• RRP: £32.99
  • You Save: £0.09
FREE Delivery in the UK.
Only 1 left in stock.
Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
The Myth of Evil has been added to your Basket
+ £2.80 UK delivery
Used: Very Good | Details
Condition: Used: Very Good
Comment: Over 2 million items sold. Fast dispatch and delivery. Excellent Customer Feedback. Most items will be dispatched the same or the next working day.
Have one to sell?
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

The Myth of Evil Hardcover – 12 Jun 2006

4.5 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

See all formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price
New from Used from
Hardcover
"Please retry"
£32.90
£27.61 £21.53
Note: This item is eligible for click and collect. Details
Pick up your parcel at a time and place that suits you.
  • Choose from over 13,000 locations across the UK
  • Prime members get unlimited deliveries at no additional cost
How to order to an Amazon Pickup Location?
  1. Find your preferred location and add it to your address book
  2. Dispatch to this address when you check out
Learn more
£32.90 FREE Delivery in the UK. Only 1 left in stock. Dispatched from and sold by Amazon. Gift-wrap available.
click to open popover

Special Offers and Product Promotions

Enter your mobile number below and we'll send you a link to download the free Kindle App. Then you can start reading Kindle books on your smartphone, tablet, or computer - no Kindle device required.
Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.

  • Apple
  • Android
  • Windows Phone

To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.




Product details

  • Hardcover: 240 pages
  • Publisher: Edinburgh University Press (12 Jun. 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0748622004
  • ISBN-13: 978-0748622009
  • Product Dimensions: 15.6 x 2.5 x 23.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 275,562 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product Description

Review

Cole has written the best book on evil to date; it deserves a place on the shelves of both academic and public libraries. Choice Does evil really exist? No, thinks Phillip Cole, but it is extremely useful as a political myth. His varied and interesting cultural study of the idea begins by tracing the literary development of Satan, from a part of God himself or a kind of prosecutorial accuser at God's side in the Pentateuch, to the fully fledged anti-God in the New Testament. Thence we take in Faust, Kant and Nietzsche, child murderers and the Holocaust, with a luridly fascinating interlude for witch-hunting and the less familiar epidemics of vampires in 18th-century central Europe. The Guardian Philip Cole's work takes an important stance against the belief that we are helpless in the face if evil. Cole rejects this impotence point blank and his book is a comprehensive analysis of the theme with a cool, direct and non-nonsense approach. -- Claudia Nielsen Network Review Cole has written the best book on evil to date; it deserves a place on the shelves of both academic and public libraries. Does evil really exist? No, thinks Phillip Cole, but it is extremely useful as a political myth. His varied and interesting cultural study of the idea begins by tracing the literary development of Satan, from a part of God himself or a kind of prosecutorial accuser at God's side in the Pentateuch, to the fully fledged anti-God in the New Testament. Thence we take in Faust, Kant and Nietzsche, child murderers and the Holocaust, with a luridly fascinating interlude for witch-hunting and the less familiar epidemics of vampires in 18th-century central Europe. Philip Cole's work takes an important stance against the belief that we are helpless in the face if evil. Cole rejects this impotence point blank and his book is a comprehensive analysis of the theme with a cool, direct and non-nonsense approach.

About the Author

Phillip Cole is Professor of Applied Philosophy at the University of Wales, Newport. He is the author of The Myth of Evil (Edinburgh University Press 2006), Philosophies of Exclusion: Liberal Political Theory and Immigration (Edinburgh University Press, 2000) and The Free, the Unfree and the Excluded: A Treatise on the Conditions of Liberty (1998).

Customer Reviews

4.5 out of 5 stars
5 star
1
4 star
1
3 star
0
2 star
0
1 star
0
See both customer reviews
Share your thoughts with other customers

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In a post-Christian era, the problem of Evil is a political problem in that it is allowed to close down a debate that current events so urgently require.

In this fascinating book, Phillip Cole argues that this powerful myth (of Evil) still holds us enthralled but that it tells us very little about the real world in dealing with Terrorists or serial killers, etc, and yet it affects pages of newspaper copy and even judicial judgements. It allows a convenient closure on any rational inquiry into events that are reduced to being evil because they are evil (which tells us not a lot).

