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THE MILLION COPY BESTSELLER Fire gave us power. Farming made us hungry for more. Money gave us purpose. Science made us deadly. This is the thrilling account of our extraordinary history - from insignificant apes to rulers of the world. Earth is 4.5 billion years old. In just a fraction of that time, one species among countless others has conquered it: us. In this bold and provocative book, Yuval Noah Harari explores who we are, how we got here and where we're going. `I would recommend Sapiens to anyone who's interested in the history and future of our species' Bill Gates
From Confucius and Plato to Karl Marx and Noam Chomsky, this book brings together more than 100 illustrated biographies of the world's great philosophers. Introduced with a stunning portrait of each featured philosopher, the biographies trace the ideas, friendships, loves, and rivalries that inspired the great thinkers and influenced their work, providing revealing insights into what drove them to question the meaning of life, and come up with new ways of understanding the world and the history of ideas. Lavishly illustrated with photographs and paintings of philosophers, their homes, friends, studies, and their personal belongings, together with pages from original manuscripts, first editions, and correspondence, this book introduces the key ideas, themes, and working methods of each featured individual, setting their ideas within a wider historical and cultural context. Charting the development of ideas across the centuries in both the East and West, from ancient Chinese philosophy to the work of contemporary thinkers, Philosophers provides a compelling glimpse into the personal lives, loves, and influences of the great philosophers as they probed into life's "big ideas".
A chronological survey of the world's most influential books. Many books have become classics, must-reads or overnight publishing sensations, but how many can genuinely claim to have changed the way we see and think? In 100 Books that Changed the World, prize-winning author Scott Christianson brings together an exceptional collection of truly groundbreaking books - from scriptures that founded religions, to scientific treatises that challenged beliefs, to novels that kick-started literary genres. This elegantly designed book offers a sweeping, chronological survey of the most important books from around the globe, from the earliest illuminated manuscripts to the age of the ebook publication. Entries include: Iliad and Odyssey, Homer (750 BC), Gutenberg Bible (1450s), The Qur'an (AD 609-632), On the Revolutions of the Heavenly Spheres, Nicolaus Copernicus (1543), Shakespeare's First Folio (1623), Philosophae Naturalis Principia Mathematica, Isaac Newton (1687), Samuel Johnson's Dictionary (1755), The Wealth of Nations, Adam Smith (1776), The Vindication of the Rights of Women, Mary Wollstonecraft (1792), The Communist Manifesto, Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels (1848), Roget's Thesaurus (1852), On the Origin of Species, Charles Darwin (1859), The Interpretation of Dreams, Sigmund Freud (1899), Lady Chatterley's Lover, D.H. Lawrence (1928), The Diary of a Young Girl, Anne Frank (1947), Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung (1964), A Brief History of Time, Stephen Hawking (1988)
In our troubled world, looking back to ancient wisdom can shed light on fresh solutions. For years, many of us have upheld the Stoic belief in `no pain, no gain.' But when the pace of modern life and the demands of jobs and family overwhelm us, punishing exercise regimes, productivity apps and early morning starts may not be the best solution. According to the pleasure-centric philosophy of Epicureanism, life can be good without great sacrifice. By consciously practicing `choice and avoidance' - by being strategic about our recreational, professional and familial pursuits - we can live with less fear and regret. By understanding our place in a world that came about by chance, we can gain greater perspective on our role within it and where our priorities should lie. No honest philosopher can give you a formula for happiness, but in The Pleasure Principle, Professor Catherine Wilson explores how Epicureanism can provide a framework for thinking about life's key issues, including family, death, politics, religion, wealth, science, and love.
Demystifying the key ideas of the world's greatest philosophers, and exploring all of the most important branches of thought including philosophy of science, philosophy of religion and feminist philosophy in a uniquely visual way, this book is the perfect introduction to the history of philosophy. A clear and accessible guide to philosophy, How Philosophy Works combines bold infographics and jargon-free text to demystify fundamental concepts. Covering everything from ethics to epistemology and phenomenology, the book presents the ideas and theories of key philosophical traditions and philosophers - from Plato and Socrates to Nietzsche and Wittgenstein via Kant - in a novel, easy-to-understand way. Its infographics will help you to understand the elements of philosophy on a conceptual level and, by tackling life's "big questions", it will help you to look at the world in an entirely new way. With its unique graphic approach and clear, authoritative text, How Philosophy Works is the perfect introduction to philosophy, and the ideal companion to DK's The Philosophy Book in the "Big Ideas" series.
