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The Open Society and its Enemies ➵ The Open Society and its Enemies Read ➼ Author Karl Popper – Natus-physiotherapy.co.uk One of the most important books of the twentieth century, Karl Popper s The Open Society and Its Enemies is an uncompromising defense of liberal democracy and a powerful attack on the intellectual ori One of the most important books of the Society and PDF É twentieth century, Karl Popper s The Open Society and its Enemies is an uncompromising defense of liberal democracy and a powerful attack on the intellectual origins of totalitarianism Popper was born into a Viennese family of Jewish origin He taught in Austria until , when he The Open PDF or emigrated to New Zealand in anticipation of the Nazi annexation of Austria the following year, and he settled in England inBefore the annexation, Popper had written mainly about the philosophy of science, but fromuntil the end of the Second World War he focused his energies on political philosophy, seeking to diagnose the intellectual origins of Open Society and eBook ↠ German and Soviet totalitarianism The Open Society and its Enemies was the resultAn immediate sensation when it was first published in two volumes in , Popper s monumental achievement has attained legendary status on both the Left and Right and is credited with inspiring anticommunist dissidents during the Cold War Arguing that the spirit of free, critical inquiry that governs scientific investigation should also apply to politics, Popper traces the roots of an opposite, authoritarian tendency to a tradition represented by Plato, Marx, and Hegel.

    The Open Society and its Enemies Kindle ↠ The Open free, critical inquiry that governs scientific investigation should also apply to politics, Popper traces the roots of an opposite, authoritarian tendency to a tradition represented by Plato, Marx, and Hegel."/>
  • Paperback
  • 755 pages
  • The Open Society and its Enemies
  • Karl Popper
  • English
  • 22 August 2019
  • 0691158134

About the Author: Karl Popper

Sir Karl Raimund Popper, FRS, rose from a Society and PDF É modest background as an assistant cabinet maker and school teacher to become one of the most influential theorists and leading philosophers Popper commanded international audiences and conversation with him was an intellectual adventure even if a little rough animated by a myriad of philosophical problems He The Open PDF or contributed to a field of thought encompassing among others political theory, quantum mechanics, logic, scientific method and evolutionary theoryPopper challenged some of the ruling orthodoxies of philosophy logical positivism, Marxism, determinism and linguistic philosophy He argued that there are no subject matters but only problems and our desire to solve them He said that scientific Open Society and eBook ↠ theories cannot be verified but only tentatively refuted, and that the best philosophy is about profound problems, not word meanings Isaiah Berlin rightly said that Popper produced one of the most devastating refutations of Marxism Through his ideas Popper promoted a critical ethos, a world in which the give and take of debate is highly esteemed in the precept that we are all infinitely ignorant, that we differ only in the little bits of knowledge that we do have, and that with some co operative effort we may get nearer to the truthNearly every first year philosophy student knows that Popper regarded his solutions to the problems of induction and the demarcation of science from pseudo science as his greatest contributions He is less known for the problems of verisimilitude, of probability a life long love of his , and of the relationship between the mind and bodyPopper was a Fellow of the Royal Society, Fellow of the British Academy, and Membre de I Institute de France He was an Honorary member of the Harvard Chapter of Phi Beta Kappa, and an Honorary Fellow of the London School of Economics, King s College London, and of Darwin College Cambridge He was awarded prizes and honours throughout the world, including the Austrian Grand Decoration of Honour in Gold, the Lippincott Award of the American Political Science Association, and the Sonning Prize for merit in work which had furthered European civilizationKarl Popper was knighted by Queen Elizabeth II in and invested by her with the Insignia of a Companion of Honour in edited from.



