Malcolm Gladwell: The Naked Face

From the August 5, 2002 issue of The New Yorker, this article by Malcolm Gladwell asks whether you can read people’s thoughts just by looking at them.

Ekman recalls the first time he saw Bill Clinton, during the 1992 Democratic primaries. “I was watching his facial expressions, and I said to my wife, ‘This is Peck’s Bad Boy,’ ” Ekman says. “This is a guy who wants to be caught with his hand in the cookie jar, and have us love him for it anyway. There was this expression that’s one of his favorites. It’s that hand-in-the-cookie-jar, love-me-Mommy-because-I’m-a-rascal look. It’s A.U. twelve, fifteen, seventeen, and twenty-four, with an eye roll.”

John Hiler comments:

All this wishful thinking got me thinking about why I write Microcontent News. I don’t enjoy the act of writing, so it can’t be that. And while I get a kick out of writing articles that go beyond the usual “Introducing the Weblog” story, it’s not that either. When you get down to it, I find writing most fascinating as an experiment in information transmission. I get a thrill out of using Narrative and Metaphor to convey Ideas in a way that people find interesting (or not). The chance to package it all with Headlines and Opening Hooks is just icing on the cake.

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