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Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings 
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Post Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
It is a mark of a true writer of genius that the innocent reader is drawn into an entire universe of creative imagination from the first breath. One finds oneself wondering wonderfully why one never yet encountered this smashing yarn before. As the first words spoken in Moby Dick put it, "But avast" (stop).

"Call me Ishmael", the famous first line of Moby Dick, opens the sense of the exotic, the Biblical, the personal, the mythic. The first google page on Ishmael only mentions Melville obliquely, with a very popular young adult's novel 'Don't Call Me Ishmael'.

The real Ishmael was Abraham's son by Haggar, and lived to 137, for those who believe the Bible to be utterly true in every jot and dimension. For those with an eye to allegory and myth, Ishmael's parents refer to the migration of the Brahmanic people from the Sarasvati and Haggar Rivers of India to Israel in 1900 BC. But that is a needless diversion that will hardly help us to understand Melville.

The evocation in this chapter is rather like the aimless young man who wishes to strike gold, or find adventure, or go to war. What Melville calls 'the watery parts of the world' are indeed very big, occupying more than seven parts in ten of our planet, and very deep, averaging three miles from surface to floor, and very vast indeed overall, containing some two billion cubic kilometers of water, all of which had been the happy sporting ground of the great whales before the Ishmaels of this world took it into their heads to share the ocean with them for danger and profit. What more jolly cure for grimness of mouth and haziness of eyes, for hypos, for intimations of death, for an empty purse, especially for a dashing young man in the dreary city swindled from the Manhatoos, than to hive off down to the sea for a spot of harpooning of the greatest creatures ever to live on our little globe?

As HM puts it in terminating this chapter, "the Fates, put me down for this shabby part of a whaling voyage, when ... the great flood-gates of the wonder-world swung open"

Chapter 1: Loomings
http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2701/270 ... m#2HCH0001

Call me Ishmael. Some years ago—never mind how long precisely—having little or no money in my purse, and nothing particular to interest me on shore, I thought I would sail about a little and see the watery part of the world. It is a way I have of driving off the spleen and regulating the circulation. Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet; and especially whenever my hypos get such an upper hand of me, that it requires a strong moral principle to prevent me from deliberately stepping into the street, and methodically knocking people's hats off—then, I account it high time to get to sea as soon as I can. This is my substitute for pistol and ball. With a philosophical flourish Cato throws himself upon his sword; I quietly take to the ship. There is nothing surprising in this. If they but knew it, almost all men in their degree, some time or other, cherish very nearly the same feelings towards the ocean with me.

There now is your insular city of the Manhattoes, belted round by wharves as Indian isles by coral reefs—commerce surrounds it with her surf. Right and left, the streets take you waterward. Its extreme downtown is the battery, where that noble mole is washed by waves, and cooled by breezes, which a few hours previous were out of sight of land. Look at the crowds of water-gazers there.

Circumambulate the city of a dreamy Sabbath afternoon. Go from Corlears Hook to Coenties Slip, and from thence, by Whitehall, northward. What do you see?—Posted like silent sentinels all around the town, stand thousands upon thousands of mortal men fixed in ocean reveries. Some leaning against the spiles; some seated upon the pier-heads; some looking over the bulwarks of ships from China; some high aloft in the rigging, as if striving to get a still better seaward peep. But these are all landsmen; of week days pent up in lath and plaster—tied to counters, nailed to benches, clinched to desks. How then is this? Are the green fields gone? What do they here?

But look! here come more crowds, pacing straight for the water, and seemingly bound for a dive. Strange! Nothing will content them but the extremest limit of the land; loitering under the shady lee of yonder warehouses will not suffice. No. They must get just as nigh the water as they possibly can without falling in. And there they stand—miles of them—leagues. Inlanders all, they come from lanes and alleys, streets and avenues—north, east, south, and west. Yet here they all unite. Tell me, does the magnetic virtue of the needles of the compasses of all those ships attract them thither?

Once more. Say you are in the country; in some high land of lakes. Take almost any path you please, and ten to one it carries you down in a dale, and leaves you there by a pool in the stream. There is magic in it. Let the most absent-minded of men be plunged in his deepest reveries—stand that man on his legs, set his feet a-going, and he will infallibly lead you to water, if water there be in all that region. Should you ever be athirst in the great American desert, try this experiment, if your caravan happen to be supplied with a metaphysical professor. Yes, as every one knows, meditation and water are wedded for ever.

