Cynical Theories

Have you heard that language is violence and that science is sexist? Have you read that certain people shouldn’t practice yoga or cook Chinese food? Or been told that being obese is healthy, that there is no such thing as biological sex, or that only white people can be racist? Are you confused by these ideas, and do you wonder how they have managed so quickly to challenge the very logic of Western society? In this probing and intrepid volume, Helen Pluckrose and James Lindsay document the evolution of the dogma behind these ideas, from its coarse origins in French postmodernism to its refinement within activist academic fields. Today this dogma is recognizable as much by its effects, such as cancel culture and social-media dogpiles, as by its tenets, which are all too often embraced as axiomatic in mainstream media: knowledge is a social construct; science and reason are tools of oppression; all human interactions are sites of oppressive power play; and language is dangerous. As Pluckrose and Lindsay warn, the unchecked proliferation of these anti-Enlightenment beliefs present a threat not only to liberal democracy but also to modernity itself. While acknowledging the need to challenge the complacency of those who think a just society has been fully achieved, Pluckrose and Lindsay break down how this often-radical activist scholarship does far more harm than good, not least to those marginalized communities it claims to champion. They also detail its alarmingly inconsistent and illiberal ethics. Only through a proper understanding of the evolution of these ideas, they conclude, can those who value science, reason, and consistently liberal ethics successfully challenge this harmful and authoritarian orthodoxy—in the academy, in culture, and beyond.

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Genre Book Education
Author Helen Pluckrose
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ISBN-10 9781634312035
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Cynical Theories

"Outlines the origin and evolution of postmodern thought over the last half century and argues that the unchecked spread and application of postmodern ideas -- from academia, to activist circles, to the public at large - presents an authoritarian ideological threat not only to liberal democracy but also to modernity itself"--

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Genre Book Education
Author Helen Pluckrose
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ISBN-10 1634312023
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How To Have Impossible Conversations

"This is a self-help book on how to argue effectively, conciliate, and gently persuade. The authors admit to getting it wrong in their own past conversations. One by one, I recognize the same mistakes in me. The world would be a better place if everyone read this book." -- Richard Dawkins, author of Science in the Soul and Outgrowing God In our current political climate, it seems impossible to have a reasonable conversation with anyone who has a different opinion. Whether you're online, in a classroom, an office, a town hall -- or just hoping to get through a family dinner with a stubborn relative -- dialogue shuts down when perspectives clash. Heated debates often lead to insults and shaming, blocking any possibility of productive discourse. Everyone seems to be on a hair trigger. In How to Have Impossible Conversations, Peter Boghossian and James Lindsay guide you through the straightforward, practical, conversational techniques necessary for every successful conversation -- whether the issue is climate change, religious faith, gender identity, race, poverty, immigration, or gun control. Boghossian and Lindsay teach the subtle art of instilling doubts and opening minds. They cover everything from learning the fundamentals for good conversations to achieving expert-level techniques to deal with hardliners and extremists. This book is the manual everyone needs to foster a climate of civility, connection, and empathy.

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Genre Book Self-Help
Author Peter Boghossian
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ISBN-10 9780738285344
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Cynical Suspicions And Platonist Pretentions

In Cynical Suspicions and Platonist Pretentions, John McGuire conducts a critical analysis of contemporary political theory with a view to facilitating a less reductive understanding of political disaffection.

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Genre Book Social Science
Author John McGuire
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ISBN-10 9789004364929
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Critique Of Cynical Reason

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Genre Book Civilization, Modern
Author Peter Sloterdijk
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ISBN-10 0860919331
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Intersectionality

The concept of intersectionality has become a central topic in academic and activist circles alike. But what exactly does it mean, and why has it emerged as such a vital lens through which to explore how social inequalities of race, class, gender, sexuality, age, ability, and ethnicity shape one another? In this fully revised and expanded second edition of their popular text, Patricia Hill Collins and Sirma Bilge provide a much-needed introduction to the field of intersectional knowledge and praxis. Analyzing the emergence, growth, and contours of the concept of intersectionality, the authors also consider its global reach through an array of new topics such as the rise of far-right populism, reproductive justice, climate change, and digital environments and cultures. Accessibly written and drawing on a plethora of lively examples to illustrate its arguments, the book highlights intersectionality’s potential for understanding complex architecture of social and economic inequalities and bringing about social justice-oriented change. Intersectionality will be an invaluable resource for anyone grappling with the main ideas, debates, and new directions in this field.

