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Description

Penguin presents the audiobook edition of Enlightenment Now by Steven Pinker, read by Arthur Morey. Includes a bonus PDF of graphs.

Is modernity really failing? Or have we failed to appreciate progress and the ideals that make it possible? If you follow the headlines, the world in the 21st century appears to be sinking into chaos, hatred and irrationality. Yet, as Steven Pinker shows, if you follow the trendlines, you discover that our lives have become longer, healthier, safer and more prosperous - not just in the West but worldwide.

Such progress is no accident: it's the gift of a coherent value system that many of us embrace without even realising it. These are the values of the Enlightenment: of reason, science, humanism and progress. The challenges we face today are formidable. But the way to deal with them is not to sink into despair or try to lurch back to a mythical idyllic past; it's to treat them as problems we can solve, as we have solved other problems in the past. This is the case for an Enlightenment newly recharged for the 21st century.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2018 Steven Pinker (P)2018 Penguin Books Ltd

Ce que les auditeurs disent de Enlightenment Now

Notations
Global
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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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Enlightening

I never tought to apply scientific methods to this kind of subjects. I'm glad that the author did. It's eye opening.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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Un livre audio exceptionnel ! Âmes sensibles, non

J'ai obtenu ce livre audio gratuitement auprès d'audible, sur conseil de mon beau frère, à qui j'ai parlé du livre pour un cadeau. Après cette première écoute, clairement, je veux faire de la prise de note intensive sur une deuxième écoute. Mr. Bill GATES a dit que c'est son nouveau meilleur livre de tous les temps et en effet, le contenu est incroyable. Sommes nous des consommateurs de l'information défaitiste ou sommes nous des producteurs de la joie de vivre dans un monde qui n'a jamais été meilleur ? Avec plaisir, je vais écouter une deuxième fois pour une prise de notes mémorable. Ce livre, c'est l'évolution retracée,si chère à Darwin. Cordialement. José

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Great book to cultivate its critical mind

Interesting book which give the elements to have a critical mind and not be subject to assumptions.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Mark
  • 26/02/2018

Glass half-full

We live in an age of doom and gloom. All the news we hear seems to be bad. Everything seems to be turning to shit. Americans were so disenchanted with this state of decline that they elected Donald Trump. The British were so disillusioned that they voted for Brexit. We have global warming, overpopulation, pollution. What is happening? How did things get so bad?

They didn’t. Stephen Pinker’s latest book is an optimistic look at the state of the World today. Like other feel-good books I’ve read & reviewed (‘The Rational Optimist’,’ Abundance’, and Pinker’s own ‘The Better Angels of our Nature’), this book tries to convince the listener that things aren’t really as bad as they seem – and it succeeds.

His method in this book is statistical. Basically, for each different aspect of World life that he examines, he provides evidence of progress by using graphs to show that things have become massively better over time.

Now, it’s awkward to look at graphs when you are out in the woods on your bike, but fortunately this isn’t necessary, because they are all well-described in the audio narrative and are pretty straightforward. Of course, if you want to check them out later, there is an accompanying pdf.

Looking at a whole screed of indices of human well-being and progress, Pinker shows us that on a global scale things have moved and are still moving in a very positive direction: Life expectancy, child mortality, poverty, war, road safety, human rights, civil rights, literacy etc etc. are all getting better over time, and in the process he also explains why it is that we are often not aware, or fail to fully notice, these encouraging trends.

Because all these observations are supported by hard statistics, it is very easy to be convinced. He also makes the point that there is no place for complacency. All the gains we have made have been the result of hard work. We face challenges that require continued hard work and ingenuity, and we need to commit ourselves to this in order to continue our progress.

This is a very refreshing and uplifting look at our World and is well worth a listen.

