Bold and brave and “quiet”

Bold and brave and quiet

“Quiet” by Susan Cain

2012, Random House

In the 21st century, we are constantly cajoled into chatter, whether it be through social media or school participation.

Susan Cain, author of “Quiet”, surprised me with her bold advocacy for the power of introverts.

She devotes early chapters to tracing the rise of extroverts. In America, in the 1920s and 1930s, when industrialisation and urbanisation began to overshadow agriculture, businesses requiring eloquent speakers boomed. One example was the sales industry, which consisted of soliciting people door-to-door and convincing them to purchase products. Since then, extroverts have been classified as thinkers, with their decisiveness and outspokenness. Cain explores how the reticent are tossed into a corner and dismissed. As a result, they are often mistaken for being shy, although not all introverts are shy.

Susan Cain CC licensed

The core of this book investigates the undervalued qualities of introverts that can benefit our society.

Cain does not intend to undermine the power of extroverts; she intends to promotes equality of both introversion and extroversion. She highlights that it’s okay to be quiet, and this attribute has been utilised by Rosa Parks, Albert Einstein, Abraham Lincoln, J.K. Rowling, and even Emma Watson to channel greater good.

Within our school, we certainly need students to raise their hands, be active leaders, and build social connections. But we also need constructive note-takers, observant and thoughtful thinkers, and authors like Susan Cain. I highly recommend “Quiet” because it will open your eyes to a fresh perspective of the world. By embracing both extroversion and introversion (and requesting that society do the same), Cain’s argument is highly convincing and worth listening to. If you need further incentives, this non-fiction bestseller is full of  SAT vocabulary and potential research topics.

Are you an introvert? an extrovert? or an ambivert?

Take this quiz to find out: ‘Quiet’ Quiz


Want to hear Susan Cain for yourself?

Check out this Tedtalk: The Power Of Introverts