Intellectuals and Society

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Intellectuals and Society
cover
Cover of the first English edition
Author(s) Thomas Sowell
Country London
Language English
Genre(s) Politics
Publisher Basic Books
Publication year 2011
Pages 680
ISBN 0465025226

Back Cover Text

This much revised and reorganized edition of Intellectuals and Society is more than half again larger than the first edition. Four new chapters have been added on intellectuals and race, including a chapter on race and intelligence.

These new chapters show the radically different views of race prevailing among the intelligentsia at the beginning of the twentieth century and at the end-- and yet how each of these opposite views of race had the same dogmatic quality and the same refusal to countenance differing opinions among their contemporaries, much less engage dissenting opinions in serious debate. Moreover, each of these very different views of race produced flourishes of rhetoric and travesties of logic, leading to dire social consequences, though of very different sorts in the two eras.

Other additions to this edition include a critique of John Rawls' conception or justice and a re-examination of the so-called "trickle-down theory" behind "tax cuts for the rich." There are other revisions, from the preface to the final chapter, the latter being extensively rewritten to bring together and highlight the themes of the other chapters, and to make unmistakably clear what Intellectuals and Society is, and is not, seeking to do.

About the Author

Thomas Sowell has taught economic at Cornell, UCLA, Amherst, and other academic institutions, and his book Basic Economics has been translated into six languages. He is currently a scholar in residence at the Hoover Institution, Stanford University. He has published in both academic journals and such popular media as the Wall Street Journal, Investor's Business Daily, Forbes, and Fortune, and he writes a syndicated column that appears in newspapers across the country.

Table of Contents

Preface v

Acknowledgements x

Part I:Introduction

Chapter 1: Intellect and Intellectuals

  • Intelligence Versus Intellect 4
    • The Intelligentsia 7
  • Ideas and Accountability 7
    • Verifiability 8
    • Accountability 10

Chapter 2: Knowledge and Notions

  • Competing Concepts of Knowledge 15
    • Concentration and Dispersion of Knowledge 17
    • Experts 25
  • The Role of Reason 29
    • Reason and Justification 29
    • "One Day at a Time" Rationalism 34

Part II: Intellectuals and Economics

Chapter 3: "Income Distribution"

  • Empirical Evidence 42
  • Moral Consideration 48
  • The Poor as Consumers 53

Chapter 4: Economic Systems

  • Chaos Versus Competition 59
  • Zero-Sum Economics 69

Chapter 5: Government and the Economy

  • Business 75
    • Management 75
    • Business "Power" or "Control" 78
  • Recessions and Depressions 84

Part III: Intellectuals and Social Visions

Chapter 6: A Conflict of Visions

  • Opposing Social Visions 94
  • The Left-Right Dichotomy 98
  • Youth and Age 108

Chapter 7: Abstract People in an Abstract World

  • Disparities and Their Causes 116
  • Intertemporal Abstractions 126
  • Equality 128

Chapter 8: Arguments without Arguments

  • "Simplistic" Arguments 139
  • Unworthy Opponents 141
  • Unworthy Arguments 147
  • The Rhetoric of "Rights" 157
  • Social Justice 159

Chapter 9: Patterns of the Annointed

  • "Change" Versus the Status Quo 172
  • Attitudes Versus Principles 175
  • A Sealed Bubble 177
  • Crusades of the Anointed 179

Part IV: Optional Reality

Chapter 10: Filtering Reality

  • Selective Samples 191
  • Suppressing Facts 193
  • Fictitious People 202
  • Verbal Cleansing 217
  • Objective Verus Impartiality 219

Chapter 11: Subjective Truth

  • The Localization of Evil 226
  • The Invidious and the Dramatic 228
    • The Invidious 228
    • The Dramatic 231

Part V: Intellectuals and the Law

Chapter 12: Changing the Law

  • Methods of Change 224
    • The Constitution and the Courts 246
    • Judicial Activism 254
    • Judicial Restraint and "Original Intent"

Chapter 13: Law and "Results"

  • Burden of Proof 272
  • Property Rights 277
  • Crime 282

Part VI: Intellectuals and War

Chapter 14: The World Wars

  • The First World War 301
    • The Pre-War Era 301
    • America at War 303
  • The Second World War 310
    • Intellectuals Between the World Wars 310
    • Responses to International Crises 328
    • The Outbreak of War 333

Chapter 15: The Cold War and Beyond

  • Replaying the 1930's 339
    • The Vietnam War 341
    • The Cold War 348
  • The Iraq Wars 362
  • Patriotism and National Honor 370

Part VII: Intellectuals and Race

Chapter 16: Disparities and Their Causes

  • Genetic Determinism 382
  • The Progressive Era 384
  • Responses to Disparities 403

Chapter 17: Race and Intelligence

  • Heredity and Environment 415
  • The Magnitudes in Question 417
  • Predictive Validity 422
  • Abstract Questions 423
  • Test Score Differences 425
  • Duration of Mental Test Results 429

Chapter 18: Liberalism and Multiculturalism

  • The Liberal Era 441
    • The Liberal Vision 443
    • Racism and Causation 448
  • The Multiculturalism Era 456
    • The Multicultural Vision 457
    • Cultural Changes 461
    • The Cultural Universe 463

Chapter 19: Race and Cosmic Justice

  • Disparities Versus Injustices 469
  • Race and Crime 472
  • Slavery 479

Part VIII: An Overview

Chapter 20: Patterns and Visions

  • Value Premises 488
  • Assumptions about Facts 491
  • Intellectual Standards 495

Chapter 21: Incentives and Constraints

  • The Supply of Public Intellectuals 504
  • The Demand for Public Intellectuals 509
    • A Sense of Mission 513
    • Constraints 517

Chapter 22: The Influence of Intellectuals

  • The Nature of Intellectuals Influence 522
  • The Cognitive Elite 528
  • Intellectuals and Politicians 531
  • The Track Record of Intellectuals 534
  • Social Cohesion 537
  • Anti-Intellectual Intellectuals 542
  • Implications 544

Endnotes 547

Index 648

Books By Same Author

Publication Data

Intellectuals and Society, Thomas Sowell, 2011, Basic Books, ISBN-10: 0465025226 ISBN-13: 978-0465025220

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