Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness” as Want to Read:
The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness

4.20  ·  Rating Details  ·  1,874 Ratings  ·  38 Reviews
In this provocative book, the distinguished author writes to break the deadlock in the struggle between the instinctivism of Konrad Lorenz and behavior psychologist B.F. Skinner.
Paperback, 576 pages
Published February 15th 1992 by Holt Paperbacks (first published 1973)
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about The Anatomy of Human Destructiveness

Crime and Punishment by Fyodor DostoyevskyTable 21 by T. Rafael CiminoThe Black Cat by Edgar Allan PoeWho's Afraid of Virginia Woolf? by Edward AlbeeThe Imp of The Perverse by Edgar Allan Poe
Beyond the Imp of Crime and Punishment
6th out of 10 books — 20 voters
Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets by J.K. RowlingThe Hobbit by J.R.R. TolkienThe Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. TolkienThe Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe by C.S. LewisPride and Prejudice by Jane Austen
Books You Happily Re-Read
72nd out of 244 books — 31 voters


More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
John G.
Sep 05, 2013 John G. rated it it was amazing
I would recommend anyone to read any of Fromm's work. This man to me, his contributions to psychology and to the understanding of the world and the human condition eclipse those of Freud and Jung. Just saying. This book gets to the questions of why things are so screwed up, why are people so violent and aggressive? I like his answers, it's a maladjusted attempt to deal with life, one way is the nihilistic (destroy that which I don't understand) or the sadistic (control that which I don't underst ...more
Maica
Jan 18, 2016 Maica rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: psychology, e-fromm
Will do a simultaneous review alongside Revolution of Hope, iA.
Hoda Marmar
I got this book for 3.5 $ one day as I was walking on the street, and a guy was selling those on the sidewalk. The book called out after me, the title was very attractive, but I never thought it would be such an amazing read! That was back in 2010, I believe. I used this book as a reference for many papers that I wrote, it made me love psychology even more. I shall reread it again this year.
Erin
Jan 12, 2008 Erin rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: the government.
If everyone in the world read this book, it would pretty much solve everything.
Karen
Jun 14, 2009 Karen rated it it was amazing
My FIRST reading of this book was when it was first published in 1973. And now I read it again. I had read other books by Erich Fromm and was reading different approaches to Psychology. It is said that Fromm was a pioneer in theoretical works with "deep insight" into the the human psyche. As you can see by the title, he explores the dark side of the huiman psyche with quotes, references, comparisons, and rebuttals of the works of others. In the last part of this text, he discusses, "Malignant Ag ...more
Ali
Dec 25, 2012 Ali rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: recommended
نزوع الانسان نحو التدمير هو طبع تُخلق له كل الظروف لكي يتطبعه بني البشر في عصر "الانسان الحديث"
وليس بغريزة تحكمنا لا مفر منها خُلقت معنا لتلازم الانسان نحو "مصير محتوم وهو الفناء"




Željko
Jun 08, 2012 Željko rated it it was amazing
Unfortunately, more relevant today than when I first read (early seventies). It seems everything is going a bit backwards.
Dan
Aug 05, 2014 Dan rated it really liked it
"The position taken in this book is one of rational faith in man's capacity to extricate himself from what seems the fatal web of circumstances that he has created. It is the position of those who are neither "optimists" nor "pessimists," but radicals who have rational faith in man's ability to avoid the ultimate catastrophe. This humanist radicalism goes to the roots, and thus to the causes; it seeks to liberate man from the chains of illusions; it postulates that fundamental changes are necess ...more
The Hermit's
Jan 03, 2013 The Hermit's rated it it was amazing
"Is aggression instinctive or behavioral?

"Fromm moves toward a provocative conclusion which involves a critical revision of Freud's theory of a 'death instinct' in man... Fromm's studies of Stalin and Himmler, and especially his penetrating psychobiography of Hitler, fascinatingly support his thesis" - Publisher's Weekly

Only after reading this was I aware of Freud's work on a 'death instinct'. This was a hilarious insightful read of a bizarre but plausible theory. I need not explain more, the
...more
Dylan
Nov 06, 2008 Dylan rated it really liked it
Fromm immediately endeared himself to me with this epigraph: "When I look at history I am a pessimist... but when I look at prehistory I am an optimist." (Incidentally, this was taken out of context. The writer, JC Smuts, actually only likes prehistory because he believes it shows how far we've come. Quite contrary to the point Fromm is making.)

