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Old 10th April 2012, 09:23 PM   #41
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Old 10th April 2012, 10:03 PM   #42
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This book I read called "The Last Canadian".
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Old 10th April 2012, 10:14 PM   #43
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Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
IIRC, based on sales:

1. Bible
2. Atlas Shrugged
The Bible, sure. But Atlas Shrugged? Puhleese. You're in your own personal fantasy land with that one.


BTW, I have a first edition of Atlas Shrugged and it's worth a couple hundred bucks. My almost first edition of Gone With the Wind would have been worth a couple thousand but it turned out to be a second printing. On the Antiques Roadshow, for comparison, a first edition of The Book of Mormon, was about $75K IIRC.
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Old 11th April 2012, 07:08 AM   #44
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Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
Since major religious works are ruled out, if we define it by sales:

1. Atlas Shrugged


If we define it by large studies asking the question, "What book has had the most influence on your life?" again:

1. Atlas Shrugged

Originally Posted by Paul Krugman
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.“

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Old 11th April 2012, 07:22 AM   #45
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Originally Posted by Complexity View Post


We are mortified.

I no longer own a copy of any Dr. Seuss book.

I'm going to start writing my name and address on all of my clothes.
That's OK.

It took me some time to find a copy of Go Dog, Go, until I discovered it was not written by Dr. Seuss, but by P.D. Eastman.
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Old 11th April 2012, 09:02 AM   #46
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Originally Posted by LarianLeQuella View Post

Originally Posted by Paul Krugman
“There are two novels that can change a bookish fourteen-year old’s life: The Lord of the Rings and Atlas Shrugged. One is a childish fantasy that often engenders a lifelong obsession with its unbelievable heroes, leading to an emotionally stunted, socially crippled adulthood, unable to deal with the real world. The other, of course, involves orcs.“



No other response would be expected or proper from the Ellsworth Toohey of 2012.

Originally Posted by RobDegraves View Post
.....http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Atlas_Shrugged

Unless it exceeded 500 000 by at least 100 million, it's not even in the ballpark.
....
The number you quote is for 2009 ONLY, and actually for 2009 only, total sales of Rand's novels exceeded 1M. Get your facts correct please.

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Old 11th April 2012, 09:53 AM   #47
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I've seen precisely 1 copy of Atlas Shrugged in my entire life, and I'm studying to become a Library Technician.
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:05 AM   #48
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Originally Posted by Damien Evans View Post
I've seen precisely 1 copy of Atlas Shrugged in my entire life, and I'm studying to become a Library Technician.
I'm not sure if it's still the case but second year students in some American universities were subjected to read the foul work.
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:06 AM   #49
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That's a great Krugman quote.

As for the Atlas Shrugged mythology, there are a lot of Libertarians who believe in Rand folly. It's no wonder they push the myth their god is the greatest. But I'm pretty sure the fact there are more Mormons, more Christians, more Muslims, more Hindus and so on than Libertarians is evidence the worship of Rand is full of exaggerated beliefs about the influence of Randism. Heck, the Libertarians can't even get their own candidates in major elections in this country, they have to run as Republicans.

Is it true that Atlas Shrugged is the second most influential book ever written?
Quote:
No one knows exactly how influential Atlas Shrugged is, because there has never been a proper study done to check. The "second most influential" claim comes from a Survey of Lifetime Reading Habits conducted in 1991 by the Book-of-the-Month Club and the Library of Congress. Printed surveys were sent to members of the Club, asking them what books had most influenced their own lives. A little over 2,000 responses were received. The Bible ranked first, and Atlas Shrugged ranked a distant second. ....

... In 1998, book publisher Random House ran an online vote asking readers to name the "best" English-language novels of the 20th century. Atlas Shrugged placed first in this vote, with Rand's other novels placing high on the list as well. However, there was a considerable amount of campaigning by special-interest groups to promote particular authors and books. There were also only limited controls to prevent repeat voting and other "ballot stuffing" techniques. In the end, the results probably reflected the intensity of feeling among the most highly motived voters as much or more than the breadth of support for any of the top vote-getters.
Seriously, a Book-of-the-Month Club reader survey and a Random House online vote?

