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The Open Society and Its Enemies

(The Open Society and its Enemies #1+2)

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  917 ratings  ·  70 reviews
Written in political exile in New Zealand during the Second World War and published in two volumes in 1945, The Open Society and its Enemies was hailed by Bertrand Russell as a 'vigorous and profound defence of democracy'. This legendary attack on the philosophies of Plato, Hegel and Marx prophesied the collapse of communism in Eastern Europe and exposed the fatal flaws of ...more
Hardcover, 920 pages
Published May 24th 2002 by Routledge (first published 1956)
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This is a deeply contradictory book, which is at times wise, measured, and methodological, and yet at other times deeply flawed and irritating.

This was a book incubated during the Second World War, an epistemological look at the origins of totalitarianism. He claims that the enemies of the 'open society', or an egalitarian liberal democracy, have in common a historical philosophy he defines as 'historicism', an attempt to codify historical laws or phenomenon, but not an a basis consistent with
Hmd Book
Jan 16, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
کتابی ارزشمند از یک فیلسوف تحلیلی با ترجمهای عالی به فارسی. کارل پوپر در این کتاب که در اثنای جنگ جهانی دوم نوشته شد به ریشهیابی دو فاجعه سیاسی در قرن بیستم پرداخته است: ۱. ظهور فاشیسم هیتلری ۲. ظهور مارکسیسم استالینی.
نویسنده ریشه این دو فاجعه را در افکار نژادپرستانه افلاطون میبیند و مفصلا در مورد فلسفه افلاطون از نظریه فرمها -ایدهها- تا نظریه شاه-فیلسوف بحث میکند. نویسنده با ذکر زندگی شخصی افلاطون و به ویژه دایی او-کریتیاس- و حکومتهای مستقر در آتن پیش و در زمان زندگی افلاطون به ریشهیابی افکار ب
Jan 16, 2018 rated it did not like it
Academic bullshit! Completely detached from historical facts. Facts as much more important than opinions.
Arash kh
به حتم خواندن کتاب بسیار مفید و باارزش خواهد بود اما نویسنده با گرایش و دیدگاه خاصی به افلاطون هگل مارکس پرداخته است. به نظر نمی رسد اصل خود فلسفه افلاطون و به ویژه نظریه مثل و فیلسوف شاه او بخواهد به دیکتاتوری و فاشیست بینجامد. لازم است نگاهی دقیق و موشکافانه به کتاب جمهور ( ودر اصل مصلح عامه) او بیندازید. ضمن این که او در کتاب های بعدی به خصوص سیاستمدار نظریه های خود را تعدیل کرده است. تعریفی که هگل نیز از روح و دولت ارایه می دهد با آن مقدمات و فرضیات مقرر نیست که به فاشیست منتهی شود یا این که ...more
Jim Neeley
Jan 11, 2012 rated it really liked it

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
Ahmad Sharabiani
The Open Society and Its Enemies (The Open Society and its Enemies #1+2), Karl Popper
عنوان: جامعه باز و دشمنان آن؛ نویسنده: کارل ریمون پوپر؛ مترجم: عزت الله فولادوند؛ تهران، شرکت سهامی انتشارات خوارزمی؛ 1364؛ در 1396 ص؛
Peter Mcloughlin
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 ...more
Meysam Rezakhan
پوپر در کتاب جامعه باز به این نکته اشاره کرده که در هیچ جامعهای «تفکر» بالیدن نمیگیره مگه اینکه شرایط گفتوگوی امن و برابر برای همه از چپِ چپ تا راستِ راست فراهم باشه و هیچکس از بیان چیزی که تصور میکنه هراس نداشته باشه .. پوپر از مخالفان سرسخت افلاطون و هگل و مارکس و هایدگر بوده چون اعتقاد داشته که اینها نماینده دولتها و حکومت های خودکامه ( توتالیتر) و جوامع بسته بودن ... در نظر کارل پوپر در سیاست شخص اول «مردم» است و قدرت مردم در جهان مدرن نباید نادیده گرفته شود اما افلاطون یک اندیشمند خودکامه و ...more
Apr 29, 2013 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Juan by: Juan Manuel Bello Rivas
Ponerle una puntuación menor a este libro solo por mis propias ideas políticas sería engañarme a mí mismo y a todos los interesados en leerlo. Antes de escribir esto he estado leyendo críticas y comentarios al mismo en varios portales diferentes y me doy cuenta de que, probablemente, ninguno de los que lo ponen como manual fundamental o lo denostan como ataque a sus ideas lo han entendido bien. Eso si lo han leído, claro, aunque entendería que no lo hicieran porque a ratos es una travesía en el ...more
Jul 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
This set of two books is a philosophical treat. Although I haven't read a lot of philosophy, this book, I believe, is good guidance for me. In it, the author critiques three philosophers, Plato, Hegel and Marx. He shows how each one failed to live up to democratic values.

