Approaching the contentious issue of social bias with nuance and a broad range of exhaustive research, behavioural scientist, activist and writer, Agarwal demonstrates how unconscious prejudice is still immensely prevalent in contemporary society. Cogently argued and intensely persuasive, Sway is an enlightening account of how entrenched sets of stereotypes have become.
'If you think you don't need to read this book, you really need to read this book.' Jane Garvey, Presenter, BBC Radio 4
'An exhaustive, brilliantly researched survey of bias and how it seeps so easily into our everyday thoughts and actions. An eye-opening book that I hope will be widely read.' Angela Saini, science journalist and author of Superior and Inferior
Included in Stylist Magazine's 'guide to 2020's best non-fiction books'
One of The Bookseller's Editor's Choice picks for April 2020
Have you ever been told to smile more, been teased about your accent, or had your name pronounced incorrectly? If so, you've probably already faced bias in your everyday life.
We like to believe that we are all fair-minded and egalitarian but we all carry biases that we might not even be aware of. We might believe that we live in a post-racial society, but racial tension and inequality is pernicious and pervasive. We might believe that gender inequality is a thing of the past, but it is still ubiquitous.
Unconscious bias has become a frequently-used term in our vocabulary, but there are still so many myths around it. For the first time, behavioural scientist, activist and writer Dr Pragya Agarwal unravels the way our implicit or 'unintentional' biases affect the way we communicate and perceive the world, and how they affect our decision-making, even in life and death situations. She takes a unique inter-disciplinary approach combining case studies, personal experience, interviews and real world stories underpinned by scientific theories and research. She covers a wide range of implicit biases in depth, including age-ism, appearance, accents, sexism and aversive racism. Throughout, Pragya answers questions such as: do our roots for prejudice lie in our evolutionary past? What happens in our brains when our biases are activated? How has bias affected technology? If we don't know about it, are we really responsible for it?
At a time when partisan political ideologies are taking centre stage, and we struggle to make sense of who we are and who we want to be, it is crucial that we understand why we act the way we do. This book will enable you to reflect and consider the forces that shape us all, opening your eyes to your own biases in a scientific and non-judgmental way.
Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing Plc
Number of pages: 448
Dimensions: 216 x 135 mm
An important look at one of the issues facing Western society today. This book exposes the insidiousness of unconscious bias and offers us a way to change the way we think that is practical, useful, readable and essential for the times we are living in. You need to read this book and think about the way you live and how you view others. -- Nikesh Shukla, author and editor of The Good Immigrant, screenwriter and fellow of the Royal Society of Literature
An exhaustive, brilliantly researched survey of bias and how it seeps so easily into our everyday thoughts and actions, from gender essentialism to casual racism. Calmly and without polemic, Agarwal explains why we all need to work harder to avoid lazy prejudice and simplistic narratives if we are to build a fairer society. An eye-opening book that I hope will be widely read. -- Angela Saini, science journalist and author of Superior and Inferior
If you think you don't need to read this book, you really need to read this book. -- Jane Garvey, presenter, BBC Radio 4
This indispensable book takes us into our own minds and helps us understand why we believe what we believe and how we can confront ourselves with not just an understanding of other people, but who we are too. A book that is challenging, fascinating and useful, and if we take notice, a book that could make us better people. -- Robin Ince, comedian, writer and broadcaster
Approaching the contentious issue of social bias with nuance and a broad range of exhaustive research, behavioural scientist, activist and writer, Agarwal demonstrates how unconscious prejudice is still immensely prevalent in contemporary society. Cogently argued and intensely persuasive, Sway is an enlightening account of how entrenched sets of stereotypes have become. * Waterstones *
Scrupulously researched, engagingly written, and searingly relevant. -- Caroline Sanderson, editor at The Bookseller
This book is totally fascinating and a reminder that we are all complex creatures with multiple layers. This book is vital reading, eye-opening and a helping hand to arm ourselves with the knowledge to be and do better. -- Emma Gannon, writer, podcast host and author of The Multi-Hyphen Method