The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics And Religion

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The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics And Religion

by Jonathan Haidt

Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group | March 13, 2012 | Hardcover

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics And Religion is rated 3.1667 out of 5 by 6.

Why can’t our political leaders work together as threats loom and problems mount? Why do people so readily assume the worst about the motives of their fellow citizens? In The Righteous Mind, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt explores the origins of our divisions and points the way forward to mutual understanding.
 
His starting point is moral intuition—the nearly instantaneous perceptions we all have about other people and the things they do. These intuitions feel like self-evident truths, making us righteously certain that those who see things differently are wrong. Haidt shows us how these intuitions differ across cultures, including the cultures of the political left and right. He blends his own research findings with those of anthropologists, historians, and other psychologists to draw a map of the moral domain, and he explains why conservatives can navigate that map more skillfully than can liberals. He then examines the origins of morality, overturning the view that evolution made us fundamentally selfish creatures. But rather than arguing that we are innately altruistic, he makes a more subtle claim—that we are fundamentally groupish. It is our groupishness, he explains, that leads to our greatest joys, our religious divisions, and our political affiliations. In a stunning final chapter on ideology and civility, Haidt shows what each side is right about, and why we need the insights of liberals, conservatives, and libertarians to flourish as a nation.

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 448 pages, 9.5 × 6.4 × 1.4 in

Published: March 13, 2012

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0307377903

ISBN - 13: 9780307377906

Found in: Health and Well Being

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Reviews

Rated 1 out of 5 by from Moral psycology Nice review of moral psychology and it's impact on religion and politics
Date published: 2014-02-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Moral psycology Nice review of moral psychology and it's impact on religion and politics
Date published: 2014-02-27
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Not as helpful as I had hoped A lot of good information in the first two parts. Well sourced and researched. He lost me when he gave religion a free pass, dismissing the evidence provided by authors like Dawkins and Harris. He instead chose the address a parody of their work and skip over the damage that the certainty of religion can enable. Once I saw the oversimplification of his conclusions, the rest of the book was frustrating and unhelpful to me. I'll try to take the insights forward with me as I ride my elephant into the sunset. But I'm afraid all this book has done is depress me, and make me feel like there really is no hope for humanity.
Date published: 2014-02-15
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Insight gained! Moral psychology? Yes, I had no real idea of this as a discipline let alone as a means to explain some of society's fundamental frictions. A well written tome, chock full of both data and anecdotes. Appreciated the elegance of Moral Foundations theory, and the insights into moral frameworks. Gained a sense of the virtues (and challenges) of the major left-right political divide. And comforted myself (maybe confirmation bias?) about my growing awareness of the values and virtues of liberal thought after a long period of a personally conservative world view. I call tha, in sum, a good read.
Date published: 2013-12-03
Rated 3 out of 5 by from Misleading title, meandering book. The author spends very little time talking substantively about politics and political decision making. Instead, this is a too-long combination of literature review and theoretical case studies that provides the reader with a rather sweeping survey of moral psychology over the last two centuries. Some interesting stories about experiments. And maybe a chapter's worth of useful things to say about how we operate in the public arena.
Date published: 2013-11-25
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Most Significant Book I Have Read This book resonated with me more than any other book I have ever read. Jonathan Haidt is a social psychologist so tackles this subject from that perspective with a fascinating history of human social and moral development. He synthesizes the work of many social psychologists and philosophical thinkers and applies that to his own novel research to create a fascinating and enlightened thesis that can help anyone better understand human behaviour especially in the context of politics and religion. Two of the most contentious issues in our society today. This book is very readable but be prepared to spend some effort - even the notes are worthwhile.
Date published: 2013-07-07

– More About This Product –

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics And Religion

The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided By Politics And Religion

by Jonathan Haidt

Format: Hardcover

Dimensions: 448 pages, 9.5 × 6.4 × 1.4 in

Published: March 13, 2012

Publisher: Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group

Language: English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10: 0307377903

ISBN - 13: 9780307377906

About the Book

A groundbreaking investigation into the origins of morality, which turns out to be the basis for religion and politics. The book is timely (explaining the American culture wars and refuting the "New Atheists"), scholarly (integrating insights from many fields) and great fun to read (like Haidt's last book, "The Happiness Hypothesis").

