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On Looking: A Walker's Guide to the Art of Observation (Anglais) Broché – 15 avril 2014

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Amazon.com: 51 commentaires
28 internautes sur 28 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Wonderful and mind-expanding 25 janvier 2013
Par George M - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
At first glance, you might think that this book's premise is a bit of a stretch. But in taking walks with experts in sociology and geology, a physician, a sound designer, and even the artist Maira Kalman, Horowitz brings a sense of wonder to the simple act of observation and perception. She gives cognitive science a good name--and more importantly, she makes it fun.
23 internautes sur 23 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Eye Opening 31 janvier 2013
Par traveler - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
On Looking is a very intelligently written book. There is a saying that 'some people see more in a walk around the block then others see in a trip around the world'. This book reminds us that for the most part we see only what we expect to see. That is why it is so easy to hide something in plain view! It also reminds us that for the most part we sleep walk through our day - which isn't always a bad thing.
The author takes walks with experts in geology or sound production or insects and finds that these people are aware of things that she is not - not unless they point them out to her.
The world is full of sights, sounds, smells, textures, spaces, and invisible winds just to name a few. This books allows one to sample some of the unseen, unheard, un-felt magnificence the outside world has to offer most of all because it reminds us that MORE is OUT THERE!
This book is interesting and well written. The only dull walk the author takes us on is the first one where she does a solo trip around the block. After that the book is quite special! Enjoy!
30 internautes sur 32 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Great concept, disappointing execution 17 novembre 2013
Par Ellen Jackson - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
"Every man takes the limits of his own field of vision for the limits of the world," said Schopenhauer. So what's the cure? It could have been this book. The author walks with experts and ordinary people who have a variety of perspectives to see what they notice and how they perceive an urban landscape.

Unfortunately, the promise of the book wasn't fulfilled. For example, Ms. Horowitz walks with a doctor who claims to be able to give a medical diagnosis of a stranger based on that person's physical appearance, gait, and other attributes.

But Ms. Horowitz only reports the doctor's assessment of two pedestrians: one who needs a hip replacement and another who may have an unspecified genetic problem. Instead of focusing on her walking companion and his observations, the author writes about mirror neurons in monkeys, a certain "look" that she feels is characteristic of Philadelphians, and a previous walk she took with a physical therapist. The chapter on urban wildlife was equally disappointing.

Moreover the book is repetitious. In describing the walk she took with a blind woman Ms. Horowitz describes the hazards of pedestrians chatting on their cell phones SEVEN different times.

I did learn a few things, so it wasn't a complete waste of time. Three stars.
18 internautes sur 19 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
Very eye-opening! 26 janvier 2013
Par Amazon Customer - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Format Kindle Achat vérifié
Written with a great sense of humor and a huge dose of curiosity, I enjoyed this book immensely. Purchased with a trip to NYC in mind (the site of the author's "Onlooking"), I am enjoying the approach immediately in my own home and neighborhoods!
15 internautes sur 16 ont trouvé ce commentaire utile 
I cannot get enthusiastic 6 mai 2013
Par algo41 - Publié sur Amazon.com
Format: Relié
A blurb on the back of my book quotes Susan Orlean as saying: "Horowitz writes like a poet, thinks like a scientist .....". I would agree, but cannot get enthusiastic about this book. The poetry is not pervasive enough to consistently enliven what is often dull. The science rarely answer questions a walker already has. It can be stimulating, but if the science were extracted, it would add up to one author's survey of popular science - in that format the reader could more easily skip sections based on interest or previous exposure, and perhaps the articles would go into more depth.

Horowitz is very likable, and I did learn some interesting things. Chapters I particularly enjoyed were walking with a toddler, walking with a geologist (although this chapter really suffered from a lack of pictures), and walking with a blind person. Perhaps all parents with young children should read the toddler chapter. The chapter on urban animals covered a subject I am deeply interested in but it was disappointing - perhaps the walk should have been done at night, when we learn encounters would have been more likely, and perhaps there is just not enough known (Horowitz is told by her expert that there is surprisingly little known about wild rats, for example). One question which was answered: pigeons bob their heads to gain depth perception, compensating for a physiological lack; but how do they find enough to eat, when they spend so much time pecking at sidewalks which have no apparent food spillage?

The material on walking in crowds is better read in the original (a chapter or two in William H. Whyte's "City: Rediscovering the Center"). I have to disagree with Alexandra's conclusion that walkers with mobile phones are a particular problem: it is counter intuitive, but they seem to look up frequently enough, and make enough early adjustments, so that even mild collisions seem very rare.
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