An introvert is defined as: A shy, reticent, and typically self-centered person. An extrovert is defined as: An outgoing, overly expressive person.
In Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can't Stop Talking, self-proclaimed introvert, author Susan Cain challenges the importance of being extroverted in our culture, and uses five years of research as her basis to explain the importance (physiological aspects and psychological advantages) of being introverted. As an obvious extrovert, I am not offended by Cain's mild attack on my personality. I understand her need to bring to light the introverts of the world, as they are not exactly known for making themselves the center of attention. I found this book to be extremely interesting as a teacher, having both extroverts and introverts in my classroom. Definitely makes me re-think my class-participation point system.
Cain's main idea is to show how introverts are undervalued in our society, and what we could have lost (Apple computers, Dr. Seuss books, Gandhi's peaceful spirit) and what we still stand to lose by not taking the time to understand and encourage introverts, giving them the chance to show us who they are. Oh, and to show us that introverts can be pretty, too.
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