Read from the Book

Introduction  “Can we all get along?” That appeal was made famous on May 1, 1992, by Rodney King, a black man who had been beaten nearly to death by four Los Angeles police officers a year earlier. The entire nation had seen a videotape of the beating, so when a jury failed to convict the officers, their acquittal triggered widespread outrage and six days of rioting in Los Angeles. Fifty-three people were killed and more than seven thousand buildings were torched. Much of the mayhem was carried live; news cameras tracked the action from helicopters circling overhead. After a particularly horrific act of violence against a white truck driver, King was moved to make his appeal for peace.  King’s appeal is now so overused that it has become cultural kitsch, a catchphrase1 more often said for laughs than as a serious plea for mutual understanding. I therefore hesitated to use King’s words as the opening line of this book, but I decided to go ahead, for two reasons. The first is because most Americans nowadays are asking King’s question not about race relations but about political relations and the collapse of cooperation across party lines. Many Americans feel as though the nightly news from Washington is being sent to us from helicopters circling over the city, delivering dispatches from the war zone.  The second reason I decided to open this book with an overused phrase is because King followed it up with something lovely, something rarely quoted. As he stumbled through his tel
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Table of Contents

Introduction 

Part I Intuitions Come First, Strategic Reasoning Second
1 Where Does Morality Come From?
2 The Intuitive Dog and Its Rational Tail
3 Elephants Rule
4 Vote for Me (Here’s Why)

Part II There’s More to Morality than Harm and Fairness
5 Beyond WEIRD Morality
6 Taste Buds of the Righteous Mind
7 The Moral Foundations of Politics
8 The Conservative Advantage

Part III Morality Binds and Blinds
9 Why Are We So Groupish?
10 The Hive Switch
11 Religion Is a Team Sport
12 Can’t We All Disagree More Constructively?

Conclusion

Acknowledgments
Notes
References
Index

From the Publisher

Why can’t our political leaders work together as threats loom and problems mount? Why do people so readily assume the worst about the motives of their fellow citizens? In The Righteous Mind, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt explores the origins of our divisions and points the way forward to mutual understanding.
 
His starting point is moral intuition—the nearly instantaneous perceptions we all have about other people and the things they do. These intuitions feel like self-evident truths, making us righteously certain that those who see things differently are wrong. Haidt shows us how these intuitions differ across cultures, including the cultures of the political left and right. He blends his own research findings with those of anthropologists, historians, and other psychologists to draw a map of the moral domain, and he explains why conservatives can navigate that map more skillfully than can liberals. He then examines the origins of morality, overturning the view that evolution made us fundamentally selfish creatures. But rather than arguing that we are innately altruistic, he makes a more subtle claim—that we are fundamentally groupish. It is our groupishness, he explains, that leads to our greatest joys, our religious divisions, and our political affiliations. In a stunning final chapter on ideology and civility, Haidt shows what each side is right about, and why we need the insights of liberals, conservatives, and libertarians to flourish as a nation.

About the Author

Jonathan Haidt is the Thomas Cooley Professor of Ethical Leadership at New York University's Stern School of Business. He is the author of The Happiness Hypothesis: Finding Modern Truth in Ancient Wisdom. He lives in New York City.

Editorial Reviews

“Haidt is looking for more than victory. He’s looking for wisdom. That’s what makes The Righteous Mind well worth reading…a landmark contribution to humanity’s understanding of itself.” –New York Times Book Review   “Jonathan Haidt is one of smartest and most creative psychologists alive, and his newest book, The Righteous Mind, is a tour de force—a brave, brilliant and eloquent exploration of the most important issues of our time. It will challenge the way you think about liberals and conservatives, atheism and religion, good and evil. This is the book that everyone will be talking about.”—Paul Bloom, Yale University, Author of How Pleasure Works “As a fellow who listens to heated political debate daily, I was fascinated, enlightened, and even amused by Haidt's brilliant insights. This penetrating yet accessible book will help readers understand the righteous minds that inhabit politics.” —Larry Sabato, University of Virginia, author of A More Perfect Constitution “A remarkable and original synthesis of social psychology, political analysis, and moral reasoning that reflects the best of sciences in these fields and adds evidence that we are innately capable of the decency and righteousness needed for societies to survive.” —Edward O. Wilson, University Research Professor Emeritus, Harvard University “Here is the first attempt to give an in depth analysis of the underlying moral stance and dispositions of liberals and conservatives. I couldn't put it down and discovered thing
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