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The Righteous Mind Audiobook

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion

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Publisher's Summary

Why can’t our political leaders work together as threats loom and problems mount? Why do people so readily assume the worst about the motives of their fellow citizens?

In The Righteous Mind, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt explores the origins of our divisions and points the way forward to mutual understanding. His starting point is moral intuition - the nearly instantaneous perceptions we all have about other people and the things they do. These intuitions feel like self-evident truths, making us righteously certain that those who see things differently are wrong.

Haidt shows us how these intuitions differ across cultures, including the cultures of the political left and right. He blends his own research findings with those of anthropologists, historians, and other psychologists to draw a map of the moral domain, and he explains why conservatives can navigate that map more skillfully than can liberals. He then examines the origins of morality, overturning the view that evolution made us fundamentally selfish creatures.

But rather than arguing that we are innately altruistic, he makes a more subtle claim - that we are fundamentally groupish. It is our groupishness, he explains, that leads to our greatest joys, our religious divisions, and our political affiliations. In a stunning final chapter on ideology and civility, Haidt shows what each side is right about, and why we need the insights of liberals, conservatives, and libertarians to flourish as a nation.

Download the accompanying reference guide.

©2012 Jonathan Haidt (P)2012 Gildan Media LLC

What the Critics Say

"Haidt is looking for more than victory. He's looking for wisdom. That's what makes The Righteous Mind well worth reading…. a landmark contribution to humanity’s understanding of itself.” (The New York Times Book Review)

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  •  
    None of your damn business Seattle, WA 09-10-12
    None of your damn business Seattle, WA 09-10-12 Member Since 2011

    I love Audiobooks. I listen to roughly 50-100 hours a month. It's a good thing I work for Audible!

    HELPFUL VOTES
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    "This changed the way I think about politics"
    Where does The Righteous Mind rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    In terms of books on politics, philosophy and cognitive science, its one of the best.

    The book tackles very sensitive topics - people's most closely held beliefs, and explains the WHY in a way that is sensible and non-controversial. Haidt provides a compelling case for why morality may have a genetic basis.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Righteous Mind?

    The chapter on Moral Foundations Theory. I laughed, I cried, it was better than Cats.


    Which scene was your favorite?

    Its not really that kind of book, but the part describing group selection theory was good.


    If you were to make a film of this book, what would be the tag line be?

    The most boring movie that ever changed your life.


    Any additional comments?

    Regardless of your political or religious persuasion, you should listen to this book.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Sergio A Pernice Buenos Aires, Capital Federal, AR 09-10-12
    Sergio A Pernice Buenos Aires, Capital Federal, AR 09-10-12 Member Since 2016
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    "Excelent!!"

    This books provides the best response I have ever read until now to a very deep question: why evolution generated intelligence and rational thought? To have a full time advertising agency that improves our odds to reproduce. Not to reach the truth. At least not in the social environment. This is the author response based on high amount of empirical evidence in the ever more influential field of Evolutionary Psychology. A must read (or heard) for those who want to enlarge their scientific worldview in areas not still fully understood.

    3 of 5 people found this review helpful
  •  
    TEPPO K. 09-25-16
    TEPPO K. 09-25-16 Member Since 2012
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    "Stunning book!"

    Changed my thinking forever about political left and right and made me understand both sides better. This knowledge will have lifelong effects. Thanks.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David 09-23-16
    David 09-23-16
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    "great book"

    I really enjoyed this book. lots of insights and thought provoking ideas that I wound never have explored without listening.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Wyatt 09-07-16
    Wyatt 09-07-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Best Narration"

    This has been the best narration I've heard for a non fiction book. He made intelligent changes helped a listener understand the context of the words better. For example, he marked the beginning and end of each quotation. With most narrators, I found myself having to listen to a passage multiple times to find the start and end of quotes. With this narrator, you could just listen to the content without getting distracted by minor details.

    The subject matter is really great as well. I would recommend it to anybody who has felt frustrated by the other side of a political argument. This book will help you an appreciation of where they are coming from and how to appeal to them.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    David Geeraerts 08-30-16 Member Since 2015
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    "Really enjoyed this book."

    Gained a better understanding of how societies and groups work. Especially interesting to me with an Anthropology background. Best definition of diversity out there without the PC. If anything it's a great story to understand that life tends to be about balance, yin yang. This holds true for the political spectrum of Left and Right.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    DONA 08-29-16
    DONA 08-29-16
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    "A MUST READ"

    A MUST READ for anyone with an avid interest in American politics. I would highly recommend this book to people running for office -- especially people who are not affiliated with right-wing politics. What we assume we know may not be as complete as the way things really are.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    BucNasty Houston, TX United States 08-26-16
    BucNasty Houston, TX United States 08-26-16 Member Since 2012
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    "Interesting and thought provoking"
    Where does The Righteous Mind rank among all the audiobooks you’ve listened to so far?

    top 15


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Righteous Mind?

    No single moment. I enjoyed describing human conscience using the metaphor of the elephant and the rider.


    Have you listened to any of Jonathan Haidt’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    N/A


    What’s the most interesting tidbit you’ve picked up from this book?

    Some empathy for the other side. It should help in having more productive discussions.


    Any additional comments?

    My only complaint is towards the end when he discusses libertarianism and the free market solution to healthcare. He uses an elective procedure as an example of why competition would work in healthcare. It only works for his example because it is elective and a person would have time to shop around. Urgent and emergency care are not competitive markets because the consumer doesn't have time to be informed. But he is right that the insurance market doesn't incentivize any price controls. It is a small complaint over a bad example.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Nathaniel 08-25-16
    Nathaniel 08-25-16
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    "Really interesting approach to human behavior"

    I like that this book pulled from so many different schools of thought and covered so many topics. Evolutionary biology/psychology, Social Darwinism, drugs, religion, and politics--they are all tied up in a very thought-provoking way.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
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    Stevie 08-19-16
    Stevie 08-19-16 Member Since 2016
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    "Neat and well constructed"

    A well constructed and fresh assertion on social theory from the standpoint of evolutionary psychology.

    Note that the author has developed his views from his first book (as he candidly states during the narrative), so it may be advisable to read this first.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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