Luck: What it Means and Why it Matters

Author(s): Ed Smith


Tracing the history of the concepts of luck and fortune, destiny and fate, from the Ancient Greeks to the present day - in religion, in banking, in politics - Ed Smith argues that the question of luck versus skill is as pertinent today as it has ever been. Weaving in his personal stories - notably the fortunate encounter, on a train he seemed fated to miss, with a beautiful stranger who would become his wife - he challenges us to think again about chance, and to re-examine the question of innate ability and of privileges, both accidental and unavoidable, that are conferred at birth. Embracing luck leads us to a fresh reappraisal of the nature of success, opportunity and fairness, and the case is ready to be made.


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To what extent do we control our own destiny? Can those who have risen to the top really say it was all down to them? Is lucky success somehow less deserving?

Praise for What Sport Tells Us About Life: 'Smith's entertaining exploration of creativity and inspiration would be every bit as useful to a poet or a songwriter as to an opening batsman' Nick Hornby 'Recommended to anyone interested in sport, history or simply human nature' Mark Lawson, Front Row 'An exceptional book: lucid, thought-provoking, informative and fair. Outstanding' The Times 'A terrific book' Mike Atherton

Ed Smith is an author and journalist and a former international cricketer who has represented England, Cambridge University, Kent and Middlesex. Ed Smith's previous books include Playing Hard Ball, On and Off the Field - the Wisden Book of the Year and shortlisted for the William Hill Sports Book of the Year and The Cricket Society Book of the Year Award - and the critically acclaimed What Sport Tells Us About Life. After retiring from cricket Ed Smith became a leader writer for The Times. He is now a features writer for The Times, has a column in GQ and writes regularly for the Spectator. In 2010 he wrote and presented a TV documentary for BBC1 and now appears regularly on the Today Programme. Ed Smith lives in London.

General Fields

  • : 9781408826577
  • : Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • : Bloomsbury Publishing PLC
  • : January 2012
  • : 216mm X 135mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : May 2012
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Ed Smith
  • : Paperback
  • : Export/Airside ed
  • : 123
  • : 256