10 thoughts on “The Open Society and its Enemies

  1. Trevor Trevor says:

    The preface to this talked about Popper s relationship with Hayek, so much so that since I d only just finished The Road to Serfdom I really wasn t sure I could bring myself to read yet another defence of capitalist realism This book ended up being much less such a defence than Hayek s book did but that said, what I found disturbing about this book reminds me of what I found most disturbing about Hayek s that is, the total rejection of everyone that might disagree with the author You kno The preface to this talked about Popper s relationship with Hayek, so much so that since I d only just finished The Road to Serfdom I really wasn t sure I could bring myself to read yet another defence of capitalist realism This book ended up being much less such a defence than Hayek s book did but that said, what I found disturbing about this book reminds me of what I found most disturbing about Hayek s that is, the total rejection of everyone that might disagree with the author You know, when a writer says Plato, Aristotle, Hegel, Wittgenstein, Bergson, Whitehead and Freud where all either fools or in Hegel s case traitors to philosophy itself, then, well, that s going to cause me some angst They might even be right, but that does mean that lots and lots of other people will have had to have been wrong and wrong for a very long time I m not saying that Popper is wrong because his opinions are controversial, but discarding quite so many greats of philosophy in one book ought to give you reason to pause The onus of proof is very much on Popper here And this is one of the things I found so surprising about this book I mean, the open society he is proposing is based in a kind of meritocracy, which is turn is based on a kind of pragmatism, and that is based on a kind of extreme version of Kantian dualism agnosticism that could properly be called radical doubt But for a radical doubter, Popper seems, as T S Eliot would say, assured of certain certainties I was somewhat gobsmacked when he cast Aristotle aside in a single chapter look I know Popper had other fish to fry, but he certainly didn t have bigger fish to fry we are talking Aristotle, not someone s uncle Jack I guess another thing is similar to Hayek in this book With Hayek if you believe even the smallest, slightest amount of state intervention might be necessary in an economy occasionally, then he sees you as either a Nazi or a Communist it hardly matters which, since he sees the two as identical In this book it is if you think that history portrays any patterns at all that might give us clues to the future development of society, then you are a dangerous fool convinced of the most terrible mistake in the history of philosophy This book starts with a refutation of Plato A friend of mine gave me a book years ago, which I ve meant to read, but never quite gotten around to It was called something like Why Socrates Had it Coming I would have to go searching for it, but I think my title is even better than the original, so finding it wouldn t help with my point here anyway From what I remember of my conversation with my friend about the book, it argues pretty much what Popper argues here, except the book attributes to Socrates all of the bad things that Popper here attributes to Plato Mostly that is that Socrates was killed because he took the side of tyrants and then, once democracy was re established, he got what was coming to him I really don t know enough about the politics of this period of Greek history to make an informed contribution to this debate But what Popper says isn t and wasn t at the time he wrote it uncontroversial Others at the time and since have jumped to Plato s defence, and those others have qualifications to do so Popper dismisses much of this criticism as these experts either wilfully misinterpreting his criticism of Plato or of them being essentially religiously required to attack Popper so as to sustain their faith in the immortal Plato Like I said, I m not qualified to enter this discussion, but I suspect it is hardly as black and white as Popper makes it out to be In part, I guess Popper is right on Plato you could hardly say Plato was a great fan of democracy or that his vision of an ideal republic sounds particularly fun or egalitarian And I think Popper is also right to say Plato believed that the problem with the world is that it is in a state of near constant decay and that as a philosopher he sees the historical tendency of the world to be in one direction and that is in the opposite direction to greater perfection To slow this inevitable descent, we need to have people in charge who understand the perfection we are moving away from, and therefore people best able to arrest that descent and those people are the philosophers For Popper the most important idea here is a notion that history has a direction that is independent of individual human activity, and that humans can understand and respond to that history as a driving force This is an idea that Popper completely rejects, and he see s Plato as an early and still influential advocate of this historicism This book was originally published in two volumes and the whole of the first volume was dedicated to Plato Popper definitely takes Plato s influence seriously.I was going to say this is similar to his criticism of Hegel, except it isn t really He really, really dislikes Hegel In fact, his hatred of Hegel is a bit pathological He sees Hegel s philosophy as worse than mere word games, but literally as cant, something he says over and over again In fact, he struggles to believe people could ever have been fooled by Hegel, and admits he struggles to take Hegel s ideas seriously He sees Hegel as dishonest and his method, which he refers to as zigzags and in other derogatory terms, as a kind of philosophical joke Having just finished an introduction to Hegel, and in the past having read quite a few books by Hegel, I have to say it was difficult to reconcile that with what Popper says here What is clear, however, is that Hegel s historicism is, in a sense, the opposite of Plato s, in that where Plato saw the world as in a near constant process of decay, Hegel sees it as constantly progressing It is definitely clear that Hegel sees development as central to how history progresses and that development is central to his understanding of the world and his philosophy So, even if Popper has simplified Hegel s philosophy here close to the point of it being unrecognisable he has attacked his philosophy on a point that is still important whether or not history can be said to have a direction and whether or not we can understand that direction For the sake of brevity of this review which, when you look at how long this bloody thing is, ought to give you a smile I m going to include Marx here too since Popper is remarkably kind to Marx in many ways in this book, but that he sees Marx s main problem being his acceptance of historicism and therefore his acceptance that history has a direction and one that