A reading club with a view to the future

044 Daniel Kahneman: Thinking, Fast and Slow

Our mind has two systems for decision-making, and understanding their biases and interactions can help us make better choices.

Daniel Kahneman: Thinking, Fast and Slow


This book delves into the workings of our two cognitive systems and how they influence our thoughts and decisions. System 1 is fast and intuitive, while System 2 is slow and deliberate. By understanding their biases, heuristics, and interactions, we can learn to make better decisions and avoid common pitfalls.


Title: Thinking, Fast and Slow

Author: Daniel Kahneman

Publishing Year: 2011

Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux

Length in Hours: 20 hours and 2 minutes

5 main ideas

  1. System 1 and System 2: We have two cognitive systems that influence our decision-making, with System 1 being fast and intuitive, and System 2 being slow and deliberate.
  2. Cognitive biases: Our cognitive biases affect our judgment and decision-making, leading to common errors like overconfidence and the availability heuristic.
  3. Prospect theory: Our choices are influenced by how we perceive losses and gains, and we are more sensitive to losses than to gains.
  4. Anchoring and adjustment: Our judgment is often influenced by the first piece of information we encounter, and we adjust from there, which can lead to biases and errors.
  5. Choice architecture: The way choices are presented can influence our decision-making, and we can use this knowledge to create better choices for ourselves and others.
Daniel Kahneman: Thinking, Fast and Slow

5 funny quotes

  1. "Econs do not feel."
  2. "We are not thinking machines that feel, we are feeling machines that think."
  3. "There is much more to be gained from experimenting with ways of treating patients than from theorizing about what might be going on inside their heads."
  4. "The gorilla experiment is a humiliation device that was designed by vision scientists to remind ordinary mortals of how little they know about themselves."
  5. "A reliable way to make people believe in falsehoods is frequent repetition, because familiarity is not easily distinguished from truth."

5 thought-provoking quotes​

  1. “The confidence that individuals have in their beliefs depends mostly on the quality of the story they can tell about what they see, even if they see little.”
  2. “Nothing in life is as important as you think it is, while you are thinking about it.”
  3. “We can be blind to the obvious, and we are also blind to our blindness.”
  4. “The test of learning psychology is whether you’ve changed your mind about human nature.”
  5. “The world makes much less sense than you think. The coherence comes mostly from the way your mind works.”

5 dilemmas

  1. The conflict between intuition and rationality
  2. The tension between the remembering self and the experiencing self
  3. The balance between the ease of cognitive effort and the accuracy of cognitive effort
  4. The challenge of integrating multiple perspectives into decision making
  5. The difficulty of separating cause and effect in complex systems

5 examples

  1. The halo effect, where a positive quality attributed to a person affects how their other qualities are perceived
  2. The sunk cost fallacy, where the investment in a project leads to continued investment despite poor results
  3. The priming effect, where exposure to a stimulus influences subsequent behavior or perception
  4. The availability heuristic, where the ease of recalling information influences how likely it is perceived to be true
  5. The planning fallacy, where people underestimate the time and resources needed to complete a task

Referenced books

  1. "Influence: The Psychology of Persuasion" by Robert Cialdini
  2. "Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth, and Happiness" by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sunstein
  3. "Predictably Irrational: The Hidden Forces That Shape Our Decisions" by Dan Ariely

Share a quote

"We are not thinking machines that feel, we are feeling machines that think."

Daniel Kahneman: Thinking, Fast and Slow
Become a NextBook Insider

Join our community to access exclusive content, comment on stories, participate in giveaways, and more.