`Melvyn not only makes you think ... he makes it enjoyable too. He's brilliant.' - John Humphrys, the Today Programme. `In a troubled world where many sneer at experts, In Our Time is always a treat. Those who know what they're talking about, talk about it, and they do it under the benevolent if occasionally testy guidance of one who knows how to bring out the best in them. Listen, read, mark, and inwardly digest; agreeable glass of accompanying refreshment optional.' - Sir Diarmaid MacCulloch 'Bragg gives short shrift to pretension of any kind, while remaining stalwart in his search for knowledge. His methodology in In Our Time is... not unlike that of a man throwing a stick at a dog: he chucks his questions ahead, and if the chosen academic fails to bring it right back, he chides them. He retains enough of his bluff Cumbrian origins not to be taken in by gambolling and tweedy high spirits.' - Will Self, from a February 2010 issue of London Review of Books In Our Time has been the cornerstone of broadcasting every Thursday morning on BBC Radio 4 for the past twenty years, with over 800 episodes since its launch in October 1998. Presented by one of Britain's greatest champions of the arts, Melvyn Bragg, the show explores ideas across history, religion, philosophy, science and culture. With a vast array of contributors from the world of academia, such as Mary Beard, Angie Hobbs and Diarmaid MacCulloch, it is one of Radio 4's most successful programmes, attracting a weekly live audience exceeding 2 million listeners, and, per episode, it is one of the world's most downloaded podcasts. To honour this major anniversary of BBC broadcasting, this beautifully illustrated book provides a lively and colourful guide to fifty of the most captivating discussions from the past two decades of In Our Time, as chosen by Melvyn and the producer Simon Tillotson, and, influenced by listeners who have recommended their favourite programmes from those years. Highlights include `Romulus and Remus', `The Death of Elizabeth I', `Ada Lovelace', `The Gin Craze', the `Epic of Gilgamesh' and `The Salem Witch Trials', and there are additional behind-the-scenes insights, peppered with Melvyn Bragg's remarks both on and off air. This is a captivating gift for all fans and a celebration of this iconic series.
Democracy is either aspired to as a goal or cherished as a birthright by billions of people throughout the world today - and has been been for over a century. But what does it mean? And how has its meaning changed since it was first coined in ancient Greece? Democracy: A Life is a biography of the concept, looking at its many different manifestations and showing how it has changed over its long life, from ancient times right through to the present. For instance, how did the 'people power' of the Athenians emerge in the first place? Once it had emerged, what enabled it to survive? And how did the Athenian version of democracy differ from the many other forms that developed among the myriad cities of the Greek world? Paul Cartledge answers all these questions and more, following the development of ancient political thinking about democracy from the sixth century BC onwards, not least the many arguments that were advanced against it over the centuries. As Cartledge shows, after a golden age in the fourth century BC, there was a long, slow degradation of the original Greek conception and practice of democracy, from the Hellenistic era, through late Republican and early Imperial Rome, down to early Byzantium in the sixth century CE. For many centuries after that, from late Antiquity, through the Middle Ages, to the Renaissance, democracy was effectively eclipsed by other forms of government, in both theory and practice. But as we know, this was by no means the end of the story. For democracy was eventually to enjoy a re-florescence, over two thousand years after its first flowering in the ancient world: initially revived in seventeenth-century England, it was to undergo a further renaissance in the revolutionary climate of late-eighteenth-century North America and France - and has been constantly reconstituted and reinvented ever since.
THE MILLION COPY BESTSELLER Sapiens shows us where we came from. Homo Deus shows us where we're going. Yuval Noah Harari envisions a near future in which we face a new set of challenges. Homo Deus explores the projects, dreams and nightmares that will shape the twenty-first century and beyond - from overcoming death to creating artificial life. It asks the fundamental questions: how can we protect this fragile world from our own destructive power? And what does our future hold? 'Homo Deus will shock you. It will entertain you. It will make you think in ways you had not thought before' Daniel Kahneman
"Herman's book tells an exciting story with gusto. Entertaining and illuminating."
Arthur Herman argues that Scotland's turbulent history, from William Wallace to the Presbyterian Lords of the Covenant, laid the foundations for 'the Scottish miracle'. Within one hundred years, the nation that began the eighteenth century dominated by the harsh and repressive Scottish Kirk had evolved into Europe's most literate society, producing an idea of modernity that has shaped much of civilisation as we know it. He follows the lives and work of thinkers such as Adam Smith and David Hume, writers such as Burns and Boswell, as well as architects, technicians and inventors, and traces their legacy into the twentieth century. Written with wit, erudition and clarity, 'The Scottish Enlightenment' claims the Scot's rightful place in the history of the western world.