We all know about Ron Paul supporters' enthusiasm when it comes to finding and voting in these online polls.
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:13 AM   #50
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Originally Posted by Beerina View Post
Since major religious works are ruled out, if we define it by sales:

1. Atlas Shrugged


If we define it by large studies asking the question, "What book has had the most influence on your life?" again:

1. Atlas Shrugged
It's also a stellar performer in terms of blithering idiocy. A trifecta!
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:17 AM   #51
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Originally Posted by Damien Evans View Post
I've seen precisely 1 copy of Atlas Shrugged in my entire life, and I'm studying to become a Library Technician.
Heh, I have to share the story of how I found the first edition. At out Friends of the Library book store they had a display on the top shelf. They had old books in groups of 3-4 literally glued together to make fake displays. When I saw Atlas Shrugged I talked the sales clerk into selling it to me. But I didn't want to damage it so I took it and the book it was glued to for $2. I took them home and carefully separated them. Turns out the other book was worth about $50 as well. But without the dust jacket the Atlas Shrugged book is worth a lot less than if it had had the jacket. Still, for $2 it was a score.

I didn't see any old Bibles in the glued book display.
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:26 AM   #52
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My bet is not on single titles, but on a genre: Cookbooks are IMO the most influential ever printed.
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Old 11th April 2012, 10:34 AM   #53
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For the record, the quote wasn't Krugman's originally - he quoted it from John Rogers heree: http://kfmonkey.blogspot.se/2009/03/...ra-2009-7.html
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Old 11th April 2012, 11:39 AM   #54
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Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
For the record, the quote wasn't Krugman's originally - he quoted it from John Rogers heree: http://kfmonkey.blogspot.se/2009/03/...ra-2009-7.html

Ah, interesting. Aren't the tubes fun?
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Old 11th April 2012, 12:10 PM   #55
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Originally Posted by Alphaba View Post
My bet is not on single titles, but on a genre: Cookbooks are IMO the most influential ever printed.
I'd go with the genre of religious fiction, myself.
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Old 11th April 2012, 12:34 PM   #56
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Originally Posted by Alphaba View Post
My bet is not on single titles, but on a genre: Cookbooks are IMO the most influential ever printed.
True, Fanny Farmer and Julia Childs had huge impacts on how we eat. One for the worse and one for the better I'm afraid.
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Old 11th April 2012, 01:26 PM   #57
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If we discount the bible, I would have to say the collected works of Aristotle. His influence on philosophy was enormous.
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Old 11th April 2012, 01:32 PM   #58
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
religious fiction

Isn't that redundant and repetetive?
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Old 11th April 2012, 01:39 PM   #59
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Originally Posted by LarianLeQuella View Post
Isn't that redundant and repetetive?
No, there is romance fiction, science fiction, historical fiction and so on.

There can also be historical non-fiction books about religion, but the religious texts themselves are all fiction.
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Old 12th April 2012, 07:21 AM   #60
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Originally Posted by varwoche View Post
It's also a stellar performer in terms of blithering idiocy. A trifecta!
Indeed it certainly is. In fact the whole thesis of AS revolves around idiocy and the various ways it manifests itself in collective society. Namely, when people shirk the responsibility for individual decisions and place their trust in the collective, they have rejected to that extent, intelligent thinking and decision making, and embraced idiocy.

It's not the first time I've agreed with varwoche, although never in the way expected.



But someone should politely inform the Bamsters that AS is just a fiction book, not an instruction manual.
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Old 12th April 2012, 07:26 AM   #61
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Originally Posted by LarianLeQuella View Post
Isn't that redundant and repetetive?
A tautology, perhaps?
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Old 12th April 2012, 08:44 AM   #62
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Originally Posted by Staffsknot View Post
If we discount the bible, I would have to say the collected works of Aristotle. His influence on philosophy was enormous.
That's a pretty good call. He did dominate Western Thinking for well over 1,000 years after his death.
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Old 12th April 2012, 08:46 AM   #63
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Originally Posted by Damien Evans View Post
That's a pretty good call. He did dominate Western Thinking for well over 1,000 years after his death.
Yeah, but that wasn't really his fault.
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Old 12th April 2012, 12:57 PM   #64
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The Analects of Confucius is another good contender.


