Book Review: The Myth of Experience

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I bought The Myth of Experience: Why We Learn the Wrong Lessons, and Ways to Correct Them because they were so many good reviews of it. I expected a lot. I didn’t get much. This book was a colossal disappointment because the writing style is pure boring.

There are several intriguing concepts and insights in the book. You’ll get most of them if you read the first two chapters. Despite the glowing reviews, two chapters is about as far as most readers got. There are no popular highlights in the book after the early part of chapter two.

One problem is that the authors need to tie themselves in knots come up with enough versions of “experience” to fill the book. So, we get a chapter on “when the experience limits creativity.” There’s a chapter on nudges and another one on the “secrets of success” we might learn from studying successful people.

There are good things. The authors discuss “kind” versus “wicked” learning environments. They offer two questions to help you analyze your experience. The two questions are “What’s missing?” and “What’s irrelevant?” There are many references to other works and research for you to follow up on.

I don’t think the good things are enough to offset the boring delivery. The juice isn’t worth the squeeze.

In a Nutshell

The Myth of Experience: Why We Learn the Wrong Lessons, and Ways to Correct Them has many some good insights and several references to other work. Even so, there isn’t enough value to offset the boring writing. The juice simply isn’t worth the squeeze.

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