will, inevitably, lead to socialism That Hegel considered Prussia as the pinnacle of human civilisation is something that is often said, but that might not be as true as it might seem however, I think there is little doubt that Marx did predict that the inherent laws of capitalist development were such that socialism was basically inevitable and urgent on the basis of his understanding of historical materialism.Popper makes it clear that it is hard to disagree with Marx s analysis of the early stages of Capitalist society People were definitely not living in paradise Life expectancy, the condition of children in factories, and the living conditions of the majority of working people were as horrendous as Marx paints them However, Popper says that by the end of Marx s life rather than these conditions worsening, as Marx had predicted, they had in fact gotten much better for most of the working people In large part, this is attributed by Popper to the power of legislative changes, and to these being imposed on society by trade unions and other bodies working for reforms Such reforms, according to Popper, made the driving need for the kind of social revolution anticipated by Marx less and less necessary.This is interesting, since it presents what saved capitalism was precisely the things that Popper s friend Hayek was proposing needed to be removed so as to make capitalismdynamic and competitive What is particularly interesting in relation to this is that just about every one of the safety nets Popper praises as humanising capitalism are either gone or currently in the process of being removed at the same time as inequality has risen to levels not seen since the 1920s But Marx did predict the total impoverishment of the working class and it is hard to argue that this has come to pass well, as long as you limit your gaze to the developed capitalist countries and stick with averages The working conditions in the factories of developing nations, as books such as No Logo make all too clear, bring Victorian Manchester back from the dead Trade Unions have lost virtually all of their power in developed nations and we are seeing austerity and disappearing social safety nets making the lives of too many people precarious not too different from what Marx said they would look like I think Popper would struggle to brush aside Marx s predictions as merely those symptomatic of an early and degenerate phase of capitalist development as he does in this book All the same, and perhaps paradoxically, the failure of just about every single one of Popper s refutations of why Marxism is no longer relevant actually goes some way to supporting his larger thesis that is, that historicism is flawed because the patterns you think you are able to discern melt before your eyes as history passes and they can just as quickly turn into their opposites again, although, let s not mention Hegel s zigzags This would be, I guess, Popper s response to our current situation that Marx was very specific that the development of capitalism would inevitably lead to the development of a proletariat that would develop its own revolutionary aims and that these would be most pronounced in the most developed capitalist countries, and would lead to a socialist revolution That the development of communication technologies in Marx s day, the printing press and railways would dissolve national distinctions and thereby facilitate an international class struggle and social revolution that would end capitalism It is hard not to notice that those predictions have not come to pass It seems Marx underestimated the nationalist feeling of people ironically enough, something Castells discusses at length in his fascinating chapter in volume three of The Rise of Network Society in relation to the collapse of the Soviet Union Marx also underestimated the power of the capitalist media and the weakness of any counter forms of media his predictions of the workers press also never really came to pass Popper would say that the failure of so many of Marx s predictions show the sterility of the historicist method and the pointlessness of making such predictions in the first place His open society is not premised on these ideas, but rather on an extreme form of pragmatism Rather than seeking to overthrow the existing order, we would be much better advised to make piecemeal improvements to society We ought to see legal and social institutions as having been built to protect all of us, and if they have not been, then modifying them so that they are is the most likely way that we can develop those protections The issues facing us cannot be solved all at once and for all time, but rather need to be tackled in much the same way as we tackle problems within the science That is, provide a hypothesis and test it, always seeking to not only find validation for that hypothesis, but also attempting to falsify it too Only by the most rigorous critical analysis based on radical doubt can we have any hope of transcending our limited understanding To the extent that Marx was a pragmatist, Popper believes he was on the right track, but Popper feels it is his historicism that let Marx down in the end And that this ultimately had tragic consequences across Eastern Europe I think there are problems with this application of a narrow vision of a kind of Kantian scientific method to social processes As we have seen, changing society piecemeal seemed the obvious solution following the second world war, but from the 1980s onward the change has been decidedly towards adog eat dog world, where the benefits of economic development have been horded increasingly in fewer and fewer hands and where democracy appears everywhere under attack While Popper could point to the forces that were encouraging social progress and aequitable distribution of social wealth in the 1940s, such forces are much harder to discern today.It would appear ludicrous to speak of the inevitability of a socialist revolution today, something that certainly would not have seemed so when this book was written All the same, this does feel like a baby and bathwater problem While I doubt we will ever be able to accurately predict the future, I don t feel, as Popper clearly does here, that we can afford to ignore the role the past and present play in preparing the way for the future I don t think this is pure chaos, but that patterns can be seen and that they provide the only hope of responding to the demands of our age Popper has a section here on his version of this, but I think he is having a bet each way in part here Perhaps history actslike Socrates s daemon a voice he sometimes heard, but that only spoke up to warn him what not to do, rather than advising him on what to do In a world of gross and rising inequalities, rising nationalist feeling in some of the most developed nations, populist movements that are at best uninterested in the truth, potential ecological collapse and global corporations that surveil and market and interfere in our government in ways that would make Stasi blush, such a foreboding daemon would indeed be a blessing