And while we're in China - The Art of War.
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Old 12th April 2012, 02:22 PM   #65
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Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
For the record, the quote wasn't Krugman's originally - he quoted it from John Rogers heree: http://kfmonkey.blogspot.se/2009/03/...ra-2009-7.html
For the record, if you look at my assertion above:

No other response would be expected or proper from the Ellsworth Toohey of 2012.

And then you look at the actual article by Krugman:

http://krugman.blogs.nytimes.com/201...sworth-toohey/

You will find that Krugman admits to being the slimeball of the planet.
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Old 12th April 2012, 06:06 PM   #66
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Old 12th April 2012, 10:16 PM   #67
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Newton's Principia belongs on the short list. Certainly it belongs higher on the list than Wiki's #49 in Andy's second post.
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Old 13th April 2012, 04:18 AM   #68
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
Newton's Principia belongs on the short list. Certainly it belongs higher on the list than Wiki's #49 in Andy's second post.
The list order threw me as well - it's in chronological order rather than importance
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Old 13th April 2012, 05:20 AM   #69
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Though he likely wasn't the first to have done so (according to what I've read anyway,) I'd suggest Herodotus' The Histories as pretty influential, if only due to the style of constructing a cohesive historical narrative upon which many more modern works would follow.

While the bias and historical accuracy of the contents can be questionable at best (and pretty far in the "holy crap!" zone at worst,) it's still recognizable for its literary influences.
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Old 13th April 2012, 01:41 PM   #70
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Originally Posted by Lamuella View Post
can I ask how we are defining influential?
That's a good question. Nobody has mentioned Mein Kampf yet.
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Old 13th April 2012, 06:03 PM   #71
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Originally Posted by Ian View Post
That's a good question. Nobody has mentioned Mein Kampf yet.
Or The Joy of Cooking.
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Old 13th April 2012, 06:43 PM   #72
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Originally Posted by Craig4 View Post
It's hard to say "Atlas Shrugged" was influential when we don't see very many economic or political systems based on the ideas in the book. We, even in the very free market United States have regulated markets for financial instruments and regulated trade.

I'll grant that Ayn Rand seems to have influenced Alan Greenspan and his Rand based ideas contributed to the economic crisis in 2007 (which he both acknowledged and regretted later). However the ideas couldn't have had too much influence since he was the chairman of the Federal Reserve, a most un-Randian position. Just because it's read does not make in influential.
Wikipedia war partly inspire by Rand too, as Jimmy Wales identifies as an Objectivist.

What about The Internet for Dummies or Dale Carnegie's How to Win Friends and Influence People?

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Old 14th April 2012, 09:32 PM   #73
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Originally Posted by applecorped View Post
Or The Joy of Cooking.
It certainly had a profound effect on the way Americans eat (particularly the 1975 addition). I'm not sure you could call the impact of the book global.
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Old 14th April 2012, 11:53 PM   #74
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It's interesting how few books on the above (impressively comprehensive) "most influential" list are works of fiction. Don Quixote was a good pick - I'm glad they included it. And of course there is the Bible, but it's my understanding that AndyAndy does not want us to blaspheme in this particular thread.
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Old 16th April 2012, 12:41 PM   #75
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Originally Posted by Skeptic Ginger View Post
No, there is romance fiction, science fiction, historical fiction and so on.

There can also be historical non-fiction books about religion, but the religious texts themselves are all fiction.
I would phrase it differently.

Romance can be real. Science can be real. History can be real. But religion is always fiction.

ETA: real in the sense of "non-fiction"
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Old 16th April 2012, 06:07 PM   #76
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Originally Posted by ingoa View Post
I would phrase it differently.

Romance can be real. Science can be real. History can be real. But religion is always fiction.

ETA: real in the sense of "non-fiction"
I'm curious, since religion was excluded in the OP. What are you trying to do, get it back included by defining/redefining as fiction?

Then it would win.
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Old 20th April 2012, 09:43 AM   #77
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Originally Posted by TubbaBlubba View Post
The Analects of Confucius is another good contender.


And while we're in China - The Art of War.
I'm surprised it took so long to mention it. War is probably the thing for which humans are most adept.
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