How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World: A Short History of Modern Delusions

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9780007140978: How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World: A Short History of Modern Delusions

What characterizes our era? Cults, quacks, gurus, irrational panics, moral confusion and an epidemic of mumbo-jumbo, that's what. In How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World, Francis Wheen brilliantly laments the extraordinary rise of superstition, relativism and emotional hysteria. From Middle Eastern fundamentalism to the rise of lotteries, astrology to mysticism, poststructuralism to the Third Way, Wheen shows that there has been a pervasive erosion of
Enlightenment values, which have been displaced by nonsense. And no country has a more vivid parade of the bogus and bizarre than the one founded to embody Enlightenment values: the USA. In turn comic, indignant, outraged, and just plain baffled by the idiocy of it all, How Mumbo-Jumbo Conquered the World is a masterful depiction of the absurdity of our times and a plea that we might just think a little more and believe a little less.

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About the Author:

Francis Wheen is deputy editor of Private Eye, the editor of Lord Gnome's Literary Companion, the author of Karl Marx: A Life and a columnist in the London Guardian. He has been a contributor to Vanity Fair, The Nation, The New Yorker, The Los Angeles Times, and The Washington Post. He has appeared on Booknotes on C-SPAN and on National Public Radio.

Review:

"[A] very well-written rant against all the baloney that people seem increasingly to believe." -- The Boston Globe

"[S]avagely amusing...this angry, energetic, disappointed, witty, learned book is entertainingly contentious." -- Toronto Globe & Mail

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. An entertaining, impassioned polemic on the retreat of reason in the late 20th century. An intellectual call to arms, Francis Wheen s Sunday Times bestseller is one of 2004 s most talked about books.In 1979 two events occurred that would shape the next twenty-five years. In Britain, an era of weary consensualist politics was displaced by the arrival of Margaret Thatcher, whose ambition was to reassert Victorian values . In Iran, the fundamentalist cleric Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini set out to restore a regime that had last existed almost 1,300 years ago. Between them they succeeded in bringing the twentieth century to a premature close. By 1989, Francis Fukuyama was declaring that we had now reached the End of History.What colonised the space recently vacated by notions of history, progress and reason? Cults, quackery, gurus, irrational panics, moral confusion and an epidemic of mumbo-jumbo. Modernity was challenged by a gruesome alliance of pre-modernists and post-modernists, medieval theocrats and New Age mystics. It was as if the Enlightenment had never happened.Francis Wheen, winner of the George Orwell prize, evokes the key personalities of the post-political era - including Princess Diana and Deepak Chopra, Osama Bin-Laden and Nancy Reagan s astrologer - while charting the extraordinary rise in superstition, relativism and emotional hysteria over the past quarter of a century. From UFO scares to dotcom mania, his hilarious and gloriously impassioned polemic describes a period in the world s history when everything began to stop making sense. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780007140978

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers, United Kingdom, 2012. Paperback. Book Condition: New. Language: English . Brand New Book. An entertaining, impassioned polemic on the retreat of reason in the late 20th century. An intellectual call to arms, Francis Wheen s Sunday Times bestseller is one of 2004 s most talked about books.In 1979 two events occurred that would shape the next twenty-five years. In Britain, an era of weary consensualist politics was displaced by the arrival of Margaret Thatcher, whose ambition was to reassert Victorian values . In Iran, the fundamentalist cleric Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini set out to restore a regime that had last existed almost 1,300 years ago. Between them they succeeded in bringing the twentieth century to a premature close. By 1989, Francis Fukuyama was declaring that we had now reached the End of History.What colonised the space recently vacated by notions of history, progress and reason? Cults, quackery, gurus, irrational panics, moral confusion and an epidemic of mumbo-jumbo. Modernity was challenged by a gruesome alliance of pre-modernists and post-modernists, medieval theocrats and New Age mystics. It was as if the Enlightenment had never happened.Francis Wheen, winner of the George Orwell prize, evokes the key personalities of the post-political era - including Princess Diana and Deepak Chopra, Osama Bin-Laden and Nancy Reagan s astrologer - while charting the extraordinary rise in superstition, relativism and emotional hysteria over the past quarter of a century. From UFO scares to dotcom mania, his hilarious and gloriously impassioned polemic describes a period in the world s history when everything began to stop making sense. Bookseller Inventory # AA89780007140978

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Book Description HarperCollins Publishers. Paperback. Book Condition: new. BRAND NEW, How Mumbo-jumbo Conquered the World: A Short History of Modern Delusions, Francis Wheen, An entertaining, impassioned polemic on the retreat of reason in the late 20th century. An intellectual call to arms, Francis Wheen's Sunday Times bestseller is one of 2004's most talked about books. In 1979 two events occurred that would shape the next twenty-five years. In Britain, an era of weary consensualist politics was displaced by the arrival of Margaret Thatcher, whose ambition was to reassert 'Victorian values'. In Iran, the fundamentalist cleric Ayatollah Ruhollah Khomeini set out to restore a regime that had last existed almost 1,300 years ago. Between them they succeeded in bringing the twentieth century to a premature close. By 1989, Francis Fukuyama was declaring that we had now reached the End of History. What colonised the space recently vacated by notions of history, progress and reason? Cults, quackery, gurus, irrational panics, moral confusion and an epidemic of mumbo-jumbo. Modernity was challenged by a gruesome alliance of pre-modernists and post-modernists, medieval theocrats and New Age mystics. It was as if the Enlightenment had never happened. Francis Wheen, winner of the George Orwell prize, evokes the key personalities of the post-political era - including Princess Diana and Deepak Chopra, Osama Bin-Laden and Nancy Reagan's astrologer - while charting the extraordinary rise in superstition, relativism and emotional hysteria over the past quarter of a century. From UFO scares to dotcom mania, his hilarious and gloriously impassioned polemic describes a period in the world's history when everything began to stop making sense. Bookseller Inventory # B9780007140978

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