The fox knows many things, the Greeks said, but the hedgehog knows one big thing. In his most comprehensive work, Ronald Dworkin argues that value in all its forms is one big thing: that what truth is, life means, morality requires, and justice demands are different aspects of the same large question. He develops original theories on a great variety of issues very rarely considered in the same book: moral skepticism, literary, artistic, and historical interpretation, free will, ancient moral theory, being good and living well, liberty, equality, and law among many other topics. What we think about any one of these must stand up, eventually, to any argument we find compelling about the rest.
Skepticism in all its forms—philosophical, cynical, or post-modern—threatens that unity. The Galilean revolution once made the theological world of value safe for science. But the new republic gradually became a new empire: the modern philosophers inflated the methods of physics into a totalitarian theory of everything. They invaded and occupied all the honorifics—reality, truth, fact, ground, meaning, knowledge, and being—and dictated the terms on which other bodies of thought might aspire to them, and skepticism has been the inevitable result. We need a new revolution. We must make the world of science safe for value.
John Stuart Mill - On politics and society
Although he wrote extensively for fifty years, Mill's reputation as the philosopher of liberalism is largely based on three books published within a short space of five years: On liberty (1859); Considerations on representative government (1861); Utilitarianism (1863). Such a selective record offers a very partial view of Mill's scope as a political theorist, and one that largely ignores the restless and questioning approach which was central to his work. In John Stuart Mill on politics and society Geraint L. Williams provides a new selection from the whole range of Mill's political writings to present a comprehensive view both of the structure of Mill's thought and of the development of his political thinking from the 1820s to the 1870s.
Edward W. Said - Orientalism
In this highly acclaimed seminal work, Edward Said surveys the history and nature of Western attitudes towards the East, considering Orientalism as a powerful European ideological creation – a way for writers, philosophers and colonial administrators to deal with the ‘otherness’ of Eastern culture, customs and beliefs. He traces this view through the writings of Homer, Nerval and Flaubert, Disraeli and Kipling, whose imaginative depictions have greatly contributed to the West’s romantic and exotic picture of the Orient. In his new preface, Said examines the effect of continuing Western imperialism after recent events in Palestine, Afghanistan and Iraq.
Slavoj Žižek - Demanding the Impossible
Where are we today and what is to be done? Slavoj Zizek ponders these questions in this unique and timely book. Based on live interviews, the book captures Zizek at his irrepressible best, elucidating such topics as the uprisings of the Arab Spring, the global financial crisis, populism in Latin America, the rise of China and even the riddle of North Korea. Zizek dazzles readers with his analyses of Hollywood films, Venezuelan police reports, Swedish crime fiction and much else. Wherever the conversation turns, his energetic mind illuminates unexpected horizons. While analyzing our present predicaments, Zizek also explores possibilities for change. What sort of society is worth striving for? Why is it difficult to imagine alternative social and political arrangements? What are the bases for hope? A key obligation in our troubled times, argues Zizek, is to dare to ask fundamental questions: we must reflect and theorize anew, and always be prepared to rethink and redefine the limits of the possible. These original and compelling conversations offer an engaging and accessible introduction to one of the most important thinkers of our time.
Daniel Quinn - Beyond Civilization
In Beyond Civilization, Daniel Quinn thinks the unthinkable. We all know there's no one right way to build a bicycle, no one right way to design an automobile, no one right way to make a pair of shoes, but we're convinced that there must be only one right way to live -- and the one we have is it, no matter what. Beyond Civilization makes practical sense of the vision of Daniel Quinn's best-selling novel Ishmael. Examining ancient civilizations such as the Maya and the Olmec, as well as modern-day microcosms of alternative living like circus societies, Quinn guides us on a quest for a new model for society, one that is forward-thinking and encourages diversity instead of suppressing it. Beyond Civilization is not about a "New World Order" but a "New Personal World Order" that would allow people to assert control over their own destiny and grant them the freedom to create their own way of life right now -- not in some distant utopian future.