  2. Peter (Pete) Mcloughlin Peter (Pete) Mcloughlin says:

    Popper is a major influence on my scientific and political outlook He is an antidote to the hypnotic siren of utopian ideologies His defense against illiberal ideologies should be required reading for all High School and College students His key ideas are the distinction between laws of nature and normative conventions, His idea that a liberal society must not try to clear the decks and start from scratch He calls this Utopian Social Engineering, Popper early in his life was friendly to soci Popper is a major influence on my scientific and political outlook He is an antidote to the hypnotic siren of utopian ideologies His defense against illiberal ideologies should be required reading for all High School and College students His key ideas are the distinction between laws of nature and normative conventions, His idea that a liberal society must not try to clear the decks and start from scratch He calls this Utopian Social Engineering, Popper early in his life was friendly to social democracy but found the Marxist apocalyptic approach to a socialist utopia highly destructive and contrary to its stated goals I also got a big take away that collective action while pragmatic in achieving objectives and redistributionist policy permissible and useful under quite a range of circumstances the open society ultimately rests on individuals only individual persons feel the sting of injustice, not the state, or group or a class or race While states, classes, groups, or races certainly are issues and can be foci of policy ultimately individuals are the center of a conception of a just and open society Classes or races or the state are not above them importance in an open society The state is a tool to help its members, not the reverse Popper shows the principles of an open society which is not necessarily a capitalist one but is one that is there to serve its members He does not think Utopian Social Engineering in the service of a static idyl a good method of helping human freedom, He rather says society should use piecemeal social engineering a work in progress in which clashing parties hammer out a negotiated settlement in settling how society should solve its problems It is humble not ruled by philosopher kings but a compromise that is amenable to as many of its members as possible I think Popper makes a strong defense for liberalism and the open society and to avoid historicist and utopian philosophies of some philosopher kings fevered vision.Update 9 4 2019 I admire Popper especially his anti authoritarian instincts but in fairness, I am going to post links to a paper that replies to his criticism especially the equivocation between a contradiction such as those found in the discipline of formal logic and the way Marxists use the term contradiction this seems to be a weakness of the Popperian critique and causes some confusion which I myself had succumbed to for a long time 4 8 2020 Now that I have read a bit of Marx I think his use of the idea of a contradiction is a little like the antinomies in Kantian philosophy You know like does the world have a beginning or not both answers are paradoxical if you think about it and unsatisfactory and drive for a quest for a better way to approach this by some explanation or rephrasing of the question A contradiction for Marx is some tendency in one part of society which bumps up against another tendency like an immovable object and irresistible force For Marx, a dialectic of history works these forces out until the next problem arises I am giving my best understanding if you don t want to look at the above article

