The Unthinkable Amanda Ripley Summary

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Everyone has experienced at one time or another news coverage concerning a disaster event, given the choices of books to pick from for this writing and presentation assignment, The Unthinkable by Amanda Ripley was among the most fascinating due to it describing the human capacity for risk and survival during disasters. Amanda Ripley documents the process and outcomes of real life disasters in which people have faced. The basis for her research is the variation in actions during dangerous situations of those who live to those who die. With this said, The Unthinkable provides insight into how the brain operates in phases, depending on the person and their genetics, given any stressful circumstance. Due to the extensive studies on disastrous…show more content…
When looking closely at denial one will find that it produces “blinders for the brain, letting [people] see only what [they] needed to see” (Ripley, 2008). In addition, denial provides false hope thus keeping people moving and calm while at the same time slowing them down. Dissociation is also common among victims and it is a useful and extreme form of denial, thus a benefit of denial is that “memory and senses [can be] switched on and off at certain key points” (Ripley, 2008, p. 12). Moreover, a segment of denial results from the mind “oscillating between horrifying realizations and mechanical submission” (Ripley, 2008, p. 13). In the midst of the understanding denial, delay necessitates the importance of people’s brain to gather information in patterns to make decent decisions; however, this takes time. Then there is risk, which incorporates probability, consequences, and dread. Given the equation of risk, dread is a key component that can be broken down further into uncontrollability, unfamiliarity, imaginability, suffering, scale of destruction, and unfairness. Risk is a factor of denial which is miss judged quite a bit by humans. Hence, denial can act as either a lifesaver or

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