How does Fishpond Work?

Shop over a million Toys in our Huge New Range

The Black Swan

New or Used: 4 copies from $22.40
Nassim Nicholas Taleb's phenomenal international bestseller The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable shows us how to stop trying to predict everything - and take advantage of uncertainty. What have the invention of the wheel, Pompeii, the Wall Street Crash, Harry Potter and the internet got in common? Why are all forecasters con-artists? What can Catherine the Great's lovers tell us about probability? Why should you never run for a train or read a newspaper? This book is all about Black Swans: the random events that underlie our lives, from bestsellers to world disasters. Their impact is huge; they're impossible to predict; yet after they happen we always try to rationalize them. 'Taleb is a bouncy and even exhilarating guide ... I came to relish what he said, and even develop a sneaking affection for him as a person' Will Self, Independent on Sunday 'He leaps like some superhero of the mind' Boyd Tonkin, Independent 'Funny, quirky and thought-provoking ... confirms his status as a guru for every would-be Damien Hirst, George Soros and aspirant despot' John Cornwell, Sunday Times 'Idiosyncratically brilliant' Niall Ferguson, Sunday Telegraph 'Great fun ... brash, stubborn, entertaining, opinionated, curious, cajoling' Stephen J. Dubner, Co-Author of Freakonomics
Product Details

About the Author

Nassim Nicholas Taleb is a radical no-nonsense philosopher for our times. He has spent his life immersing himself in problems of luck, uncertainty, probability, and knowledge, and he has led three high-profile careers around his ideas, as a man of letters, as a businessman-trader, and as a university professor and researcher. He is currently Distinguished Professor of Risk Engineering at New York University's School of Engineering. He is the author of the 4-volume INCERTO (Antifragile, The Black Swan, Fooled by Randomness, and The Bed of Procrustes). Taleb refuses all awards and honours as they debase knowledge by turning it into competitive sports.


Taleb is concerned with black swans, i.e., unpredictable and improbable events that have great impact. Among the examples of these he cites are the rapid spread of the Internet and the 9/11 attacks. People endeavor to explain black swans after they occur, but they cannot do so in advance. Despite the crucial effects of these events, economists and other supposed experts in prediction fail to allow for them; indeed, their theories often deny their possibility. Because of this failure, Taleb maintains that much business forecasting is useless. To him, only a few economists, e.g., Friedrich Hayek, grasp the vital importance of uncertainty and escape condemnation. Taleb extends his indictment of conventional approaches to risk, contending that the bell curve, a key tool of many standard theories, often fails to fit the actual world. He further posits that people tend not to cope with a black swan properly, tailoring their response to specific details of the incident rather than generalizing their response. Taleb's excellent book, which continues and extends his earlier Fooled by Randomness: The Hidden Role of Chance in Life and in the Markets, effectively exposes many common illusions. Recommended for all collections.--David Gordon, Bowling Green State Univ., OH Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.

Great fun ... brash, stubborn, entertaining, opinionated, curious, cajoling * Freakonomics * An idiosyncratically brilliant new book * Sunday Telegraph * A fascinating study of how we are regularly taken for suckers by the unexpected * Guardian * Like the conversation of a raconteur ... hugely enjoyable - compelling * Financial Times * Confirms his status as a guru for every would-be Damien Hirst, George Soros and aspirant despot * Sunday Times * In the tradition of The Wisdom of Crowds and The Tipping Point * Time *

Look for similar items by category
How Fishpond Works
Fishpond works with suppliers all over the world to bring you a huge selection of products, really great prices, and delivery included on over 25 million products that we sell. We do our best every day to make Fishpond an awesome place for customers to shop and get what they want — all at the best prices online.
Webmasters, Bloggers & Website Owners
You can earn a 5% commission by selling The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable on your website. It's easy to get started - we will give you example code. After you're set-up, your website can earn you money while you work, play or even sleep! You should start right now!
Authors / Publishers
Are you the Author or Publisher of a book? Or the manufacturer of one of the millions of products that we sell. You can improve sales and grow your revenue by submitting additional information on this title. The better the information we have about a product, the more we will sell!
Item ships from and is sold by Fishpond World Ltd.
Back to top