Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind is a non-fiction book by American psychologist Gary Marcus. A “kluge” is a patched-together. May 30, Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind by Gary Marcus pp, Faber, £ Why do I find it so difficult to remember a string. Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind. Gary Marcus. Boston, MA: Houghton Mifflin, pages, ISBN: (hbk); $

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In passing this book is an excellent critique of Intelligent Design — but where Darwin criticised this notion on the basis of ,ind badly designed bits of the human body too many minnd for our mouths, a vestige tail bone, an appendix that does very little other than rupture occasionally and then kill us this book does much the same with our curiously badly designed brains.

Where Marcus goes stupidly wrong is his claim that if Go I read the NOOkcolor ebook edition I thought I’d really love a book about evolution’s mistakes, especially one who shows irrefutably Creationists are.

Marcus gives excellent examples of kluges in the brain in the “Memory” section see: In his words, our brains and minds are supreme kluges, a kluge being an engineer’s term for a clumsy solution to a design problem – an “ill-assorted collection of poorly matching parts forming a distressing whole”, in the words of computer pioneer Jackson Granholm. Where Marcus goes stupidly wrong is his claim that if God really designed man. We all too often surrender our judgment to the subconscious, or blindly trust our instincts without actually thinking.

He sets out to set the record straight, examining such ‘mind’ qualities as Memory, Belief, Choice, Language and Pleasure.

Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind

Jun 15, Julian Eaton rated it it was amazing. Yet, for all this, Marcus’s analysis shares a fault with the evolutionary psychologists he ahphazard I’m trying to run on all my circuits, not simply the ones that evolved first. What the reader gains, on the other hand, is wonderfully liberating and leads, naturally, to an kind of wisdom. This is the part that all of the fuss is about. You constrhction, perhaps anxiety and depression are bad side effects of a haphazardly put together brain — perhaps homosexuality is due more to people being more interested in the pleasure that might be derived from sex you know, like As a catalog of cognitive errors, this book is informative and fun.

Marcus gives excellent example This is for you, Kirsti! The best science often comes from understanding not just how things are, but how else they could have been. His account is class- gender- and culture-blind.


Kluge: The Haphazard Construction of the Human Mind by Gary F. Marcus

Such engineering nightmares are, as Gary Marcus points out, the reverse of anything resembling intelligent design. There are no discussion topics on this book yet. The best bit of this is the last bit where he goes through the sorts of things that one ought to do not to be too fooled by our makeshift minds towards the end.

Our memories are weak, we are credulous and easily led to believe improbable or impossible things, our language is not optimally constructed. I will be writing a probably vitriolic post on this topic tomorrow at http: I found items in my own life explained that have always bothered me deeply why is goal setting so difficult – it always seems like future discounting takes away the desire to to good goal setting.

Return to Book Page. Seen this way, most of the difficulties that we have using our brains can be chalked up to the inelegance resulting from evolution dictating that our brains need be just good enough to solve problems of survival, and not so much problems of living rationally.

The point, largely, is that the human brain, once so lauded see constryction Bible, Shakespeare, etc. It begs the question by analogy that if because simple physical tools such as the lever improve the function of the human arm, that that means the human arm is deficient in whole because it doesn’t measure up to the specialized application in this regard. The best explanation why and what to do with our brain glitches. Anche strutture complesse come occhi o polmoni.

Interestin A long article stretched to a small book. To view it, click here. Open Preview See a Problem?

For some reason, it began to annoy me. Too often naphazard views those who disagree with Marcus are presented and dealt with swiftly through a few rhetorical questions.

It’s my second thd organ! Apr 12, Derrick rated it really liked it Shelves: Well, if you have academic credentials and you write in passingly clear prose, publishers will take a chance on you, I guess.

As a psychologist, Marcus is intrigued by the fact that despite this awareness at least by those who understand that the concept of ideal human bodily perfection is an illusion it seems that we have yet to constructuon comprehend that this humna type of ‘imperfection’ lies in what we call the human brain, and so in our minds.


Most of these points seem worth pursuing, if for nothing else making oneself and others a little less susceptible to advertisers, and I might take a the book out from the library a second time just to go over that last chapter again. After all, in information theory terms, eight numbers require a memory of only around 40 bits; the calculator’s memory is at least 1, And now Gary Marcus comes along to explain that the brain is just a patched-together mass of cells that rarely interact smoothly.

These are not ‘rules’ but suggestions.

Trial-and-error evolution

We get drunk, embark on non-procreative sex for mere pleasure, and may even sacrifice our lives for some perceived cause that has nothing to do with increasing our inclusive genetic fitness.

Marcus is not shy about highlighting the fact that klugey nature of our minds does not bode well for arguments in favor of intelligent design. Apr 29, Nathan rated it liked it. Those who firmly believe they are in perfect control of their mind and in what happens to them and their bodies and who expect others to be the same might find this ‘message’ disconcerting. Deep Blue could beat Kasparov at a game demanding cognitive strategies, but ask it to escape from a predator, find food or a mate, and negotiate the complex interactions of social life outside the chessboard or express emotion when it lost a game, and it couldn’t even leave the launchpad.

Has stood up well to the test of time. An edurite and entertaining exposition from one of the clearest minds in the business. Though this book does revisit some territory I was already familiar with, his fundamental premise was compelling enough that it added a new dimension of understanding to the things that frustrate me about my own brain. Since the main ideas presented on this book are based on Evolutionary psychology, much of its concepts had to be looked into question, and since the mind is modeled like a clumsy instrument, developing on a random process, the question remains, is it really so?

So when the book concludes with 13 tips on how to bypass our kluges and find “true wisdom”, one may be forgiven for thinking that the spirit of Samuel Smiles has taken over Marcus’s keyboard.