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Malcolm Gladwell

Kirsty Young talks to writer Malcolm Gladwell.

The writer Malcolm Gladwell is interviewed by Kirsty Young for Desert Island Discs.

Always concise, frequently counterintuitive and unexpectedly beguiling, his work orders the world in a way that gives fresh insights into human behaviour.

He believes that a knowledge of people's backgrounds is necessary to understanding their success; his own achievements may presumably then be attributed, not just to his keen mind and polished prose, but also to his parents - an English mathematician and a Jamaican psychotherapist.

He says, "I am the bird attached to the top of a very large beast, pecking away and eating the gnats.... I am someone who draws inspiration from the brilliance of others and repackages it ... I am a populariser, a simplifier and a synthesizer."

Producer: Sarah Taylor.

Available now

45 minutes

Last on

Fri 15 Aug 2014 09:00

Music Played

  • Billy Bragg

    Levi Stubbs' Tears

    • Must I Paint You A Picture? The Essential Billy Bragg CD1.
    • Cooking Vinyl.
  • Gillian Welch

    Look at Miss Ohio

    • Soul Journey.
    • Acony.
  • Daniel Lanois

    Jolie Louise

    • Acadie.
    • Opal.
  • Brian Eno

    I'll Come Running

    • Another Green World.
    • EG.
  • Elvis Costello


    • King of America Cd2.
    • Demon.
  • Marvin Gaye

    Piece of Clay

    • Phenomenon.
    • Reprise.
  • Castaway's Favourite

    • Marvin Gaye

      The Star Spangled Banner

      • The Marvin Gaye Collection Volume 3: Rare, Live And Unreleased.
      • Tamla Motown.
  • John Prine

    All the Best

    • All the Best.
    • Mercury.
  • Book Choice

    • Selected works - Geoffrey Trease

  • Luxury Choice

    • Golf clubs and balls


Role Contributor
Presenter Kirsty Young
Interviewed Guest Malcolm Gladwell
Producer Sarah Taylor


  • Sun 10 Aug 2014 11:15
  • Fri 15 Aug 2014 09:00

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