The Political Mind

  • by George Lakoff
  • Narrated by Kent Cassella
  • 8 hrs and 30 mins
  • Unabridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

You can't understand 21st-century American politics with an 18th-century brain....In What's the Matter with Kansas? Thomas Frank pointed out that a great number of Americans actually vote against their own interests. In The Political Mind, George Lakoff explains why.As it turns out, human beings are not the rational creatures we've so long imagined ourselves to be. Ideas, morals, and values do not exist somewhere outside the body, ready to be examined and put to use. Instead, they exist quite literally inside the brain - and they take physical shape there. For example, we form particular kinds of narratives in our minds just like we form specific muscle memories such as typing or dancing, and then we fit new information into those narratives. Getting that information out of one narrative type and into another - or building a whole new narrative altogether - can be as hard as learning to play the banjo. Changing your mind isn't like changing your body - it's the same thing.But as long as progressive politicians and activists persist in believing that people use an objective system of reasoning to decide on their politics, the Democrats will continue to lose elections. They must wrest control of the terms of the debate from their opponents rather than accepting their frame and trying to argue within it.This passionate, erudite, and groundbreaking book will appeal to readers of Steven Pinker and Thomas Frank. It is a fascinating read for anyone interested in how the mind works, how society works, and how they work together.


What the Critics Say

"His conclusion - that if citizens and policy-makers better understand brain functioning, hope exists to ameliorate global warming and other societal disasters in the making - will be of vital importance and interest to all readers." (Publishers Weekly)


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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

One of the most important political books

This book explains how a someone can talk to people with the same beliefs and go over the heads of the opposition without them realizing it. It exposes the trap of getting your opposition to use the same terms (frames), which actually strengthens your own position.
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- Steve Kelem

Good story, unacceptable performance

Who would you have cast as narrator instead of Kent Cassella?

There are many very good narrators and all of them would fit. Unfortunately, Kent Cassella made a very bad job here. I don't know any other of his performances and I hope I won't have to know. This was probably the worst narration I have ever listened to. One could think that Kent Cassella is going to win a sort of fast-reading grand prix.

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- Marcin

Book Details

  • Release Date: 09-17-2008
  • Publisher: Tantor Audio