Essay on Outliers: Out of the Ordinary

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Malcolm Gladwell insists throughout his book, Outliers: The Story of Success, that the recipe for achievement is not simply based on personal talents or innate abilities alone. Gladwell offers the uncommon idea that outliers largely depend upon “extraordinary opportunities and cultural legacies” (Gladwell19). According to Gladwell, successful men and women are beneficiaries of relationships, occasions, places, and cultures. The author draws on a different case study in each chapter to support a particular argument concerning success. Despite his indifference and suppression in regards to counterarguments, Gladwell’s claims are effective for many reasons, including through the accounts of experts, tone and style of writing, and the…show more content…
The author explains exactly what the professional asserts and how particular pieces of evidence relate to Gladwell’s unconventional idea of success. Furthermore, Gladwell’s tone and style of writing throughout Outliers contributes to his arguments’ effectiveness. The manner in which Gladwell tells the stories in relation to each individual claim is brilliant. Not only is the writing tone of the author informative, thoughtful, and compelling, but it is also frequently conversational. Many times in Outliers, Gladwell seems to be speaking directly to his readers. The author achieves this conversational tone primarily by asking questions within his arguments. In The 10,000-Hour Rule chapter, Gladwell applies this tone when he asks, “What’s ten years?” The author is challenging the reader to determine what significance ten years has in relation to success. Unknowingly challenged, the reader searches for an explanation within his or her own thoughts before continuing reading. The author answers his own question, “It [ten years] is roughly how long it takes to put in ten thousand hours of hard practice” (41). Gladwell also uses a conversational style of writing by including a personal touch within the epilogue, A Jamaican Story. “That is the story of my mother’s path to success,” writes the author (272). With this statement, Gladwell is opening up a personal revelation to the reader in a way

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