Tuesday, September 18, 2012

A Community of Outliers [Introduction]


Haley Scholars Fall 2012 Reading Groups 

The opening chapter of Outliers is "interesting and revealing,"  one of our participants noted.

Malcolm Gladwell opens his book with a narrative about this small town Roseto, Pennsylvania, where residents seemed to have an unusual predisposition for good health. During the 1950s, hardly anyone under age sixty-five had heart disease in Roseto, even though heart attacks “were an epidemic in the United States” and “the leading cause of death in men under the age of sixty-five.”

According to Gladwell, the citizens of Roseto had “created a powerful, protective social structure capable of insulating them from the pressures of the modern world. The Rosetans were healthy because of where they were from, because of the world they had created for themselves in their tiny little town in the hills.”

What did you find most notable or fascinating about the Rosetans, and why?

Or, what insight did you gain about the role of community in the development of outliers?

20 comments:

Ashya Ford said...

I found it interesting how the Rosetans didn't exercise or partake in any healthier ways of life, yet they were the healthier people. It's amazing that internal health is boosted by external contact with others.
-Ashya F.

Ashya Ford said...

I found it interesting how the Rosetans didn't exercise or partake in any healthier ways of life, yet they were the healthier people. It's amazing that internal health is boosted by external contact with others.
-Ashya F.

Ashya Ford said...

I found it interesting how the Rosetans didn't exercise or partake in any healthier ways of life, yet they were the healthier people. It's amazing that internal health is boosted by external contact with others.
-Ashya F.

Jacqueline C. said...

In the introduction of "Outliers," the insight I gained was that the role of the Rosetan community was of importance. They found health by bonding together and socializing. Although they came from an entire different place, they stuck together to retain their way of living. It is true that "the people we surround ourselves with have a profound effect on who we are." When communities are able to come together, it creates unity.

Breon Anderson said...

I found it interesting on how they leaved there life style. how in the book it talks about there was no crime or voilence. Also how there is three generations in one household and how the grandparents demand respect.

Breon Anderson said...

I found it interesting on how they leaved there life style. how in the book it talks about there was no crime or voilence. Also how there is three generations in one household and how the grandparents demand respect.

TaTierra Witherspoon said...

I found it interesting how the Rosetans maintained a healthy life w/no one dying of unnatural causes. Most people lived well over 65 , while in the US people died under 65. Mainly due to heart disease. The Rosetans tight-knit community kept them living healthy. These days most people are dying for unknown or stupid reasons.

Ajeenah Johnson-Brown said...

What stuck out most to me while reading the introduction of Outliers by Malcolm Gladwell was how different Roseto lifestyle is. They mentioned in the book that there were three generations of a family all living under one roof. This is clearly rare in America. Most often families are spread throughout the country.
It also surprised me that the Rosetans had hardly any heart disease, especially, at a time when heart disease among men under 65 was so common.The stranger part about this was that they didn't do anything special to prevent it. People in Roseto didn't work out more, eat better, or have better genes than anyone else. Making the Rosetans an outlier, or statistical observation that's markedly different in value from the others of the sample.

Aliya Foster said...

I think the fact that the Rosetans have such a strong sense of community is amazing. Although the New World presented such a fast paced environment, they still were able to maintain their relationships, and thus their health as well. I think today's society has much to learn from the Rosetans.

Joshua Jones said...

In the Outliers I found it interesting that the Rosetans lived basically the same lifestyle as the Americans, but had a healthier life because of thier close knit, friendly communities.

Jade Green said...

The thing that stuck out to me most was how the Rosetans lifestyle was different but that everybody knew about them. It seems that this is how the American lifestyle may seem to others outside of America. I never fully thought how much our lifestyle can be different to others.

Jade Green said...

The thing that stuck out to me most was how the Rosetans lifestyle was different but that everybody knew about them. It seems that this is how the American lifestyle may seem to others outside of America. I never fully thought how much our lifestyle can be different to others.

Anonymous said...

What I found most interesting was their ability to stay healthy. Reason being because they were living in a disease field world what made them so special that disease everyone else were getting passed by them.

-Wole Abraham

Kiara Gay said...

I found it fascinating the Rosetans were able to stay healthy without exercise or eating healthy. Also, it was interesting that they were able to build an operating city because they came over to the New world with nothing and were able to make something, the city, out of that nothing. Together they are happy and they are a community that can function because everyone is joined as one whole family.

Emmanuel Ogunbode said...

Something that I found truley interesting was the ability of the Rosetans to stay so healthy, despite all of the current diseases. This helped strengthen the unity that the people were trying to preserve, ultimately making everyone stronger.
-Emmanuel O.

Anonymous said...

Something that I found truley interesting was the ability of the Rosetans to stay so healthy, despite all of the current diseases. This helped strengthen the unity that the people were trying to preserve, ultimately making everyone stronger.
-Emmanuel O.

Raven Cole said...

I found it interesting that the Rosetan's remained so close even after immigrating to America. Instead of them assimilating into American culture, they maintained their own and also maintained healthier lifestyles.

Jessica O said...

Its very interesting and that the Rosetans maintained good health just by treating eachother well. They did not feel the need to use drugs, alcohol or even exercise. The people studying them probably wanted to know thier secret of good health so they could implement them, but it is inspiring that the Rosetans did not do it for the purpose of good health. They just did what was right
-Jessica O.

Wesley Haskins said...

I found it intriguing how the Rosetans managed to initially tell the people from back home about a better place to live so the community as a whole could improve. Then, they established a successful and efficient society that seemed to have pretty good morals. I also liked how they did not try to conquer other towns, which in most cases in history has happened.
-Wesley Haskins

Dj Sterling said...

I feel that the role of their community is what made them outliers. They didn't choose to conform to the way the people in the New World were living. They continued to have good relations and a close knit community which resulted in good health. It seemed that the emotional support from the community helped sustain their health regardless of their bad eating and smoking habits.
-Darrel Sterling Jr.