"Stimulating. A work which deserves to be bought by any interested reader."
"A sparkling book. Herman argues his case with an impressive accumulation of evidence."
"Herman carries his thesis off with brio."
'TOM PHILLIPS IS A VERY CLEVER, VERY FUNNY MAN' Greg Jenner This is a book about TRUTH - and all the ingenious ways, throughout history, that we've managed to avoid it. We live in a 'post-truth' age, we're told. The US has a president who openly lies on a daily basis (or who doesn't even know what's true, and doesn't care). The internet has turned our everyday lives into a misinformation battleground. People don't trust experts any more. But was there ever really a golden age of truth-telling? As the editor of the UK's leading independent fact-checker, Tom Phillips deals with complete bollocks every day. Here, he tells the story of how we humans have spent history lying to each other - and ourselves - and asks an important question: how can humanity move towards a truthier future? PRAISE FOR HUMANS: A BRIEF HISTORY OF HOW WE F*CKED IT ALL UP: 'F*cking brilliant' Sarah Knight, The Life-Changing Magic of Not Giving a F*ck 'Very funny' Mark Watson, comedian 'In dark times, it's reassuring to learn that we've always been a bunch of clueless f*cking nitwits' Stuart Heritage, Don't Be a Dick, Pete 'A light-touch history of moments when humans have got it spectacularly wrong... Both readable and entertaining' Telegraph
'We English men have wits,' wrote the clergyman Ralph Lever in 1573, and, 'we have also framed to ourselves a language.' Witcraft takes an original approach to the history of philosophy by overthrowing the standard narrative of canonical texts and thinkers and by concentrating on philosophy in one language - English. It contains compelling portraits of celebrated British and American philosophers, including Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Berkeley, Mill and James, but it broadens our understanding of philosophical activity by including the work of those usually thought of as literary authors such as Hazlitt, Coleridge, Emerson and George Eliot, and many men and women who thought philosophically, or whose lives were changed by philosophy, but are now forgotten. Some of those Ree uncovers include pioneers such as Mary Astell (the female virtuoso who advocated a philosophical college for women), Thomas Wirgman (the London goldsmith who offered tuition in Kantian philosophy), Harriet Martineau (the lady economist), Ragar Redbeard (who modelled himself on Nietzsche and proclaimed that nothing is true) and Thomas Davidson (perfective socialist and founder of the Fellowship of the New Life). Ree's description of philosophy in Britain and America reveals it to be colourful, diverse, inventive and cosmopolitan. It is not just an examination of great thinkers, but of ordinary men and women thinking for themselves, and reaching their own conclusions about religion, politics, art and everything else. It is full of stories and personalities as well as ideas, and shows philosophy springing from the life around it. Witty, erudite, provocative and engaging, it enables us to think freshly about the history of philosophy.
In the century since its birth, the crossword has evolved into the world's most popular intellectual pastime: a unique form of wordplay, the codes and conventions of which are open to anyone masochistic enough to get addicted. In Two Girls, One on Each Knee, Alan Connor celebrates the wit, ingenuity and frustration of setting and solving puzzles. From the beaches of D-Day to the imaginary worlds of three-dimensional crosswords, to the British school teachers and journalists who turned the form into the fiendish sport it is today, encompassing the most challenging clues, particular tricks, the world's greatest setters and famous solvers, PG Wodehouse and the torturers of the Spanish Inquisition, this is an ingenious book for lovers of this very particular form of wordplay.
In Moral Conscience through the Ages, Richard Sorabji brings his erudition and philosophical acumen to bear on a fundamental question: what is conscience? Examining the ways we have conceived of that little voice in our heads - our self-directed judge - he teases out its most enduring elements, the aspects that have survived from the Greek playwrights in the fifth century BCE through St Paul, the Church Fathers, Catholics and Protestants, all the way to the 17th centurys political unrest and the critics and champions of the eighteenth to twentieth centuries. Sorabji traces a history of conscience over this long period and examines an impressive breadth of recurrent topics: the longing for different kinds of freedom of conscience, the proper limits of freedom itself, protests at consciences being terrorized, dilemmas of conscience, the value of conscience to human beings, its secularization, its reliability, and ways to improve it. These historical issues are alive today, with fresh concerns about topics such as conscientious objection, the force of conscience, or the balance between freedoms of conscience, religion, and speech. The result is a stunningly comprehensive look at a central component of our moral understanding.