The first and shortest part of the book is dedicated to a discussion of psychological theory (Instinctivism vs. Behaviorism), and, not being a psychologi
...more
Prokop Holy
Jan 09, 2010 Prokop Holy rated it it was amazing
Shelves:
We need to create the conditions that would make the growth of man, this unfinished and uncompleted being - unique in nature - the supreme goal of all social arrangements. Genuine freedom and independence and the end of all forms of exploitative control are the conditions for mobilizing the love of life, which is the only force that can defeat the love for the dead.
It is much easier to get excited by anger, rage, cruelty, or the passion to destroy than by love and productive and active interest,
...more
Rowena
Oct 07, 2008 Rowena rated it it was amazing
This a book showing that human is more violent than animal. The more "civilized", the more violent he becomes. When reading this book, I remember a National Geographic episode showing the most dangerous cat variety. Can you imagine that tiger and lion are second to house-cat? House cat kills anything, while tiger and lion merely kill their food. Just like human, don't you think?
Taylor
A fascinating tome I've read and re-read and highlighted and read some more. Sparked my interest in non-fiction reading in general, and Nazi history in particular. Indirectly sparked a long love affair with history, so I have much to thank it for. I must re-read it yet another time.
Yaser maadat
Mar 30, 2015 Yaser maadat rated it really liked it
يحلل فروم في هذا الكتاب النزعة التدميرية البشرية من جانب فريد يركز على العوامل الاجتماعية في تكوين الشخصية التدميرية المتطرفة،و من امثلتها النكروفيليا و السادية و المازوخية و غيرها من اقنعة التدميرية البشرية،كما يقدم فروم نقد شاملا للغريزيين من ناحية و للسلوكيين من ناحية اخرى في تحليلهم للتدميرية بناء على اتجاهاتهم النفسية دون الاكتراث بعلم الطباع الذي ينطلق منه فروم،و يفرد فروم جزءا هاما لنقد فكرة فرويد عن التدميرية و يحللها تحليلا شاملا منطقيا،يقدم فروم عدة امثلة على الشخصية التدميرية لعل ابرز ...more
Griim Reeaper
Como criminólogo, las hipótesis de Fromm dejan mucho que desear (aunque entiendo que su postura es puramente psicoanalítica). Intentar explicar la destructividad como una manera de sobrellevar la angustia existencial es totalmente ridículo; su teoría sobre el carácter necrófilo carece de bases cientificas que lo sustenten; y por ultimo, el análisis del carácter de Hitler se basa 70% en especulaciones de Speer durante su comunicación personal. Si algo he de rescatar de este libro es que me parece ...more
Mikko
Erich Frommin Tuhoava ihminen ei ole täydellinen kirja, mutta suositeltavaa luettavaa jokaiselle, joka haluaa ymmärtää miksi sivistynyt kulttuuri tuntuu olevan joskus niin täynnä ahdistusta. Se on psykologinen tutkielma, jonka suurin ansio on menneisyyden psykologisten teorioiden kumoaminen ja uusien suuntaviivojen luominen.

Kirjailija toteaa teoksessaan, etteivät ihmisen tekoja määrää yksinomaan perinnölliset seikat tai yksinomaan ympäristö, vaan ihminen on yhdistelmä kumpaakin sekä omaa, määrit
...more
Sergey Artamonov
Jun 15, 2014 Sergey Artamonov rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science, philosophy
Объёмная и довольно сложная книга со множеством ссылок и цитат. Фромм, успешно полемизируя с инстинктивистами (в частности, с Лоренцом), утверждает, что человеческая агрессия - иного происхождения, чем у других видов животных, и весьма убедительно, на мой взгляд, доказывает тезис о том, что человеческая жестокость обусловлена несовершенством существующих социальных систем. Множество исторических, антропологических и других данных иллюстрирует развитие деструктивных черт у нашего вида. Очень инте ...more
Erik Graff
Apr 29, 2009 Erik Graff rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone
Recommended to Erik by: WFMT
Shelves: psychology
During the summer between college and my first graduate school I worked as a security guard for Chicago's Womens' Athletic Club on Ontario and Michigan Avenues in the Gold Coast area. The job had been obtained for me, and others of our friends, by Mike and Tom Miley whose mother, Helen, was working as the business manager there. After graduating from seminary she was kind enough to employ me again until I found more regular work.

