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"The Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less" Author Barry Schwartz to Lecture at Pomona College Lecture

Paradox of Choice book cover

Psychologist Barry Schwartz, author of The Paradox of Choice: Why More is Less, will give a talk of the same title on Monday, January 30 at 7 p.m., at Pomona College’s Seaver North Auditorium (645 N. College Ave., Claremont).

A featured speaker at TED Conferences in 2005, 2009 and 2010, Schwartz offers a critique of modern Western societies, exploring how having nearly infinite choices—whether salad dressings, jeans, stereo systems or who and when to marry—ultimately leads to emotional paralysis and depression. Too many possibilities, paired with high expectations, lead to greater disappointment, he says.

“Even if we manage to overcome the paralysis and make a choice, we end up less satisfied with the result of the choice than we would be if we had fewer options to choose from,” says Schwartz.

The Christian Science Monitor praises The Paradox of Choice (2003) as “Brilliant…the case Schwartz compelling, the implications disturbing...An insightful book.”

Among Schwartz’s other books are The Costs of Living: How Market Freedom Erodes the Best Things in Life (2001), which addresses the impact of free-market thinking on consumerism and culture, and The Battle for Human Nature: Science, Morality and Modern Life (1987), which examines how the multi-disciplinary view of human nature as governed purely by self-interest is limited and often wrong. Schwartz is professor of social theory and social action at Swarthmore College.

For more information, contact: (909) 607-2227.

Pomona College, one of the nation’s premier liberal arts colleges, provides its students with a challenging curriculum in the humanities, natural sciences, social sciences, and fine arts, and an unsurpassed environment for intellectual inquiry and growth. Its hallmarks include small classes, close relationships between students and faculty, and a range of opportunities for student research.