But here is an artist. He desires to paint you the dreamiest, shadiest, quietest, most enchanting bit of romantic landscape in all the valley of the Saco. What is the chief element he employs? There stand his trees, each with a hollow trunk, as if a hermit and a crucifix were within; and here sleeps his meadow, and there sleep his cattle; and up from yonder cottage goes a sleepy smoke. Deep into distant woodlands winds a mazy way, reaching to overlapping spurs of mountains bathed in their hill-side blue. But though the picture lies thus tranced, and though this pine-tree shakes down its sighs like leaves upon this shepherd's head, yet all were vain, unless the shepherd's eye were fixed upon the magic stream before him. Go visit the Prairies in June, when for scores on scores of miles you wade knee-deep among Tiger-lilies—what is the one charm wanting?—Water—there is not a drop of water there! Were Niagara but a cataract of sand, would you travel your thousand miles to see it? Why did the poor poet of Tennessee, upon suddenly receiving two handfuls of silver, deliberate whether to buy him a coat, which he sadly needed, or invest his money in a pedestrian trip to Rockaway Beach? Why is almost every robust healthy boy with a robust healthy soul in him, at some time or other crazy to go to sea? Why upon your first voyage as a passenger, did you yourself feel such a mystical vibration, when first told that you and your ship were now out of sight of land? Why did the old Persians hold the sea holy? Why did the Greeks give it a separate deity, and own brother of Jove? Surely all this is not without meaning. And still deeper the meaning of that story of Narcissus, who because he could not grasp the tormenting, mild image he saw in the fountain, plunged into it and was drowned. But that same image, we ourselves see in all rivers and oceans. It is the image of the ungraspable phantom of life; and this is the key to it all.

Now, when I say that I am in the habit of going to sea whenever I begin to grow hazy about the eyes, and begin to be over conscious of my lungs, I do not mean to have it inferred that I ever go to sea as a passenger. For to go as a passenger you must needs have a purse, and a purse is but a rag unless you have something in it. Besides, passengers get sea-sick—grow quarrelsome—don't sleep of nights—do not enjoy themselves much, as a general thing;—no, I never go as a passenger; nor, though I am something of a salt, do I ever go to sea as a Commodore, or a Captain, or a Cook. I abandon the glory and distinction of such offices to those who like them. For my part, I abominate all honourable respectable toils, trials, and tribulations of every kind whatsoever. It is quite as much as I can do to take care of myself, without taking care of ships, barques, brigs, schooners, and what not. And as for going as cook,—though I confess there is considerable glory in that, a cook being a sort of officer on ship-board—yet, somehow, I never fancied broiling fowls;—though once broiled, judiciously buttered, and judgmatically salted and peppered, there is no one who will speak more respectfully, not to say reverentially, of a broiled fowl than I will. It is out of the idolatrous dotings of the old Egyptians upon broiled ibis and roasted river horse, that you see the mummies of those creatures in their huge bake-houses the pyramids.

No, when I go to sea, I go as a simple sailor, right before the mast, plumb down into the forecastle, aloft there to the royal mast-head. True, they rather order me about some, and make me jump from spar to spar, like a grasshopper in a May meadow. And at first, this sort of thing is unpleasant enough. It touches one's sense of honour, particularly if you come of an old established family in the land, the Van Rensselaers, or Randolphs, or Hardicanutes. And more than all, if just previous to putting your hand into the tar-pot, you have been lording it as a country schoolmaster, making the tallest boys stand in awe of you. The transition is a keen one, I assure you, from a schoolmaster to a sailor, and requires a strong decoction of Seneca and the Stoics to enable you to grin and bear it. But even this wears off in time.

