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BS: 88 Books that shaped America

McGrath of Harlow 12 Aug 16 - 01:28 PM
robomatic 12 Aug 16 - 12:48 PM
Stu 12 Aug 16 - 05:44 AM
CupOfTea 11 Aug 16 - 10:29 PM
keberoxu 11 Aug 16 - 07:18 PM
GUEST,Lighter 04 Jul 12 - 10:12 AM
JohnInKansas 04 Jul 12 - 09:34 AM
josepp 04 Jul 12 - 09:25 AM
GUEST,Lighter 04 Jul 12 - 08:05 AM
Allan C. 04 Jul 12 - 06:33 AM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 08:38 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 08:24 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 08:21 PM
Bill D 03 Jul 12 - 07:06 PM
GUEST,Shimrod 03 Jul 12 - 06:27 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 04:06 PM
pdq 03 Jul 12 - 03:44 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 03:01 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 02:44 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 02:29 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 03 Jul 12 - 02:19 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 01:25 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 01:19 PM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 12:54 PM
Q (Frank Staplin) 03 Jul 12 - 12:46 PM
pdq 03 Jul 12 - 11:50 AM
Big Al Whittle 03 Jul 12 - 11:25 AM
Jack the Sailor 03 Jul 12 - 11:06 AM
Bill D 03 Jul 12 - 10:53 AM
Wesley S 03 Jul 12 - 09:18 AM
GUEST,Lighter 03 Jul 12 - 09:14 AM
GUEST,Lighter 03 Jul 12 - 08:58 AM
Jim Carroll 03 Jul 12 - 08:54 AM
Big Al Whittle 03 Jul 12 - 04:49 AM
Little Hawk 03 Jul 12 - 01:15 AM
Don Firth 03 Jul 12 - 12:59 AM
JohnInKansas 03 Jul 12 - 12:11 AM
Jack the Sailor 02 Jul 12 - 11:36 PM
katlaughing 02 Jul 12 - 10:34 PM
josepp 02 Jul 12 - 10:14 PM
Bill D 02 Jul 12 - 10:01 PM
Jack the Sailor 02 Jul 12 - 09:48 PM
Janie 02 Jul 12 - 09:37 PM
GUEST,Lighter 02 Jul 12 - 09:28 PM
Bill D 02 Jul 12 - 08:46 PM
Jack the Sailor 02 Jul 12 - 08:09 PM
GUEST,Josepp 02 Jul 12 - 08:05 PM
Jack the Sailor 02 Jul 12 - 07:29 PM
GUEST,josepp 02 Jul 12 - 07:18 PM
GUEST,Lighter 02 Jul 12 - 06:45 PM
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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 12 Aug 16 - 01:28 PM

I'd have thought The Bible would have made it in the list, given it's not just about American books.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: robomatic
Date: 12 Aug 16 - 12:48 PM

H. L. Mencken: "The American Language"


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Stu
Date: 12 Aug 16 - 05:44 AM

A few from the intervening years that have made a big impression on me:

The Old Man and the Sea by Earnest Hemingway

The Man in the High Castle by Phillip Dick.

Infinite Jest by David Foster Wallace


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: CupOfTea
Date: 11 Aug 16 - 10:29 PM

I am completely astonished that in the tally of what we find lacking in the OP's list, books of music are strikingly absent. The shaping of the country in the colonial era through to independence had much to do with religious as well as political separation from England. The onset of a publishing industry in this period spawned numerous hymnals - in particular the Shape Note format. Northern & Southern Harmony, & the start of denominational hymnals. Standardizing hymns in books helped form an identity, and was part of the trend toward universal literacy in the US.

While some books are compilations of significant songs or tunes that are part of the American heritage, hymnals were, and are, used in a much different way, to direct and inspire. When thinking of influential books- how many of those mentioned are an intrinsic part of someone's life experience? I know there are a couple on that list I've read multiple times.

Let's hear it for early American hymnals, please?

Joanne in Cleveland (whose church life is enriched by 7 different hymnals)


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: keberoxu
Date: 11 Aug 16 - 07:18 PM

Jack London's "The Scarlet Plague" isn't on that list, is it, although its author is. What gets my attention about that book, is that its author projected its futuristic setting for one hundred years in the future. And "The Scarlet Plague" dates from 1914. So here we are, over one hundred years later.

Correct me if I'm mistaken here -- I have seen none first-hand -- but I believe "The Scarlet Plague" has been adapted for the screen, cinema/and-or television (radio even??) more than once.