Slavoj Žižek - Violence
Philosopher, cultural critic, and agent provocateur Slavoj Žižek constructs a fascinating new framework to look at the forces of violence in our world. Using history, philosophy, books, movies, Lacanian psychiatry, and jokes, Slavoj Žižek examines the ways we perceive and misperceive violence. Drawing from his unique cultural vision, Žižek brings new light to the Paris riots of 2005; he questions the permissiveness of violence in philanthropy; in daring terms, he reflects on the powerful image and determination of contemporary terrorists. Violence, Žižek states, takes three forms--subjective (crime, terror), objective (racism, hate-speech, discrimination), and systemic (the catastrophic effects of economic and political systems)--and often one form of violence blunts our ability to see the others, raising complicated questions. Does the advent of capitalism and, indeed, civilization cause more violence than it prevents? Is there violence in the simple idea of "the neighbour"? And could the appropriate form of action against violence today simply be to contemplate, to think? Beginning with these and other equally contemplative questions, Žižek discusses the inherent violence of globalization, capitalism, fundamentalism, and language, in a work that will confirm his standing as one of our most erudite and incendiary modern thinkers.
Niccoló Machiavelli - The Prince
The most famous book on politics ever written, The Prince remains as lively and shocking today as when it was written almost five hundred years ago. Initially denounced as a collection of sinister maxims and a recommendation of tyranny, it has more recently been defended as the first scientific treatment of politics as it is practiced rather than as it ought to be practiced. Harvey C. Mansfield's brilliant translation of this classic work, along with the new materials added for this edition, make it the definitive version of The Prince, indispensable to scholars, students, and those interested in the dark art of politics. This revised edition of Mansfield's acclaimed translation features an updated bibliography, a substantial glossary, an analytic introduction, a chronology of Machiavelli's life, and a map of Italy in Machiavelli's time. "Of the other available [translations], that of Harvey C. Mansfield makes the necessary compromises between exactness and readability, as well as providing an excellent introduction and notes."—Clifford Orwin, The Wall Street Journal "Mansfield's work . . . is worth acquiring as the best combination of accuracy and readability."—Choice "There is good reason to assert that Machiavelli has met his match in Mansfield. . . . [He] is ready to read Machiavelli as he demands to be read—plainly and boldly, but also cautiously."—John Gueguen, The Sixteenth Century Journal
Thomas Hobbes - Leviathan
After the publication of his masterpiece of political theory, Leviathan, Or the Matter, and Power of Commonwealth Ecclesiastic and Civil, in 1651, opponents charged Thomas Hobbes with atheism and banned and burned his books. The English Parliament, in a search for scapegoats, even claimed that the theories found in Leviathan were a likely cause of the Plague of 1665 and the Great Fire of 1666. For the modern reader, though, Hobbes is more recognized for his popular belief that humanity's natural condition is a state of perpetual war, with life being "solitary, poor, nasty, brutish, and short." Despite frequent challenges by other philosophers, Leviathan's secular theory of absolutism no longer stands out as particularly objectionable. In the description of the organization of states, moreover, we see Hobbes as strikingly current in his use of concepts that we still employ today, including the ideas of natural law, natural rights, and the social contract. Based on this work, one could even argue that Hobbes created English-language philosophy, insofar as Leviathan was the first great philosophical work written in English and one whose impact continues to the present day.
Nigel Farage - Fighting Bull
Nigel Farage is a founder member of the UK Independence Party, which was established in September 1993. He is the Member of the European Parliament for the South East region and is the leader of the parliamentary party in the EU parliament.
Orson Scott Card - Shadow of the Giant
Bean's past was a battle just to survive. He first appeared on the streets of Rotterdam, a tiny child with a mind leagues beyond anyone else. He knew he could not survive through strength; he used his tactical genius to gain acceptance into a children's gang, and then to help make that gang a template for success for all the others. He civilized them, and lived to grow older. Then he was discovered by the recruiters for the Battle School. For Earth was at war - a terrible war with an inscrutable alien enemy. A war that humanity was near to losing. But the long distances of interstellar space has given hope to the defenders of Earth - they had time to train military geniuses up from childhood, forging them into an irresistible force in the high-orbital facility called the Battle School. That story is told in two books, the beloved classic ENDER'S GAME, and its parallel, ENDER'S SHADOW. Bean was the smallest student at the Battle School, but he became Ender Wiggins' right hand, Since then he has grown to be a power on Earth. He served the Hegemon as strategist and general in the terrible wars that followed Ender's defeat of the alien empire attacking Earth. Now he and his wife Petra yearn for a safe place to build a family - something he has never known - but there is nowhere on Earth that does not harbor his enemies - old enemies from the days in Ender's Jeesh, new enemies from the wars on Earth. To find security, Bean and Petra must once again follow in Ender's footsteps. They must leave Earth behind, in the control of the Hegemon, and look to the stars.
