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50 Big Ideas You Really Need to Know
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50 Big Ideas You Really Need to Know (50 Ideas You Really Need to Know )

3.53 of 5 stars 3.53  ·  rating details  ·  170 ratings  ·  14 reviews
In a series of 50 accessible and lucidly written essays, Ben Dupre probes some of the most significant ideas in politics, philosophy, religion, economics, science and the arts. Some of these are unimpeachable (liberty, reason); others mind numbing (The Big Bang chaos); a few mysterious (fate, surrealism) or downright despicable (fascism, racism). What they have in common i
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Hardcover, 208 pages
Published August 1st 2009 by Quercus Books (first published January 1st 2009)
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Casandra
Disappointingly biased

It is rare that I can find almost nothing to recommend a particular book, but this one is one of those few. The ideas presented may be essential knowledge, but the way they are presented is quite skewed. In the introduction, the author praises communism as a particularly successful societal plan. Perhaps I am naive, but I don't consider it a success by any definition of the word. Skipping to a few other topics reveals a perspective best characterized as supportive of the no
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Steve
Having previously tackled 50 Philosophy Ideas, author Ben Dupré now broadens his scope to focus on fifty of the most significant ideas in general that have left their mark on human civilisation over the past two and a half millenia. From liberty to liberalism, Gaia to Utopia, each idea is outlined in a manner that is, for the most part, highly readable and entertaining.

If you're already familiar with this series of books, you'll know what to expect: 4 pages allotted to each idea (just enough to
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Amar Khan
It only gives a brief intro or summary to each of the inclusive topics, due to which it often only regurgitates the foundations of knowledge that most already possess. It often quotes whole chunks of text in various forms, consequentially there is very little original work in this book - if any. Some of the 50 ideas within the book's content have no place inside it, if the book was to be about the top 50 ideas in the field of philosophy and ethics. This leads to a second error in its title/ disp ...more
Tasneem Malik
Nice summary of 50 truly great ideas that shape our modern thinking. The ideas range from science to art to politics
J.
It did teach me a thing or two, but inside the 4 paged chapters for such big theories, I found that it lacked the most basic thing of all: the definition. Although each theory and idea have too many elements to fit into three to four pages, I think that as a book that says 'You Really Need to Know', it didn't focus on actually informing the reader of an official definition. Several facts were interesting, but as a whole, I did not learn as much as I would have liked to.
Alan Hughes

50 Big Ideas You Really Need to Know' is a concise, accessible and popular guide to the central tenets of Western thought. Every important principle of philosophy, religion, politics, economics, the arts and the sciences is profiled in a series of short illustrated essays, complemented by an informative array of timelines and box features.

Bryan Kornele
The subjects average about 3 pages and I believe everyone can learn something from this book. The only gripe that I have is that the author tries to get technical in some of the chapters and it just ends up making those chapters confusing to read. Looking forward to the math one.
Michael
Politics, philosophy, science, the arts, and so much more defined and described both historically and as currently ascribed, all in a logical and thoughtful manner, absent of bias. Very interesting, thought provoking, and educational. Recommended.
Asad Ali
Nice summary of 50 truly great ideas that shape our modern thinking. The ideas range from science to art to politics
Caleb
Great resource for basic philosophy. Language and clarity is questionable, though with a little reflection, the book pops right open. It takes a while to get into, but the scope and succinctness of this book is fascinating.
Danielle
I feel like they leave out important information about some of the theories and principles, but alot of amazing things and indeed all stuff you really need to know!
Divya Sornaraja
Very interesting collection of facts with perspectives.

Likes: The broader perspective of the concept of "idea".

Dislikes: Could have had added a little more detail.
Jason
good coverage of a lot of ground some nice ideas but sometimes heavy going.
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