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 9Chapter Summaries & Analyses

Chapter 9 Summary: “Birth of the Warrior Psychologist”

This chapter places Danny and Amos back in Israel, more specifically in the context of the Israeli military. As Benny Shalit, head of Israeli military psychology, argued for “elevated status for military psychology” (241), Danny and Amos became “warrior psychologists.” Both men, loyal to Israel and to each other, pounced on the opportunity to become military field psychologists. Danny recalls, “We just got a jeep and went bouncing around in the Sinai looking for something useful to do” (242). Soldiers were dying around them, and still Danny and Amos went out, trying their best to gather psychological data from soldiers fresh from combat while not fully believing in the efficacy of their mission. Amos remained the more adventurous of the pair; he would have continued to jump out of airplanes “for fun” until Barbara reminded him that he was a father of children.

The chapter also provides greater insight into Danny and Amos’s ultimate goal for their work. Lewis writes, “before the war, Danny and Amos had shared the hope that their work on human judgment would find its way into high-stakes real-world decision making […] they would design decision-making systems” (247). However, consistent failures of Israeli intelligence essentially made Danny and Amos lose faith in decision analysis altogether.