David and Goliath: Underdorgs, Misfits, and the Art of Battling Giants - A Review


David and Goliath GladwellI grew up in church and am familiar with the story of David and Goliath. I have also read several works of Malcolm Gladwell and was curious to see how he would portray the classic Sunday school narrative.  David and Goliath is the self proclaimed story of underdogs, misfits, and the art of battling giants. In it, Gladwell discusses the advantages of being disadvantaged. He challenges how we think about competing with bigger and better opponents by highlighting the tactical promise of being smaller and seemingly worse off. 

Gladwell discusses the advantages of being disadvantaged.

Gladwell's work begins with the timeless narrative of the shepherd boy and Philistine warrior. He paints a living picture of the unlikely hero leveraging every advantage available to him. David's acute awareness of his own gifts, and the limitations of his adversary, serve as a model for Gladwell's central argument. He fills the remaining pages with examples of lesser protagonists toppling greater foes. 

I would not recommend reading this book. It was interesting but repetitive and flat. Gladwell's anecdotal method was hit and miss. More examples don't make a better argument. The whole thing just felt flat, lacking other thought provoking dimensions. This is a book with a strong and simple premise that just grows old after you get it. Unfortunately for the author, everyone gets it right away. 

Brent ColbyComment