Offering a “CliffsNotes guide” to some of the most important literary works of our time, Benjamin Wiker, author of 10 Books That Screwed Up the World, turns his discerning eye from the great texts that have done damage to Western civilization to the great texts that could help rebuild it.
This book features a range of works, from classics such as Democracy in America and The Federalist Papers to more popular classics like Sense and Sensibility and The Tempest. Through these works, Wiker reveals some of the most important lessons for our time, as well as the true meaning of conservatism. Written with an educational purpose and a witty tone, this is a must listen for conservatives, Republicans, and book lovers everywhere.
Respect to the man or woman bold enough to think for a lifetime about the world and write their understanding of it down for others to criticize. An interesting listen - some people will hate it and write letters of complaint (and worse). Some will love it and congratulate the writer.
0 of 1 people found this review helpful
If you are looking for an overview of conservative philosophy this book would be the best place to start. A well-written and comprehensive overview of the most important conservative books (at least according to the author), this book has eye opening and rich content for anyone who thinks that conservative philosophy is just "free markets" and "small government". There is much much more than that to conservative thought and values; this book really gives an interesting overview. Who would have thought conservativism goes back over 2000 years! Nicely recorded and pleasant to listen to as well. 5 stars, get it!
12 of 14 people found this review helpful
This is one of the best overviews of conservatism I have ever read. It is fantastic, because it is not about modern politics and name-calling that are often heard, but the deep traditions that has formed the core of conservatism from Aristotle onward. A perfect book for someone who is a conservative, but never found the unifying threads that held it all together. Also great for any liberal who wants to understand what it is that conservatives are all about.
4 of 5 people found this review helpful
Having read most of the books on this list, I think I'll have to agree with Mr. Wiker. He presents pretty compelling logic to support his political ideas, though I have to strongly disagree with him about Ayn Rand. Atlas Shrugged is quintessential reading for anyone trying to understand the economic beliefs of the right. The problems come in where their religious beliefs don't see eye-to-eye.
Mr. Wiker's interpretation of The Lord of the Rings was one I had heard in passing, but in this extended explanation I came around to being able to appreciate the work in a different light.
After the gushing review of C. S. Lewis' Abolition of Man, I have to read that book.
What I liked most about this book is it focused on the conservative mindset, though there were many glancing blows thrown across the isle. I would strongly recommend it to any conservative looking for the way. Liberals who are truly trying to understand the right can take a lot from this book, but most will miss its messages.
9 of 12 people found this review helpful
This is a GREAT book and worth 5 stars. I read Wiker’s previous book Ten Books that Screwed Up the World, and I looked forward to any similar work. I was not disappointed. Several times while reading I thought to myself, “I’m loving this!”
Wiker provides an excellent introduction to help us understand how the terms “conservative” and “liberal” have changed over the centuries, lest we jump to the mistaken assumption that yesterday’s liberal is also today’s liberal. (They are not.)
He outlines that he will cover works that provide the foundation of what we call “conservative principles” today. His selection of books achieve this purpose wonderfully. After the first 3 or 4 books, you begin to be able to have the feel of conservatism as a bottom-up, fundamental, and common-sense approach to life… as opposed to liberalism’s top-down Utopian progress toward some dreamy super-society. I could never define conservatism well, but this book made it clear. I also enjoyed that Wiker not only reviewed each book, but provided a brief biography of each author.
His selection of 4 others are definitely worth noting, and I plan to follow up with reading at least one I missed. He is also correct about the impostor Atlas Shrugged, and provided insight into how closely the book’s deceptive views are linked to the miserable, deplorable life of its author Ayn Rand.
The narrator is the same one that provided the reading of Ten Books that Screwed Up The World. He has a distinctly clear voice that has a hint of authority. Well-chosen for this book.
I enjoyed this one so much I will definitely read it again. If you want to investigate your own views about conservatism then consider this book to help you. If you label yourself a liberal, then this book will help you to understand your conservative friends better.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
beautiful reading and amazing book. Even better than the previous 10 books that ruined the world, also from Wiker.
If you are interested in why every conservative must be a Christian - this is your book. If you are interested in a character assassination of the most prominent critic of that requirement - Ayn Rand - this is your book. If you are interested in a marriage of an ubber-condescending reader with an equally patronizing author... again... you will find yourself here.
If on the other hand, you are interested in conservatism as a dynamic philosophy: a coherent productive life-view - which does not require full-immersion Baptism; a view which assumes that conservatism can have roots in rationality as opposed to spirituality... A personal outlook which is continually evolving as opposed to wholly revealed within a specific flavor of scripture - Well, don't waste your time, this is NOT the book for you.
This work should be sub-titled: How My Holy Book Proves: The Right Is Right. It is a tedious, dull, Christian sermon wrapped tighter than a store-bought CD.
23 of 53 people found this review helpful