the geography of thought: how asians and westerners think differently...and why by richard e. nisbett was a book that our ceo mentioned he had read recently, so i picked it up on one of my trips to library. it basically argues that western and eastern thought has some fundamental differences, and much of it boils down to a difference between individualistic and holistic thinking.

this is one of those books that stands across the accessible and academic divide, but i don’t think it fails on the accessibility front (and am not qualified to really judge it on academic merits). some of the studies he cites are fascinating, and do a good job of illustrating some of the differences.

my main complaint about the book would be that it is a little too binary. a few of the studies break things down beyond just western and eastern, but most of the studies are fairly small in scope and so can’t be cut that finely. this means that areas like the mideast and africa aren’t really given much consideration.

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