Socrates, for instance, held an open inquiry method that was well-crafted for the democratic society that had risen up in ancient Greece in the time in which he lived. But Plato who was responsible for writing down Socrates' arg
May 25, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
«در هیچ جامعهای تفکر بالیدن نمیگیرد مگر آنکه شرایط گفتگوی امن و برابر برای همه از چپِ چپ تا راستِ راست فراهم باشد.
جامعه باز که دستاورد یونانیان است، غیر دینی است. در جامعه باز طبیعت و قرارداد از یکدیگر جدا و زمینه برای رویکرد انتقادی فراهم است.
در جامعه باز فردیت انسانها در درجه نخستِ اهمیت قرار دارد و در جامعه بسته فردیت به بهانه وحدت ملی یا وحدت قوم و قبیله سرکوب میشود.
اگر راست است که دانش بدون نقد و آزمایش ممکن نیست، خرد حکم میکند که امور جامعه هم به روی نقد باز باشد.»
Mar 05, 2017 rated it did not like it
An excellent book on the "inner workings" of ultra-liberalism. Don't take this stuff seriously. Read it as a warning.
Nov 19, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: history, philosophy
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
Mairi Byatt
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Stunning, no longer feel alone!
Jan 22, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Een monument van een boek als dit verlangt naar enkele verzuchtingen:

Wat ik bewonder aan de mens Popper is zijn zachtaardige maar daarom niet minder diepgaande kritiek op methodisch gebrekkige volksverheffers enerzijds (vijand Marx) en zijn snoeiharde afrekening met pretentieuze volksonderdrukkers verdwaald in eigen gespuide metafysische mistbanken anderzijds. (vijanden Plato & Hegel)

Ik begon aan dit boek om meer duidelijkheid te verkrijgen over de limieten van de kennistheorie maar die is e
Jul 29, 2013 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy
Popper mounts many-faceted defence of liberal democracy and its underpinnings against what he sees as attacks on it by Plato/Aristotle (essentialist, authoritarian) and Marx/Engels (historicist). These great tidy, totalising theories of society stand against the messy muddling through of democracy.

I was largely in agreement with Popper through much of the text. I'm sure I would re-read more critically now (I am an anarchist), but remain grateful to it for furnishing me with criticisms of essenti
Ehsan falah
Dec 05, 2007 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Sir Karl Raimund Popper is counted among the most influential philosophers of science of the 20th century, and also wrote extensively on social and political philosophy. In The "Open Society and Its Enemies", Popper developed a critique of historicism and a defence of the 'Open Society' and liberal democracy. He was the famous and powerfull enemy for authoritarianism and totalitarianism.
سر كارل ريموند پوپر در شمار فلاسفه مهم و پرقدرت فلسفه علم و فلسفه سياسي قرن بيستم است. عمده بحث وي در كتاب "
Arno Mosikyan
May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: philosophy

It springs rather from my conviction that, if our civilization is to survive, we must break with the habit of deference to great men.

Great men may make great mistakes; and as the book tries to show, some of the greatest leaders of the past supported the pere... Their influence, too rarely challenged, continues to mislead those on whose defence civilization ...

Marxism is only an episode—one of the many mistakes we have made in the perennial and dangerous struggle for building a better and f
Jozef Borja-Erece
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
“Instead of posing as prophets, we must become the makers of our fate. We must learn to do things as well as we can, and to look out for our mistakes. And when we have dropped the idea that the history of power will be our judge, when we have given up worrying whether or not history will justify us, then one day perhaps we may succeed in getting our power under control.

In this way we may even justify history, in our turn. It badly needs a justification.”

The Democratic Spirit

If one tasked with re
Kozo Abe
Some time ago a wise old man came to see me in Prague and I listened to him with admiration. Shortly afterwards I heard that this man had died. His name was Karl Popper.

One of the targets of Popper’s profound criticism –which he supported by ample evidence –was a phenomenon he called holistic social engineering. He used this term to describe human attempts to change the world for the better completely and globally, on the basis of some preconceived ideology that purported to understand all the l
Thore Husfeldt
Jun 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Absolutely fantastic. A monumental, meticulously argued, and sometimes vigorous defence of liberal democracy based on an original, nontrivial, insightful, surprising, and very convincing description of the tribal and authoritarian aspects that make up the perennial attack on the open society sometimes known as totalitarianism. Written with admirable clarity, this book feels to me as valuable today as ever.

I should have read this decades ago.
Nolan Gray
Jul 29, 2014 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Political philosophy required reading.
Jun 09, 2016 rated it liked it

Given the reputation of the book and indeed the theme, I was disappointed.

I was expecting an attack on idealism, on its possible dangers with magnates of irresponsibility.
What I got was an idealized defence of the autonomous "individual" rather than a case that would give understanding, belief and realization of an "open society".

The other disappointing feature was a lack to understanding of the two Big Hitters which Popper fires against in the second volume: Hegel and Marx. This charge is parti
Aug 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This major work has been "on my list" since I read that marvelous little book Wittgenstein's Poker about the time Wittgenstein supposedly got so angry at Popper he brandished a poker at him (if you haven't read that book, I highly recommend it). After the election of Trump I thought I should hurry up and get it read.