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Genre Book Social Science
Author Patricia Hill Collins
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ISBN-10 9781509539697
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Everybody Is Wrong About God

A call to action to address people's psychological and social motives for a belief in God, rather than debate the existence of God With every argument for theism long since discredited, the result is that atheism has become little more than the noises reasonable people make in the presence of unjustified religious beliefs. Thus, engaging in interminable debate with religious believers about the existence of God has become exactly the wrong way for nonbelievers to try to deal with misguided—and often dangerous—belief in a higher power. The key, author James Lindsay argues, is to stop that particular conversation. He demonstrates that whenever people say they believe in "God," they are really telling us that they have certain psychological and social needs that they do not know how to meet. Lindsay then provides more productive avenues of discussion and action. Once nonbelievers understand this simple point, and drop the very label of atheist, will they be able to change the way we all think about, talk about, and act upon the troublesome notion called "God."

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Genre Book Religion
Author James A. Lindsay
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ISBN-10 9781634310383
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Life In Light Of Death

Life is short, and it can be sweet. Contemplating death is looking into a mirror that allows us to see these simple facts clearly, as if for the first time. We have every reason to believe that we have but one life to live—and no good reasons to believe otherwise—and death marks the termination of each life. Examining this reality opens doors to understanding ourselves, each other, connection, love, and life itself in an entirely new way. Life in Light of Death offers a short exploration of the sweetness and opportunity available to those who understand and embrace this fact. By looking at life as reflected by death, we can see what really matters and how best to live.

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Genre Book Self-Help
Author James Lindsay
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ISBN-10 9781634310888
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Kindly Inquisitors

“A liberal society stands on the proposition that we should all take seriously the idea that we might be wrong. This means we must place no one, including ourselves, beyond the reach of criticism; it means that we must allow people to err, even where the error offends and upsets, as it often will.” So writes Jonathan Rauch in Kindly Inquisitors, which has challenged readers for more than twenty years with its bracing and provocative exploration of the issues surrounding attempts to limit free speech. In it, Rauch makes a persuasive argument for the value of “liberal science” and the idea that conflicting views produce knowledge within society. In this expanded edition of Kindly Inquisitors, a new foreword by George F. Will strikingly shows the book’s continued relevance, while a substantial new afterword by Rauch elaborates upon his original argument and brings it fully up to date. Two decades after the book’s initial publication, while some progress has been made, the regulation of hate speech has grown domestically—especially in American universities—and has spread even more internationally, where there is no First Amendment to serve as a meaningful check. But the answer to bias and prejudice, Rauch argues, is pluralism—not purism. Rather than attempting to legislate bias and prejudice out of existence or to drive them underground, we must pit them against one another to foster a more vigorous and fruitful discussion. It is this process that has been responsible for the growing acceptance of the moral acceptability of homosexuality over the last twenty years. And it is this process, Rauch argues, that will enable us as a society to replace hate with knowledge, both ethical and empirical. “It is a melancholy fact that this elegant book, which is slender and sharp as a stiletto, is needed, now even more than two decades ago. Armed with it, readers can slice through the pernicious ideas that are producing the still-thickening thicket of rules, codes, and regulations restricting freedom of thought and expression.”—George F. Will, from the foreword

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Genre Book Law
Author Jonathan Rauch
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ISBN-10 9780226130552
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My First Little Book Of Intersectional Activism

After the success of her debut Woke: A Guide to Social Justice, radical slam poet and intersectional feminist Titania McGrath has turned her talents to the realm of children's non-fiction. Aimed at activists from the age of six months to six years, Titania's book will help cultivate a new progressive generation. In a series of groundbreaking and poignant chapters, she will take you on a journey with some of the most inspiring individuals in history, such as Emmeline Pankhurst, Meghan Markle, Nelson Mandela, Hillary Clinton and Joseph Stalin. Praise for Woke: 'Beautiful classic satire' Ricky Gervais 'The latest genius twist in Britain's long tradition of satirical spoof' Daily Express 'Titania McGrath mercilessly satirises the Left's online umbrage brigade, the permanently offended, those who have taken on the role of policing thoughts and words to the point of absurdity' The Herald 'Hilarious' Evening Standard 'Hilarious' Spectator 'Hilarious' The Times 'Utterly unfunny' Peter Hitchens

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Genre Book Humor
Author Titania McGrath
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ISBN-10 9781472134264
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