Wednesday, February 10, 2010

10 Books That Have Screwed Up the World

One of my elders told me he was listening to a book on CD that caught my attention by the title alone: "10 Books that Screwed Up the World (And 5 Others That Didn't Help)" by Benjamin Wiker, Ph.D.

By the way...the solution is NOT to burn these books (as many, in my humble opinion, "whacko" Christians have done over the years)...but for intelligent, articulate, mature Christ-followers to READ them (or, as in my case, at least become familiar with them...though I'm not sure I fit the "intelligent, articulate, mature" description!), critique them, discover how the very falsehoods contained in them reside in our own hearts and seek to restore our broken world to wholeness and truth...The point is not censorship of bad books as much as striving to make the truth more attractive and more winsome and to gently point out the internal inconsistencies of error.

Here are the books he covers:

Preliminary Screw Ups
--The Prince by Niccolo Machiavelli (1513)
--Discourse on Method by Rene Descartes (1637)
--Leviathan by Thomas Hobbes (1651)
--Discourse on the Origin and Foundations of Inequality Among Men by Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1755)

10 Big Screw Ups
1. The Communist Manifesto by Marx and Engels (1848)
2. Utilitarianism by John Stuart Mill (1863)
3. The Descent of Man by Charles Darwin (1871)
4. Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche ((1886)
5. The State and Revolution by Vladimir Lenin (1917)
6. The Pivot of Civilization by Margaret Sanger (1922)
7. Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler (1925)
8. The Future of an Illusion by Sigmund Freud (1927)
9. Coming of Age in Samoa by Margaret Mead (1928)
10.Sexual Behavior in the Human Male by Alfred Kinsey ((1948)

And finally, one Dishonorable Mention
--The Feminine Mystique by Betty Friedan (1963)

I hope to blog briefly on each of these over the next several weeks.


cbcahpell said...

It seems like many, though certainly not all, of these books describe a real problem in the broken world we live in, but then offer twisted solutions. (E.G. The Communist Manifesto points out the oppression and exploitation of the poor and the numerous problems (greed, materialism, etc) with a free market system, while The Feminine Mystique shows how women are expected to find their worth in tasks at home and silently submit to gender discrimination.) The problems are real, but the call to arms is simply the blind leading the blind. May God help us to see the issues, the oppression, and the very real problems of the world that many of these books highlight, and respond as Jesus would.

Anonymous said...

Thinking the Bible could be one of them. Seems certain people I know are capable of using it more often as an excuse for not doing something they really should do and KNOW they should do, but won't do because they don't want to. I don't know how many times "Christians" are guilty of using the Bible or using God as an excuse to show compassion on their fellow Christians or non-Christians, as an excuse to drop friends or refuse to be friends with someone because it's simply TOO "inconvenient" for them. If it really were inconvenient then they wouldn't be on social media trying to win some stupid popularity points!! They'd be friends with everyone they DO KNOW in person and through social media because they'd realize the potential social media has to be an outreach tool, but rather they use Scripture to destroy the lives of baby Christians, excusing their own objectionable behavior because they don't want to be inconvenienced!! What do you say to that, hunh??