  3. E. G. E. G. says:

    ForewordPreface Karl Popper s The Open Society and Its Enemies in the Contemporary Global World , by V clav Havel Personal Recollections of the Publication of The Open Society , by E H GombrichAcknowledgementsPreface to the First EditionPreface to the Second EditionIntroduction The Open Society and Its Enemies NotesNotes to Volume INotes to Volume IIIndex

  4. Ryan Boissonneault Ryan Boissonneault says:

    The main question driving this two volume masterpiece of political philosophy is this What are the intellectual origins of totalitarianism and how can we combat them with better principles This takes Popper all the way back to ancient Greece, where he makes the strong read indisputable case that the intellectual origin of totalitarianism starts with Plato the subject of the first volume While Popper admired many aspects of Plato s works, he recognized in his political philosophy the firs The main question driving this two volume masterpiece of political philosophy is this What are the intellectual origins of totalitarianism and how can we combat them with better principles This takes Popper all the way back to ancient Greece, where he makes the strong read indisputable case that the intellectual origin of totalitarianism starts with Plato the subject of the first volume While Popper admired many aspects of Plato s works, he recognized in his political philosophy the first and most influential intellectual defense of totalitarian government Not that this was, in hindsight, particularly difficult to see once we get over our infatuation with Plato s genius A quick read of Plato s Republic will reveal his plans for a caste based society with state controlled human reproduction i.e., eugenics , limited to no social mobility between the classes, the prevention of the mixing of blood between races, centralized and censored education, and intentionally lying to the population to maintain social control and harmony The link between state controlled human breeding and totalitarianism is hard to deny even for Plato s biggest apologists Plato is quite clear in his desire to eradicate all forms of individualism As Plato wrote, In the highest form of the state there is common property of wives, of children, and of all chattels And everything possible has been done to eradicate from our life everywhere and in every way all that is private and individual In contrast to the egalitarian philosophy of superior thinkers like Pericles, Democritus, and others, Plato s idea of justice is any action that benefits the state collectively, without regard to its individual members This idea of asking the individual members of a society to make great sacrifices for some eventual utopian ideal did not end with Plato In fact, Karl Marx would take these ideas transmitted principally through Aristotle and Hegel to their most dangerous levels, as described in the second volume of The Open Society.What you ll find in the second volume is the best and most thorough critique of Marxism available Unlike with Plato, however, Popper gives Marxcredit for his humanitarian intentions We should remember that when Marx was critiquing capitalism, working conditions were horrendous, to say the least including rampant child labor and 15 hour work days Against this backdrop of unrestrained capitalism, we can see how Marx would think and hope that it would only be a matter of time before the workers revolted Where Marx went wrong was in his historicist approach i.e., the uncovering of historical laws that can be used to predict the future Marx thought that capitalism would destroy itself because it would inevitably lead to an increased concentration of wealth, increasing levels of misery among the workers, and increasing class tension that could never be mitigated by political reform Except that political reform is exactly what happened Marx failed to anticipate wealth redistribution, in which the state redistributes capitalist profits through taxation, providing, among other things, subsidies for medical insurance, education, social security, and welfare The state has also taken an active role in regulating the capitalists by limiting working hours and setting minimum pay levels, for example That Marxists fail to see these developments as falsifying Marxism speaks to the power of historical prophecy regardless of what happens, it can always be made to fit into the Marxist narrative i.e., the road to socialism is not linear Ironically, this makes Marxism unscientific because it s not falsifiable , despite the fact that Marxism is often claimed to be a scientific theory The dangers of Marxism are the same as with Platonism it asks people to make great sacrifices for a distant ideal or utopian vision and ignores the types of reforms that can make people s lives better in the near term and it disregards the conception of justice as the non violent resolution of conflicting priorities But be careful to not take from this that Popper was a conservative Popper used the concept of the paradox of freedom to show that unlimited freedom including economic freedom destroys itself Just as the state restricts the freedom of others to commit physical violence, Popper recommends state intervention to prevent the economically strong from dominating the economically weak That s why Popper is best thought of as a progressive using the state to combat economic injustice , rather than as either a Marxist who thinks the social revolution will make the state unnecessary or a conservative libertarian who advocates for unlimited economic freedom, and therefore, for economic exploitation The Open Society is sometimes thought of only as a critique of Plato and Marx and an effective one at that , but it is something muchprofound than even that Popper lays out his own innovative political philosophy that replaces the question Who should rule with the better question How can we so organize political institutions that bad or incompetent rulers can be prevented from doing too much damage This shift of emphasis is grounded in the historical fact that most leaders throughout history have exhibited below average intelligence and morality, indicating that humanity is generally quite bad at selecting capable and worthwhile leaders While we should hope for the best in our political leaders, we should also prepare for the worst Democracy, in this sense, is less about the authoritative rule of the majority as it is the perpetual defense against tyranny This is why a focus on institutions, and the establishment of effective systems of accountability, is farimportant than selecting any particular leader, particularly if that leader is determined to weaken those very democratic institutions Additionally, the implementation of policy should adopt the method of searching for, and fighting against, the greatest and most urgent evils of society, rather than searching for, and fighting for, its greatest ultimate good The piecemeal social engineer, using Popper s term, will, like the scientist, run experiments and measure outcomes with an eye toward the reduction of unnecessary suffering, harm, and injustice, without concern for the eventual attainment of perfection solving problems only introduces new ones Because things do not always turn out as we imagine and often generate unintended consequences it is always necessary to test and revise our ideas This doesn t prohibit bold or progressive policy, it only suggests that we should maintain some humility with regard to our ability to prophesy the future As Popper wrote In fact, a scientific orientation to politics might lead to the happy situation where politicians begin to look out for their own mistakes instead of trying to explain them away and to prove that they have always been right This and not Utopian planning or historical prophecy would mean the introduction of scientific method into politics, since the whole secret of scientific method is a readiness to learn from mistakes

