Enemies of Hope

Raymond Tallis, Enemies of Hope: A Critique of Contemporary Pessimism: A long book you won’t want to end, which is sometimes funny, often passionate, optimistic, and grounded in common sense. The unique structure adds greatly to the appeal-Tallis was commissioned to write an 800-word review of Dudley Young’s Origins of the Sacred: the Ecstasies of Love and War, but it spiraled out of control (you can watch this happening on the pages, as Tallis becomes increasingly incensed by Young’s book) to become a panoramic critique of contemporary opposition to reason, consciousness and humanism. Tallis traces the pessimistic picture of human beings as ‘sick animals’ being pushed around by unconscious forces, to Freud, Marx, postmodernism, and cognitive and evolutionary psychology. [recommended by James Tartaglia, Keele University]

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