By Benjamin Wiker
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 ended in warfare, genocide, totalitarian oppression, family members breakdown, and disastrous social experiments. And but those authors' undesirable rules are nonetheless renowned and pervasive--in truth, they could impression your personal considering 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 via its malignant middle and exposes it to the sunshine of day. during this witty, discovered, and provocative exposé, you will learn:
* Why Machiavelli's The Prince was once the muse for a protracted checklist of tyrannies (Stalin had it on his nightstand)
* How Descartes' Discourse on procedure "proved" God's life purely via making Him a production of our personal ego
* How Hobbes' Leviathan resulted 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 e-book 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 strong and Evil issued the decision for an international governed exclusively via the "will to power"
* How Hitler's Mein Kampf used to be one of those "spiritualized Darwinism" that bills for his genocidal anti-Semitism
* How the pansexual paradise defined in Margaret Mead's Coming of Age in Samoa became 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, stunning, and instructive, 10 Books That Screwed Up the realm bargains a brief schooling at the worst principles in human history--and how we will be able to keep away from them within the future.
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Additional info for 10 Books That Screwed Up the World
As Rousseau made clear in his First Discourse, the development of society-the development of the human being beyond mere isolated, animal existence-constitutes man's fall from idyllic, original, natural hap piness into the morbid, vicious, entangling miseries of civilization, a tragic descent from natural freedom to artificial servitude. "Everyone must see," says Rousseau, "that . . " But in the state of nature, each man is entirely independent. " 14 We are not far from Marx and Engel's famous cry that closes the Communist Manifesto: "The communists disdain to conceal their views and aims.
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? No, it is the groundless claim that "every man has a right to every thing. " 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.
A fable. A tall tale. An utterly imaginary state. Neither Hobbes nor anyone else living in the seventeenth century could have had a clue about what human origins were really like. Archaeology wasn't even in its infancy. But even more obvious, if human beings had been like Hobbesian men and women at the dawn of humanity, the nightfall of humanity would quickly have descended through self-destruction. How could families ever have begun and grown into tribes if men were little more than blood thirsty killers and wandering rapists, and women became cannibals soon after they became mothers or simply bashed in the heads of their offspring because they found them inconvenient?
10 Books That Screwed Up the World by Benjamin Wiker