1. “Introduction: The Roseto Mystery”
The introduction of Outliers begins with an inspection of Italian American immigrants near the end of the 19th century, the founders of a small town in Pennsylvania, called Roseto. In a study conducted by physician Stewart Wolf, et al. researchers set out to decide how the people of Roseto were able to live longer, healthier lives than that of the people in the towns of the same region, as well as the rest of the nation. The secret of the success for the people of Roseto could be found in a nearly unanimous social integration, which focused on respect for elders, a common set of religious beliefs, and an egalitarian way of thinking. Wolf’s findings introduced the medical community to a new way of researching serious health risks; research without isolation of the subject, by including the environment of the people studied. Gladwell ends the introduction by preparing the reader to use “The Roseto Mystery” analogously with his extended definition of success.
2. “Part One: Opportunity”
2.1 “The Matthew Effect”
Across the world sports athletes are molded from childhood into age classed leagues. The better players are filtered into the topmost leagues by their size, skill, and individual merit as they get older. This selection convention is typical throughout the world and is how the best of the best eventually make their way into professional sports such as hockey, soccer, and the Olympics. The idea that a person’s individual merit is the sole reason behind his or her success is challenged. An interesting connection is realized in the birth month of star hockey players; it is discovered that more hockey players have birth months in January, February, and March than in any other month of the year. The reason is found in the January 1st cutoff date for acceptance into age classed hockey...