Larry's Reviews > The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements
The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements
Dec 08, 2008
#2 on my list of the ten most influential books in my life. At this point mybest guess is that I read this around 1960. It was a clear and incisive look at the people who believe as a matter of faith and not as a matter of logic or fact. What is more amazing is that the author was a longshoreman who had no formal education beyond high school. Reading his insights was my first understanding of the workings of the minds of irrational people. The principles of mass irrationality apply to religion, politics and most other group behavior of human beings. While it is usually incomprehensible to rational actors Mr. Hoffer's book always comes to mind when I need to grasp the motivation of certain groups. His ideas are as certain today as they were when I first encountered them over 40 years ago.
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December 8, 2008 – Shelved