  5. Jawad Jawad says:

    Academic bullshit Completely detached from historical facts Facts as muchimportant than opinions.

  6. Gary Beauregard Bottomley Gary Beauregard Bottomley says:

    This is an incredibly great book for four different reasons Popper explains Plato, Aristotle, Hegel and Marx distinctly historicism is demolished the Popperian nature of science is expounded and the madness of today is understood through his 1938 1945 interpretation of the past both as he presents his historical interpretations and as a meta history a history about a history through how we today see what he saw because we see the world from our perspective of today as he saw his world th This is an incredibly great book for four different reasons Popper explains Plato, Aristotle, Hegel and Marx distinctly historicism is demolished the Popperian nature of science is expounded and the madness of today is understood through his 1938 1945 interpretation of the past both as he presents his historical interpretations and as a meta history a history about a history through how we today see what he saw because we see the world from our perspective of today as he saw his world through his own time lens.Facetiously I can say, you re neurotic and have psychological problems since you deny your own neurosis because you repress it since you obviously deny it If you don t, then you would admit to being neurotic, and then I would also know you are neurotic by your own testimony Popper, of course, in this book mocks psychoanalysis by pointing out its catch 22 pseudo scientific roots There was a surprisingly large amount of philosophy of science in this book even though its main thrust was fascism, Marxism and the falseness of historicism and the enemies of an open society Popper will present Plato s Republic as he interprets it as a template for fascism All one needs to do is read Hitler s Mein Kampf in order to see the connections though, Popper never mentions Hitler at least I don t think he does Hitler imo was clearly inspired by Plato for the creation of his Nazi madness Sparta is a model for the Republic and Hitler in his insane ramblings describes his social revolution of the classless one class with the state being the end of all being similarly as presented by Plato by encouraging the physical over the arts, opposing learning just for its own sake as in the learning a foreign language such as French Hitler gave that example in his book , discouraging poetry or anything that distances one from the perfect form as embodied in the Platonic virtues courage, justice, wisdom and prudence , all actions must be for the sake of the state or as Popper often refers to the state the tribe as represented by the guardians, and the mixing of bronze with gold or silver let alone anyone outside of the original tribe should not be tolerated and would only cheapen the culture, blood and characteristics derived from the soil and culture Popper will show all of these to be part and parcel for fascism and also within the Republic and amplified by Hegel Popper preemptively mocks the evo devo evolutionary development crowd of today such as Jordan Peterson and the always shallow Steven Pinker by his critic of psychologicism with its mythical origins necessitating the denial of a sociological reality He connects the fascist and the Marxist to a community without an individual and power for the sake of power itself through the state left Hegelianism, Marxism or through the individual guardian cult leader, e.g Hitler or Donald Trump in a classless one class society right wing Hegelianism, fascism.Popper was surprisingly sympathetic to Marx and his methodology but not to his conclusions Marx s critic is within the given assumptions of capitalism and liberalism and is therefore an immanent critique and gave a warning for the excesses in the industrial age and very well could be applicable as a warning for our digital age as a warning against Facebook, Google, Apple anddominating our spheres of influence through market domination and leading to excessive power for a select few Popper will quote the brutality that Marx documented in which unfettered capitalism would inflict upon a 9 year old boy and his 16 hour working days, with no sick days or sympathy or soul and so on Popper will note that government intervention, protection and laws allowed some checks on unfettered