What of it, if some old hunks of a sea-captain orders me to get a broom and sweep down the decks? What does that indignity amount to, weighed, I mean, in the scales of the New Testament? Do you think the archangel Gabriel thinks anything the less of me, because I promptly and respectfully obey that old hunks in that particular instance? Who ain't a slave? Tell me that. Well, then, however the old sea-captains may order me about—however they may thump and punch me about, I have the satisfaction of knowing that it is all right; that everybody else is one way or other served in much the same way—either in a physical or metaphysical point of view, that is; and so the universal thump is passed round, and all hands should rub each other's shoulder-blades, and be content.

Again, I always go to sea as a sailor, because they make a point of paying me for my trouble, whereas they never pay passengers a single penny that I ever heard of. On the contrary, passengers themselves must pay. And there is all the difference in the world between paying and being paid. The act of paying is perhaps the most uncomfortable infliction that the two orchard thieves entailed upon us. But BEING PAID,—what will compare with it? The urbane activity with which a man receives money is really marvellous, considering that we so earnestly believe money to be the root of all earthly ills, and that on no account can a monied man enter heaven. Ah! how cheerfully we consign ourselves to perdition!

Finally, I always go to sea as a sailor, because of the wholesome exercise and pure air of the fore-castle deck. For as in this world, head winds are far more prevalent than winds from astern (that is, if you never violate the Pythagorean maxim), so for the most part the Commodore on the quarter-deck gets his atmosphere at second hand from the sailors on the forecastle. He thinks he breathes it first; but not so. In much the same way do the commonalty lead their leaders in many other things, at the same time that the leaders little suspect it. But wherefore it was that after having repeatedly smelt the sea as a merchant sailor, I should now take it into my head to go on a whaling voyage; this the invisible police officer of the Fates, who has the constant surveillance of me, and secretly dogs me, and influences me in some unaccountable way—he can better answer than any one else. And, doubtless, my going on this whaling voyage, formed part of the grand programme of Providence that was drawn up a long time ago. It came in as a sort of brief interlude and solo between more extensive performances. I take it that this part of the bill must have run something like this:

"GRAND CONTESTED ELECTION FOR THE PRESIDENCY OF THE UNITED STATES.
"WHALING VOYAGE BY ONE ISHMAEL.
"BLOODY BATTLE IN AFFGHANISTAN."
Though I cannot tell why it was exactly that those stage managers, the Fates, put me down for this shabby part of a whaling voyage, when others were set down for magnificent parts in high tragedies, and short and easy parts in genteel comedies, and jolly parts in farces—though I cannot tell why this was exactly; yet, now that I recall all the circumstances, I think I can see a little into the springs and motives which being cunningly presented to me under various disguises, induced me to set about performing the part I did, besides cajoling me into the delusion that it was a choice resulting from my own unbiased freewill and discriminating judgment.

Chief among these motives was the overwhelming idea of the great whale himself. Such a portentous and mysterious monster roused all my curiosity. Then the wild and distant seas where he rolled his island bulk; the undeliverable, nameless perils of the whale; these, with all the attending marvels of a thousand Patagonian sights and sounds, helped to sway me to my wish. With other men, perhaps, such things would not have been inducements; but as for me, I am tormented with an everlasting itch for things remote. I love to sail forbidden seas, and land on barbarous coasts. Not ignoring what is good, I am quick to perceive a horror, and could still be social with it—would they let me—since it is but well to be on friendly terms with all the inmates of the place one lodges in.

By reason of these things, then, the whaling voyage was welcome; the great flood-gates of the wonder-world swung open, and in the wild conceits that swayed me to my purpose, two and two there floated into my inmost soul, endless processions of the whale, and, mid most of them all, one grand hooded phantom, like a snow hill in the air.

Chapter Two - http://www.gutenberg.org/files/2701/270 ... m#2HCH0002


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Wow, that is certainly marvelous writing. I wonder what it cost Melville to produce that. There's no doubt after one reads that opening that Melville is after big literary game, being unafraid to attempt to rival even the Old Testament in epic portentousness. I doubt that we'll see a single echo of that softer, un-tragic book, the New Testament of the Bible. And yet, is there a playfulness under the surface, as Ismael revels in his own inventive imagination?

I was in my mid-20s when I first read this book. I recall it was during cramming for lit comprehensives that I figured I needed to read Moby-Dick. A big mistake to read it or probably any great book in that frenzied way. I felt punished by the book and was glad to put it down when done with it. I don't have a memory of that opening chapter producing great admiration in me, which is a pity.

