Summary of The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty

How We Lie to Everyone – Especially Ourselves

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The (Honest) Truth About Dishonesty book summary
Find out why you and your co-workers aren’t honest and how you might be able to change that.


8 Overall

7 Applicability

7 Innovation

8 Style


Dan Ariely admits he’s a liar and a cheat, just like everybody else. The author and social scientist humbly uses his own stories – along with plenty of research – to illustrate factors that motivate cheating and lying. Citing fairly simple experiments, Ariely shows how one little lie leads to another and another. For example, he once skipped a long airport line by exaggerating a medical condition to obtain a wheelchair. He fell so hard for his own lie that he became indignant about the airport’s poor accommodations for his ailment. Ariely is a precise writer and an excellent storyteller. Despite some redundancies, getAbstract recommends this book to liars, to cheaters, to the managers who put up with them and to you, the only honest person on Earth.

In this summary, you will learn

  • Why everyone cheats
  • Why you still believe you’re a good person despite your lies
  • What you can do to prevent lying and cheating in your company


Society hasn’t yet figured out how to eliminate lying and cheating – whether that means misinforming the government about tax obligations or padding an expense report. The 2001 Enron meltdown is only one example of contemporary corporate scandals that raise questions about the...
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About the Author

Dan Ariely is the James B. Duke professor of psychology and behavioral economics at Duke University. He wrote The Upside of Irrationality and Predictably Irrational.

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