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The Retreat of Reason: Political Correctness and the Corruption of Public Debate in Modern Britain (Second Edition) [Paperback]

Anthony Browne
4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)

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Book Description

10 April 2006
Discusses political correctness and the freedom of debate.


Product details

  • Paperback: 132 pages
  • Publisher: Civitas:Institute for the Study of Civil Society; 2nd Revised edition edition (10 April 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1903386500
  • ISBN-13: 978-1903386507
  • Product Dimensions: 1.3 x 14 x 21 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (32 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 157,969 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Review

Anthony Browne, the Europe correspondent for the Times, has written a tremendously important pamphlet about political correctness -- Melanie Phillips' Blog, January 2006

Anthony Browne’s excellent treatise ... is a polemic against the manner in which intelligent, honest debate is suffocated by political correctness. -- Rod Liddle, Spectator, 21 January 2006

Anthony Browne’s recent excellent pamphlet on political correctness, The Retreat of Reason. -- Peter Whittle, Sunday Times, 22nd January 2006

Browne’s pamphlet is a polemic against the manner in which intelligent, honest debate is suffocated by political correctness. -- Rod Liddle, Spectator, 21/01/06

One of the most important pamphlets of recent times, The Retreat of Reason, has just been published. -- Melanie Phillips, Daily Mail, 9 January 2006

a swingeing attack on the way "political correctness" has corrupted public debate in Britain, and does it with panache. -- A.C. Grayling, New Statesman, 23 January 2006 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews
113 of 119 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent 25 Sep 2007
Format:Paperback
This book is a very informative text for anyone who wishes to understand more clearly the effects of the Political Correct culture that has swept across our land over recent years.

Browne discusses in detail the objectives of the Political Correct elite and how this plague has driven an infection into the very heart of a once free speaking nation. Using strong examples and a thorough understanding of current events and social behavior this book gives the reader an interesting insight into debate and the suppression of debate that we are currently faced with.

The effects of PC culture that is so strongly enforced by our media and government are clear when we see how individuals have to behave day to day to ensure they are not offending some group or other. Browne brings home his point when introducing hypocrisy in PC culture, misleading statistical evidence to support PC objectives and the new victim culture that is so evident in today's society.

This is an excellent read and one which should certainly put a few noses out of joint. More of the same please!!
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90 of 96 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Spot on 9 Oct 2006
Format:Paperback
As someone said, there's not much that feels especially new in it - and yet I've never read a book that addresses this topic quite so directly before. Some parts of it seem so blindingly obviously right that you almost wonder that it needs to be said. But of course it very much does need to be said. Browne occasionally refers to Political Correctness as an infection, and it certainly seems like that to me - and as he shows very clearly, a very serious and harmful one that has created a new kind of tyranny. I don't suppose that those who are electively blind will be cured by reading this book; but if you're not, you should read it.
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49 of 53 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Precise analysis 20 Nov 2006
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
It's pretty rare to find a book that hits the nail of its subject with such chilling and brief precision. Read it quickly before it is banned!
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53 of 58 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Thank you Mr Browne! 6 Feb 2006
Format:Paperback
If I was well off, I'd buy a thousand copies of this book, and give them away for free to politicians, social workers and the HR departments of our major companies. The book articulates our inward suspicions about the PC brigade in a masterly manner. You've heard of the Parable of the Emperor's New Clothes no doubt. When you read this book, exposing Political Correctness for what it is, you too will do the equivalent of that boy and yell out 'He's in his underwear!' The author should be awarded an OBE for 'Services to Humanity.'
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89 of 98 people found the following review helpful
By BrianC
Format:Paperback
The small pamphlet is very well written and covers a lot of what I have studied in psychology books over the years and what I believe is becoming a huge problem. For those who have taken the time to learn the facts on the psychology of PC-ness it will be nothing new but it is written in a very clear and common-sense form that makes it a great read. Don't get me wrong I think there is a need for a degree of PC in our culture but nowhere near the level it is currently running at. The current use of PC as a weapon by extremists to get their views across without others having the ability to give a retort is a disgrace and is especially true where the extremist is deemed also as a "victim group".
Some people will wave the flag of this being dangerous talk but to be honest unless it is relaxed a backlash will happen and the usefulness of low-level PC'ness will be lost :(.
Great read, everyone who thinks the world is made of cuddly bunny rabbits should be forced to read it.
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28 of 31 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars More of the same please 19 May 2008
By Peter K
Format:Paperback
I am a former member of the PC Brigade and I found this book an excellent introduction to countering PC arguments.

