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10 Books That Screwed Up the World - download pdf or read online

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 warfare, genocide, totalitarian oppression, kin breakdown, and disastrous social experiments. And but those authors' undesirable principles are nonetheless renowned and pervasive--in truth, they could impact your individual pondering with no your figuring out 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 every one of those evil books by means of 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 was once the foundation for an extended checklist of tyrannies (Stalin had it on his nightstand)
* How Descartes' Discourse on process "proved" God's lifestyles merely by way of making Him a production of our personal ego
* How Hobbes' Leviathan ended in the assumption that we've got a "right" to no matter what we want
* Why Marx and Engels's Communist Manifesto might win the award for the main malicious ebook 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 stable and Evil issued the decision for an international governed exclusively by way of the "will to power"
* How Hitler's Mein Kampf used to be a type of "spiritualized Darwinism" that money owed 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 production 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 deals a short schooling at the worst rules in human history--and how we will stay away from them within the future.

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Extra resources for 10 Books That Screwed Up the World

Sample text

The word "cornucopia" should awaken us to the richness and over­ flowing abundance of Rousseau's work. Even as we demonstrate its confusion, we should not underestimate its profundity. Simple­ minded errors rarely engender great historical results, and Rousseau's was no simple mind. One finds in him, for good or ill, the seeds of Romanticism and folk-nationalism, the French Revo­ lution and totalitarianism, Marx and Nietzsche, Freud and Darwin, - 44 10 BOOKS THAT SCREWED UP THE WORLD modern anthropology and Margaret Mead, the sexual revolution and the dissolution of the family-all marked with what is charac­ teristically Rousseau: genius and blunder.

The common sense point is this: reality exists before our think­ ing, so that our thinking depends on reality, and this in two ways. First, our thinking depends on the reality of our own existence. If we don't exist, we can't think. Second, our thinking correctly depends on our properly conforming our minds to what really exists. Scientific theories are judged true or false, better or worse, insofar as they actually correspond to the way things are in the real world. " Reality trumps. If we ignore this first principle, and take Descartes' instead, our imaginations untethered to reality can only run wild, as he himself giddily demonstrates.

But his point was that Descartes' philosophical method had somehow seeped into our souls and become second nature. What, then, is Descartes' method? Simply put, doubt everything. In order to conquer skepticism, Descartes proposed that we be skeptical about everything to see if there is anything left we can't be skeptical about. " Before we jump on Descartes' bandwagon, we should ask the most obvious question: isn't this a rather doubtful process? What if we took it the other way around? Should we accept as absolutely true everything in which we can discern the least grain of certainty?

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10 Books That Screwed Up the World by Benjamin Wiker

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