The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written: The History of Thought from Ancient Times to Today

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9780806520001: The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written: The History of Thought from Ancient Times to Today
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Presents the history of each book, little-known facts about its author and its creation, reasons for its inclusion, and an analysis of its influence today

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From Library Journal:

This book is part of the publisher's "100" series, which includes The 100: A Ranking of the Most Influential Persons in History (Carol Pub., 1992) and 13 similar compilations of the most influential women, films, gays, blacks, and so on. The current title describes the 100 books that have most changed human history, having formed the basis of the world's religions, advanced scientific knowledge, altered our understanding of ourselves, and created and reformed social and political traditions. The author, who has written many books on literary and biographical topics, e.g., Hardy (LJ 1/95), offers a four- or five-page essay on each title, giving historical background and setting, an argument for the book's right to be on the list, and a discussion of its influence today. Among the works included are Herodotus's History, The Gospels of Truth, Erasmus's In Praise of Folly, Shakespeare's First Folio, Pascal's Pens?es, Mary Wollstonecraft's Vindication of the Rights of Women, Martin Buber's I and Thou, Simone de Beauvoir's The Second Sex, and Mao's Quotations from Chairman Mao Tse-tung. Half the fun of any such list is seeing which books are included and hearing the author's reasoning. Unfortunately, though the content is good, the essays are uneven and the style digressive. Not an essential purchase.APaul A. D'Alessandro, Portland P.L., ME
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From Publishers Weekly:

British literary historian Seymour-Smith's survey of what he considers the 100 most influential books is a searching inquiry into major thinkers, writers and philosophers. Arranged in chronological order from the I Ching to B.F. Skinner's Beyond Freedom and Dignity, the selection is admirably inclusive, setting Confucius's Analects, India's Upanishads, the Koran and the Zoroastrian Avesta alongside the Old and New Testaments, Plato's Republic, and works by Dante, Shakespeare, Spinoza, Gibbon, Copernicus, Voltaire, Marx, Thoreau, Einstein, Freud, Jung. His compendium features concise, opinionated essays marked by intellectual depth and scope, and includes vivid biographical details of each book's author. Seymour-Smith finds most modernist techniques already present, or anticipated, in Cervantes's Don Quixote, and he views Rabelais as the first truly popular writer. His eclectic choice of influential moderns?de Beauvoir, Mao, Orwell, Keynes, Chomsky, cybernetician Norbert Winer, mystic G.I. Gurdjieff, Wittgenstein?is unpredictable, a roster he defends with alacrity. This is a mind-expanding one-volume humanities course. Illustrations.
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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9781567316780: The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written: The History of Thought From Ancient Times to Today

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ISBN 10:  1567316786 ISBN 13:  9781567316780
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