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Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s) 
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Post Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)


The time has come to vote on our September and October book selection! Please read this entire post BEFORE you cast your vote. It contains important information, including some changes that may affect you.

To begin with we now have a Community Guidelines page. Here you will find 4 rules for the BookTalk community. Pay special attention to Rule 2 and 4, as they pertain to the book selection process.




1. Please do NOT vote if you have not made at least 10 posts to our forums, as per Rule 4.

2. Please do NOT ask friends, family, or ANYONE to come to BookTalk and cast a vote in this poll. The poll is for active BookTalk members that have made at least 10 quality contributions to our forums.

Those people you drag in to influence the vote in your favor will probably never join and will screw up the polling process. This is cheating. You're welcome to tell people about BookTalk, and get them interested enough to join. But they MUST make at least 10 quality posts in order for their vote to be counted.

3. And please do NOT cast a vote yourself if you don't plan on reading and discussing the book. We have message boards and a chat room. Please participate!

4. The moment you have cast your vote you MUST post your book selection in this thread. Your vote will NOT be counted if you have not told everyone the name of the book you picked....no exceptions.

We no longer allow members to send an email telling what book they picked. There is too much room for cheating with this technique. We all deserve to know the names of each BookTalk member that casts a vote, and the book they selected. Thank you!




We have 3 choices in this poll. Please think hard about what book will be the most educational, entertaining, and worthy of discussion. No matter which book wins we will be asking either the author, or a representative of the author, to be our guest in the BookTalk chat room.

NOTE:

We will need 2 discussion leaders that are willing to be very active in the reading and discussion of the winning book. Please don't nominate yourself if you will not be active. Being active means checking the forum just about every day and making posts regularly.

It does not entail being an authority on the subject matter or defending the author's position. You simply need to stimulate discussion. Interested? Let me know!

And here are our 3 choices for September and October 2004.


drum roll please...




What is Good? by A.C. Grayling

Review by PeterDF of BookTalk.org...

Secular ethics is a subject that we don't often discuss in Booktalk, maybe this book will inspire us to explore it in more detail.

Anthony Grayling may not be known very well across "the pond". We first came across him at a recent literary festival near where we live. He writes a column in "The Times" in which he reviews books. He was a judge in this year's "Mann Booker Prize for Fiction" and he frequently appears on radio and television over here. He was a charming, witty, approachable and urbane speaker and very well informed about science and its recent impact on philosophical thought.


Here are a couple of quotes from the book:

Quote:

"One main opponent" (to enlightenment rationalism) " - as a matter of historical fact - the main opponent - is religion, which claims that revelation in any form from mystical experience to dictation of scriptures by a deity, conveys from outside the world of ordinary experience truths undiscoverable by human enquiry within it."

Quote:

"...if there is indeed conscious design in the universe, the most that its presence entails is a designer of designers; it tells us nothing about how many, who or what they were and certainly not that it or they fit the notions of a particular religious tradition. Moreover, since suffering and death, the preying of animal upon animal, natural disasters and plagues, deformities, pain and anguish seem to be part of the design, it is not as good as it might be, so if there were indeed a designer, it's clear it could have done with more practice..."

But this book is more than a polemic against religion - it is an exploration of humanistic thought and how it has developed in the three great enlightenments of Classical Greece, the renaissance and the more recent enlightenment in the 18th and 19th Century.

There are some fascinating revelations in this book. I found his description of stoicism as a powerful, intelligent, mature, thoughtful and insightful philosophy, informed as it was by the ancient wisdom of Socrates to be compelling. And I found the Christians' dismissal of it with one word - paganism - shocking.

Grayling's vocabulary is extensive and he uses it with considerable relish so you might want to keep a dictionary near when you read it. But don't be put off. I found this to be the most enjoyable book I have read for years
.




