Distracted: The Erosion of Attention and the Coming Dark Age

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Prometheus Books, 2008 - Psychology - 327 pages
19 Reviews
We have oceans of information at our fingertips, yet we seek knowledge in Yahoo headlines glimpsed on the run. We are networked as never before, but we connect with friends and family via email and fleeting face-to-face moments that are rescheduled a dozen times.
Welcome to the land of distraction.

Despite our wondrous technologies and scientific advances, we are nurturing a culture of diffusion and detachment. Our attention is scattered among the beeps and pings of a push-button world. We are less and less able to pause, reflect, and deeply connect.

Distracted is a gripping exposť of this hyper-mobile, cyber-centric, attention-deficient life. Day by day, we are eroding our capacity for deep attention — the building block of intimacy, wisdom, and cultural progress. The implications for a healthy society are stark.

And yet we can recover our powers of focus through a renaissance of attention. Neuroscience is just now decoding the workings of attention, with its three pillars of focus, awareness, and judgment, and revealing how these skills can be shaped and taught. This is exciting news for all of us living in an age of overload.

In her sweeping quest to unravel the nature of attention and detail its losses, Maggie Jackson introduces us to scientists, cartographers, marketers, educators, wired teens, and even roboticists. She offers us a compelling wake-up call, an adventure story, and reasons for hope.

Pull over, hit the pause button, and prepare for an eye-opening journey. More than ever, we cannot afford to let distraction become the marker of our time.

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Review: Distracted: The Erosion of Attention and the Coming Dark Age

User Review  - Pedro Fragoso - Goodreads

This proved surprisingly good. One of the most intriguing concepts explored in the essay is "depth of thinking" -- there certainly is much of this herein. I'm going through a reading list inspired by ... Read full review

Review: Distracted: The Erosion of Attention and the Coming Dark Age

User Review  - Catherine Gillespie - Goodreads

In her book Distracted, author Maggie Jackson investigates how our rapidly shifting cultural orientation to information and decrease in attention could portend the beginnings of a new depression of ... Read full review


Chapter One Wired Love l880Tracing the Roots
Chapter Two F0cusEmailing the Dead

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About the author (2008)

Maggie Jackson (New York, NY) is an award-winning author and journalist who writes the popular "Balancing Acts" column in the Boston Globe. Her work also has appeared in the New York Times and on National Public Radio, among other national publications. Her acclaimed first book, What's Happening to Home? Balancing Work, Life and Refuge in the Information Age, examined the loss of home as a refuge.

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