44 pages 1 hour read

Michael Lewis

The Undoing Project: A Friendship That Changed Our Minds

Nonfiction | Biography | Adult | Published in 2016

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Chapter 4Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 4 Summary: “Errors”

Chapter 4 resumes Amos’s story, as he returned to Israel in 1966 after five years in the United States. He had accepted a position as an assistant professor at Hebrew University and was also now married to a woman named Barbara, who had studied alongside him at the University of Michigan. She would also teach a psychology class at Hebrew University. Barbara quickly noticed the stark cultural differences between Americans and Israelis, such as the habit many Israeli students had of shouting their disapproval in the middle of lectures if they disagreed with the lecturer. She also noticed how intermingled Israeli society was, and she and Amos experienced this together firsthand. Rather than being holed up in an ivory tower of abstract theories, here they “mixed with politicians and generals and journalists and others involved directly in running the country […] so it was impossible even for the most rarefied intellectual to insulate himself from the risks facing the entire society” (119).

These risks became glaringly apparent after just six months, when the Six-Day War broke out. Amos was thrust back into action as a paratrooper, along with his friend Amnon Rapoport, who had returned with Amos to teach at Hebrew University.