Like many, my jaw was left agape by the terrible events of 11.9.2001, but when the politicians stepped up and refused to condsider the possibility of causal connection, it had further to drop yet. Unlike Horror, Terror is without explanation at its confrontation, a fear of the unknown, apparently without cause, but its remedy cries out for exposure and understanding. Being told it was Evil full stop with all the attendant slurrs of moral relativism seemed hopelessly inadequate; was the defence of Enlightenment values (the 'Clash' of which we were warned) to be mired in this mythology of Evil?

Cole's book was badly needed to hand, as he explains the grip Evil holds and its use as a political manipulator (of a frightened and compliant public, prepared to concede its liberties). Recognition of this mythology doesn't in itself provide a political solution to problems described as Evil, but it is surely a more rational (and enlightened) basis for attempting to do so.
Read more ›
Comment 3 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse
Format: Hardcover
Most jaws dropped on 11th September 2001. And for those like me who amazingly found their jaws still had further to go when the Political reaction came on full stream in the following days, this is a reassuring book even if we have had to wait rather too long for it. Explanation we were told was exoneration and what we were fed was that loop to end all further discourse 'because it was Evil...'. And has this account actually helped at all in the intervening 5 years?

Phillip Cole's book argues convincingly that while Evil remains a powerful idea, it doesn't go beyond mythology and its use in attempting to understand human affairs is far from helpful, whether with terrorism or more traditional forms of homicide. It closes down any possible search for causes and rational explanation, let alone any solution save the most draconian; Evil, like the dragons of old or the witches of comparatively recent history, must be slain.

He does however illustrate Evil's political uses with both historical and contemporary examples in which it both frightens and closes down debate - a most useful tool of herd management.

This book was presented at the Edinburgh Book Festival together with Michael Gove's alarmist Celsius 7/7, which is a wake up call to Islamist Totalitarianism, a monster fully formed and already under our beds as we slumber. An interesting but unconvincingly narrow explanation of current anxieties where obscure Islamist conspiracy is more credible than self evident injustice and wretched lives.

I know which book I would prefer for my politicians' bedside reading.
Comment 2 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Report abuse

Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)

Amazon.com: HASH(0x94cebc94) out of 5 stars 1 review
0 of 14 people found the following review helpful
HASH(0x946dff30) out of 5 stars Evil really DOES exist-contrary to what Phillip Cole thinks 10 Mar. 2015
By T. Washington - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover
It is fashionable in some circles to decry the "demonization" of adversaries( be they terrorist groups such as the Provisional IRA, Al Qaeda and more recently Islamic State, Boko Haram) or tyrannical regimes( be they Nazi Germany during WWII, the Soviet Union- espduring the Stalinist era of the Cold War- and more recently, Vladimir Putin's Russian Federation after its annexation of the Crimea last year and mischief making in the Ukraine nowadays) after all are they not human beings as we are? Yes they are but the "enemy" be they jihadists, Soviet style Communists or Nazis is clearly demonstratably at odds with the humane and liberal values( in the case of not just jihadists but Communists and Nazis alike , they expressly reject the "infidel/bourgeois/ Jew loving" values of Western societies and their barbarous and brutal behaviour, be it in the shape of Gulags or the Holocaust for "racial inferiors" or beheading "infidels") clearly puts them at odds with us and arouses especial anger and loathing. Whilst there are instances of atrocity stories being faked during wars( at least as far back as the Crusades- my personal "favourite" is the claim that German soldiers cut the hands off a Belgian baby during WWI- no such evidence was produced for the baby's existence- we don't even know its biological sex to begin with and anyway how long could a baby live with its hands cut off?), the basic rule of thumb is that an enemy behaves with especial and avowed cruelty be it Germans or Japanese or North Koreans or Vietnamese during the respective wars, then it IS de facto "demonic"! Speaking as a religious person there REALLY is such a thing as evil and Phillip A.Cole's inability to see this is a big drawback
Was this review helpful? Let us know


Feedback