The Philosophical Baby

  • by Alison Gopnik
  • Narrated by Elisabeth Rodgers
  • 8 hrs and 52 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

How do babies think? What is it like to be a baby? How much do our experiences as children shape our adult lives? In the last decade, there has been a revolution in our understanding of the minds of infants and young children. We used to believe that babies were irrational, and that their thinking and experience were limited. Now Alison Gopnik - a leading psychologist and philosopher, as well as a mother - explains the cutting-edge scientific and psychological research that has revealed that babies learn more, create more, care more, and experience more than we could ever have imagined. And there is good reason to believe that babies are actually smarter, more thoughtful, and more conscious than adultsThis new science holds answers to some of the deepest and oldest questions about what it means to be human. A new baby's captivated gaze at her mother's face lays the foundations for love and morality. A toddler's unstoppable explorations of his playpen hold the key to scientific discovery. A three-year-old's wild make-believe explains how we can imagine the future, write novels, and invent new technologies. Alison Gopnik - a leading psychologist and philosopher, as well as a mother - explains the groundbreaking new psychological, neuroscientific, and philosophical developments in our understanding of very young children, transforming our understanding of how babies see the world, and in turn promoting a deeper appreciation for the role of parents.


What the Critics Say

"One of the most prominent researchers in the field, Gopnik is also one of the finest writers, with a special gift for relating scientific research to the questions that parents and others most want answered. This is where to go if you want to get into the head of a baby." (
"Her pages are packed with provocative observations and cunning insights. I'd highly recommend this fascinating book to any parent of a young child - and, indeed, anyone who has ever been a baby." (The Guardian)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Good info, annoying narrator

As much as I admire Alison Gopnik, I was unable to listen to this because of the narrator's constant use of upspeak? I don't know if this is how she really talks or she adopted it for this project only but either way, it ruined an otherwise terrific book.
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Hard to stay engaged due to narrator

I really can't evaluate the content of this book because the narrator makes it so difficult to listen and stay engaged. When I sped the book up to 1.5 speed instead of normal speed it was better, but slightly distorted. I finally gave up, which is a shame because I think there may have been some worthwhile content. Be sure to listen to a sample before you buy. If you're really into the subject matter, you might be able to make it through.
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- Anne

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-02-2009
  • Publisher: Audible Studios