ONLINE BOOKS Key Ideas in Human Thought Author Kenneth McLeish –

Key Ideas in Human ThoughtThis is not the sort of book one reads even in many sittings but it is a reference book of some indisputable value even if it is also a remarkably biased book for one that professes to cover 1C2500 important terms and topics in all areas of intellectual inuiry from science to history economics to literature mathematics to music 1D Now all areas of intellectual inuiry from science to history economics to literature mathematics to music 1D Now a breath What is intellectually parochial about this book with which I shall deal anon is perhaps outweighed by the usefulness of much of its information For example my partner just asked me what the First And Second Laws and second laws thermodynamics might be In these days of the Internet I could have looked it up these days of the Internet I could have looked it up wikipedia another source that maintains a certain intellectual parochialism despite it cosmopolitanism and internationalism 14or possibly because of them but 1CKey Ideas in Human Thought 1D was readily at hand so I cracked open its almost 800 pages and looked up 1Cthermodynamics 1D which was easily done in this alphabetically arranged encyclopedia Historically not all encyclopedias have been arranged alphabeticallyIn this instance the article on thermodynamics was only about a column long Each page is divided into two columns rather than the text running straight across the page The first and second laws turn out to have to do with the transfernon transfer of heat energy and tell us that energy cannot be kept going as in a perpetual motion machine rather energy can neither be created nor destroyed and it moves from warmer to cooler bodies and not the other way around It can be turned from heat into work energy but not perpetuallyWell this is useful if ou need to know it and cannot remember what Crochet your science teacher was saying whileou were looking out the window The book contains such a vast number of succinct explanations of concepts Playhouse you never thoughtou would need to know or recall 14but nevertheless might suddenly find ourself needing to define 14that its shortcomings can and should be overlooked 14up to a point Sometimes its flaws are at least a tiny bit laughable For example right before 1Cthermodynamics 1D is an article on 1CTheosophy 1D which defines it as a cult in bold print to indicate that that concept can be looked up too and after describing its historical origin in the work of Helena Blavatsky and HS Olcott along with We vote Key ideas the ear's best browse NewsweekKey Ideas in Human Thought explains 2500 Key Ideas in Human ThoughtHeir founding conceptions ands influences finally sums up by saying 1CThe cult was investigated in 1884 and declared fraudulent but in its day it attracted a huge following worldwide 1D As someone not attached to Theosophy but acuainted with it I can only find this explanation much too short Perhaps each contributor was given only so much space for each topic Not the same amount of space for articles are of very different lengths Among the things I would add to this explanation of Theosophy are that despite a than century old finding that the basis of theosophy might involve some fraudulence Theosophy continues To Thrive Worldwide And Had Many Touching Points With Events thrive worldwide and had many touching points with events ideas in the twentieth century Its most sustained importance to my mind is its influence on the ever living comedy troupe The Fire Sign Theatre but one can t have that without all the restAnother article is on 1CGreen Politics and Design 1D This is of historical interest only as it traces a shift in environmentalist thought from a suspicion of 1Cgreen design 1D 14 1Clow technology recycling and a social role for the designer 1D 14as part of consumerism to an embrace and appreciation for 1Cthe long term implications of their designs and the materials they use 1D It ends with an almost teleological prediction 1CAs we approach the end of the twentieth century a new green aesthetic for design will influence the whole of our visual culture 1D The next article is on the 1Cgreenhouse effect 1D and describes the theory of global warming though the term is not used here but is in the entries on global warming and sustainable development as succinctly as ou might ever find but again my favorite sentence is the last one 1CHowever it is likely that the biosphere bold type euals v will be able to to higher temperatures euals v will be able to adjust to higher if humans cannot 1D In other words even if global warming makes the earth unlivable for people life will probably continue through creatures that are tolerant of high temperatures I find this remarkable because it is not comforting and is so obviously not meant to beA somewhat useful article the first under 1CB 1D is about 1CBa 19athism 1D While not a household word this is a pan Arab political philosophy subscribed to by both the late Saddam Hussein of Ira and Hafiz al Assad of Syria 14father of the currently embat. F the most important terms and concepts that have shaped the modern world Encompassing all. ,

Kenneth McLeish Î 5 Read

Tled Syrian leader Bashar al Assad Interestingly despite both being nominally ba 19athist Hussein and the elder Assad were regional enemies and rivals Assad supporting Iran against Ira in their 1980 1988 war He also joined the US led coalition against Hussein in 1991 Today Iran has joined Russia in supporting the ounger Assad against Syrian rebelsThe article on 1Clibertarianism 1D idiosyncratically turns into a baldly argumentative refutation rather than a value neutral explanation 1CThere Are Two Major Problems two major problems this childishly simple argument 1D Even the subject of the final entry 1CZoroastrianism 1D gets a objective treatment despite the contributor undoubtedly not being a gets a objective treatment despite the contributor undoubtedly not being a potential articles are notably absent such as one on the free market although there is a discussion of 1Cfree trade 1D this is an extremely limited aspect of free market theory and even in this case there is no examination of free trade before the twentieth century Free trade is primarily considered as a product of government intervention which is an incomplete picture to put it charitably Though the article is not written by the same contributor who did the one on libertarianism the point of view is reminiscent since he too sees muscular governments as necessary to make economic transactions just Not to put too fine a point on it but I detect a profound bias in all of thisThe chief editor Kenneth McLeish is also a contributor He wrote the entry on 1CTheosophy 1D for example Like most of the contributors he is British I see an Australian a German a possible South African and one American in the list of contributors The CVs of contributors are eye opening at times The article on the 1Cgreenhouse effect 1D was written by Richard Burch a PhD and researcher in parasitology not as one might expect by Philip Sarre a geographer and author of the book 1COne World for One Earth 1D who did write the entries on global warming and 1Csustainable development 1D Another contributor is Tania Krzywinska whose degree in Modern Drama and Film apparently led her to her area of expertise 1CCinematic Hardcore Pornography 1D although she only co wrote the entry on 1Cpornography 1D with McLeish and is one of four contributors to the article on 1Cgender 1D and is not the author of the entry on 1Ceroticism 1D That would be again McLeish. Fields of inuiry from science to history this rich compendium is a valuable tool for anyone.

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