Review: Quiet by Susan Cain


At one parents evening I found myself sat there being told that my daughter was essentially just like me as a child. It was quite frightening really – I could have been sat back in one of my own parent evenings, listening to my character being broken down by the teacher. Not in a bad way as such, but with some faults being pointed out with notes on how they are trying to change them.

You see, it would appear that Bean is an introvert. She is clever and knows what she is talking about, she just doesn’t like to share this all the time with the rest of the class. And of course her teacher would like her to, she would like her to share her knowledge – for the benefit of everyone else.

This is essentially why this book appealed so much to me. With it’s tagline “The power of introverts in a world that can’t stop talking’ this book celebrates the introvert. It disputes the fact that we should be changing introverts into extroverts – that extroverted behaviour is ‘good’ and introverted personalities are ‘bad’.

This book looks at how introverts are seen in the western world, compared to how they are seen in other cultures. It celebrates the introvert and challenges the notion that we should try to change the behaviour that comes naturally to some of us. It enabled me to recognise what I should have known all along – that being an introvert has it’s advantages, and also it’s disadvantages. God gave us both personality types for a reason, for balance, and we each have something to give to the world.

At the next parent’s evening I will be sharing this book with the teacher and asking them to consider the different values that introverts can bring to a class, and not to try to change them into something that they are not.

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