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  1. 3.2 hrs • 9/5/2016 • Unabridged

    In this, his first book, Nietzsche developed a way of thinking about the arts that unites the Greek gods Apollo and Dionysus as the central symbol of human existence. Although tragedy serves as the focus of this work, music, visual art, dance, and the other arts can also be viewed using Nietzsche’s analysis and integration of the Apollonian and the Dionysian. The Birth of Tragedy stands alongside Aristotle’s Poetics as an essential work for all who seek to understand poetry and its relationship to human life. © Agora Publications

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    Nietzsche's The Birth of Tragedy

    3.2 hrs • 9/5/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 2.8 hrs • 9/1/2015 • Unabridged

    A concise overview of our belief systems and the next exciting installment in the MIT Press Essential Knowledge series Our beliefs constitute a large part of our knowledge of the world. We have beliefs about objects, about culture, about the past, and about the future. We have beliefs about other people, and we believe that they have beliefs as well. We use beliefs to predict, to explain, to create, to console, to entertain. Some of our beliefs we call theories, and we are extraordinarily creative at constructing them. Theories of quantum mechanics, evolution, and relativity are examples. But so are theories about astrology, alien abduction, guardian angels, and reincarnation. All are products (with varying degrees of credibility) of fertile minds trying to find explanations for observed phenomena. In this book, Nils Nilsson examines beliefs: what they do for us, how we come to hold them, and how to evaluate them. We should evaluate our beliefs carefully, Nilsson points out, because they influence so many of our actions and decisions. Some of our beliefs are more strongly held than others, but all should be considered tentative and changeable. Nilsson shows that beliefs can be quantified by probability, and he describes networks of beliefs in which the probabilities of some beliefs affect the probabilities of others. He argues that we can evaluate our beliefs by adapting some of the practices of the scientific method and by consulting expert opinion. And he warns us about “belief traps”—holding onto beliefs that wouldn’t survive critical evaluation. The best way to escape belief traps, he writes, is to expose our beliefs to the reasoned criticism of others.

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    Understanding Beliefs by Nils J. Nilsson
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  3. 12.1 hrs • 7/7/2015 • Unabridged

    The Lucifer Priciple is a revolutionary work that explores the intricate relationships among genetics, human behavior, and culture to put forth the thesis that “evil” is a by-product of nature’s strategies for creation and that it is woven into our most basic biological fabric. Though this argument is not a new one—it has been brought forth by such great historical figures as St. Paul, Thomas Hobbes, and Raymond Dart—Howard Bloom here takes fresh data from a variety of sources and shapes it into a lens through which listeners can reinterpret the human experience.

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    The Lucifer Principle by Howard Bloom

    The Lucifer Principle

    Foreword by David Sloan Wilson
    12.1 hrs • 7/7/15 • Unabridged
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  4. 29.8 hrs • 6/2/2015 • Unabridged

    The author of the international bestseller Happiness makes a passionate case for altruism—and why we need it now more than ever. In Happiness, Matthieu Ricard demonstrated that true happiness is not tied to fleeting moments or sensations but is an enduring state of soul rooted in mindfulness and compassion for others. Now he turns his lens from the personal to the global with a rousing argument that altruism—genuine concern for the well-being of others—could be the saving grace of the twenty-first century. It is, he believes, the vital thread that can answer the main challenges of our time: the economy in the short term, life satisfaction in the mid-term, and environment in the long term. Ricard’s message has been taken up by major economists and thinkers, including Dennis Snower, Amartya Sen, Joseph Stiglitz, and George Soros. Matthieu Ricard makes a robust and passionate case for cultivating altruistic love and compassion as the best means for simultaneously benefitting ourselves and our society. It’s a fresh outlook on an ardent struggle—and one that just might make the world a better place.