The Future of Life by Edward O. Wilson

Amazon.com

The eminent Harvard naturalist and Pulitzer Prize winner Edward Wilson marshals all the prodigious powers of his intellect and imagination in this impassioned call to ensure the future of life. Opening with an imagined conversation with Henry David Thoreau at Walden Pond, he writes that he has come "to explain to you, and in reality to others and not least to myself, what has happened to the world we both have loved." Based on a love affair with the natural world that spans 70 years, Wilson combines lyrical descriptions with dire warnings and remarkable stories of flora and fauna on the edge of extinction with hard economics. How many species are we really losing? Is environmentalism truly contrary to economic development? And how can we save the planet? Wilson has penned an eloquent plea for the need for a global land ethic and offers the strategies necessary to ensure life on earth based on foresight, moral courage, and the best tools that science and technology can provide. -- Lesley Reed

Book Description

From one of the world's most influential scientists (and two-time Pulitzer Prize



Sat Aug 14, 2004 7:21 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
I checked amazon for What is Good, anticipating its victory...and it says 'out of print' and unavailable!!!

There are used copies avail from the UK with 7-10 day shipping.

Hopefully the out of stock thing is temporary.

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of Pain




Sat Aug 14, 2004 8:30 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
There appear to be plenty of used books available. So many people are interested in reading this I feared they would kill me if I didn't include it on this poll.

Chris

"For Every Winner, There Are Dozens Of Losers. Odds Are You're One Of Them"




Sat Aug 14, 2004 8:45 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Oh, I voted for What is Good? by A.C. Grayling. And I assume you did too Mr. P.

Chris

"For Every Winner, There Are Dozens Of Losers. Odds Are You're One Of Them"




Sat Aug 14, 2004 8:46 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Yes i did. I may order it from the independent sellers and wait the 7-10 days.

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of Pain




Sat Aug 14, 2004 10:49 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Dammit Chris, you drop that falsehood about amazon not having "what is good" and then close the forum. They have it here www.amazon.co.uk/exec/obidos/ASIN/0753817551for GBP 4.99: exactly $7.35. Now I know the postage would be a little more but seven dollars and thirty five cents is NOT too much for a BookTalk book.


If you make yourself really small, you can externalize virtually everything. Daniel Dennett, 1984




Sun Aug 15, 2004 12:44 am
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Jeremy

Have you noticed its on the poll? and that I voted for it?

Chris

"For Every Winner, There Are Dozens Of Losers. Odds Are You're One Of Them"




Sun Aug 15, 2004 1:28 am
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Jeremy:

amazon price is 3.99 pounds ($7.35) and shipping to NJ, 5-7 days is 4.00 pounds ($7.37)

So it is inexpensive at a total of $15.00 or so.

Alright alright...no need for I told ya so's!

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of Pain




Sun Aug 15, 2004 7:54 am
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
You can also get a copy of What is Good? used. I bought one already as I plan to read the book whether or not it wins in the poll.

Chris

"For Every Winner, There Are Dozens Of Losers. Odds Are You're One Of Them"




Sun Aug 15, 2004 10:38 am
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
I gotta wait until next paycheck...money being tight and all.

I will get it no matter what too.

Mr. P.

The one thing of which I am positive is that there is much of which to be negative - Mr. P.

I came to get down, I came to get down. So get out ya seat and jump around - House of Pain




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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Add me to the getting What is Good no matter what list. I voted for it and if it wins I will finally not have my reading time cut short by library return date. Yay!




Sun Aug 15, 2004 11:46 am
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
ROFL! No! :rollin

Chris

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Mon Aug 16, 2004 1:00 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
deadcity12
Quote:
. . .the future of life. if it doesn't win,
. . . then ALL bets are pretty much off, aren't they? Oh wait, did you mean the BOOK?


If you make yourself really small, you can externalize virtually everything. Daniel Dennett, 1984




Mon Aug 16, 2004 3:06 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
I voted for What Is Good? by Grayling. BTW- deadcity12: Do not fret, for as this poll shows, a losing book from a former poll can do well on the next poll. Many of us are interested in reading Wilson, myself included.




Mon Aug 16, 2004 4:42 pm
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Post Re: Official Poll - Sept/Oct 2004 Book of the Month(s)
Future of life, 'cause I haven't read any of Wilson's books.




Tue Aug 17, 2004 6:05 am
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