And one can certainly look back on both books and films in recent decades that resemble "The Scarlet Plague."


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 04 Jul 12 - 10:12 AM

Compare the shaping influence of those dry documents on history with that of most of the 88 titles on the first list.

The fond idea that poets are the "movers and shakers of the world forever" is rather overstated.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 04 Jul 12 - 09:34 AM

I might take exception with the one contribution by Kinsey, since his other three (major) books were much better. And among those affecting the "practice" the follow-ons by Pomeroy et.al. actually have been much more influential.

As to books that "shaped" anything, there probably should be at least a couple of titles by/about Freud, although we pretty much got over that, and we still have a sizeable population who were (more recently than most will know) substantially influenced by the "Eugenics" craze of the 20s-40s, although picking a single book would be difficult. Almost any "home medical" reference book from the 20s would suffice.

As suggested, a list of books that should have influenced America, but mostly didn't is interesting. I can't offer a list of books, but one collection in my library offers "Fifty Major Documents of the Twentieth Century" (Published about half-way through the century?).

Hardly anyone now knows anything of them, but SHOULD. even if the latter half of the century might have added something, and a few of them have now been amended.

How many do you know of?

Fifty Major Documents of the 20th Century TOC:
1. The Daily Telegraph Interview, October 28, 1908
2. The Austro-Hungarian Ultimatum to Serbia, July 23, 1914
3. Extracts from Bethmann-Hollweg's Speech to the Reichstag, August 4, 1914
4. The Zimmermann Note, January 19, 1917
5. President Wilson's War Message, April 2, 1917
6. The Balfour Declaration on Palestine, November 2, 1917
7. The Fourteen Points, January 8, 1918
8. The Armistice Demands, November 10, 1918
9. The Covenant of the League of Nations, 1919
10. Extracts from the Treaty of Versailles, June 28, 1919
11. Article 48 of the Weimar Constitution, August 11, 1919
12. The Enfranchisement of Women in Great Britain and the United States, 1918-1919
13. The 25-Point Program of the National Socialist German Workers' Party, February 25, 1920
14. The Zinoviev Letter, September 15, 1924
15. The Locarno Pact, October 16, 1925
16. The Tanaka Memorial, July 25, 1927
17. The Kellogg-Briand Pact for the Renunciation of War, August 27, 1928
18. The Escalator Clause of the London Naval Treaty, April 22, 1930
19. Quadragesimo Anno : Pope Pius XI on Reconstructing the Social Order, May 15, 1931
20. The Statute of Westminster, December 11, 1931
21. The Nuremberg Laws on Citizenship and Race, September-November, 1935
22. Opening Chapter of the Soviet Constitution of December 5, 1936
23. Abdication Letter of Edward VIII to the House of Commons, December 10, 1936
24. The Hossbach Document, November 5, 1937
25. The Munich Agreement, September 29, 1938
26. Winston Churchill's Three Famous Speeches of 1940
A. "Blood, Toil, Tears and Sweat," May 13, 1940
B. "Their Finest Hour," June 18, 1940
C. "So Much Owed by So Many to So Few," August 29, 1940
27. The Rome-Berlin-Tokyo Axis Pact, September 27, 1940
28. President Franklin D. Roosevelt's Four Freedoms Speech, January 6, 1941
29. The Atlantic Charter, August 14, 1941
30. War Message of President Roosevelt on Japan, December 8, 1941
31. Declaration by the United Nations, January 1, 1942
32. The Casablanca Conference, January 26, 1943
33. The First Quebec Conference, August 11-24, 1943
34. The Moscow Pact Declaration on General Security, October 30, 1943
35. The Cairo Conference, November 22-26, 1943
36. The Tehran Conference, December 1, 1943
37. The Secret Treaty of Yalta, February 4-11, 1945
38. Hitler's Political Testament, April 29, 1945
39. Admiral Doenitz's Assumption of Leadership in the Third Reich, May 1, 1945
40. The Potsdam Declaration, August 2, 1945
41. The Japanese Instrument of Surrender, September 2, 1945
42. The Baruch Proposals-for the Control of Atomic Energy, June, 1946
43. Extracts from the Nuremberg Trial Judgments, October 1, 1946
44. The Truman Doctrine, March 12, 1947
45. The Marshall Plan, June 5, 1947
46. Expulsion of Marshal Tito and Yugoslavia from the Cominform, June, 1948
47. The Universal Declaration of the Rights of Man, December, 1948
48. The North Atlantic Treaty, April 4, 1949
49. Final Act of Nine-Power Conference on Arming West Germany, London, September 28-October 3, 1954
50. Charter of the United Nations

Amazingly, about half of the above were discussed in one of my high school classes - but it was an "unusual" class, and most of the kids didn't get much past auto maintenance and home cooking.

