Thursday, March 24, 2005

Why can't people finish nonfiction books?

Easy. Because most defend a hypothesis. Once you get the jist of that, and the the main arguments, everything else is just useless shredded lettuce in the doubledecker taco.

Some great books I never finished:

Robert Wright's NonZero
A book that explores the increasing complexity of human interaction and how those interactions have a nonzero sum. This means that relationships need not have a winner and a loser. And how this explains all sorts of crazy shit that you'd never guess it could. Like the similarities between religions and why we'd jump in a river to save a stranger.

Jared Diamond's Guns, Germs and Steel.
I'll admit it. I bought this book because it said that it won the pulizer prize. I'm not made of stone, people. It explains why white people "own all the cargo." The explination starts and stops with geography. Geographical advantages of those living in Europe lead to the advantages found in the title of the book. An evolutionary Biologist, like Wright, but not nearly as good a writer.

Thomas Friedman's Beruit to Jerusalem
The most respected, and loudest authority on Middle-Eastern politics also happens to be an optimist, and consistently pisses off Republicans and Democrats. Clear without being patronizing. Also, TF has just discovered the wit and wisdom of Robert Wright. I love it when my heroes discover eachother and make me feel smart for liking the people I like.

Karen Armstrong's Through The Narrow Gate
Karen decides she wants to be a nun when she turns sixteen. Goes to the monestary against her parent's wishes. Can't rectify her studies of Islam and Buddism during her required year at oxford before marrying Christ. Marries Christ anyway then quits after her mother superior admits that she thinks the resurrection is a sham. Karen Armstrong today is the Dean of Religious Studies at Oxford. Also wrote: A History Of God, and Islam. A clear head in a confused bookstore of an AM radio.


Blogger Enforcer said...

Fuck Mike I had no idea you were smart, Mike 1 Geoff 0.

I don't read.

11:32 AM  

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