Thinking ahead to the parts of the book that most puzzle readers--the sections on whaling--I can connect them with Ishmael's introduction because like it, they are arguments, arguments about whales and whaling.

I don't know if I have the time right now to re-read the book. I'll try, and am intrigued by the prospect of having a very different experience with it.


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
I like that you've posted the whole chapters.

Maybe at the top you should really make it clear that this is the entire chapter. Use a larger font and make it bold.

I did it for you. I just think people will then know that that long post is actually the chapter and not your review. :)



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Absolutely brilliant. Have never read the book. For some reason I thought it was all about gloomy revenge and stormy seas. His writing takes one's breath away. He wittily describes his melancholia in an incredibly long sentence within the first three lines, 'Whenever I find myself growing grim about the mouth; whenever it is a damp, drizzly November in my soul; whenever I find myself involuntarily pausing before coffin warehouses, and bringing up the rear of every funeral I meet;. . .'
and the whole narrative rushes and bubbles forward.


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
In my version the notes comment on his imaginary poster:
"GRAND CONTESTED ELECTION FOR THE PRESIDENCY OF THE UNITED STATES.
"WHALING VOYAGE BY ONE ISHMAEL.
"BLOODY BATTLE IN AFFGHANISTAN."

'The prescience of these headlines was noted in 2004, after the United States had invaded Afghanistan following the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, and during the contested presidential election between Al Gore and George W. Bush.' Weird!


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
I would worry about your notes. It is not prescient, it is perennial. In this world nothing can be said to be certain, except grand contested presidential elections and bloody battles in Afghanistan. Didn't Franklin say something like that?

And I truly wonder at your notegiver's sense of reality if they consider a headline about some obscure whale killer a miraculous prophecy. H. Melville - American prophet - predicts elections will be held for Presidency. Such perception!

8) :wink:

There is a wonderfully self-deprecating sense of providential irony here. Melville's grandfathers were both heroes of the revolution, so his decline in status to a money grubbing slaughterer in the abattoirs of the high seas was keenly felt. Melville would have understood Conrad's point that "The conquest of the earth, which mostly means the taking it away from those who have a different complexion or slightly flatter noses than ourselves, is not a pretty thing when you look into it too much. What redeems it is the idea only." Whaling sought redemption in the providential idea of comparison to high politics, when really people do it because it is a job, and shut away any sense of the beauty and dignity of the whale.


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
No name attributed to the notes. Perhaps he should have called it a coincidence


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 Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
I'm in an unusual position here, because I was 2/3rd (well, 66%) through the book when I came across the forum. So I'm starting again. I have no doubt it'll be worth it. Already reading again brings greater clarity.
I too had expected sombre meaningfulness and high drama, and a lot of boredom (recalled from a much earlier reading). The delight Ishmael gives me now is therefore doubly treasured. He's such an extraordinary narrator. So high-spirited, so devil-may-care, so funny, so philosophical in such an entertaining way.

BTW - I don't think it's the whole chapter posted up above?



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Welcome to the discussion, Chris27. :-)

From my online source that is indeed the entire chapter. If you find a longer chapter let us know.

And I agree that reading this classic a second or even third time will bring greater clarity. I'm sure you'll enjoy it. If I were in your shoes I'd start again too. It is nice to be able to join an active discussion and move along at the same pace as everyone else.



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
:blush: Sorry - I just didn't scroll slowly enough, I guess.



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Chris27 wrote:
I'm in an unusual position here, because I was 2/3rd (well, 66%) through the book when I came across the forum. So I'm starting again. I have no doubt it'll be worth it. Already reading again brings greater clarity.
I too had expected sombre meaningfulness and high drama, and a lot of boredom (recalled from a much earlier reading). The delight Ishmael gives me now is therefore doubly treasured. He's such an extraordinary narrator. So high-spirited, so devil-may-care, so funny, so philosophical in such an entertaining way.

BTW - I don't think it's the whole chapter posted up above?


Hello Chris, welcome, and thank you kindly for joining our quiet nook. I'm intrigued by your precision regarding how far you had ploughed through this whale of a book. Many would not quibble about a point repeater and would even accept that pi is three.