This is a major tome that takes some work to get through (though you can effectively skim through portions). If you want to grasp the summary, read the chapter with the same title as
Laszlo Alexandru
Lucrare stufoasă, pe alocuri greu digerabilă stilistic, edificată în jurul gîndirii neconformiste a autorului, care recitește și demitizează nume mari din istoria filosofiei (Platon, Hegel, Marx etc.), ce s-au dovedit gînditori intransigenți, de factură totalitară. Accentele pe alocuri pamfletare sînt totuși de prisos, într-o încercare de o asemenea anvergură demonstrativă. Predomină convingerea minunată a lui Popper în virtuțile permisive, dialogale, ale democrației, care trebuie prezervată cu ...more
Ben Cullimore
Written and published towards the end of the Second World War, The Open Society and its Enemies represents a passionate defence of freedom and reason, two ideals that, Karl Popper believed, were under threat by the twin ideologies of fascism and communism. Popper presents a largely convincing argument against teleological historicism, identifying Plato, Georg Wilhelm Friedrich Hegel and Karl Marx as the main culprits for the dangerous role that such a belief played in the political philosophies ...more
Lukas op de Beke
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book is written with all the brazenness and love of intellectual conflict that is typically associated with the philosopher Karl Popper. Though mainly known as a philosopher of science and in particular for having expounded the notion of falsification and the doctrine of critical rationalism, Popper proves that he is also a political philosopher of the first rank. with this beautifully written and very knowledgeable, devastating critique of Plato's political philosophy.

Admittedly, Popper do
Hákon Leifsson
Jan 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Ég skrifaði örugglega 1000 orða afskaplega vel ígrundaða gagnrýni . Í henni komu meðal annarra spekingarnir Hegel, Marx, Platón, Aristótales, Locke fram.

Orð á borð við vísindaheimspeki, frelsi, alræði, frjálslyndi, raun- og rökhyggja, vísindaheimspeki, lýðræði, hugtökin opin og lokuð samfélög, útópía, dystópía og mörg, mörg önnur stórmerkileg orð fram. Til að gera langa sögu stutta, hvarf textinn - og leyfist mér að vitna í (í brjálaðri kaldhæðni nb) Trump.


(Lesið samt, frábær bók, sér í l
Eric Munn
Dec 01, 2017 rated it it was ok
I definitely found some great thoughts / insights in this tome of a book, but overall it felt very repetitive. It became clear after the first 300 some pages that there Popper has problems (well thought out and accurate problems) with, as he calls it, historicist thinking. The belief there's an ideal version of government that we're trying to achieve from the past can lead to some very bad policies. And all of this could be told in a third of what it currently is. I'm guessing this was more Popp ...more
Jul 21, 2018 marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Capitolul 2 - Heraclit efesianul - cca 500BC - Lumea e constituita dintr-o gramada de lucruri aruncate talmes balmes sub o patura nemasurata, purificata de entropia focului divin. In timp ce totul se intampla, somnambuli gregari adera la promisiunile unei lumi democratice. Vechea lume se destrama incremental si se incovoaie sub sfidarea impostorilor si a stra-stra-stra-etc-bunicilor lor, carpita de unitatea contrariilor. The art of bitching is perfected.
For a loner who died, allegedly burried in
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Sir Karl Raimund Popper, FRS, rose from a 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 contributed to a field of thought encompassing ...more

Other books in the series

The Open Society and its Enemies (4 books)
  • The Open Society and Its Enemies - Volume One: The Spell of Plato
  • The Open Society and Its Enemies - Volume Two: Hegel and Marx
  • After the Open Society: Selected Social and Political Writings
“The so-called paradox of freedom is the argument that freedom in the sense of absence of any constraining control must lead to very great restraint, since it makes the bully free to enslave the meek. The idea is, in a slightly different form, and with very different tendency, clearly expressed in Plato.

Less well known is the paradox of tolerance: Unlimited tolerance must lead to the disappearance of tolerance. If we extend unlimited tolerance even to those who are intolerant, if we are not prepared to defend a tolerant society against the onslaught of the intolerant, then the tolerant will be destroyed, and tolerance with them. — In this formulation, I do not imply, for instance, that we should always suppress the utterance of intolerant philosophies; as long as we can counter them by rational argument and keep them in check by public opinion, suppression would certainly be unwise. But we should claim the right to suppress them if necessary even by force; for it may easily turn out that they are not prepared to meet us on the level of rational argument, but begin by denouncing all argument; they may forbid their followers to listen to rational argument, because it is deceptive, and teach them to answer arguments by the use of their fists or pistols. We should therefore claim, in the name of tolerance, the right not to tolerate the intolerant. We should claim that any movement preaching intolerance places itself outside the law, and we should consider incitement to intolerance and persecution as criminal, in the same way as we should consider incitement to murder, or to kidnapping, or to the revival of the slave trade, as criminal.”
“We must plan for freedom, and not only for security, if for no other reason than only freedom can make security more secure.” 25 likes
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