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    Altruism

    Translated by Charlotte Mandell and Sam Gordon
    Read by Dan Woren
    29.8 hrs • 6/2/15 • Unabridged
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  5. 0 reviews 0 5 4 4 out of 5 stars 4/5
    5.6 hrs • 4/21/2015 • Unabridged

    A passionate manifesto decrying misogyny in the Arab world, by an Egyptian-American journalist and activist When the Egyptian journalist Mona Eltahawy published an article in Foreign Policy magazine in 2012 titled “Why Do They Hate Us?” it provoked a firestorm of controversy. The response it generated, with more than four thousand posts on the website, broke all records for the magazine, prompted dozens of follow-up interviews on radio and television, and made it clear that misogyny in the Arab world is an explosive issue, one that engages and often enrages the public. In Headscarves and Hymens, Eltahawy takes her argument further. Drawing on her years as a campaigner and commentator on women’s issues in the Middle East, she explains that since the Arab Spring began, women in the Arab world have had two revolutions to undertake: one fought with men against oppressive regimes, and another fought against an entire political and economic system that treats women in countries from Yemen and Saudi Arabia to Egypt, Tunisia, and Libya as second-class citizens. Eltahawy has traveled across the Middle East and North Africa, meeting with women and listening to their stories. Her book is a plea for outrage and action on their behalf, confronting the “toxic mix of culture and religion that few seem willing or able to disentangle lest they blaspheme or offend.” A manifesto motivated by hope and fury in equal measure, Headscarves and Hymens is as illuminating as it is incendiary.

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    Headscarves and Hymens

    5.6 hrs • 4/21/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    4.8 hrs • 1/27/2015 • Unabridged

    Modern Western culture and technology is inextricably tied to the belief in the existence of a self as a separate ego, separated from and in conflict with the rest of the world. In this classic book, Alan Watts provides a lucid and simple presentation of an alternative view based on Hindu and Vedantic philosophy.

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    The Book

    4.8 hrs • 1/27/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 6.1 hrs • 11/13/2014 • Unabridged

    In 1869, at the age of twenty-four, Friedrich Nietzsche was appointed a professor of classical philology at the University of Basel, a remarkable position for one of his age. The Birth of Tragedy, published in 1872, was his first significant publication. It did little, however, to help his reputation as a scholar; his views were controversial and aroused strong criticism in some quarters. Nietzsche later reissued The Birth of Tragedy in 1886 under the title The Birth of Tragedy, or Hellenism and Pessimism, introducing it with “An Attempt at a Self-Criticism.” This audiobook includes this preface.

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    The Birth of Tragedy

    6.1 hrs • 11/13/14 • Unabridged
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  8. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    12.7 hrs • 10/9/2014 • Unabridged

    We are doomed to repeat history if we fail to learn from it, but how are we affected by the forces that are invisible to us? In The Invisible History of the Human Race, Christine Kenneally draws on cutting-edge research to reveal how both historical artifacts and DNA tell us where we come from and where we may be going. While some books explore our genetic inheritance and popular television shows celebrate ancestry, this is the first book to explore how everything from DNA to emotions to names and the stories that form our lives are all part of our human legacy. Kenneally shows how trust is inherited in Africa, silence is passed down in Tasmania, and how the history of nations is written in our DNA. From fateful, ancient encounters to modern mass migrations and medical diagnoses, Kenneally explains how the forces that shaped the history of the world ultimately shape each human who inhabits it. The Invisible History of the Human Race is a deeply researched, carefully crafted, and provocative perspective on how our stories, psychology, and genetics affect our past and our future.

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    The Invisible History of the Human Race

    12.7 hrs • 10/9/14 • Unabridged
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  9. 12.3 hrs • 4/9/2013 • Unabridged

    From one of our most acclaimed historians comes an account of human solidarity throughout the ages, provocatively arguing against the received wisdom that history is best understood as a chronicle of groups in conflict. Investigating the six most pervasive categories of human difference—religion, nation, class, gender, race, and civilization—Cannadine asks how determinative each of them has really been over the course of history. Without denying their power to motivate populations dramatically at particular moments, he reveals that in the long term none has proven remotely as divisive as the occasional absolutist cries of “us versus them” would suggest, whether Christian versus Muslim during the Crusades (and now), landed gentry versus peasantry during the Bolshevik Revolution, or Jews versus “Aryan race” in Nazi Germany. For most of recorded time, these same “unbridgeable” differences were experienced as just one identity among others; whatever most chroniclers, self-serving mythmakers, and demagogues would have us believe, history needs to be reimagined to include the countless fruitful interactions across these lines, which are usually left out of the picture. 

