The Invisible Gorilla

  • Author Christopher Chabris, Daniel Simons
  • Narrator Dan Woren
  • Publisher HarperCollins Publishers
  • Run Time 9 hours and 20 minutes
  • Format Audio
  • Genre Popular psychology.

Listen to a sample

What to expect

If a gorilla walked out into the middle of a basketball pitch, you’d notice it. Wouldn’t you? If a serious violent crime took place just next to you, you’d remember it, right? The Invisible Gorilla is a fascinating look at the unbelievable, yet routine tricks that your brain plays on you.

In an award-winning and groundbreaking study, psychologists Christopher Chabris and Daniel Simons asked volunteers to watch a 60-second film of a group of students playing basketball and told them to count the number of passes made. About halfway through, a woman dressed head to toe in a gorilla outfit slowly moved to centre screen, beat her chest at the camera, and casually strolled away. Unbelievably, almost half of the volunteers missed the gorilla.

As this astonishing and utterly unique new book demonstrates, exactly the same kind of mental illusion that causes people to miss the gorilla can also explain why many other things, including why:

  • honest eyewitness testimony can convict innocent defendants
  • expert money managers suddenly lose billions
  • Homer Simpson has much to teach you about clear thinking

Insightful, witty, and fascinating, The Invisible Gorilla closely examines the false impressions that most profoundly influence our lives and gives practical advice on how we can minimize their negative impact.

Critics Review

  • “Entertaining and illuminating”
    Dan Ariely, New York Times bestselling author of Predictably Irrational

    “A riveting romp across the landscape of our psychological misperceptions.”
    Nicholas A. Christakis, Professor, Harvard Medical School

    “This book will delight all who seek depth and insight into the wonder and complexities of cognition”
    Jerome Groopman, Recanati Professor, Harvard Medical School

    “breathtaking and insightful”
    Richard Wiseman, author of Quirkology

    “Like its authors, the book is both funny and smart”
    Joseph T. Hallinan, Pulitzer Prize winning author of Why We Make Mistakes

    “incredibly engaging…a must-read”
    Elizabeth Loftus, author of Memory and Eyewitness Testimony

    “engaging, accurate and packed with real-world examples – some of which made me laugh out loud”
    Sandra Aamodt, co-author of Welcome To Your Brain

    “not just witty and engaging, but also insightful”
    Thomas W. Malone, author of The Future of Work and founder of the MIT Center for Collective Intelligence

    “The Invisible Gorilla should be required reading by every judge and jury member in our criminal justice system, along with every battlefield commander, corporate CEO, and, well, you and I”
    Michael Shermer, Publisher of Skeptic magazine and author of Why People Believe Weird Things

    “Clever, illuminating, by turns shocking and delightful, this book will change a lot of your bad habits and could even save your life”
    Margaret Heffernan, CEO and author of Women on Top

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