Malcolm Gladwell Outliers The American Dream

1751 Words8 Pages
My understanding of the “American Dream” is a concept of migrating to the United States, starting from scratch, and becoming rich and successful by working hard. But after reading Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell change my perspective of the “American Dream” by providing the idea of luck and opportunity playing a major factor in one 's success. Almost all the success story of the immigrant in the book was by opportunity because of birth, chance by cultural background and circumstances. Gladwell changed my view of how the “American Dream” is accomplished, not solely by hard work, but luck and opportunity are what factor into someone accomplishing the “American Dream”. Reading Outliers, the main thesis or central premise of Gladwell on why some people…show more content…
Malcolm Gladwell insists that IQ is not the determining factor in one’s ability to achieve success because he believes that opportunity and chance play critical roles in one’s journey to achieve success. In Outliers, Gladwell includes Christopher Langan story growing up. Langan has an IQ of one ninety-five, “The average person has an IQ of one hundred… Einstein one fifty” (Gladwell 70). Langan is considered “the smartest man in America” and sometimes “the smartest man in the world”. He is also a college dropout, due to financial difficulty and other factors. Langan has a special ability, but his circumstances held him back from graduating college. Living in a life of poverty growing up, Langan did not have such opportunity that Gates had due to his circumstances. Langan has one of the highest IQ and that did not determine his success because he has not reach the level of success with his ability. What Gladwell means when he suggests that IQ reaches a point of diminishing returns after reaching 130 is after reaching 130 or surpassing it, IQ stop mattering. Having a higher IQ does not matter after 130, having enough does because intelligence has a threshold. When practical intelligence is mention in Outliers, Malcolm Gladwell writes “practical intelligence includes things like "knowing what to say to whom, knowing when to say it, and knowing how to say it for maximum effect." It is procedural: it is about knowing how doing something without necessarily knowing why you know it or being able to explain it. It 's practical in nature: that is, it 's not knowledge for its own sake” (Gladwell 101). It differs from IQ because IQ is a score obtained from one of the several standardized tests constructed to evaluate someone’s
Open Document