo distracting himself in a Pisa cathedral by observing the swinging of a recently lit lamp; Leonardo da Vinci doodling ideas in his notebook; Google co-founder Larry Page’s thoughts on the perfect search engine; the invention of the microwave oven; the advantages of your local bookseller over Amazon’s algorithms; a reassessment of Donald Rumsfeld’s defense strategy, and many more.
Rich, textured, and exciting, Curious is a new take on the most absorbing human trait of all.
About the Author
Ian Leslie is the critically acclaimed author of Born Liars: Why We Can’t Live Without Deceit, which was a Globe and Mail Top 100 Book. He has written about politics, culture, marketing, and psychology for the Guardian, The Times, Prospect, and the BBC. He lives in London, England.