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Extended Audio Sample A Conflict of Visions: Ideological Origins of Political Struggles, by Thomas Sowell Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (597 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Thomas Sowell Narrator: Michael Edwards Publisher: Blackstone Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Controversies in politics arise from many sources, but the conlficts that endure for generations or centuries show a remarkably consistent pattern.

In this book, which the author calls a “culmination of thirty years of work in the history of ideas,” Sowell attempts to explain the ideological difference between liberals and conservatives as a disagreement over the moral potential inherent in nature. Those who see that potential as limited prefer to constrain governmental authority, he argues. They feel that reform is difficult and often dangerous, and they put their faith in family, custom, law, and traditional institutions. Conversely, those who have faith in human nature prefer to remove institutional and traditional constraints. Controversies over such diverse issues as criminal justice, income distribution, or war and peace repeatedly show an ideological divide along the lines of these two conflicting visions.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “Extraordinary…[Sowell] makes his case fairly, lucidly, and persuasively.”

    New York Times Book Review

  • “A provocative analysis of the conflicting visions of human nature that have shaped the moral, legal, and economic life of recent times…His discussion of how these conflicting attitudes ultimately produce clashes over equality, social justice, and other issues is instructive.”

    Publishers Weekly

  • “The book builds a convincing case that ethical and policy disputes are ultimately based on the differences in these visions. It covers a wide variety of political, philosophical, and economic thought…An important contribution to our understanding of current social issues.”

    Library Journal

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Dianna | 2/19/2014

    " Excellent information, but does not flow as well as his later works. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Brannon | 2/16/2014

    " Amazing read. It fundamentally changed how I think and how I look at politics and philosophy. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 by Dave | 2/12/2014

    " Forget everything you ever thought you knew about free markets..... 99.99999% of you don't have a clue. For enlightenment read this book. After reading this you realize the world is full of idiots pretending to be informed. Especially in the cable news channels and to a greater extent the business new channels also. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Nanette | 2/11/2014

    " A very thought-provoking read that discusses the beginnings and fundamental differences between the constrained and unconstrained visions (i.e. the two main political parties). It will be a must read for my children. I'm buying the book. "

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