Download PDF by Karen A. Cerulo: Never Saw It Coming: Cultural Challenges to Envisioning the

By Karen A. Cerulo

People—especially Americans—are typically optimists. they are much higher at imagining best-case eventualities (I may possibly win the lottery!) than worst-case eventualities (A typhoon might damage my neighborhood!). this can be real not only in their method of imagining the long run, yet in their thoughts besides: individuals are larger in a position to describe the simplest moments in their lives than they're the worst.

Though there are mental purposes for this phenomenon, Karen A.Cerulo, in Never observed It Coming, considers in its place the function of society in fostering this angle. What sorts of groups boost this trend of notion, which don't, and what does that say approximately human skill to guage attainable results of selections and events?

Cerulo takes readers to assorted geographical regions of expertise, together with intimate kin relationships, key transitions in our lives, the locations we paintings and play, and the boardrooms of corporations and bureaucracies. Using interviews, surveys, inventive and fictional debts, media stories, historic information, and reputable files, she illuminates probably the most universal, but least studied, of human traits—a blatant forget for worst-case situations. Never observed It Coming, hence, may be the most important to someone who desires to comprehend human makes an attempt to photo or plan the future.

“In Never observed It Coming, Karen Cerulo argues that during American society there's a ‘positive symmetry,’ a bent to target and exaggerate the easiest, the winner, the main positive final result and outlook. hence, the conceptions of the worst are underdeveloped and elided. certainly, as she masterfully outlines, there are dramatic effects to this characterological lack of ability to visualize and get ready for the worst, because the failure to heed memos best as much as either the September 11 and NASA Challenger mess ups, for example, so painfully reminded us.”--Robin Wagner-Pacifici, Swarthmore College

“Katrina, Sept. 11, and the struggle in Iraq—all reveal the costliness of failing to expect worst-case eventualities. Never observed It Coming explains why it's so tough to take action: adaptive habit hard-wired into human cognition is complemented and bolstered via cultural practices, that are in flip institutionalized within the ideas and constructions of formal organisations. yet Karen Cerulo doesn’t simply diagnose the matter; she makes use of case reports of settings during which humans successfully count on and care for power catastrophe to explain structural strategies to the continual dilemmas she describes so good. Never observed It Coming is a strong contribution to the rising fields of cognitive and ethical sociology.”--Paul DiMaggio, Princeton University

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