The position at the club was a peach. My duties consisted of guardi
...more
Neville Tirimba Ogoti
Erich Fromm wrote a brilliant book with great insights into human behaviour. I wouldn't say that all he says in the book is true though. Some of the conclusions are over-generalised, but it's still a fascinating read.
Natasa
Jun 10, 2014 Natasa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: psy, favorites
Fascinating book, dated yet by no means outdated. Worth reading and re-reading. As Hemingway put it “Each time you re-read you see or learn something new.”
Flavia Sparacino
Mar 05, 2014 Flavia Sparacino rated it really liked it
Fromm's work is current even today. I keep re-reading his books from time to time.
Ileana Pinal
Feb 28, 2014 Ileana Pinal rated it it was amazing
Excelente analisis sobre la violencia humana
Dilara
Dec 28, 2015 Dilara rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
üj bucukdan.
Bryn Hammond
Dec 07, 2012 Bryn Hammond rated it really liked it
Hard to rate, as I read it up to 30 years ago. I'll rate as I judged then. It was big and fascinating for me then and I felt a trust for the author and what he told me. These days, I have to wonder. I don't believe potty-training plays a critical part in the formation of the adult human mind. Still, I suspect the author is a wise soul even if he talks within a frame of the theories of the day. From memory I felt him kind and wise. I'd have given five stars at eighteen.

Heavy on the Nazis.
Garrett Dunnington
Freudian; overtly biological. Too many accounts in reference to Freud and other Austrian School psychiatrists. Drags on and on. Nice introduction, but too many comparisons and way too much research data. (non-conclusive).
Islam Medhat
Sep 13, 2014 Islam Medhat rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
كتاب اكثر من رائع لكنى استفدت اكتر من الجزء الثانى فالجزء الاول يغلب عليه الطابع الاكاديمي العلمى البحت اما الجزء الثانى فهو اكثر سهوله نظرا لوجود امثله تطبيقيه كهتلر مثلا نموذج للساديه والنيكروفيليا
Sankar Raj
Dec 14, 2010 Sankar Raj rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Anatomy of Human Destructiveness is as I see it,is a difficult book to read. In it Fromm discusses various approaches to psychology to understand the roots of violence in human society
Vikas Datta
Nov 22, 2014 Vikas Datta rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Needs to be read by anyone who has wryly shook his head at the species' capacity for destructive behaviour...
Jfish938
Dec 30, 2007 Jfish938 rated it liked it
Interesting ideas on aggression, although dated and based heavily on more traditional psychoanalytic theory.
Sonia
Aug 20, 2013 Sonia marked it as to-read
Marked as to read. Have ordered from Amazon and now waiting for its arrival. I am full of anticipation.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 99 100 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • The Politics of Experience/The Bird of Paradise
  • The Farther Reaches of Human Nature (Esalen Book)
  • The Neurotic Personality of Our Time
  • The Origins and History of Consciousness
  • Psychology and Alchemy (Collected Works 12)
  • The Discovery of Being
  • Understanding Human Nature
  • Playing and Reality
  • Myth of the Machine: Technics and Human Development
  • A Way of Being
  • The Myth of the Birth of the Hero: A Psychological Exploration of Myth
  • Beyond the Brain: Birth, Death, and Transcendence in Psychotherapy
  • Escape from Evil
  • Existential Psychotherapy
  • The Mass Psychology of Fascism
  • Zero Degrees of Empathy: A New Theory of Human Cruelty
8788
Erich Fromm was a German-born U.S. psychoanalyst and social philosopher who explored the interaction between psychology and society. His works include The Art of Loving; Love, Sexuality, and Matriarchy; and Man for Himself. He died in 1980.

Fromm's theory is a rather unique blend of Freud and Marx. Freud, of course, emphasized the unconscious, biological drives, repression, and so on. In other word
...more
More about Erich Fromm...

Share This Book



“Critical and radical thought will only bear fruit when it is blended with the most precious quality man is endowed with - the love of life” 32 likes
“The "pathology of normalcy" rarely deteriorates to graver forms of mental illness because society produces the antidote against such deterioration. When pathological processes become socially patterned, they lose their individual character. On the contrary, the sick individual finds himself at home with all other similarly sick individuals. The whole culture is geared to this kind of pathology and arranged the means to give satisfactions which fit the pathology. The result is that the average individual does not experience the separateness and isolation the fully schizophrenic person feels. He feels at ease among those who suffer from the same deformation, in fact, it is the fully sane person who feels isolated in the insane society - and he may suffer so much from the incapacity to communicate that it is he who may become psychotic.” 1 likes
More quotes…