The Open Society and its Enemies
The Spell of Plato
Written in political exile during the Second World War and first published in 1945, Karl Popper's The Open Society and Its Enemies is one of the most influential books of the twentieth century. Hailed by Bertrand Russell as a 'vigorous and profound defence of democracy', its now legendary attack on the philosophies of Plato, Hegel and Marx exposed the dangers inherent in centrally planned political systems. Popper's highly accessible style, his erudite and lucid explanations of the thought of great philosophers and the recent resurgence of totalitarian regimes around the world are just three of the reasons for the enduring popularity ofThe Open Society and Its Enemies, and for why it demands to be read both today and in years to come.
This is the first of two volumes of The Open Society and Its Enemies.
Table of Contents
Introduction The Spell of Plato. The Myth of Origin and Destiny 1. Historicism and the Myth of Destiny 2. Heraclitus 3.Plato's Theory of Forms or Ideas Plato's Descriptive Sociology 4.Change and Rest 5 Nature and Convention Plato's Political Programme 6.Totalitarian Justice 7.The Principle of Leadership 8.The Philosopher King 9.Aestheticism, Perfectionism, Utopianism The Background of Plato's Attack 10.The Open Society and its Enemies Notes _ _ _
Karl Popper (1902-1994). Philosopher, born in Vienna. One of the most influential and controversial thinkers of the twentieth century.
'One of the great books of the century' - Alan Ryan, The Times
'Few philosophershave combined such a vast width of knowledge with the capacity to produce important original ideas as he did.' - Anthony Quinton, The Guardian
'This is a work of great interest and significance, stimulating and suggestive throughout. Dr Popper's virtues are manifold. He has a great fertility of ideas. Almost every sentence gives us something to think about.' - G.C. Field, Philosophy