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    The Undivided Past by David Cannadine

    The Undivided Past

    12.3 hrs • 4/9/13 • Unabridged
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  10. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    14.3 hrs • 7/15/2012 • Unabridged

    To err is human. Yet most of us go through life assuming (and sometimes insisting) that we are right about nearly everything, from the origins of the universe to how to load the dishwasher. If being wrong is so natural, why are we all so bad at imagining that our beliefs could be mistaken, and why do we react to our errors with surprise, denial, defensiveness, and shame? In Being Wrong, journalist Kathryn Schulz explores why we find it so gratifying to be right and so maddening to be mistaken, and how this attitude toward error corrodes relationships, whether between family members, colleagues, neighbors, or nations. Along the way, she takes us on a fascinating tour of human fallibility, from wrongful convictions to no-fault divorce; medical mistakes to misadventures at sea; failed prophecies to false memories; “I told you so!” to “Mistakes were made.” Drawing on thinkers as varied as Augustine, Darwin, Freud, Gertrude Stein, Alan Greenspan, and Groucho Marx, she proposes a new way of looking at wrongness. In this view, error is both a given and a gift, one that can transform our worldviews, our relationships, and, most profoundly, ourselves. In the end, Being Wrong is not just an account of human error but a tribute to human creativity, the way we generate and revise our beliefs about ourselves and the world. At a moment when economic, political, and religious dogmatism increasingly divide us, Schulz explores with uncommon humor and eloquence the seduction of certainty and the crises occasioned by error. A brilliant debut from a new voice in nonfiction, this book calls on us to ask one of life’s most challenging questions: what if I’m wrong?

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    Being Wrong

    14.3 hrs • 7/15/12 • Unabridged
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  11. 20.0 hrs • 12/12/2011 • Unabridged

    Daniel Kahneman, recipient of the Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences for his seminal work in psychology challenging the rational model of judgment and decision making, is one of the world’s most important thinkers. His ideas have had a profound impact on many fields—including business, medicine, and politics—but until now, he has never brought together his many years of research in one book.  In Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman takes us on a groundbreaking tour of the mind and explains the two systems that drive the way we think and make choices. One system is fast, intuitive, and emotional; the other is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities—and also the faults and biases—of fast thinking and reveals the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and behaviour. The importance of properly framing risks, the effects of cognitive biases on how we view others, the dangers of prediction, the right ways to develop skills, the pros and cons of fear and optimism, the difference between our experience and memory of events, the real components of happiness—each of these can be understood only by knowing how the two systems work together to shape our judgments and decisions.  Drawing on a lifetime’s experimental experience, Kahneman reveals where we can and cannot trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking. He offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our professional and our personal lives—and how we can use different techniques to guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble. Thinking, Fast and Slow will transform the way you take decisions and experience the world.

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    Thinking, Fast and Slow by Daniel Kahneman

    Thinking, Fast and Slow

    20.0 hrs • 12/12/11 • Unabridged
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  12. 8.4 hrs • 12/5/2011 • Unabridged

    An entertaining illumination of the stupid beliefs that make us feel wise. You believe you are a rational, logical being who sees the world as it really is, but journalist David McRaney is here to tell you that you’re as deluded as the rest of us. But that’s OK—delusions keep us sane. You Are Not So Smart is a celebration of self-delusion. It’s like a psychology class, with all the boring parts taken out, and with no homework. Based on the popular blog of the same name, You Are Not So Smart collects more than forty-six of the lies we tell ourselves everyday, including: –Dunbar’s Number - Humans evolved to live in bands of roughly 150 individuals, the brain cannot handle more than that number. If you have more than 150 Facebook friends, they are surely not all real friends. –Hindsight bias - When we learn something new, we reassure ourselves that we knew it all along. –Confirmation bias - Our brains resist new ideas, instead paying attention only to findings that reinforce our preconceived notions. –Brand loyalty - We reach for the same brand not because we trust its quality but because we want to reassure ourselves that we made a smart choice the last time we bought it.

