Tag Archives: Amos Tversky

David Leonhardt

[Amos Tversky’s] confidence and brilliance combined to make for a cutting sense of humor. After he had given a talk, an English statistician approached him and said, “I don’t usually like Jews, but I like you.” Tversky responded, “I usually like Englishmen, but I don’t like you.”

David Leonhardt, ‘From Michael Lewis, the story of two friends who changed how we think about the way we think’, The New York Times, December 6, 2016

Cass Sunstein

Foot, Thomson, and Edmonds go wrong by treating our moral intuitions about exotic dilemmas not as questionable byproducts of a generally desirable moral rule, but as carrying independent authority and as worthy of independent respect. And on this view, the enterprise of doing philosophy by reference to such dilemmas is inadvertently replicating the early work of Kahneman and Tversky, by uncovering unfamiliar situations in which our intuitions, normally quite sensible, turn out to misfire. The irony is that where Kahneman and Tversky meant to devise problems that would demonstrate the misfiring, some philosophers have developed their cases with the conviction that the intuitions are entitled to a great deal of weight, and should inform our judgments about what morality requires. A legitimate question is whether an appreciation of the work of Kahneman, Tversky, and their successors might lead people to reconsider their intuitions, even in the moral domain.

Cass Sunstein, ‘How Do We Know What’s Moral?’, New York Review of Books, April 24, 2014

Michael Lewis

A lot of things that most human beings would never think to do, to Amos simply made sense. For instance, when he wanted to go for a run he . . . went for a run. No stretching, no jogging outfit or, for that matter, jogging: He’d simply strip off his slacks and sprint out his front door in his underpants and run as fast as he could until he couldn’t run anymore. “Amos thought people paid an enormous price to avoid mild embarrassment,” said his friend Avishai Margalit, “and he himself decided very early on it was not worth it.”

Michael Lewis, The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds, New York, 2016, ch. 3