capitalism, but it by inference to today is not necessarily a guarantee against excessive power in the hands of today s monopolistic gatekeepers tell me again why Facebook did not stop the spreading of the doctored Nancy Pelosi tape last week but Youtube did, and with certainty a similar propagation of false news will happen without adequate counter warnings potentially leading to us re electing a president who believes climate change is a Chinese hoax and that vaccines cause autism , or lies, exaggerates and misleads intentionally without impunity Matter of fact, Popper has a section on how enemies of the open society will always have conspiracies without substance to blame others for harm to the in tribe, that is similar to those today who pretend they are the Real Americans , the ones who claim to have no identity because they are the definition of what all should strive for since they are already of the privileged class, the in tribe.Popper will say that Plato wants a return to the original tribe without change since all change is evil except for the change of evil itself, and Marx wants a change away from the tribe s origins to a utopian classless changeless society Popper really seemed to like Schopenhauer and Kierkegaard Popper said that Kierkegaard was anti anti Christians and anti anti humanism of his day I see Kierkegaard differently I see him as against humanism especially that which came out of the modernist Enlightenment, but that is just a matter of opinion and labels Popper is most definitely a humanist, a believer in classical liberalism and equality fairness , and I think that Popper just might have misinterpreted Kierkegaard s overall life project There were some interesting conversations on irrationality, rationality and reason Popper will call Alfred Whitehead a mystic and mocks him for thinking knowledge is for the domain of only the elect who have special insight and will show an irrational like Arnold Toynbee can reach rational conclusions Fascism needs the pretense of rationality It needs the esoteric certainty of the self anointed elect to such a degree that all others who have different beliefs must under their paradigm be under the false illusion of fake news BTW, Whitehead is a big believer in a pernicious teleology driving science and life, see The Function of Reason for amplification This is a superior book It is freely available on the internet in PDF I put it into voice dream reader on my Iphone and listened to it as an audio book The author assumes that the reader really wants to know what was going on in the world and why and assumed that the reader was willing to learn and was doing everything in their power to understand I think this book would have been a must read when it came out, and I would classify it as a must read today

  7. Jim Neeley Jim Neeley says:

    Wow That was a book I did not think I was going to get through Some parts I just really comprehended easily, some I had to go back and reread I m sure part of the reason is my complete lack of knowledge, beyond pop culture snippets, of that historical era But I do have this to say, that I agree with Poppers criticism of power,authority, totalitarianism, and his view of an open society.What I think this book did for me, was made me look at my critical thinking better and reasoning ability.Use Wow That was a book I did not think I was going to get through Some parts I just really comprehended easily, some I had to go back and reread I m sure part of the reason is my complete lack of knowledge, beyond pop culture snippets, of that historical era But I do have this to say, that I agree with Poppers criticism of power,authority, totalitarianism, and his view of an open society.What I think this book did for me, was made me look at my critical thinking better and reasoning ability.Use it as a guide in making a stronger foundation arguments It was very thorough and reasoned.A must read for those interested in democracy and civic responsibility,take your time and use the foot notes It will be worth it

  8. Nathan Nathan says:

    This is one of those books that have inspired many generations of bad readings of Plato, Hegel, and Heraclitus Popper clearly becomes victim of his own critique The history of philosophy in the west is forced to support his thesis I would even go so far as to call his presentation irresponsible.