John


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: josepp
Date: 04 Jul 12 - 09:25 AM

One book that had a huge impact on me was "The Illuminatus! Trilogy" and when I meet others who were first introduced to the subject matter covered in that book, it had the same impact on them. I suppose if you already knew all the stuff the book covers then maybe not so much. But then I had already ready Pynchon's "The Crying of Lot 49" and everything Lovecraft ever wrote and it only heightened my enjoyment of the Trilogy so I don't know. That book also quote a bit from Ishmael Reed's "Mumbo Jumbo" so I hunted that down and read it too. I lent it to a guy on my ship who had also read the Trilogy and "Crying" and we would discuss Mumbo Jumbo for hours.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 04 Jul 12 - 08:05 AM

The "memo from upstairs" theory has the ring of truth, especially if accompanied by an 8-hour deadline.

The more I think about the systematic omission of foreign authors of all periods from a list of books that "shaped America," the more irritated I get, particularly when I look at some of the titles that obviously haven't done much evident "shaping"

Of course, "The Scarlet Letter" did teach me and millions of other middle-schoolers to hate literature for many years. I guess that counts for something.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Allan C.
Date: 04 Jul 12 - 06:33 AM

I don't know if the book (edited by) E. A. Botkin listed above changed anything about America, but it certainly helped to point me toward an interest in folklore and traditional songs. I stumbled upon his "Treasury of American Folklore" long before I ever heard of Lomax. Botkin produced quite a number of other books of the same sort. Many of them were specific to certain areas of the USA. I have quite a few of these and have enjoyed thumbing through the various stories and songs therein.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 08:38 PM

Its not a book, but it deserves to be on this list more than most of the books on the list. The TV series Star Trek. For inspiring young people to enter the field of science.

Maybe the movie Wall Street for doing the polar opposite of its intended purpose.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 08:24 PM

How about the report of the 9/11 commission. Or Debt of Honor by Tom Clancy which may have been the blueprint for the worst day in US history.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 08:21 PM

Good point Bill. Perhaps by that standard, this one should be stricken. It is not like we know about Chavez only because of this book.

Cesar Chavez, "The Words of Cesar Chavez" (2002)


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Bill D
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 07:06 PM

Sure... but hardly anything that it is obvious 'shaped' us yet.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Shimrod
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 06:27 PM

Did no-one write anything significant in the 1990s?


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 04:06 PM

Yes I did, Thank you for pointing that out.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: pdq
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 03:44 PM

Have you two posted to the wrong thread?

This one is about classic books.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 03:01 PM

Q

I went back and read the poll

          -------- Support --------   --------- Oppose --------    No
          NET   Strongly   Somewhat   NET   Somewhat   Strongly opinion
4/8/12    41      12         29       45       21         24       14

Somewhat support? That is not want a member would say. At best you have only 12 percent as member of the Tea Party. Obviously the reality is much smaller than that.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 02:44 PM

New York Times (Pew) puts agreement with the Tea Party in the mid 20's

That is in districts with Tea Party representatives.

I know it depends on how you ask the question. But since support is a much stronger term than "agree with," it makes your unsupported statement of 41% nation wide (Or did you just mean my district in North Carolina) seem dubious at best.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 02:29 PM

No not millions. The Tea Party A-holes, my term, are the ones running for office using nasty divisive ads with their name on them.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 02:19 PM

What a sight! All those millions of Tea Party A-holes.

(41% of Americans support the "Tea Party" according to the Washington Post estimate).
Tea party support stable, but interest is waning, Scott Clement, 04/15/2012, Washington Post Politics.

For those who want to know what and who the Blue Dogs are, see "Blue Dog Coalition" in Wikipedia. There are 26 Representatives according to this list, 6 departing at end of 112th Congress.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 01:25 PM

Judging from his ads Rouzer is a Tea Party A-hole. I think he is running against the Blue Dog in our district.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 01:19 PM

Very true Q. But it is very dubious that any one dime novel had enough influence to be included in such a list on its own merits.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 12:54 PM

Sorry, I thought 1984 was there.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Q (Frank Staplin)
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 12:46 PM

Stumbled on this list of American Folk Tales.
Not really pertinent (?) but a lot of interesting stories; Americans undoubtedly have been influenced (if not "shaped") by them.