100 Speeches that Roused the World tells the stories behind the most inspiring, rousing and memorable speeches, from ancient Greece to the present day. A concise introduction and analysis of each speech is accompanied by key illustrations and photographs. 100 Speeches presents the power of the spoken word at its finest, from stirring calls to arms to impassioned pleas for peace. Speeches include: Sojourner Truth, "Ain't I a woman" (1851), Abraham Lincoln's Gettysburg Address (1863), Emmeline Pankhurst "Freedom or Death" (1913), Winston Churchill, "Blood, Sweat and Tears" (1940), John F. Kennedy, "We choose to go to the moon" (1961), Martin Luther King, "I Have a Dream" (1963), Nelson Mandela on his release from prison (1990), Barack Obama, "Yes, We Can!" (2008) and Malala Yousafzai, "The right of education for every child" (2013). Others include Cicero, Elizabeth I, George Washington, Mahatma Gandhi, Vladimir Lenin, Adolf Hitler, Joseph Stalin, Enoch Powell, Eva Peron, Mao Zedong, Malcolm X, Margaret Thatcher, Richard M. Nixon, Maya Angelou, Steve Jobs and Oprah Winfrey. This is a classic collection of inspirational, momentous and thought-provoking speeches that have stirred nations, challenged accepted beliefs and changed the course of history.
All cultures are different, and have different ways of thinking. In How the World Thinks, Julian Baggini travels the globe to provide a hugely wide-ranging map of human thought. He shows us how distinct branches of philosophy flowered simultaneously in China, India and Ancient Greece, growing from local myths and stories - and how contemporary cultural attitudes, with particular attention to the West, East Asia, the Muslim World and Africa, have developed out of the philosophical histories of their regions. Interviewing thinkers from all around the world, he asks why, for instance, do our European systems of governments and justice differ so widely from the East? Why can Islam not easily incorporate secular knowledge? How do we understand China? By gaining greater knowledge of how others think, we can become less certain of the knowledge we think we have, the first step to greater understanding.
A fascinating history that reveals the ways in which the pursuit of rationality often leads to an explosion of irrationality It (TM)s a story we can (TM)t stop telling ourselves. Once, humans were benighted by superstition and irrationality, but then the Greeks invented reason. Later, the Enlightenment enshrined rationality as the supreme value. Discovering that reason is the defining feature of our species, we named ourselves the oerational animal. But is this flattering story itself rational? In this sweeping account of irrationality from antiquity to today "from the fifth-century BC murder of Hippasus for revealing the existence of irrational numbers to the rise of Twitter mobs and the election of Donald Trump "Justin Smith says the evidence suggests the opposite. From sex and music to religion and war, irrationality makes up the greater part of human life and history. Rich and ambitious, Irrationality ranges across philosophy, politics, and current events. Challenging conventional thinking about logic, natural reason, dreams, art and science, pseudoscience, the Enlightenment, the internet, jokes and lies, and death, the book shows how history reveals that any triumph of reason is temporary and reversible, and that rational schemes, notably including many from Silicon Valley, often result in their polar opposite. The problem is that the rational gives birth to the irrational and vice versa in an endless cycle, and any effort to permanently set things in order sooner or later ends in an explosion of unreason. Because of this, it is irrational to try to eliminate irrationality. For better or worse, it is an ineradicable feature of life. Illuminating unreason at a moment when the world appears to have gone mad again, Irrationality is fascinating, provocative, and timely.
100 Documents That Changed the World brings together the most important written agreements, declarations and statements in history. The documents included here have changed the course of history by rewriting laws, granting freedoms and laying out constitutions. But as well as official charters and presidential proclamations, there are also the hand-written documents that have gone on to shape the way we think, the scrawled notes that mark breakthroughs in the worlds of science and technology, and the annotated manuscripts that have become literary landmarks. Documents included: Magna Carta (1215); Shakespeare's First Folio (1623); Declaration of independence (1776); Constitution of the United States (1787); Louisiana Purchase (1803); Darwin's Evolutionary Tree (1837); Gettysburg Address (1863); Treaty of Versailles (1919); German Surrender (1945); Martin Luther King, Jr's "I Have A Dream" speech (1963); First Website (1991); Edward Snowden Files (2013).
The late scholastics, writing in the Baroque and Early Modern periods, discussed a wide variety of moral questions relating to political life in times of both peace and war. Is it ever permissible to bribe voters? Can tax evasion be morally justified? What are the moral duties of artists? Is it acceptable to fight in a war one believes to be unjust? May we surrender innocents to the enemy if it is necessary to save the state? These questions are no less relevant for philosophers and politicians today than they were for late scholastic thinkers. By bringing into play the opinions and arguments of numerous authors, many of them little known or entirely forgotten, this book is the first to provide an in-depth treatment of the dynamic and controversial nature of late scholastic applied moral thinking which demonstrates its richness and diversity.