4 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
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  • Christian Petersen
  • 08/05/2018

Great Content - well researched

This was an enjoyable and informative audiobook. My only issue was with the Steven's anti-Trump bias. Some of his criticisms were indeed justified. However when discussing creeping authoritarianism and war, there was no discussion of Barrack Obama or Hilary Clinton in their roles as war mongers in Syria or Libya. Their complete disregard for congressional approval in waging war against those sovereign nations was unconstitutional. Obama too was an Authoritarian. Steven's push back against populism is understandable, though how it was represented was biased in my opinion. He also makes the case for cosmopolitanism and open societies while addressing the inherant totalitarianism and radicalism present within Islam. It would have been interesting to hear his thoughts on how a cosmopolitan and liberal society can co-exist with people who hold antithetical beleifs, and what should be done at a state level re immigration and how to deal with people who fail to integrate. His criticism of Nietzche was interesting. I enjoyed listening to his arguments for secular, humanist societies built around the philosophical universalisation of morals and ethics. His information re the reduction of crime and poverty in all countries, even the poorest and the increased life span enjoyed by all people was uplifting. Other than the above criticisms I highly reccommend this audiobook. It was enjoyable, interesting and entertaining.

2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Lord Dinesh Senan
  • 21/07/2020

Essential reading for responsible global citizens

For anyone wishing to have an informed, fact-based & balanced perspective on wide-ranging issues straddling politics, economics, finance, sociology, religion and spirituality, this colossus of a book stands as a timely beacon in terms of objective clarity and wisdom. It will certainly be invaluable for policy makers as well as for responsible businesses and thinking voters around the world. It helps us “to know where we stand”, sans exaggeration, as a species on the most pressing issues facing our species today. Here, ‘good news’ finally gets its fair air time too, which is often lost in the sensationalist world of the media of today. It is for me quite simply the most powerfully intelligent, refreshing and useful book I have read in a decade. Thank you Steven Pinker. 🙏🏼

  • Global
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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 10/05/2020

A powerful piece of Human Optimism

Long book. Full of great data and a powerful optimistic argument. Very well narrated.

  • Global
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  • Client d'Amazon
  • 10/09/2019

An important and timely work

Thank goodness for voices of reason like Steven Pinker's. It saddens me that he endures so much criticism from people who should really be applauding the direction he is steering the public discussion. This book is huge in scope and he takes up positions of guarded optimism (on the whole) that are generally well argued and sensible, while avoiding glibly cataclysmic assessments. I never write reviews. But this book has prompted me to break this habit. Listen to it, stay calm and let's do what we need to do.

  • Global
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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 02/08/2019

Excellent

I enjoyed this story of humans authored by Pinker. Morey did an excellent job narrating - he seemed passionate / knowledgeable on the subject that several times I had to remind myself that this production was not read by the author.

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • John Kidd
  • 19/01/2019

awesome book

This is a book I will return to frequently to ensure I am not swayed by the tempory news cycles

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • David Naude
  • 28/10/2018

Does this book ever end

At nearly 20 hours this book seems to be as fulfilling as bottomless coffee. Enlightening but eventually, getting bored of it.

  • Global
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  • Utilisateur anonyme
  • 04/09/2018

This book will definitely enlighten

The book provides cold hard stats to bring balance to our perceptions of everything, from wars to racism to vaccines.

  • Global
    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Kel S
  • 04/05/2018

