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Mark

Carrollton, TX, United States | Member Since 2003

35
HELPFUL VOTES
  • 2 reviews
  • 69 ratings
  • 1 titles in library
  • 0 purchased in 2014
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  • The Dream of Reason: A History of Philosophy from the Greeks to the Renaissance

    • UNABRIDGED (18 hrs and 8 mins)
    • By Anthony Gottlieb
    • Narrated By Wanda McCaddon
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (663)
    Performance
    (164)
    Story
    (166)

    In this landmark new study of Western thought, Anthony Gottlieb looks afresh at the writings of the great thinkers, questions much of conventional wisdom, and explains his findings with unbridled brilliance and clarity. After finishing The Dream of Reason, listeners will be graced with a fresh appreciation of the philosophical quest, its entertaining and bizarre byways, and its influence on every aspect of life.

    Amazon Customer says: "An in depth read."
    "Outstanding"
    Overall

    There are great literary works and there are great works of narration. "The Dream of Reason (Unabridged)" from Audible.com is both.

    The greatness of this book is well known ( so I will concentrate primarily on the recording content), tracing the philosophy of "reason" from its infancy in early Greek thought, to the monumental advances of Aristotle (the greatest philosopher of all time IMO), onto the relevancy to the modern day. One need NOT be formally trained in philosophy to enjoy, learn from, and appreciate this narration. Even so, the advanced philosopher will enjoy even more. In short this is simply a real gem.

    Although I had read this book several times in print, the audible version animates in such a wonderful way. Indeed, I found myself so captivated by the perfect narration, that I tended to 'remain" in my car even upon arrival at my destination :-)

    I could not recommend a title at Audible.com more highly.
    Indeed, I truly believe it will make you a better person. It did me :-)

    Mark

    15 of 15 people found this review helpful
  • Ayn Rand and the World She Made

    • UNABRIDGED (19 hrs and 36 mins)
    • By Anne C. Heller
    • Narrated By Bernadette Dunne
    • Whispersync for Voice-ready
    Overall
    (232)
    Performance
    (111)
    Story
    (113)

    Ayn Rand is the author of two phenomenally best-selling ideological novels, The Fountainhead and Atlas Shrugged, which have sold over 12 million copies in the United States alone. Through them, she built a right-wing cult following in the late 1950s and became the guiding light of Libertarianism and of White House economic policy in the 1960s and '70s. Her defenses of radical individualism and of selfishness as a "capitalist virtue" have permanently altered the American cultural landscape.

    Mark says: "Great history of both Rand and her era"
    "Great history of both Rand and her era"
    Overall

    In short, this is not merely a history of Rand, but also a lovely portrayal of the "high level" history of the 30's through the 60's. Roosevelt, New Deal, Anti-semitism, Conservatives, were all nightmares for Rand.

    Of particular interest to me, was her relationship with Isabel Patterson, author of "God in the Machine." Of course, at the end of the day Rand would have nothing to do with mysticism of ANY sort, which eventually broke the decades long friendship.

    Ont to the book itself. It is well written with an engaging style. Heller, is an ecellent historian and put years of research into this effort. I judge her treatment and presentation as fair and balanced. She presents the greatness and genius of Rand along with her deep psychological wounds, which from my understanding dogged her over her entire life. Nevertheless it is an inspiring book in both the positive and negative sense. Positively inspiring because Heller clearly paints an individual who knew who she was -- i.e. her "values" -- and who overcame amazing odds and actually accomplished what SHE set out to do -- to become an independent writer. Negatively inspiring, in that it serves as a lesson for us all that even geniuses need to always be aware they are not believing their own BS.

    Ironically, being that "evasion" in Objectivist circles is similar to "unpardonable sin", Rand herself was not immune to psychological dysfunction. Towards the end, all she retained around her were people who jumped when she said frog, and this in both my and the author's opinion was her achilles heel. People, especially geniuses, should not purposely choose a cadre of sycophants as their primary support group. We all need to be challenged, especially the more "forceful" the personality.

    Regarding the narrator, Bernadette Dunne, I think she is now my favorite. Her voice is clear and crisp, and she does not merely "read" but is talented at capturing the emotional context of the author's meaning.

    20 of 21 people found this review helpful

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