The research effort behind it and the fairly impartial way it was presented
Many terrible accounts of slaves being greatly abused both physically and mentally. But balanced with some accounts of the circumstances that lead to these events.
Biggest impact for me was a greater appreciation for the value of conservative as opposed to radical change. Anybody who thinks that large problems can ever be solved with an overnight revolution or such should read this book and see what the emancipation of Negroes after the Civil war did to many in the African population.
The irony of using Charles Darwin as a specimen in a scientific study on the theory of evolution. The humor, the charm, the humanity and the cold blooded analysis
The time and detail put in to quite simple but profound topics
His style suited the content of the book perfectly
Don't be afraid to look inside.
Here is an example of the brilliance..
Americans, like human beings everywhere, believe many things that are obviously untrue. Their most destructive untruth is that it is very easy for any American to make money. They will not acknowledge how in fact hard money is to come by, and, therefore, those who have no money blame and blame and blame themselves.
Every other nation has folk traditions of men who were poor but extremely wise and virtuous, and therefore more estimable than anyone with power and gold. No such tales are told by the American poor. They mock themselves and glorify their betters. The meanest eating or drinking establishment, owned by a man who is himself poor, is very likely to have a sign on its wall asking this cruel question: “if you’re so smart, why ain’t you rich?”
This inward blame has been a treasure for the rich and powerful, who have had to do less for their poor, publicly and privately, than any other ruling class since, say Napoleonic times. Many novelties have come from America. The most startling of these, a thing without precedent, is a mass of undignified poor. They do not love one another because they do not love themselves.”
Probably, it seemed a bit disjointed and expect is easier to follow as an audio book than a text.
Some very nice language in parts. Very elegant description of how unsatisfied the SteppenWolf is with day to day consumerism. Never heard anybody express the idea that "this is all largely crap" in such learned and literary terms.
The lesbian scene with his 2 girlfriends. Probably one of the original porno stories of all time but still an oldy but a goody.
Can see why the rock band Steppenwolf took this as their name. Sex and Drugs was all there and they just put it together with Rock and Roll.
Was a great laugh listening to Dawkins dryly explaining why fairy tales like "a pumpkin turning into a stage coach" cannot actually happen. But still had me thinking about some of these topics a bit more than I had to date.
Gave me a greater sense of sympathy for people in general because although the book was about fairly extreme clinical cases I think it is fair to say we all suffer some form of mental impairment in some areas. Personally have been trying to learn to play guitar for several years and probably made the same progress that most people will make in 2 years so although I am not a Lost Mariner my own brain is obviously not quite the perfect mechanism either.
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