Famous American Folktales & Stories

http://www.americanfolklore.net/sindex.html#up

Despite the objections by josepp, I maintain that the dime novels were among the most important books shaping the American image of their country. Read to tatters by millions, thousands of whom would go west to build a new life. Horace Greeley would encapsulate that yearning and its fulfillment, when he wrote "Go West, ...."


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: pdq
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 11:50 AM

As I pointed out, neither George Orwell nor Aldous Huxley are on the list of 88.

Other Brits who perhaps should be are H. G. Well (for "The Time Machine", if nothing else), George Bernard Shaw and James Joyce.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 11:25 AM

'
When I see a list like this I can just imagine some people sitting in an office on Monday morning getting a memo from "upstairs" that they have to have a list of 100 books finished by Friday'

Nonsense - the original e-mail was divinely inspired. There are also 88 white notes on a piano. Surely not just a coincidence,

Never ignore an omen!


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 11:06 AM

I know all of the books on the list were not written by Americans. Orwell? Wasn't he born in Bengal, India.

Speaking of which.... How about Kama Sutra?


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Bill D
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 10:53 AM

Lighter... I have a Calvin and Hobbes (the originals) Tee-shirt ..so I guess they helped shaped American pop-culture business. ;>)


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Wesley S
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 09:18 AM

When I see a list like this I can just imagine some people sitting in an office on Monday morning getting a memo from "upstairs" that they have to have a list of 100 books finished by Friday afternoon. The rest of the week is taken up with arguments along the lines of "Well if you get to include that one then I get to add this one". On and on until Friday when they give up and go home after finishing a list of 88 books.

Then they tell "upstairs" that they devised a list of criteria so stringent that only the 88 books made the list.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 09:14 AM

And how 'bout those early influential furriners like Calvin and Hobbes (I mean the originals), and Locke and Rousseau?

Their books *really* helped shape America. Shakespeare and Milton too. And, face it, Marx & Engels. I guess the Bible and the Talmud go without saying. (It may be premature to add the Quran and the Sayings of Confucius.) All are reasons why America is so diverse.
   
The title of the list should include the word "help." Books don't do everything.

Just thought of another one of vast influence: Alex Comfort's "The Joy of Sex." Of course, he was a furriner too, so he couldn't possibly have written a book that helped shape America, right?


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 08:58 AM

Like "The Pentagon Papers" (often cited, rarely read), "All the President's Men" (with the aid of the movie, of course) arguably convinced millions *never* to trust Washington about *anything.*

Other millions had already reached that conclusion, but we're talking about books here.

I wonder of "The Exorcist" (1971) had anything to do with the rise of Fundamentalism (starting in the late '70s).

If so, it was helped out, again, by the movie.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jim Carroll
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 08:54 AM

It occurs to me that it might be a good idea to discuss books that books that should have shaped America but unfortunately didn't
In fact some of those mentioned so far already fall into that category (before anybody accuses me of being anti-American, the same applies to any country, including and especially my own).
Jim Carroll


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Big Al Whittle
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 04:49 AM

Perhaps if you put all the copies of those books in the gulf of Mexico, and it silted up over them - they would change the shape of America.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Little Hawk
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 01:15 AM

I attempted to read "The Fountainhead" once while in high school...got through about 3 chapters...and dropped it, because I found it espoused so deeply repulsive a philosophy that it practically made me feel physically ill to keep reading it.

That was my very short acquaintance with Ayn Rand's work. You could call it "loathing at first sight", I guess. It seemed to be directly opposed to every basic social instinct I have.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Don Firth
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 12:59 AM

Nathaniel Brandon, a disciple of Ayn Rand's, gave a series of twenty lectures entitled, "The Basic Principles of Objectivism" (Objectivism is what Rand called her philosophy), and the tapes of these lectures were played to groups of Ayn Rand enthusiasts all over the country.

It was a group of Ayn Rand fans who had taken these lectures who got together and started the "Libertarian Party."

I know this for a fact.

Don Firth


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: JohnInKansas
Date: 03 Jul 12 - 12:11 AM

Obviously they're referring only to the old books, since they left the "Anarchists' Cookbook" off the list.

(Take your pick of any of the 3 or 4 versions in circulation, since they're all pretty much total crap - but a lot of people have believed in them.)

