The Righteous Mind: Why Good People Are Divided by Politics and Religion

Unabridged Audiobook

Release Date
July 2012
11 hours 0 minutes
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 groupish. It is our groupishness, 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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Carolyn D.

One of the best books I have ever had to pleasure of reading. I loved listening to it so much, I'm actually going to buy the hard copy. Would highly recommend!

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Samantha D.

This is an amazing, thought-provoking book. It starts a bit too dense, but then it really takes off. It’s helped me understand the world a bit better, I think.

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Louis V H.

As a psychologist myself, I really wanted to like this book. However, I found some of Haidt's ultimate conclusions and wisdom of trying to finding middle ground pretty out of touch with today's reality. Moreover, this is fairly privileged position and overlooks the experiences and perspective of marginalized communities. Advocating for a centrist or moderate position perpetuates the status quo and fails to address the systemic inequities and social injustices that disproportionately affects marginalized groups. Haidt speaks of the "gays" like they're collateral damage and makes no mention at all of impact of intersectionality, including the existence of trans people. I was really disappointed overall with this book.

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Richard F.

Very good read

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Mark T

Interesting book. While I don't agree with a good portion of it as I thought it was too long and I don't believe in molecules to man evolution, I did enjoy the last part of the book as well as his explanations (6 Moral Modules). I did appreciate him explaining the graphs which of course you don't see on a audiobook. It was well worth the purchase.

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