Orson Scott Card - Shadow of the Hegemon
The War is over, won by Ender Wiggin and his team of brilliant child-warriors. The enemy is destroyed, the human race is saved. Ender himself refuses to return to the planet, but his crew has gone home to their families, scattered across the globe. The battle school is no more. But with the external threat gone, the Earth has become a battlefield once more. The children of the Battle School are more than heros; they are potential weapons that can bring power to the countries that control them. One by one, all of Ender's Dragon Army are kidnapped. Only Bean escapes; and he turns for help to Ender's brother Peter. Peter Wiggin, Ender's older brother, has already been manipulating the politics of Earth from behind the scenes. With Bean's help, he will eventually rule the world.
Orson Scott Card - Ender in Exile
After twenty-three years, Orson Scott Card returns to his acclaimed best-selling series with the first true, direct sequel to the classic Ender's Game. In Ender’s Game, the world’s most gifted children were taken from their families and sent to an elite training school. At Battle School, they learned combat, strategy, and secret intelligence to fight a dangerous war on behalf of those left on Earth. But they also learned some important and less definable lessons about life. After the life-changing events of those years, these children—now teenagers—must leave the school and readapt to life in the outside world. Having not seen their families or interacted with other people for years—where do they go now? What can they do? Ender fought for humanity, but he is now reviled as a ruthless assassin. No longer allowed to live on Earth, he enters into exile. With his sister Valentine, he chooses to leave the only home he’s ever known to begin a relativistic—and revelatory—journey beyond the stars. What happened during the years between Ender’s Game and Speaker for the Dead? What did Ender go through from the ages of 12 through 35? The story of those years has never been told. Taking place 3000 years before Ender finally receives his chance at redemption in Speaker for the Dead, this is the long-lost story of Ender. For twenty-three years, millions of readers have wondered and now they will receive the answers. Ender in Exile is Orson Scott Card’s moving return to all the action and the adventure, the profound exploration of war and society, and the characters one never forgot. On one of these ships, there is a baby that just may share the same special gifts as Ender’s old friend Bean…
Stephen W. Hawking - A Brief History of Time
Brief History of Time, published in 1988, was a landmark volume in science writing and in world-wide acclaim and popularity, with more than 9 million copies in print globally. The original edition was on the cutting edge of what was then known about the origins and nature of the universe. But the ensuing years have seen extraordinary advances in the technology of observing both the micro - and the macrocosmic world - observations that have confirmed many of Hawking's theoretical predictions in the first edition of his book. Now a decade later, this edition updates the chapters throughout to document those advances, and also includes an entirely new chapter on Wormholes and Time Travel and a new introduction. It make vividly clear why A Brief History of Time has transformed our view of the universe.
Stephen W. Hawking - Leonard Mlodinow - The Grand Design
The three central questions of philosophy and science: Why is there something rather than nothing? Why do we exist? Why this particular set of laws and not some other? No one can make a discussion of such matters as compulsively readable as the celebrated University of Cambridge cosmologist Hawking (A Brief History of Time). Along with Caltech physicist Mlodinow (The Drunkard's Walk), Hawking deftly mixes cutting-edge physics to answer those key questions. For instance, why do we exist? Earth occupies a "Goldilocks Zone" in space: just the perfect distance from a not-too-hot star, with just the right elements to allow life to evolve. On a larger scale, in order to explain the universe, the authors write, "we need to know not only how the universe behaves, but why." While no single theory exists yet, scientists are approaching that goal with what is called "M-theory," a collection of overlapping theories (including string theory) that fill in many (but not all) the blank spots in quantum physics; this collection is known as the "Grand Unified Field Theories." This may all finally explain the mystery of the universe's creation without recourse to a divine creator. This is an amazingly concise, clear, and intriguing overview of where we stand when it comes to divining the secrets of the universe.
Niccoló Machiavelli - A fejedelem
Az itáliai politikus-zenész-komédiaíró-filozófus munkája immár csaknem fél évezrede méltán a politika művészetének megkerülhetetlen alapkönyve – királyok, kalandorok, politikusok tanulták-tanulják belőle a hatalom gyakorlásának művészetét.
John Gribbin - Deep Simplicity
'One is left feeling even more - if this is possible - filled with admiration for science and delight at the world it investigates' The world around us can be a complex, confusing place. Earthquakes happen without warning, stock markets fluctuate, weather forecasters seldom seem to get it right. How do we make sense of it all? John Gribbin reveals our seemingly random universe is actually built on simple laws of cause and effect that can explain why, for example, just one vehicle breaking down can cause a traffic jam; why wild storms are caused by a slight atmospheric change; even how we evolved from the most basic of materials. Like a Zen painting, a fractal image or the pattern on a butterfly's wings, simple elements form the bedrock of a sophisticated whole. Synthesising chaos and complexity theory for the perplexed, _Deep Simplicity_ brilliantly illuminates the harmony underlying our existence.
