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Da Book Recommendations Thread inda Houze..
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Sorry for the Ali G. accent.

Anyway, inspired by Nadi's desire for good Nietzsche stuff I had the idea of opening a thread where all of you Intellectuals could share and reommend books which you consider special and unique, books that have had a great impact on you and that helped shaping certain attitudes of yours and your world view in general.
So.....what are in your opnion must-reads in the fields of politics, economy, arts and culture, philosopy etc....You can name novels, too!
ing Awesome idea.

For plotical books...Read "Jihad vs. McWorld"...Excellent book about how our Democracy is being threatened in opposite ways by opposite forces.

Also, I was wondering...Does anyone have any deep Philosophical books? I don't read much at all, but I may if I had something interesting to read.
The Prince - a great book on politics and governing over the people... really revolutionaty for its time
David Deutsch's "The fabric of reality", is a really well written book on how four theories can be combined into one which explains *everything*. I do not agree on all that its points, but DD is a fantastic writer and some of the chapters (for instance one about time travel - and why it imposes no paradoxes) really moved my perception of the world.

Apart from that I would recommend Alain De Botton's "The consolations of philosophy", which is a little book listing exactly what its title implies. A fast read with lots of fun and heartening comments.

Other than that there are philosophical introductions that I read earlier in my life that I thought was good (e.g. Donald Pallmer's "Looking at philosophy"), but the best book for this purpose must have been "Sophie's world" (can't remember the authors name). It's a novel, and, besides introducing some of the main western philosophers and their ideas, it includes a litterary twist I've never encountered before. It totally blew me away.
Originally posted by Izzy
The Prince - a great book on politics and governing over the people... really revolutionaty for its time

Ugh, me hates Machiavelli...damn him and his "ends justify the means" bulle :p

Definitely is an essential philosophical work though...

A couple fictional works that I'd recommend:

- Crime & Punishment by Doestoevsky.

Classic that asked "Why not murder?" Doestoevsky's answer at the end doesn't ring true for a non-Christian, but it stands as a deep and interesting novel, one of my faves.

- 1984 by Orwell, Brave New World by Huxley, Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury.

Essential stories about future "negative" utopias...with all too many shades of our current world in them.

And a book that I haven't read but can certainly recommend (since the fellow who wrote it is my favourite philosophy teacher) is:

Meditations for Spiritual Misfits by Robert Badra.

It's a short work, but Badra has a very interesting take on life (An ex-monk, ex-priest, who's currently a Christian *and* a Buddhist, very open to other religions, and thinks all are equally valid, just different expressions of the same thing) and flared my interest in philosophy again, so I can definitely recommend this book; though it's out of print...
Fahrenheit 451 by Bradbury.
now this book is truly great.

I know this is going to sound lame with all the LOTR hype going about, but its not like i just watched the movie and said 'oohh ahh elves! oohh let me go find that book' ...NO, not at all, but read the silmarillion and the lost tales and his other works that are not so popular, because they are his best works.

The only other novels i would say that are a must read, IMO, is the wheel of time trilogy, just because of the fact that it is such a damn good fantasy trilogy (by robert jordan)...and Raise High the Roofbeam Carpenters, and Franny & Zooey...(J.D salinger).

these are probably my favorite books of all time...they dont really have tooooooooo much to do with politics and or philosophy (somewhat yes)...but they are nevertheless good books.


Ayn Rand-Atlas Shrugged
Ahhh... cool thread.

Intriguing book:

Steal this Book - Abbie Hoffman ... Here is an excerpt from Amazon that talks about the book.
In 1970, Abbie Hoffman conceived the idea for his most ambitious book project yet. He had begun criss-crossing the country, ferreting out alternative ways of getting along in America--some illegal, but most of them having to do with survival techniques. Steal This Book captures the spirit of those years, describing actions and techniques that were already in use in all 50 states.

We - Yevgeny Zamyatin (this is the book that inspired Orwell to write 1984, short book ~115 pages, but very good).

Communist Manifesto -Karl Marx

Animal Farm - George Orwell

Clockwork Orange - Anthony Burgess

Book of Happiness: A Handbook for Living - His holiness the Dalai Lama

Catch 22 - Joseph Heller - One of the best reads I have had the pleasure of reading .... awesome.

Catcher in the Rye - JD Salinger ... Salingers writing style is amazing, very easy to read... Most of the time when a book is easy to read (like a micheal crichton book for eg), i feel like i wasted time. Salingers book made me feel satisfied in the story.

A book of five rings - Miyamoto Musashi (havent read this one yet, but I plan to soon)

Heart of Darkness - Joseph Conrad - great book.. saw the movie first (Apocalypse Now --- for those of you who have been living under a rock), and loved it. The book was great as well.
well this one changed and consolidated some of my views in life (i have it in spanish so i dont know if the title is translated like this)
Jesus Lived in India - Holger Kersten. very good book with solid facts that state that Jesus did not die on the cross and died of old age in india

also anything by richard bach, gabriel garcia marquez (really good tho he writes in spanish dont know if there are any tranlsations) oh and anything by kalil gibran and these one the art of loving - erich fromm.

well that's it :p also would like to add that sophie's world - jostein gaarder is a very good introduction to philosophy and is very recommended ;)
Sadly, i haven't read many books :(

I was big time into literature in higschool, but mostly fiction. the college came, and away went my time.

now, i mostly just read on the web. I have several books inline to read though, some fiction some fact, including some of the ones listed above, especially 1984.

But, one book i would reccomend to anyone is "The Life Era" by Eric Chaisson. Truly remarkable book that changed my life. It's quite math and physics heavy, but a good read even if you don't understand all the equations. Which even with a strong math background, 4 years of college, and 3 years of computer programming, i didn't fully grasp. Just pick it up and read it, believe me.

Also, "A Brief History of Time" by Steven Hawkings is excellent, also in the physics realm.

Here are some good quotes from that book:

Also, "Billions and Billions" by Carl Sagan, a book i always THOUGHT was about astronomy, but is actually not entirely, it is a collection of essays on a variety of subjects, including but not limited to the cold war, and abortion. Those are the only chapters i have read, but i'd love to finish it.

Originally posted by JohnSmith
Sadly, i haven't read many books :(


haha know what thats like!

one that is excellent for world affairs is:

The Lexus and the Olive Tree by Thomas L. Friedman

this quote from Amazon sums it up nicely:
One day in 1992, Thomas Friedman toured a Lexus factory in Japan and marveled at the robots that put the luxury cars together. That evening, as he ate sushi on a Japanese bullet train, he read a story about yet another Middle East squabble between Palestinians and Israelis. And it hit him: Half the world was lusting after those Lexuses, or at least the brilliant technology that made them possible, and the other half was fighting over who owned which olive tree.

excellent reading! late|
"l'etranger" (in french)
"the stranger" (translated to english)
by albert camus
- kind of an intro to existentialism, great book! LINK

"the rogue primate"
by john livingston

Rogue Primate: An Exploration of Human Domestication is a provocative book wherein John Livingston challenges most conventional ideas about the relationship between humans and the natural world.

An award-winning study of the relationship of humans to nature argues that humans have become so domesticated by and dependent on technology they can no longer truly relate to nature and are more prone to damage their environment

great idea, i've been looking for some good reccomendations

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