The 48 Laws of Power
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The 48 Laws of Power

4.12 of 5 stars 4.12  ·  rating details  ·  13,769 ratings  ·  957 reviews
Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this piercing work distills three thousand years of the history of power in to forty-eight well explicated laws. As attention-grabbing in its design as it is in its content, this bold volume outlines the laws of power in their unvarnished essence, synthesizing the philosophies of Machiavelli, Sun-tzu, Carl von Clausewitz, and oth...more
Paperback, 452 pages
Published 2000 by Penguin Books (first published 1998)
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Seif Salama
I have read the many reviews that criticize the 48 Laws as "Not Practical", "Dangerous" and "Shameless". What planet are you people from. I went to school to get a college degree, I have followed my fathers advise and worked an honest days labor. I came in early and stayed late to get the job done. I have received great reviews and many promises of money and promotion. All for little. I noticed my peers, who were not as dedicated as I by their own admission, careers were moving along at the same...more
This books falls on its face on so many levels. What was the author shooting for here? Am I the only one who doesn't "get" this book? As a "serious" management-like book this book fails miserably. It's mean-spirited nonsense manifesto along the lines of:

1. Be as deceitful as you can. Then step it up a notch or two. Repeat until you are God of the Universe.
2. There's no shame in clawing your bloody way to the top of the pile by stepping on people's heads and necks. In fact, it's encouraged and he...more
This book does not have to be construed as a means to cruel and heartless power any more than Sun Tzu's The Art of War should be viewed as such. Are some power tactics manipulative? Yes. Does getting to the top sometimes involve taking an opportunity away from someone else? Yes. Is power necessarily a bad thing? No. Often, yes. Though this is not necessarily the case. Greene outlines a number of the aspects of power, giving concrete and interesting examples from history.

For those that say they...more
i learned to be eviiiilll with this book....haha actually this book made me realize how shady people can be. Plus how smart you and ambitious you should be about succeeding in life. You got to stand out in this world. If you roll with the bunches you'll become lost. You always have to have a good reputation or if you have a certain reputation you better use it to your advantage (damn im evil hahaha). This book will expose and teach you alot about the real world. One of my first books i really re...more
S Kasm
There are some engaging principles here that make you consider the principle of power from different vantage points -- This book is for those who already have a strong moral center as you find that the author meanders and introduces you to novel approaches to accquiring power --- often times at the expense of values. In many ways, this book is Machiavellian in scope and re-modifies many of the same principles in The Prince for our more modern age. If you're looking for a short-cut to get to the...more
Ahmad Khater
الحياة تغيرت كتير بعد لما قرأت كتاب ديل كارنيجي" كيف تكسب الاصدقاء و تؤثر فى الناس" ..اه ..
و بداء أعمال الناس المحترمة كمحترم و الناس الغير محترمة ـ كمحترم طبعا !
و لما الواحد دخل الحياة العملية و شاف الدنيا اكتر و اكتر و اتفتحت عينة على حاجات تانية ( زى الحقد و الغيرة و الحسد و حب الشر للغير ..) و غيرها من الصفات القبيحة .. أكتشفت للاسف انك مش لازم تكون شخص سيء ، بس لازم تعرف الناس دى بتفكر أزاى و ازاى تتعامل معاهم...و متنساش انك و انت بتحارب الوحش أنك تتحول لوحش .


من القواعد الجميلة هناك و ا...more
Shang Shang
When it comes to morality and ethics, people are used to thinking in terms of black and white. Conversely, "The 48 Laws of Power" deals primarily with the gray areas. At the risk of sounding melodramatic and trite, I say that most of the Laws covered in this book can be used for great evil or for great good. It depends on the reader. There is really nothing wrong with most of the Laws.

Each Law comes with true stories from history about those who successfully observed it and those who foolishly o...more
Jul 18, 2007 Justin rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition Recommends it for: Aspiring Ruthless Power Mongers/Everyone Else
This is Machiavelli updated for the everyman (and woman). Robert Greene is educated as all get out and he puts it out there for everyone to see. Really, the only way you can make arguments for the positions he takes is by citing historical example, (i.e. the laws of power are immutable and unchanging and here's all my examples throughout history to explicate that). Machiavelli really only relied on his own times (Renaissance Italy which of course was populated with characters like Cesare Borge w...more
This is really an unique book that serves both as a manual as well as a reading of the history of power and how it was used through the ages. I imagine most read this book to get insight into business transactions or self-help - but what is fascinating are the examples that are used to show certain aspects of obtaining or getting power. That and Robert's other two books "The Art of Seduction" and the War one are important studies on the nature of those subject matters.

