Read e-book online 10 Books That Screwed Up the World: And 5 Others That Didn't PDF

By Benjamin Wiker

ISBN-10: 1596980559

ISBN-13: 9781596980556

You've heard of the "Great Books"?
These are their evil opposites. From Machiavelli's The Prince to Karl Marx's The Communist Manifesto to Alfred Kinsey's Sexual habit within the Human Male, those "influential" books have resulted in conflict, genocide, totalitarian oppression, relations breakdown, and disastrous social experiments. And but those authors' undesirable rules are nonetheless well known and pervasive--in truth, they could impact your individual considering with no your knowing it. right here with the antidote is Professor Benjamin Wiker. In his scintillating new ebook, 10 Books That Screwed Up the area (And five Others that did not Help), he seizes each one of those evil books via its malignant center and exposes it to the sunshine of day. during this witty, realized, and provocative exposé, you will learn:

* Why Machiavelli's The Prince used to be the foundation for an extended record of tyrannies (Stalin had it on his nightstand)
* How Descartes' Discourse on process "proved" God's lifestyles purely through making Him a construction of our personal ego
* How Hobbes' Leviathan resulted in the idea that we've got a "right" to no matter what we want
* Why Marx and Engels's Communist Manifesto may well win the award for the main malicious publication ever written
* How Darwin's The Descent of guy proves he meant "survival of the fittest" to be utilized to human society
* How Nietzsche's past sturdy and Evil issued the decision for an international governed completely through the "will to power"
* How Hitler's Mein Kampf used to be a type of "spiritualized Darwinism" that bills for his genocidal anti-Semitism
* How the pansexual paradise defined in Margaret Mead's Coming of Age in Samoa grew to become out to be a construction of her personal sexual confusions and aspirations
* Why Alfred Kinsey's Sexual habit within the Human Male used to be easily autobiography masquerading as science

Witty, surprising, and instructive, 10 Books That Screwed Up the area bargains a brief schooling at the worst rules in human history--and how we will be able to steer clear of them within the future.

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See if you can spot the most fatuously fictional aspect of his reasoning: “Because the condition of man . . ” Which is the most egregiously fantastical fiction? Is it that our natural condition is one of war? Is it that, in our natural state, everyone is governed by his own reason (meaning, for Hobbes, that each person acts like a cunning, ruthless Machiavellian)? Is it the assertion that primitive human beings naturally and easily resort to cannibalism when they run out of coconuts? ” It is hard for us to spot the fatuity because “rights” talk has largely overtaken our public and political discourse, rudely shoving moral speech out of the way.

In either case, reality is the appropriate test of our everyday beliefs and scientific theories. In contrast to this salutary realism, Descartes’ method of doubting everything but his own thought, has, for us poor moderns, made subjectivism the criterion of truth. But methodical egoism (the Latin for “I” is ego) isn’t the only bad thing Descartes sent down the river to us. The very way he defined the “I” has also befouled the historical stream. ” A ghastly conclusion, or rather a ghostly one, for by it Descartes imagined that we were pure spirits trapped in alien bodies (or more accurately, as we soon find out, alien machines).

21 This vicious but nonchalant assault on parenthood has been repeated too many times by the Rousseaus of our own day for us to add any further comment. As with Hobbes, we see again the power of fiction. Rousseau’s account of natural man was no more real than Hobbes’s, but following the same pattern, once it became the accepted story of human origins, it thereby exercised the power of a self-fulfilling prophecy. In imagining Rousseau to be right, we have become what Rousseau imagined.

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10 Books That Screwed Up the World: And 5 Others That Didn't Help by Benjamin Wiker


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