Amanda Montell in conversation with Sarah Edmondson - The Age of Magical Overthinking

Amanda Montell in conversation with Sarah Edmondson - The Age of Magical Overthinking

Wednesday, May 01, 2024 7:00 PM

Location:
The Garden Club at Wild Heaven Brewery - West End
1010 White Street, SW
Atlanta, Georgia 30310

From the bestselling author of "Cultish" and host of the podcast "Sounds Like a Cult," a delicious blend of cultural criticism and personal narrative that explores our cognitive biases and the power, disadvantages, and highlights of magical thinking.

 Join us at the Garden Club at Wild Heaven West End for a special evening with Amanda Montell in honor of her highly-anticipated new book, "The Age of Magical Overthinking: Notes on Modern Irrationality." Montell will appear in conversation with Sarah Edmondson, author of "Scarred: The True Story of How I Escaped NXIVM, the Cult that Bound My Life" and host of the podcast, "A Little Bit Culty."

Tickets include a signed hardcover edition of the book. Skip the service fees by purchasing your tickets in-store.

Please note: Although tickets are non-refundable, if you cannot attend, your ticket still entitles you to a signed copy of the book. A Cappella Books will hold your book for one month from the event date. You may pick it up in-store or call us to request shipping.

About the Book

Utilizing the linguistic insights of her “witty and brilliant” (Blyth Roberson, author of "America the Beautiful?") first book "Wordslut" and the sociological explorations of her breakout hit "Cultish," Amanda Montell now turns her erudite eye to the inner workings of the human mind and its biases in her most personal and electrifying work yet.

“Magical thinking” can be broadly defined as the belief that one’s internal thoughts can affect unrelated events in the external world: Think of the conviction that one can manifest their way out of poverty, stave off cancer with positive vibes, thwart the apocalypse by learning to can their own peaches, or transform an unhealthy relationship to a glorious one with loyalty alone. In all its forms, magical thinking works in service of restoring agency amid chaos, but in "The Age of Magical Overthinking," Montell argues that in the modern information age, our brain’s coping mechanisms have been overloaded, and our irrationality turned up to an eleven.

In a series of razor-sharp, deeply funny chapters, Montell delves into a cornucopia of the cognitive biases that run rampant in our brains, from how the “Halo effect” cultivates worship (and hatred) of larger-than-life celebrities, to how the “Sunk Cost Fallacy” can keep us in detrimental relationships long after we’ve realized they’re not serving us. As she illuminates these concepts with her signature brilliance and wit, Montell’s prevailing message is one of hope, empathy, and ultimately forgiveness for our anxiety-addled human selves. If you have all but lost faith in our ability to reason, Montell aims to make some sense of the senseless. To crack open a window in our minds, and let a warm breeze in. To help quiet the cacophony for a while, or even hear a melody in it.

About the Author

Amanda Montell is a writer and linguist from Baltimore. She is the author of the acclaimed books "Wordslut," and "Cultish." Along with hosting the podcast "Sounds Like a Cult," her writing has also appeared in The New York Times, Marie Claire, Cosmopolitan, and more. She holds a degree in linguistics from NYU and lives in Los Angeles with her partner, plants, and pets.

About the Conversation Partner

Sarah Edmondson is a Canadian actress and voice-over artist who has starred in multiple TV series and more than a dozen films. Her whistleblower story following her departure from personal and professional development company NXIVM is told in her memoir, "Scarred: The True Story of How I Escaped NXIVM, the Cult that Bound My Life," the CBC podcast “Uncover: Escaping NXIVM,” and critically acclaimed HBO documentary series on NXIVM, "The Vow."

Co-hosted by her husband and fellow NXIVM whistleblower Anthony “Nippy” Ames, her podcast, “A Little Bit Culty,” explores the fads, beliefs, and trends that blur the line between devotion and dysfunction to help people understand, heal from, and avoid abusive situations. Besides her work as an actor and podcaster, Sarah attends conferences and events as a speaker, host, and cult-recovery advocate.