Melville is short, sharp and to the point, making one word do the work of ten. So it is hardly surprising that the length of a chapter would expand in the recollection, since so many vivid imaginaries tumble upon one another haphazard. Not for Melville the long chapter where the reader dreams of cheering up on seeing land in sight, as the cynic Diogenes once said. Rather like a Mystic clam chowder, something small and ordinary has a way of growing in the fondness of the mind's eye, and a sentence becomes fabled as a whole novel.


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
My apparent precision was a shorthand for 'I'm reading on a Kindle', which is no substitute for a real book, though it handily gives the illusion that it might be possible to read or re-read a huge collection of classics.
I shall from now on think of Ishmael as a Mystic Clam.

(Now I've read the posts on Chapter 2 and discovered Mystic is a place!. My cultural referents are almost entirely British, so I have a lot to learn, just geographically.)



Last edited by Chris27 on Fri Mar 02, 2012 2:34 am, edited 1 time in total.



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
This is my first attempt at reading Moby Dick and quite frankly I am a little nervous. I probably won't get all or even most of what it is trying to say.

I have the Wordsworth Classics paperback. This is what it says on the back cover:

The book is written in an extraordinary variety of styles, from sailors slang to biblical prophesy and Shakespearian rant. It can be read as an exciting sea story, a sociological critique of American class and racial prejudices, a repository of information about whaling and a philosophical inquiry into the structure of good and evil. Ignored for many years after its first publication Moby Dick is now recognised as one of the greatest novels of American literature.

I'll try not to sweat over it but try and enjoy it the best I can.



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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Damifino - nice to be in a discussion with you again. I was a little dubious too, but now really enjoying it.


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Post Re: Moby Dick Chapter 1 Loomings
Robert Tulip wrote:
Who ain't a slave? Tell me that. Well, then, however the old sea-captains may order me about—however they may thump and punch me about, I have the satisfaction of knowing that it is all right; that everybody else is one way or other served in much the same way—either in a physical or metaphysical point of view, that is; and so the universal thump is passed round, and all hands should rub each other's shoulder-blades, and be content.