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    You Are Not So Smart

    8.4 hrs • 12/5/11 • Unabridged
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  13. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    20.0 hrs • 10/25/2011 • Unabridged

    The guru to the gurus at last shares his knowledge with the rest of us. Nobel laureate Daniel Kahneman’s seminal studies in behavioral psychology, behavioral economics, and happiness studies have influenced numerous other authors, including Steven Pinker and Malcolm Gladwell. In Thinking, Fast and Slow, Kahneman at last offers his own, first book for the general public. It is a lucid and enlightening summary of his life’s work. It will change the way you think about thinking. Two systems drive the way we think and make choices, Kahneman explains: System One is fast, intuitive, and emotional; System Two is slower, more deliberative, and more logical. Examining how both systems function within the mind, Kahneman exposes the extraordinary capabilities, as well as the biases of fast thinking and the pervasive influence of intuitive impressions on our thoughts and our choices. Engaging the reader in a lively conversation about how we think, he shows where we can trust our intuitions and how we can tap into the benefits of slow thinking, contrasting the two-system view of the mind with the standard model of the rational economic agent. Kahneman’s singularly influential work has transformed cognitive psychology and launched the new fields of behavioral economics and happiness studies. In this groundbreaking book, Kahneman shows how the mind works and offers practical and enlightening insights into how choices are made in both our business and personal lives—and how we can guard against the mental glitches that often get us into trouble.

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    Thinking, Fast and Slow

    20.0 hrs • 10/25/11 • Unabridged
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  14. 10.3 hrs • 5/10/2011 • Unabridged

    The Nature Principle presents a compelling case that a conscious reconnection to nature can make us whole again and that the future will belong to nature-smart individuals, families, businesses, and communities. Supported by evidence from emerging empirical and theoretical research and eye-opening anecdotes, Louv shows that when we tap into the restorative powers of the natural world we can boost mental acuity and creativity, heal illness, increase immunity, broaden our compassion, and strengthen human bonds. As he says in his introduction, The Nature Principle is “about the power of living in nature—not with it, but in it. The twenty-first century will be the century of human restoration in the natural world.”

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    The Nature Principle

    10.3 hrs • 5/10/11 • Unabridged
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  15. 3.3 hrs • 4/26/2011 • Unabridged

    Immanuel Kant’s Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals, first published in 1785, lays out Kant’s essential philosophy and defines the concepts and arguments that would shape his later work. Central to Kant’s doctrine is the categorical imperative, which he defines as a mandate that human actions should always conform to a universal, unchanging standard of rational morality. Directly opposed to utilitarian philosophy, Kant’s theories have been broadly influential since their publication and stand as a seminal contribution to ethical thought. Although Kant expanded upon the ideas defined here in his later work, including the Critique of Pure Reason and the Metaphysics of Morals, it is in his Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals that they are communicated in their most clear, concise form. This edition is the translation by Thomas Kingsmill Abbott.

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  16. 5.0 hrs • 3/25/2011 • Unabridged

    First published in 1859, John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty is an exhaustive exploration of social and civic liberty, its limits, and its consequences. Mill’s work is a classic of political liberalism that contains a rational justification of the freedom of the individual in opposition to the claims of the state. Drawing upon the empiricism of John Locke, George Berkeley, and David Hume and the utilitarianism of Jeremy Bentham, On Liberty defends the representative democracy as the culmination of society’s progression from lower to higher stages, even as it recognizes one of the unique dangers of this type of government—namely, the “tyranny of the majority.” Central to Mill’s ideology is the harm principle—the idea that individual liberties should only be curtailed when they harm or interfere with the ability of others to exercise their own liberties. Unlike other liberal theorists, Mill did not rely upon theories of abstract rights to support his ideology, but rather grounded his philosophy in ideas of utility. As relevant to modern audiences as it was to Mill’s Victorian readership, On Liberty is an enduring classic of political thought.

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    On Liberty

    5.0 hrs • 3/25/11 • Unabridged
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