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Extended Audio Sample The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion, by Jonathan Haidt Click for printable size audiobook cover
4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 4.00 (2,343 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Jonathan Haidt Narrator: Jonathan Haidt Publisher: Gildan Audio Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date:
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Why can’t our political leaders work together as threats loom and problems mount? Why do people so readily assume the worst about the motives of their fellow citizens?

In The Righteous Mind, social psychologist Jonathan Haidt explores the origins of our divisions and points the way forward to mutual understanding. His starting point is moral intuition—the nearly instantaneous perceptions we all have about other people and the things they do. These intuitions feel like self-evident truths, making us righteously certain that those who see things differently are wrong.

Haidt shows us how these intuitions differ across cultures, including the cultures of the political left and right. He blends his own research findings with those of anthropologists, historians, and other psychologists to draw a map of the moral domain, and he explains why conservatives can navigate that map more skillfully than can liberals.

He then examines the origins of morality, overturning the view that evolution made us fundamentally selfish creatures. But rather than arguing that we are innately altruistic, he makes a more subtle claim—that we are fundamentally group-oriented. It is this need for society, he explains, that leads to our greatest joys, our religious divisions, and our political affiliations.

In a stunning final chapter on ideology and civility, Haidt shows what each side is right about and why we need the insights of liberals, conservatives, and libertarians to flourish as a nation.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “A landmark contribution to humanity’s understanding of itself…Haidt is looking for more than victory. He’s looking for wisdom. That’s what makes The Righteous Mind well worth reading.” 

    New York Times Book Review

  • “An eye-opening and deceptively ambitious best seller…undoubtedly one of the most talked-about books of the year.”

    Wall Street Journal

  • “Splendidly written, sophisticated and stimulating. It may well change how you think and talk about politics, religion, and human nature.”


  • “Ingenious prose…Beautifully written, Haidt’s book shines a new and creative light on moral psychology and presents a provocative message.”


  • “Haidt’s work feels particularly relevant now…Haidt’s perspective can help us better understand our own political and religious leanings.”

    San Francisco Chronicle

  • “Highly readable, highly insightful…The principal posture in which one envisions him is that of a scrappy, voluble, discerning patriot standing between the warring factions in American politics urging each to see the other’s viewpoint, to stop demonizing, bashing, clobbering…Haidt’s real contribution, in my judgment, is inviting us all to sit at the table.”

    Washington Times

  • “Excellent…An impressive book that should be read by anyone who has the slightest interest in how political opinions are reached.”

    Daily Beast

  • A New York Times Bestseller

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Andrea | 1/29/2014

    " A very interesting book about the psychology of morality. It was a manageable read that is not too technical. You know his political bias, but he does a good job equally representing both sides. If you are confused about why people are so divided on politics and religion, you will enjoy reading this book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Alejandro Hurtado | 1/26/2014

    " Incredibly insightful and highly recommended. It really does give a new, at least to me, perspective on something that I've wondered about for a long time. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 by Mary | 1/25/2014

    " Does a nice job explaining our uncivil political landscape. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 by Nicolo | 1/25/2014

    " Title is really boring, but the rest is really good. At moments goes beyond morality and brain science to evolutionary psychology. Good Stuff. "

  • > Show All
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