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 resulted in battle, genocide, totalitarian oppression, kin breakdown, and disastrous social experiments. And but those authors' undesirable principles are nonetheless renowned and pervasive--in truth, they may effect your individual considering with out your understanding it. the following with the antidote is Professor Benjamin Wiker. In his scintillating new publication, 10 Books That Screwed Up the area (And five Others that did not Help), he seizes every one of those evil books through its malignant center and exposes it to the sunshine of day. during this witty, discovered, and provocative exposé, you will learn:
* Why Machiavelli's The Prince used to be the foundation for a protracted checklist of tyrannies (Stalin had it on his nightstand)
* How Descartes' Discourse on technique "proved" God's life basically by means of making Him a construction of our personal ego
* How Hobbes' Leviathan resulted in the idea that we have 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 strong and Evil issued the decision for an international governed completely by means of the "will to power"
* How Hitler's Mein Kampf used to be one of those "spiritualized Darwinism" that debts for his genocidal anti-Semitism
* How the pansexual paradise defined in Margaret Mead's Coming of Age in Samoa became 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, stunning, and instructive, 10 Books That Screwed Up the realm bargains a brief schooling at the worst rules in human history--and how we will be able to stay away from them within the future.
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Extra info for 10 Books That Screwed Up the World
In short, the one and only task of government is merely to reproduce a happier version of the Hobbesian state of nature, where there is a maximum of liberty to pursue one's personal desires but without the nasty, violent death part. Hobbesian justice is therefore understood as a kind of inversion of the golden rule: don't do unto others, so they won't do unto you. Or, if we could put it in a longer, positive form that is more famil iar: let others do what they want (as long as whatever they do is not directly hurting you), so that you may do whatever you want (as long as you are not directly hurting others) .
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.
Left to ourselves, inde pendent of society and in our natural condition, we are creatures entirely without conscience, ruled solely by pleasure and pain, rav enous in our desires and ruthless in their pursuit. If that redefini tion of human nature weren't bad enough, Hobbes added the insidious notion that human rights are simply equivalent to human desires (however sordid), so that whatever we happen to desire, we have a right to by nature. Thus Hobbes is the father of the all too familiar belief that we have a right to whatever we want-however morally degraded, vile, or trivial it may be-and further, that it is the government's j ob to protect such rights.
10 Books That Screwed Up the World by Benjamin Wiker