Robert Greene - The Art of Seduction
The season's most talked-about all-purpose personal strategy guide and philosophical compendium," said Newsweek of Robert Greene's bold, elegant, and ingenious manual of modern manipulation, The 48 Laws of Power. Now Greene has once again mined history and literature to distill the essence of seduction, the most highly refined mode of influence, the ultimate power trip. The Art of Seduction is a masterful synthesis of the work of thinkers such as Freud, Ovid, Kierkegaard, and Einstein, as well as the achievements of the greatest seducers throughout history. From Cleopatra to John F. Kennedy, from Andy Warhol to Josephine Bonaparte, The Art of Seduction gets to the heart of the character of the seducer and his or her tactics, triumphs and failures. The seducer's many faces include: the Siren, the Rake, the Ideal Lover, the Dandy, the Natural, the Coquette, the Charmer, and the Charismatic. Twenty-four maneuvers will guide readers through the seduction process, providing cunning, amoral instructions for and analysis of this fascinating, all-pervasive form of power. Just as beautifully packaged and every bit as essential as The 48 Laws of Power, The Art of Seduction is an indispensable primer of persuasion and offers the best lessons on how to take what you want from whomever you want or how to prevent yourself from being taken
James Ellroy - Blood's a Rover
America's master of noir delivers his masterpiece, a rip-roaring, devilishly wild ride through the bloody end of the 1960's. It's dark baby, and hot hot hot. Martin Luther King assassinated. Robert Kennedy assassinated. Los Angeles, 1968. Conspiracies theories are taking hold. On the horizon looms the Democratic Convention in Chicago and constant gun fire peppers south L.A. Violence, greed, and grime, are replacing free-love and everybody from Howard Hughes, Richard Nixon and J. Edgar Hoover to the right-wing assassins and left-wing revolutionaries are getting dirty. At the center of it all is a triumvirate: the president’s strong-arm goon, an ex-cop and heroine runner, and a private eye whose quarry is so dangerous she could set off the whole powder keg. With his trademark deadly staccato prose, James Ellroy holds nothing back in this wild, startling and much anticipated conclusion to his Underworld USA trilogy.
C. Wright Mills - The Marxists
For the past hundred years the Marxists have posed the chief political alternative to capitalist society. They have been successful revolutionaries in Russia, China, and Yugoslavia. They are now the technicians and philosophers whose appeals to the under- developed nations of Asia, Africa, and Latin America may be decisive. In this pelican book they speak for themselves – in documents by the leading theorists and rulers from Marx, by way of Lenin, Trotsky, and Stalin, to Khruschev, Mao Tse-tung, and even Che Guevara of Cuba. As a guide through these theories C. Wright mills, the controversial and outspoken author of the power elite and other sociological studies, maps out the essential ideas of Marxism and examines them critically. He sketches their historical development – failures and points to their implications for the present and the future.
George R. R. Martin - A Game of Thrones
In a world where the approaching winter will last four decades, kings and queens, knights and renegades struggle for control of a throne. Some fight with sword and mace, others with magic and poison. Beyond the Wall to the north, meanwhile, the Others are preparing their army of the dead to march south as the warmth of summer drains from the land. After more than a decade devoted primarily to TV and screen work, Martin (The Armageddon Rag, 1983) makes a triumphant return to high fantasy with this extraordinarily rich new novel, the first of a trilogy. Although conventional in form, the book stands out from similar work by Eddings, Brooks and others by virtue of its superbly developed characters, accomplished prose and sheer bloody-mindedness. Although the romance of chivalry is central to the culture of the Seven Kingdoms, and tournaments, derring-do and handsome knights abound, these trappings merely give cover to dangerous men and women who will stop at nothing to achieve their goals. When Lord Stark of Winterfell, an honest man, comes south to act as the King's chief councilor, no amount of heroism or good intentions can keep the realm under control. It is fascinating to watch Martin's characters mature and grow, particularly Stark's children, who stand at the center of the book. Martin's trophy case is already stuffed with major prizes, including Hugos, Nebulas, Locus Awards and a Bram Stoker. He's probably going to have to add another shelf, at least. Major ad/promo.