The Cambridge History of Modern European Thought is an authoritative and comprehensive exploration of the themes, thinkers and movements that shaped our intellectual world from the late eighteenth century to the present. Representing both individual figures and the contexts within which they developed their ideas, this two-volume history is rich with original interpretive insight, and is written in a clear and accessible style by leading scholars in the field. Renouncing a single 'master narrative' of European thought across the period, Breckman and Gordon establish a formidable new multi-faceted vision of European intellectual history for the global modern age.
'His finest work and one that was both symptom and engine of the concept of "history from below" ... Here Levellers, Diggers, Ranters, Muggletonians, the early Quakers and others taking advantage of the collapse of censorship to bid for new kinds of freedom were given centre stage ... Hill lives on' Times Higher Education In 'The World Turned Upside Down' Christopher Hill studies the beliefs of such radical groups as the Diggers, the Ranters, the Levellers and others, and the social and emotional impulses that gave rise to them. The relations between rich and poor classes, the part played by wandering 'masterless' men, the outbursts of sexual freedom, the great imaginative creations of Milton and Bunyan - these and many other elements build up into a marvellously detailed and coherent portrait of this strange, sudden effusion of revolutionary beliefs. 'Established the concept of an "English Revolution" every bit as significant and potentially as radical as its French and Russian equivalents' Daily Telegraph 'Brilliant ... marvellous erudition and sympathy' David Caute, New Statesman 'This book will outlive our time and will stand as a notable monument to the man, the committed radical scholar, and one of the finest historians of the age' The Times Literary Supplement 'The dean and paragon of English historians' E.P. Thompson
A comprehensive and authoritative anthology of Rousseau's major later political writings in up-to-date English translations. This volume includes the essay on Political Economy; The Social Contract; the extensive, late Considerations on the Government of Poland; as well as the important draft on The Right of War and a selection of his letters on various aspects of his political thought. The Social Contract, Rousseau's most comprehensive political work - he called it a 'small treatise' - was condemned on publication by both the civil and the ecclesiastical authorities in France as well as in Geneva, and warrants for its author's arrest were issued. Rousseau was forced to flee and it is during this period that he wrote some of his autobiographical works. This new edition features an expanded Introduction, and an extensive editorial apparatus designed to assist students at every level access these seminal texts.
Probably the most famous living philosopher, Slavoj Zizek explores the concept of 'event', in the second in this new series of easily digestible philosophy What is really happening when something happens? In the second in a new series of accessible, commute-length books of original thought, Slavoj Zizek, one of the world's greatest living philosophers, examines the new and highly-contested concept of Event. An Event can be an occurrence that shatters ordinary life, a radical political rupture, a transformation of reality, a religious belief, the rise of a new art form, or an intense experience such as falling in love. Taking us on a trip which stops at different definitions of Event, Zizek addresses fundamental questions such as: Are all things connected? How much are we agents of our own fates? Which conditions must be met for us to perceive something as really existing? In a world that's constantly changing, is anything new really happening? Drawing on references from Plato to arthouse cinema, the Big Bang to Buddhism, Event is a journey into philosophy at its most exciting and elementary. Slavoj Zizek is a Hegelian philosopher, Lacanian psychoanalyst, and Communist political activist. He is the author of numerous books on dialectical materialism, critique of ideology and art. His main work is Less Than Nothing, a study on the actuality of Hegelian dialectics.
To a great extent, Holocaust consciousness in the contemporary
United States has become intertwined with American Jewish identity
and with support for right-wing Israeli politics -- but this was
not always the case. In this illuminating study, Kirsten Fermaglich
demonstrates that in the late 1950s and early 1960s, many American
Jewish writers and academics viewed the Nazi extermination of
European Jewry as a subject of universal interest, with important
lessons to be learned for the liberal reform of American politics.
What is the Enlightenment? A period rich with debates on the nature of man, truth and the place of God, with the international circulation of ideas, people and gold. But did the Enlightenment mean the same for men and women, for rich and poor, for Europeans and non-Europeans? In this fourth edition of her acclaimed book, Dorinda Outram addresses these and other questions about the Enlightenment and its place at the foundation of modernity. Studied as a global phenomenon, Outram sets the period against broader social changes, touching on how historical interpretations of the Enlightenment continue to transform in response to contemporary socio-economic trends. Supported by a wide-ranging selection of documents online, this new edition provides an up-to-date overview of the main themes of the period and benefits from an expanded treatment of political economy and imperialism, making it essential reading for students of eighteenth-century history and philosophy.
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