Kristin mentioned books a little bit ago so, while I know I’ve done this before, it’s been I while so I wanted to mention 15 of the most personally influential book I have read. The are as follows (roughly in the order in which I read them):

1. The Autobiography of Malcolm X
2. Who Really Wrote the Bible
3. God: a Biography – Jack Miles
4. The Qur’an
5. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostovesky
6. The Brother’s Karmazov, Dostoevsky
7. Atlas Shrugged – Ayn Rand
8. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
9. The God Delusion – Richard Dawkins
10. How the Mind Works – Steven Pinker
11. The Blank Slate – Steven Pinker
12. Language, the Stuff of Thought – Steven Pinker
13. The Idiot – Fyodor Dostoevsky
14. Ethnic America, a History – Thomas Sowell
15. The Virtue of Selfishness – Ayn Rand

9 Responses to “Books”

  1. Phelps says:

    Not all of these are complete books (but then I guess you could say the same thing about the Quran)and my list is in no particular order

    1. Libertarianism: A Primer (David Boaz)
    2. Why People Believe Strange Things (Michael Shermer)
    3. The Anti-Federalist Papers (Anonymous)
    4. The Federalist Papers (Anonymous)
    5. Common Sense (Thomas Paine)
    6. Concerning Human Understanding (John Locke)
    7. Myth, Lies, and Downright Stupidity (John Stossel)
    8. Passionate Nation: The Epic History of Texas (James Haley)
    9. A Book of Five Rings (Morimoto Musashi)
    10. The Visual Display of Quantitative Information (Edward Tufte)
    11. The Tank Lords (David Drake)
    12. The Art of War (Sun Tzu)
    13. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
    14. The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin (Ben Franklin)
    15. Multimedia Learning (Richard E. Mayer)

  2. Phelps says:

    Ugh, googled it and saw that Shermer’s book was Why People Believe WEIRD things. Mea culpa.

  3. mexi says:

    Heh. I almost put “The Art of War” but rather than a book I regard it as a really really smart fortune cookie.

  4. Kristin says:

    My list is far shorter, also in no particular order
    Angela Davis: An Autobiography
    The color Complex by Kathy Russell
    After Virtue: A study in Moral Theory by Alasdair MacIntyre
    Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison

    I read the Qur’an about three years ago when my brother was actively seeking to convert to Islam. I remember reading Common Sense for a class as well as a Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, other than that not familiar with many of the authors on either of your lists.

  5. mexi says:

    I’ll read After Virtue if you read The Blank Slate.

    (the gauntlet has been thrown!)

  6. mexi says:

    Oh and I’ll read one on Phelps’ list too just for the hell of it.

  7. Kristin says:

    I’ll pick it up later this evening. Phelps you need to add some more books nothing sounds even remotely appealing. Now I must finish watching the Berlin Track meet. Go Tyson!

  8. Phelps says:

    For fun I’m rereading the Baroque Cycle by Neal Stephenson. My favorite line is in no way representative of the books in general:

    “Half-cocked” Jack Shaftoe: “That is one prodigious butt-fucking!”

  9. Phelps says:

    Oh, and I need to send Mexi back his book on Funding Al Queda (it was a report on it, not a how-to) and I may put Myth, Lies and Downright Stupidity in there.

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