I am not against all aspects of PC but it has now become a bloated, arrogant,dishonest and ironically very intolerant creed. I realised that I no longer wanted to be PC when I saw so called liberals marching around London with placades saying " We are all Hezbollah now ". I suppose a placade stating " we are all medieval, homophobic, anti-semitic, misogynst, intolerant religious fascists now " would have been unwieldy.

Once a realised I no longer believed in PC I wanted to learn how to counter PC arguments and this book fits the bill as a primer.However Browne offers counter arguments to many of the dogmas of PC without stooping to the name calling the PC crowd now unfortunately uses in place of honest debate.I am still in favour of equality for women, gays and ethnic minorities and so is the author. It is the bullying dogma, dishonest and sometimes downright stupidity of many PC arguments that has driven me away from it. After reading Brownes book I know I am not alone.
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43 of 48 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars AND NOT BEFORE TIME . . . 7 Feb 2006
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
A brave, necessary and cogently argued book that exposes how PC has hijacked our freedom to indulge in debates that touch on politically sensitive issues.
I hope this begins the necessary process of desanctifying PC and of restoring it to its rightful place as an instrument of balance and justice.
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35 of 39 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Read it before we all go down 12 Oct 2006
Format:Paperback
This book is excellent both in content and description.

Read it while you can and recommend it.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars rhetoric in the best sense
This is short, concise and to the point. It does supply few examples and references, and doubtless contains some inaccuracies; it might even be described as a tract. Read more
Published 3 months ago by Cjbevan
4.0 out of 5 stars Vital Issues
This book might well without undue exaggeration be entitled "The Death of Reason," and what is so alarming is that so few seem aware that our long-cherished rights to freedom of... Read more
Published 14 months ago by Bluecashmere.
5.0 out of 5 stars A good read
So nice to read a book and know I'm not the only one out there who thinks like this, had borrowed a copy from a friend and thought I'd like one of my own to lend to others.
Published 18 months ago by Alison
3.0 out of 5 stars Get other views!
The main thesis of this book is that political correctness started with the correct intentions of reducing bigotry and 'irrational discrimination' - battles that the author thinks... Read more
Published on 1 July 2012 by CLEOMENES III
4.0 out of 5 stars A Much Need Polemic
On publication no doubt Anthony Browne's The Retreat of Reason was a much needed pamphlet, and still is, to combat a movement that had given up on reality and the truth. Read more
Published on 8 April 2012 by Herman Norford
5.0 out of 5 stars The retreat of reason: political correctness and the corruption of...
This is an excellent book for de-bunking all the usual spin that seems to be regurgitated by lines of endless politicians who are keen to put themselves on the moral highground... Read more
Published on 18 Feb 2012 by Chris
5.0 out of 5 stars A Modern McCarthyism in our Midst
Civilisation has progressed. We no longer burn heretics at the stake. According to Steven Goldberg , these days "all one has to lose by unpopular arguments is contact with people... Read more
Published on 9 Feb 2012 by V. E. Lane
5.0 out of 5 stars The Poetry of Logic
Since its publication, `The Retreat of Reason' by Anthony Browne has become somewhat of a Bible to `refugees' of the politically correct hysteria. Read more
Published on 22 Mar 2011 by Caped Crusader
3.0 out of 5 stars Interesting overview if flawed in detail
Before picking over the detail it has to be said that this a good read; it's well written and concise and gives an excellent overview of that phenomenon we love to hate, political... Read more
Published on 17 Feb 2011 by Zipster Zeus
2.0 out of 5 stars One-sided opinion
I was disappointed in this book. It's not really terrible.... I would happily recommend it to those who have already made up their minds about political correctness and enjoy... Read more
Published on 25 Aug 2010 by Peter Braham
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