Grit

The Power of Passion and Perseverance

Grit

In this instant New York Times bestseller, pioneering psychologist Angela Duckworth shows anyone striving to succeed—be it parents, students, educators, athletes, or business people—that the secret to outstanding achievement is not talent but a special blend of passion and persistence she calls “grit.”

Drawing on her own powerful story as the daughter of a scientist who frequently noted her lack of “genius,” Duckworth, now a celebrated researcher and professor, describes her early eye-opening stints in teaching, business consulting, and neuroscience, which led to the hypothesis that what really drives success is not “genius” but a unique combination of passion and long-term perseverance.

In Grit, she takes readers into the field to visit cadets struggling through their first days at West Point, teachers working in some of the toughest schools, and young finalists in the National Spelling Bee. She also mines fascinating insights from history and shows what can be gleaned from modern experiments in peak performance. Finally, she shares what she’s learned from interviewing dozens of high achievers—from JP Morgan CEO Jamie Dimon to New Yorker cartoon editor Bob Mankoff to Seattle Seahawks Coach Pete Carroll.

Among Grit’s most valuable insights:

*Why any effort you make ultimately counts twice toward your goal
*How grit can be learned, regardless of I.Q. or circumstances
*How lifelong interest is triggered
*How much of optimal practice is suffering and how much ecstasy
*Which is better for your child—a warm embrace or high standards
*The magic of the Hard Thing Rule

Winningly personal, insightful, and even life-changing, Grit is a book about what goes through your head when you fall down, and how that—not talent or luck—makes all the difference.
  • Scribner | 
  • 352 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781501111105 | 
  • May 2016
List Price $28.99 (price may vary by retailer)
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Reading Group Guide

This reading group guide for Grit includes an introduction, discussion questions, and ideas for enhancing your book club. The suggested questions are intended to help your reading group find new and interesting angles and topics for your discussion. We hope that these ideas will enrich your conversation and increase your enjoyment of the book.

Introduction

Angela Duckworth’s Grit, a longtime New York Times bestseller, is a master class in the components of grit: the combination of passion and perseverance that can take a life from good to great to exceptional. From studies of spelling bee champions to Olympic athletes to her own life as a researcher and mother, Duckworth takes the reader through a fascinating landscape of experiments and experiences, unlocking the psychological secrets of success. At once a primer in what makes a person gritty and a toolkit for cultivating that complex of skills, Grit is essential reading for any student, professional, or parent—or anyone who strives for a more demanding, fulfilling, and rewarding life.

Topics and Questions for Discussion

1. In the preface to Grit, Duckworth describes her father repeatedly calling her “no genius” as a child—ironic because she was awarded a MacArthur “Genius” Grant in mid-career. How were your intellectual merits evaluated when you were a child? What impac see more

About the Author

Angela Duckworth
Photograph by Zach Teris

Angela Duckworth

Angela Duckworth, PhD, is a 2013 MacArthur Fellow and professor of psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. She has advised the White House, the World Bank, NBA and NFL teams, and Fortune 500 CEOs. She is also the Founder and Scientific Director of the Character Lab, a nonprofit whose mission is to advance the science and practice of character development. She completed her BA in neurobiology at Harvard, her MSc in neuroscience at Oxford, and her PhD in psychology at the University of Pennsylvania. Grit: The Power of Passion and Perseverance is her first book and an instant New York Times bestseller.

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