The 100 Most Influential Books Ever Written: The History of Thought from Ancient Times to Today

Martin Seymour-Smith, Author Citadel Press $34.95 (504p) ISBN 978-0-8065-2000-1
British literary historian Seymour-Smith's survey of what he considers the 100 most influential books is a searching inquiry into major thinkers, writers and philosophers. Arranged in chronological order from the I Ching to B.F. Skinner's Beyond Freedom and Dignity, the selection is admirably inclusive, setting Confucius's Analects, India's Upanishads, the Koran and the Zoroastrian Avesta alongside the Old and New Testaments, Plato's Republic, and works by Dante, Shakespeare, Spinoza, Gibbon, Copernicus, Voltaire, Marx, Thoreau, Einstein, Freud, Jung. His compendium features concise, opinionated essays marked by intellectual depth and scope, and includes vivid biographical details of each book's author. Seymour-Smith finds most modernist techniques already present, or anticipated, in Cervantes's Don Quixote, and he views Rabelais as the first truly popular writer. His eclectic choice of influential moderns--de Beauvoir, Mao, Orwell, Keynes, Chomsky, cybernetician Norbert Winer, mystic G.I. Gurdjieff, Wittgenstein--is unpredictable, a roster he defends with alacrity. This is a mind-expanding one-volume humanities course. Illustrations. (June)
Reviewed on: 05/04/1998
Release date: 01/01/1960
Show other formats
Hardcover - 500 pages - 978-0-8065-1865-7
Paperback - 524 pages - 978-0-8065-2192-3
Stay ahead with
Tip Sheet!
Free newsletter: the hottest new books, features and more
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Only $18.95/month for Digital Access
or $20.95 for Print+Digital Access!
Email Address


Log In Lost Password

PW has integrated its print and digital subscriptions, offering exciting new benefits to subscribers, who are now entitled to both the print edition and the digital editions of PW (online or via our app). For instructions on how to set up your accout for digital access, click here. For more information, click here.

The part of the site you are trying to access is now available to subscribers only. Subscribers: to set up your digital subscription with the new system (if you have not done so already), click here. To subscribe, click here.

Email with questions.

Not Registered? Click here.