Review: Barry Schwartz – The Paradox of Choice (S)

The Paradox of Choice
Barry Schwartz

“In The Paradox of Choice, Barry Schwartz explains why too much of a good thing has proven detrimental to our psychological and emotional well-being. In accessible, engaging, and anecdotal prose, Schwartz explains how a culture that thrives on the availability of constantly evolving options can also foster profound dissatisfaction and self-blame in individuals, which can lead to a paralysis in decision making and, in some cases, depression.”

I was looking for a book to read at the local library. I had heard that this author wasn’t bad except I was looking for a different book by him. All I could find was this one so I thought I’d give it a try. Unfortunately it’s not really the right book for me or in my area of interest.

I completely agree with the argument of the book, which is that less is more in making decisions.
But I didn’t need to read a whole book about it. I was sold on the argument and idea early on. But then the book keeps going on about it more and more, and simply dragging it out in a way that wasn’t necessary.

There is only a very small section of one chapter at the end with “what we can do”. That’s what I was waiting and wading through the rest of the book to read! Unfortunately it was more like a conclusion rather than an action plan. It was very repetitive and seemed like the author was just having a rant. It was also very heavily geared at Americans. Which is fine, except parts are just not relevant to me or people in other countries. For example, the private health system and even just the volume of choices at supermarkets, here it is nowhere near what’s in the book.

I would recommend it to anyone who is a complete “maximizer” as referred to in the book. But even still, you only need to read a bit of it to get the point. 2 stars.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.