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Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (Illustrated Edition) (English Edition) di [Mackay, Charles]
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Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds (Illustrated Edition) (English Edition) Formato Kindle

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Lunghezza: 667 pagine Word Wise: Abilitato Miglioramenti tipografici: Abilitato
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Descrizione prodotto


Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds is a history of popular folly by Scottish journalist Charles Mackay, first published in 1841. The book chronicles its subjects in three parts: "National Delusions", "Peculiar Follies", and "Philosophical Delusions". MacKay was an accomplished teller of stories, though he wrote in a journalistic and somewhat sensational style.

The subjects of Mackay's debunking include alchemy, crusades, duels, economic bubbles, fortune-telling, haunted houses, the influence of politics and religion on the shapes of beards and hair, magnetisers (influence of imagination in curing disease), murder through poisoning, prophecies, popular admiration of great thieves, popular follies of great cities, and relics. Present-day writers on economics, such as Michael Lewis and Andrew Tobias, laud the three chapters on economic bubbles. Scientist and astronomer Carl Sagan mentioned the book in his own discussion about pseudoscience, popular delusions, and hoaxes.

In later editions Mackay added a footnote referencing the Railway Mania of the 1840s as another "popular delusion", of importance at least comparable with the South Sea Bubble. Mathematician Andrew Odlyzko has pointed out, in a published lecture, that Mackay himself played a role in this economic bubble; as leader writer in the Glasgow Argus, Mackay wrote on 2 October 1845: "There is no reason whatever to fear a crash".

Note: This is an illustrated edition of the book for an engaging read.

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  • Formato: Formato Kindle
  • Dimensioni file: 6159 KB
  • Lunghezza stampa: 667
  • Venduto da: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Lingua: Inglese
  • ASIN: B019J45RSW
  • Da testo a voce: Abilitato
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  • Screen Reader: Supportato
  • Miglioramenti tipografici: Abilitato
  • Media recensioni: Recensisci per primo questo articolo
  • Posizione nella classifica Bestseller di Amazon: #521.386 a pagamento nel Kindle Store (Visualizza i Top 100 a pagamento nella categoria Kindle Store)
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Le recensioni clienti più utili su (beta) 4.1 su 5 stelle 300 recensioni
118 di 119 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
1.0 su 5 stelle Warning! Do Not Buy the WRONG Version of this Great Book 14 novembre 2015
Di Myopinion - Pubblicato su
Formato: Copertina flessibile Acquisto verificato
A. Popular Delusions is a truly great book.
B. But be careful which of the many offerings you buy.

First off, many of the editions in Amazon are partial reprints of the original 1841 edition. Anything with 200 or so pages is badly incomplete. The book you want must have all 16 chapters.

Second, most of the print editions, especially those claiming about 400-odd pages, are complete, but have type so small as to severely limit your reading pleasure. You must understand there is no copyright protection for the original English author so anyone can rip it off, and to make the most money many of these "artists" try to print as few literal pages as possible. The two editions I have bought (in 1967 at a bookstore and 2003 on Amazon), both published in London, have about 700 pages, including the dozen or so original hand illustrations. This is the print edition you want.

Third, to solve the type-size problem, acquiring a Kindle edition can be a good answer. It can also be priced as cheaply as 99 cents or even 0. But beware of what it contains as well. When I clicked on the Kindle version of a complete 16-chapter print version (the one on which I am writing this review) it turned out that the free Kindle version was shorted to just a few chapters, which I was able to discover only after I downloaded it
Fourth, the completely independent book, Gustave Le Bon's "The Crowd", originally published in 1895 is equally worth reading.

You'll love both books; make sure you actually enjoy them and get the whole things, as well.
18 di 18 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Text is Essential; Choose the Edition You Buy Carefully 29 marzo 2014
Di Imelda - Pubblicato su
Formato: Copertina flessibile Acquisto verificato
Classic text and very relevant today in light of the recent financial crisis. If you buy the CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; Reprint edition (October 22, 2013), beware that it has no pagination, making it impossible to cite to for academic work. I also note other reviews that comment on abridged editions by other publishers. So, beware. But the text is both priceless and timeless.
4 di 4 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Very Insightful 12 marzo 2016
Di Naturalist - Pubblicato su
Formato: Formato Kindle Acquisto verificato
What a delight. I enjoyed this book tremendously. It's extremely interesting, very well written (despite its age (written in 1841)), and highly amusing and at the same time instructive and wise. Can't recommend it highly enough.
1) On pages 5 & 240, "Prance" should be "France."
2) On page 17, "a one time" should instead be, "at one time."
3) On page 71, the year 1257 should instead be 1357, so there would be no contradiction with the dates prior and the dates after it in the story of Ncholas Flamel.
4) N page 95, "ail account . . . " should instead be, "all account . . . "
5) On page 128, "allowed it to believed . . . " should stead be, "allowed it to be believed . . . "
6) Again on page 128, "It has never yet been discovered what was his real name, . . . " should instead be, "It has never yet been discovered what his real name was . . . "
7) On page 139, in "the story above related was merely concocted between her La Motte, and others . . . ", there should be a comma after the word "her."
8) On page 246, "intestine divisions" should instead be, "intense divisions."
9) On page 283, it's stated that, "from the passing of the act of Queen Mary till the accession of James to the throne of England, a period of thirty-nine years, the average number of executions for witchcraft in Scotland was two hundred annually, or upwards of seventeen thousand altogether." Now, 200x39=7,800, not "upwards of seventeen thousand."
10) On page 373, "more frivolous that these" should instead be, "more frivolous than these."
24 di 24 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle Excellent book. 11 novembre 2012
Di Customer Review - Pubblicato su
Formato: Formato Kindle Acquisto verificato
History repeats itself, making this book well worth reading. Financial scams recur because people don't remember the past.

To quote John Kenneth Galbraith, Economist: "There's nothing unique about this. It is something which happens every 20 or 30 years because that is about the length of the financial memory. It's about the length of time that it requires for a new set of suckers, if you will, a new set of people capable of wonderful self-delusion to come in and imagine that they have a new and wonderful fix on the future."
4 di 4 persone hanno trovato utile la seguente recensione
5.0 su 5 stelle The book to have 21 luglio 2014
Di Padre Mellyrn - Pubblicato su
Formato: Copertina flessibile Acquisto verificato
This is a book to have in these days. You can clearly see after reading this that many people, countries included did not learn from their failures, and thus are doomed to repeat the same, sad, silly, useless mistakes. I occasionally buy copies of the book to hand out to my students where I work.

One edition I have, when I originally bought the book in the early days of the market boom, before it went bust, had a foreword by Andrew Tobias who said "If you read nothing else in this book, read about the economic bubbles." (the South Sea Company bubble of 1711–1720, the Mississippi Company bubble of 1719–1720, and the Dutch tulip mania of the early seventeenth century). And he was right, when people were rushing off to buy stock at top dollar as they 'went public', I counselled many friends to look at what they were buying. One manager I knew got into the bubble mania and bought several thousand dollars of pre-IPO stock. Day one the stock jumps some 1000% in few hours (roughly it was $5.50 to start and $55 by the end of the day), and is lording it over everyone; 6 months later when he could sell it (according to contract) it was down to $2 and something a share.

This is book that should be on the shelf of every home library. From the Witch trials in Salem, to the Alchemists and other charlatans he shows us that the world is filled with people with who are always with the crowd and utterly mad.

"Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one." - Charles Mackay

"We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first." - Charles Mackay
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