Really unique and interesti...more
Joshua Steimle
I think this is a horrible book. Written well enough, sure, whatever, but just so very, very wrong, unless you have no morals. At least with Machiavelli you could make the excuse that he wasn't so much advocating what he said, but merely describing reality. This guy is advocating evil. As I read it I couldn't help wondering how many politicians actually think this way.

If I ever met someone who actually liked this book and wanted to live their life according to it, I would never hire that person,...more
Did you ever notice how sometimes the right book comes along at the right time? I bought this book way back in '01, almost as a joke--it was so politically incorrect, but mostly for the stellar historical references-- remember, he who forgets the past is destined to repeat it. Little did I realize this tome was to become one of the most dog-eared and spine-cracked books in my collection. Initially, I was trying to make sense of the havoc that schemers and liars were wreaking upon me. I used to b...more
There are about 1 million books that purport to explain how to essentially "win" at social situations by making friends, getting your specific goal accomplished, coming off as the alpha dog, etc., but this book kicks all their asses.

Each "law of power" is illustrated with a historical event that included a fight for power and a clear-cut winner or loser. These are all high-profile cases with which you'll be familiar -- how Cleopatra seduced Marc Antony, how Napoleon ruled France and beyond with...more
No Remorse
“Men are more ready to repay an injury than a benefit, because gratitude is a burden and revenge a pleasure.”
— Tacitus, C. (A.D. 55-120)

"...a woman who is interested in a man wants to see that other women are interested in him, too. Not only does that give him instant value, it makes it all the more satisfying to snatch him from their clutches." -Robert Greene

"Everything in seduction however, depends on suggestion. You cannot announce your intentions or reveal them directly in words."

"By saying...more
"Мудрость начинается с принятия фактов", не помню автора этих слов. Книга "48 законов власти" подчеркивает тот факт, что власть, будучи самоцелью, либо средством выживания, делает средства ее достижения неискоренимыми. Мораль и законы власти находятся скорее в разных плоскостях. Люди, стремящиеся к власти, среди нас и вокруг нас. Начиная от желания влиять на мнения окружающих, и заканчивая стремлением управлять мировыми структурами, все эти люди могут представлять опасность для вас лично. Знание...more
carrie beth
Jun 18, 2008 carrie beth rated it 1 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to carrie beth by: Barter
I couldn't stomach this book so to be fair I only finished about a quarter of it so I can't speak for the whole thing. A friend recommended it to me. It seemed to justify selfishness on these somewhat flawed ethics-based arguments. I think it's a recommended reading for business majors. Some folks love it. A good book to check out on power that takes a somewhat different approach is Thich Naht Hanh's "The Art of Power".
Michael Austin
Robert Greene has done an excellent job of distilling how power works at the macro level, among great generals, statesmen, larger-than-life seducers, and even top CEOs at Fortune 500 companies. But most of us do not experience power in the way that is presumed by these examples. Most of us experience a much more fluid, shifting, and consensus-based form of power among people whom we must work with over and over again over many years and cannot afford to treat as disposable. This book is of limi...more
Quincy Miller
This book belongs in the category of sad-but-true. For those who have a moral objection to the amoral approach of the authors presentation, I understand your feelings, but I think you miss the point. No matter how we feel about the dubious power plays that have occurred throughout history and that occur in our contemporary private and public lives, the fact is that they exist. Here are 48 approaches to power that you will either attempt to use or you will experience them being used against you a...more
For all the readers and reviewers who don't "get" or like this book, here's what you are not getting: It is fact. This book is not teaching anyone to be amoral. It is teaching you how people really are in the real world. It separates the behaviors and tactics of people in history who have succeeded and failed into the 48 "Laws". It is an explanation of power in the only way it can be expressed.
If you don't want to be a deceitful heartless prick who does whatever he can to whomever all for perso...more
The reason for giving this book 4 stars is for the beautiful way it is written. It is very thorough (even though very long) and I was amazed by all the real life stories Greene gives to emphasize his concepts. I don't agree with many theories he states, and I didn't understand some of them (given my very passive character, but I learned a lot of history nonetheless. Apparently Greene gave this book a lot of effort and a lot of research was put into making this book what it is. I recommend it jus...more
Ibrahim Altamimi

يا ليتني قرأته قبل يومي هذا
Sara Lynn Paige
This book does not get two stars because I am offended by its contents, or naive enough to think that this isn't how some people function. This book gets two stars simply because it's boring, though it does have it's funny moments.