This is my favorite passage in chapter 1



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Sense and Goodness Without God - by Richard CarrierFrankenstein - by Mary ShelleyThe Big Questions - by Simon BlackburnScience Was Born of Christianity - by Stacy TrasancosThe Happiness Hypothesis - by Jonathan HaidtA Game of Thrones - by George R. R. MartinTempesta's Dream - by Vincent LoCocoWhy Nations Fail - by Daron Acemoglu and James RobinsonThe Drowning Girl - Caitlin R. KiernanThe Consolations of the Forest - by Sylvain TessonThe Complete Heretic's Guide to Western Religion: The Mormons - by David FitzgeraldA Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man - by James JoyceThe Divine Comedy - by Dante AlighieriThe Magic of Reality - by Richard DawkinsDubliners - by James JoyceMy Name Is Red - by Orhan PamukThe World Until Yesterday - by Jared DiamondThe Man Who Was Thursday - by by G. K. ChestertonThe Better Angels of Our Nature by Steven PinkerLord Jim by Joseph ConradThe Hobbit by J. R. R. TolkienThe Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy by Douglas AdamsAtlas Shrugged by Ayn RandThinking, Fast and Slow - by Daniel KahnemanThe Righteous Mind - by Jonathan HaidtWorld War Z: An Oral History of the Zombie War by Max BrooksMoby Dick: or, the Whale by Herman MelvilleA Visit from the Goon Squad by Jennifer EganLost Memory of Skin: A Novel by Russell BanksThe Structure of Scientific Revolutions by Thomas S. KuhnHobbes: Leviathan by Thomas HobbesThe House of the Spirits - by Isabel AllendeArguably: Essays by Christopher HitchensThe Falls: A Novel (P.S.) by Joyce Carol OatesChrist in Egypt by D.M. MurdockThe Glass Bead Game: A Novel by Hermann HesseA Devil's Chaplain by Richard DawkinsThe Hero with a Thousand Faces by Joseph CampbellThe Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor DostoyevskyThe Adventures of Huckleberry Finn by Mark TwainThe Moral Landscape by Sam HarrisThe Decameron by Giovanni BoccaccioThe Road by Cormac McCarthyThe Grand Design by Stephen HawkingThe Evolution of God by Robert WrightThe Tin Drum by Gunter GrassGood Omens by Neil GaimanPredictably Irrational by Dan ArielyThe Wind-Up Bird Chronicle: A Novel by Haruki MurakamiALONE: Orphaned on the Ocean by Richard Logan & Tere Duperrault FassbenderDon Quixote by Miguel De CervantesMusicophilia by Oliver SacksDiary of a Madman and Other Stories by Nikolai GogolThe Passion of the Western Mind by Richard TarnasThe Left Hand of Darkness by Ursula K. Le GuinThe Genius of the Beast by Howard BloomAlice's Adventures in Wonderland by Lewis Carroll Empire of Illusion by Chris HedgesThe Sound and the Fury by William Faulkner The Extended Phenotype by Richard DawkinsSmoke and Mirrors by Neil GaimanThe Selfish Gene by Richard DawkinsWhen Good Thinking Goes Bad by Todd C. RinioloHouse of Leaves by Mark Z. DanielewskiAmerican Gods: A Novel by Neil GaimanPrimates and Philosophers by Frans de WaalThe Enormous Room by E.E. CummingsThe Picture of Dorian Gray by Oscar WildeGod Is Not Great: How Religion Poisons Everything by Christopher HitchensThe Name of the Rose by Umberto Eco Dreams From My Father by Barack Obama Paradise Lost by John Milton Bad Money by Kevin PhillipsThe Secret Garden by Frances Hodgson BurnettGodless: How an Evangelical Preacher Became One of America's Leading Atheists by Dan BarkerThe Things They Carried by Tim O'BrienThe Limits of Power by Andrew BacevichLolita by Vladimir NabokovOrlando by Virginia Woolf On Being Certain by Robert A. Burton50 reasons people give for believing in a god by Guy P. HarrisonWalden: Or, Life in the Woods by Henry David ThoreauExile and the Kingdom by Albert CamusOur Inner Ape by Frans de WaalYour Inner Fish by Neil ShubinNo Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthyThe Age of American Unreason by Susan JacobyTen Theories of Human Nature by Leslie Stevenson & David HabermanHeart of Darkness by Joseph ConradThe Stuff of Thought by Stephen PinkerA Thousand Splendid Suns by Khaled HosseiniThe Lucifer Effect by Philip ZimbardoResponsibility and Judgment by Hannah ArendtInterventions by Noam ChomskyGodless in America by George A. RickerReligious Expression and the American Constitution by Franklyn S. HaimanDeep Economy by Phil McKibbenThe God Delusion by Richard DawkinsThe Third Chimpanzee by Jared DiamondThe Woman in the Dunes by Abe KoboEvolution vs. Creationism by Eugenie C. ScottThe Omnivore's Dilemma by Michael PollanI, Claudius by Robert GravesBreaking The Spell by Daniel C. DennettA Peace to End All Peace by David FromkinThe Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey NiffeneggerThe End of Faith by Sam HarrisEnder's Game by Orson Scott CardThe Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-Time by Mark HaddonValue and Virtue in a Godless Universe by Erik J. WielenbergThe March by E. L DoctorowThe Ethical Brain by Michael GazzanigaFreethinkers: A History of American Secularism by Susan JacobyCollapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared DiamondThe Battle for God by Karen ArmstrongThe Future of Life by Edward O. WilsonWhat is Good? by A. C. GraylingCivilization and Its Enemies by Lee HarrisPale Blue Dot by Carl SaganHow We Believe: Science, Skepticism, and the Search for God by Michael ShermerLooking for Spinoza by Antonio DamasioLies and the Lying Liars Who Tell Them by Al FrankenThe Red Queen by Matt RidleyThe Blank Slate by Stephen PinkerUnweaving the Rainbow by Richard DawkinsAtheism: A Reader edited by S.T. JoshiGlobal Brain by Howard BloomThe Lucifer Principle by Howard BloomGuns, Germs and Steel by Jared DiamondThe Demon-Haunted World by Carl SaganBury My Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee BrownFuture Shock by Alvin Toffler

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