A case for scientific-based optimism

It's easy with all the worries of the world to think that everything is getting worse, or at the least, is bound to get worse at any moment. Pinker in this book makes the compelling case that most of those concerns are either misguided, exaggerated, or flat-out wrong when one looks at the evidence. And on that, Pinker's book largely succeeds in explaining just how things have changed and have done so in almost all cases for the better. And that this progress has come because humanity has reaped the harvest of the enlightenment ideals and values. The rise of science is often credited with advancements in medicine and food supply. If there was no other reason than to privilege science as a worthy pursuit, it would be this. But in addition to us living longer and healthier, we are more connected, able to travel further, have access to affordable necessities, and shared in the prosperity that has come from better harnessing nature. Poverty is decreasing, extreme poverty is all but eradicated, and the masses in both the developing and developed world are living improved lives as a result - working less and having more time for leisure. The book is at its strongest when bringing alive the practical consequences of the data, where what it means in real terms is laid out. It does this by contrast - by looking at alternative modes of government and moral thinking, and showing just how the way things are now are better. The arguments about markets lifting people out of poverty were especially compelling, as was the more rational view of how to deal with environmental problems such as global warming. (Though I wish there was time dedicated to dealing with the issue of plastic in our oceans.) The book keeps utopian thinking in check by repeatedly showing how utopian beliefs get in the way of practical problem solving, and how practical problem solving is how we've gotten this far. Perhaps if there's a weakness to the book, it's the connection to particular philosophers and philosophical strands as being the intellectual foundations of the successes, or foundations of the counter-enlightenment that obfuscates and seeks to undo the Enlightenment. For example, the book closes with a very uncharitable reading of Nietzsche that lays the blame for much of the horrors of the 20th century at his philosophy. This seems like it gives way too much power to his words in fascism and war. Similarly the likes of Kant et al. get a lot of credit for the goods of the subsequent successes of the enlightenment. This case isn't sufficiently made, and seems a little overblown given the role of historical contingency in shaping the course of history. That quibble aside, there's a lot of good to find in this book. And to me the take-home message is this: 1. We ought to understand the world through science and reason in order to solve the problems we as a species face. 2. Despite a long history of intellectual pessimism about three state of the world, the fruits of science and reason have improved the lives of people in the last few hundred years and in particular very recently. 3. The values of the enlightenment: life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness, give the moral and cultural foundations that allow for individuals and societies to flourish in a way no other ideals have. and finally 4. If we want this to continue, we should continue to value science and reason as the tools for achieving this. It may not create a utopia, but it's far better than the alternatives that have come before despite any superficially seductive qualities they have to the human mind.

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  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amazon Kunde
  • 30/11/2018

Ein Augenöffner!!!

Super gut belegtes Buch, frei von persönlichen Meinungen und Vorurteilen! Ein klasse Lehrbuch für Meinungsbildung

3 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Henrik
  • 16/03/2018

Reason, science, humanism and progress

Turn on, tune in, drop out of the media maelstrom and read Enlightenment Now. Repeat ad infinitum. I have the greatest respect for Steven Pinker, his thinking and understanding of the world. The Blank Slate, and The Better Angels of our Nature have determined everything else that I’ve sought and read in the last couple of years. For anyone concerned and interested in the fate of humanism, progress and an enlightened humanity - this book belongs on the bookshelf and should be read thoroughly.

2 personnes ont trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Daniel Thomann
  • 17/11/2018

A fresh take on humanity at the moment!

A great book, which I tell my pupils and colleagues about! Read it as soon as possible.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Esteban Ortiz Castanares
  • 16/07/2020

A great theme that had made todays wold

Excellent narrative, great and interesting theme, however it is a little bit repetitive and the author in some chapters concentrate himself to show how many persons support his thesis (and how many books he read) insted to focus on the logic that guide his argumentation.

  • Global
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  • Amazon Kunde
  • 24/06/2020

A must read

The best book, I've "read" so far. Not always comfortorable listen to, but always significant.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
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  • Felix Neubert
  • 01/05/2020

Not so good as audio book due to many graphs

There are many references to graphs that are not coming with an audio book, which is really unfortunate for any interested reader.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars
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  • BM'
  • 22/02/2019

A book about hypotheses

If you read many non sci-fi books, you realize that this is book is nothing more than a list of many different hypotheses and bad explanations. I would not recommend this book. Highly overrated. Instead you should read books like factfulness by Hans Rosling or Sapiens.

  • Global
    2 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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  • Christian/Munich
  • 31/10/2018

In science and the economy we trust

Strongly biased description of reality. Promises scientific analysis, provides simplistic views and answers instead. Had to stop after roughly 40%, felt like waste of time.

  • Global
    3 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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  • Steffen
  • 04/07/2018

Not my audiobook.

I like the genre, the ideas and the messages of the book. I am on the side of the author but probably in this case the audiobook format was not ideal.

1 personne a trouvé cela utile

  • Global
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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  • Amanda
  • 30/06/2018

Makes you feel good about being a scientist

Steven Pinker examines how human lives have been getting better and longer thanks to enlightenment values and exposes how different biases create the illusion of living in newly horrible times. He tries to pinpoint what has actually been responsible for progress and problems in the past and what we should do to ensure that human flourishing continues. This is one of my favourite books of all times. More people need to be aware of how good we have it and that there has never been such a thing as a golden age that we should be nostalgic for. Definitely recommend to everyone