I picked up 48 Laws of Power with no knowledge about it at all. It was an eBook lent to me by a friend, and when I started reading it- I thought it was a joke. I found myself laughing out loud at this "exaggerated" take on the recognizable actions of people I had prev...more
When I first started reading this book, I got scared at the possibility of truth represented by the writer.. Then I really started enjoying it- because really- humans are really funny creatures- not to admit that would be an inability on our part to accept a divine joke.

So I laughed at myself, at shifting societal standards of morality, at politicians- (and the principles here really remind me of them).
And I especially enjoyed the last piece of advice:
I hated every word of this manual for the soulless. It's a perfect example of exactly what's wrong with Big Pharma, big business, Wall Street, and in short capitalism as it's currently practiced. This book, which is kinda-sorta a synthesis of many previous Me First directives (Machiavelli leaps to mind), is a handbook on how to fuck over everyone you come in contact with, in order for you to get "ahead" and "succeed". It'd be awesome for sociopaths and wanna-be-CEOs. It plunged me into despair....more
Golden Flower
لم يعجبني الكتاب اطلاقا ولم اكمل قراءته فقد ظننت في البدايه انه كتاب من كتب التنمية الذاتيه ولكن وجدته كتاب يحتوي على قوانين واساليب ملتويه وقذرة ومجملها يناسب بعض السياسين ومعظمها يعتمد على الخديعه والمكر والشر
Ahmed Hassan
قرأت قبل كدا كتاب الأمير (أو جزء كبير منه) لكن من اللحظة اللي قرأت فيها مقدمة الكتاب دا عرفت إنه مختلف تماماً..
أعتقد لو ميكافيللي قرأ الكتاب دا ممكن يقدسه! 48 قانون للقوة بأستخدام أساليب ما بين كذب وغش وخداع ودهاء يتطلب تفكير وتدبير..
أعتقدت إن الشر سهل، الكتاب أقنعني إنه فن!
الحقيقة كتاب مهم، ويخليك تفكر في الأمور بمنظور مختلف تماماً..

كمثال أعتقد إن الكتاب بشكل أو بآخر برغم إنه بيدعو للتعامل مع البشر بشكل لا أخلاقي تحكمه فقط المنفعه -برغم رأي الكاتب اللي ذكره في المقدمة- إلا إنه في نفس الوقت بيدع...more
Dave Garnand
I completely misunderstood what I was about to read when I got this book. I foolishly thought it was going to be a strongly researched and thoughtful historical investigation into the nature of power with 48 astute observations similar to Good to Great or other thoughtful research.

This books is probably written for and is appealing to the shallow and overconfident who seek to take more from the world than they give by using the perpetually infantile "well, they're doing it!."

If you are committe...more
Mohammad  El-Bishry
هذا الكتاب المترجم بتقدير ممتاز يفتح عينيك ليجعلك إن كنت رافضاً لمبدأه ذكياً على الاقل وليكن أداه لتحليل طبيعة بعض الناس من حولك ولفهم السياسيين
Merihan Al Fiqi
و كل ما كان يبدوا ساحرا اسرا من قبل ظهر على حقيقته كنوع من التأمر القبيح
La pointe de la sauce
Before reading this book one should bear in mind the value of honesty and mutual respect, which should never be sacrificed. With that said this book is almost totally amoral, evil, corrupt and I guess, very effective. It's the sort of aggressive book people in banking/finance read on a Sunday whilst robbing grandma's pension. It asks the reader to play dirty, court attention, take credit for others work, you name it.

There are about a handful of strategies a self respecting person can employ out...more
Dinesh singh rawat
There can be more than 48 laws in practical life, but must have for some one who is ambitious and always want to be in power.
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There is more than one author by this name on Goodreads.

Best-selling author and public speaker, Robert Greene was born in Los Angeles. He attended U.C. California at Berkeley and the University of Wisconsin at Madison, where he received a degree in classical studies. He has worked in New York as an editor and writer at several magazines, including Esquire; and in Hollywood as a story developer and...more
More about Robert Greene...
The Art of Seduction The 33 Strategies of War Mastery The Concise 48 Laws of Power The 50th Law

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“When you show yourself to the world and display your talents, you naturally stir all kinds of resentment, envy, and other manifestations of insecurity... you cannot spend your life worrying about the petty feelings of others” 447 likes
“LAW 4
Always Say Less Than Necessary

When you are trying to impress people with words, the more you say, the more common you appear, and the less in control. Even if you are saying something banal, it will seem original if you make it vague, open-ended, and sphinxlike. Powerful people impress and intimidate by saying less. The more you say, the more likely you are to say something foolish.”
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