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on 16 April 2008
Having read a vast amount of political literature during my politics degree there is only one book that really stands out from the rest. It is this book, 'discourse on the origin of inequality'. It is an intriguing read with some very thought provoking stuff. I think if you were to read any of Rousseau it should be this book. In response to the review where they say he states the obvious, he may well do but it is the way he writes that really gets you thinking. You must also remember the time he was writing, many of these things that we think are obvious were not in the 1700's!
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on 16 December 2006
Any suggestion that Rousseau is simply proffering a series of trite ideas is misplaced. Though largely ignored by comparison with The Social Contract, A Discourse on Inequality is in my opinion Rousseau's magnum opus. Rousseau's emphasis on the benefits of a culture based around philistinism - as seen in the less well-written Discourse on the Arts and Sciences - is clearly evident in his conception of 'savage' or 'natural' man (depending on edition) who sacrificed his asocial hunter-gatherer existence for life in society. The deleterious consequences of man's socialisation described by Rousseau are both polemical and compelling. Moreover, the effect, which the text had upon the ideas of both Marx and Engles, is perhaps ostensible in sentences such as: `The first man who, having fenced off a plot of land, thought of saying "This is mine" and found people simple enough to believe him was the real founder of civil society'.
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on 10 January 2014
Being one of the philosopher and thinkers that influenced the modern way of thinking this discourse is probably his best. Rousseau analyses in depth and with great attention what he thinks is the origin of inequality and raises a lot questions, discussions and thinking on whether he is right or wrong.
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on 21 December 2014
Delivered early, very happy, degree student v happy
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on 9 January 2015
Great for activists
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on 22 July 2015
text book.
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on 25 November 2014
Ace value.
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on 14 January 2016
Yes
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