This event is free and open to the public. Reserve your copy of Range today!
Join Chatter on Books at East City Bookshop for a live recording of their podcast as hosts Marc Sterne and Torie Clarke interview author David Epstein about his newest book, Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World. The event will be followed by a book signing.
About Chatter on Books
Chatter on Books (COB) is a 45-minute podcast that steals its format liberally from ESPN’s Pardon the Interruption, The Tony Kornheiser Show, and NPR’s Wait, Wait Don’t Tell Me, applying that irreverence to interesting and entertaining books and authors. COB features hosts Marc Sterne and Torie Clarke and a rotating panel of guests. Over burgers and beer or wine, they debate the best sellers of the week, interview leading authors about life, politics, sports and entertainment and generally pontificate about topics large and small, books being the thread that runs through it all.
About Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World
Plenty of experts argue that anyone who wants to develop a skill, play an instrument, or lead their field should start early, focus intensely, and rack up as many hours of deliberate practice as possible. If you dabble or delay, you’ll never catch up to the people who got a head start. But a closer look at research on the world’s top performers, from professional athletes to Nobel laureates, shows that early specialization is the exception, not the rule.
David Epstein examined the world’s most successful athletes, artists, musicians, inventors, forecasters and scientists. He discovered that in most fields—especially those that are complex and unpredictable—generalists, not specialists, are primed to excel. Generalists often find their path late, and they juggle many interests rather than focusing on one. They’re also more creative, more agile, and able to make connections their more specialized peers can’t see.
Provocative, rigorous, and engrossing, Range makes a compelling case for actively cultivating inefficiency. Failing a test is the best way to learn. Frequent quitters end up with the most fulfilling careers. The most impactful inventors cross domains rather than deepening their knowledge in a single area. As experts silo themselves further while computers master more of the skills once reserved for highly focused humans, people who think broadly and embrace diverse experiences and perspectives will increasingly thrive.
About the panelists
Marc Sterne is a longtime Kornheiser producer, At the Movies host, and stand-up comedian.
Torie Clarke is a longtime Washington hand, regular on The Tony Kornheiser Show, related to out-of-control CAPs fans, and author of Lisptick on a Pig and A Survivor’s Guide to Washington.
David Epstein is the author of Range: Why Generalists Triumph in a Specialized World, and of the New York Times bestseller The Sports Gene. He has master's degrees in environmental science and journalism and has worked as an investigative reporter for ProPublica and a senior writer for Sports Illustrated. He lives in Washington, DC.