John


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 11:36 PM

They read Rand the way fundies read the bible

That is pretty much my point. If you read Atlas Shrugged with and understanding of the world it makes no sense.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: katlaughing
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 10:34 PM

I think Joel Chandler Harris's Uncle Remus books should be mentioned. Interesting quote about him by Twain at that link.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: josepp
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 10:14 PM

////I know libertarians who quote from it.////

They're just repeating what the ideologues in their cult tell them to say. They read Rand the way fundies read the bible--no real comprehension (after all, what is there to comprehend?) and then the pastor or reverend tells them what it means and they then repeat it as though it was their own thoughts.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 10:01 PM

Lighter-
I sort of agree with you that several you questioned could have been left off... or been farther down on a longer list.

I don't think "All the President's Men" was influential... the events it described were influential. It was a good book...even an important book. But Dr. Spock & Dale Carnegie & Robert E. Heinlein & Betty Friedan were more 'influential'. (I watched them influence many college students many years ago)

My point was mostly about sticking to the point.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 09:48 PM

I think that lighter makes a couple of good points about Moby Dick and the validity of how the list seems to have been chosen.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Janie
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 09:37 PM

Thanks Wesley! Interesting to think about.

And thanks Bill D.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 09:28 PM

So, Bill, how did the books I questioned (and many others on the list) "shape America"?

I mean really. What activities, industries, movements, common attitudes, etc., did these books "shape"? Lincoln quipped that "Uncle Tom's Cabin" started the Civil War. Even as repartee, that makes it sound pretty influential. Can we say anything similar about "The Legend of Sleepy Hollow?" (Not a book, BTW: a mere sketch.)

And why not 100? Couldn't they think of another dozen?

Surely Rand's "The Fountainhead" has had more time to be influential (particularly as helped out by the Gary Cooper flick) than has "Atlas Shrugged," published a decade later.

I'd call it a list of "88 American Books on Various subjects that Caught the Attention of our Staff for One Reason or Another."


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Bill D
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 08:46 PM

Like all lists of this sort, many of the suggested additions and complaints manage to miss the point OF the list.

There are books which 'shaped' America, but 'wonderful books which should have shaped America was not the topic... and neither was 'books which America shaped'.

We can differ about making up such a list, and lists often help to focus the debate.... but like Mudcat threads, we get 'topic creep'.

I agree that Atlas Shrugged had an influence.... durn it!


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 08:09 PM

I know libertarians who quote from it.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Josepp
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 08:05 PM

I doubt the libertarians have read it. They were just always that way.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: Jack the Sailor
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 07:29 PM

Wall Street bankers
Ron & Rand Paul,
thousands of "libertarians" and survivalists.

Atlas Shrugged has spawned a whole new American religion of greed, selfishness and anarchy.

Dianetics influence is also obvious. It also preaches a pernicious brand of self-involvement and undermines social institutions.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,josepp
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 07:18 PM

////By far the most influential science fiction work other than Atlas Shrugged has been Dianetics by L Ron Hubbard.////

My gut instinct is to call this statement utter bullshit but then I might have to oncede that the Wall Street bankers have probably read these two turds and believed every word of their bullshit and hance brought this country to ruin. No one else, though (least of all Scientologists). Nor should they waste their time.


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Subject: RE: BS: 88 Books that shaped America
From: GUEST,Lighter
Date: 02 Jul 12 - 06:45 PM

Bram Stoker was Irish and wrote in the UK.

But I have to agree with your estimate of Hubbard's influence. Surely far greater than Allen Ginsberg's, Nathaniel Hawthorne's, Stephen Crane's, etc.

Q is right to criticize the complete omission of dime novels other than "Mark, the Match Boy."

And, yes, the Book of Mormon should be listed.

In any case, where's Lomax's "Cowboy Songs and Other Frontier Ballads" (1910)? Clearly more influential than, say, Williams's "Spring and All."

If classic fiction is your bag, where's "Tales of the Grotesque and Arabesque," by Edgar Allen Poe? Hemingway's "The Sun Also Rises" came more than a dozen years before "For Whom the Bell Tolls" and made him (and his style) famous. "A Farewell to Arms" cemented it in 1929.

If Eugene O'Neill helped shape America, why not pick an earlier play like "Beyond the Horizon," which won him a Pulitzer Prize in 1920? Or "Anna Christie," which did the same in 1922?

And wait just a cotton-pickin' minute! Where are "All the President's Men" and "The Pentagon Papers"?

And "Thomas Jefferson: An Intimate History," by Fawn M. Brodie (1974). (You know, dishing the alleged dirt on Tom and Sallie.)


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