  9. Zach Zach says:

    Come for the defense of the open society, stay for the sick Hegel burns.Popper s work is concerned with the defense of the open society liberal democracy as a political system, with policies underpinned by piecemeal social engineering with humanitarian aims against its enemies totalitarians of various stripes.The first volume deals largely with Plato, whom Popper regards as a genius who lost his moral way, abandoning and then reversing the humanitarianism of his mentor, Socrates, and his g Come for the defense of the open society, stay for the sick Hegel burns.Popper s work is concerned with the defense of the open society liberal democracy as a political system, with policies underpinned by piecemeal social engineering with humanitarian aims against its enemies totalitarians of various stripes.The first volume deals largely with Plato, whom Popper regards as a genius who lost his moral way, abandoning and then reversing the humanitarianism of his mentor, Socrates, and his generation of Periclean democrats In its stead, in the Statesman, the Laws, and most of all in the Republic, is a racial dictatorship where anything the racial leaders do to keep the population quiescent is justified Lies, violence, and eugenics are all justified in pursuit of totalitarian justice and truth But since Plato s early dialogues are imbued with the true spirit of Socrates, and since Plato is such a brilliant writer, he has deceived many humanitarian defenders of the open society into agreeing with his closed, totalitarian tribalism I find this attack on Plato to be extremely devastating and I don t think I will ever look at him the same way.The second volume is largely concerned with Hegel and with Marx As opposed to Plato, who Popper regards as an evil genius, Hegel is simply evil there is no genius to be found The sick burns of Hegel are really quite hilarious, though Hegel s influence on philosophy is not quite so funny The argument is that Hegel, as a toady of the absolutist Prussian government that sponsored him, revived Plato s right wing, racial totalitarianism, by bombastically contending that the Spirit of the Nation is the true actor of history and is always just For Spirit, substitute race, and you have the fascists of a century after Hegel since the awful places where this philosophy leads are pretty obvious Popper does not spend muchtime criticizing it.Instead, he turns to Marx His contention is that Marx is much misunderstood he is a humanitarian though he may not admit it , who was unable to shake off his Hegelian education and that led him to try to create immutable laws of history and to not renounce violence, both fatal errors On his humanitarianism, Popper argues that Marx saw the insane exploitation of the workers of the 1850s children working 18 hour days for starvation wages only to die before they were 18 and was fundamentally revolted This led him to socialism, but his Hegelian upbringing led him to try and prophecy socialism out of history, in which he failed The workers succeeded in uniting enough to change many parts of their fate via the ballot box, rather than by a Communist revolution However, Popper argues that because of their faith in that revolution, the worker s parties failed to do as much with their power as they could have in the early nineteenth century that Marxists really didn t have a plan for gradually reforming society because Marx thought that only revolutionary change counted Further, the ambiguity around the use of violence to effect revolutionary change triggered a corresponding readiness to use violence among the owners of capital, giving us the fascists, who, as owners of capital, had access to better guns And even in the place where the Communists had a successful violent revolution Russia Lenin quickly discovered that there wasn t really a plan after the revolution So he clung to power and created a totalitarianism of the left, appropriating Marxist slogans to benefit his own party So Marx s desire to help the workers was admirable, but his program due largely to his Hegelian historical prophecies led to disaster.As an attack on totalitarianisms of the right Plato, Hegel and the left Marx , Popper could hardly bedevastating But he has a positive social program as well In place of utopian social engineering the complete reformation of society based on race or class Popper offers a defense of piecemeal social engineering, what we might call nowadays liberal incrementalism, with a goal of minimizing suffering Revolutions are justified only in removing an un democratic regime and replacing it with democratic institutions doinginvites the rule of the strongman Social policies should be conducted as experiments, to discover what is most effective in alleviating suffering This may be less romantic that Marx s program of total revolution, but it is mucheffective.I would recommend this book to everyone The Open Society needs its defenders now as much as ever Not only must we contend with the re emergence of racial totalitarianisms and the attack from Plato, we are also confronted with a desire to return to the conditions of capitalism that so enraged Marx capital accumulation, wage stagnation, and a rollback of the intervention of the state to help the needy, defended by an authoritarian as against humanitarian version of Christianity We have an open society, and it is up to us to keep it, and to improve it

  10. Erwin Erwin says:

    An excellent book on the inner workings of ultra liberalism Don t take this stuff seriously Read it as a warning.

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