The 100 Best Nonfiction Books of All Time

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Image by John Overholt (CC BY-SA 2.0)

The Best Books: Top 100 Nonfiction list is a concise selection of books that provides the reader with an understanding of the social and natural world.

It teaches world civilisation - East and West - from the beginning to the present, including history, economics, sociology, literature, science, philosophy, and religion.

All the texts were chosen for their importance and their accessibility, finishing them gives at least a glimmering of what our race is all about.

This list is best read in conjunction with the 100 best short nonfiction books list.

1. The World of Odysseus

By Moses Finley | Used Price: 80% Off

The World of Odysseus is a concise and penetrating account of the society that gave birth to the Iliad and the Odyssey--a book that provides a vivid picture of the Greek Dark Ages, its men and women, works and days, morals and values. Long celebrated as a pathbreaking ... More »

The World of Odysseus
The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

2. The Structure of Scientific Revolutions

By Thomas Kuhn | Used Price: 60% Off

A good book may have the power to change the way we see the world, but a great book actually becomes part of our daily consciousness, pervading our thinking to the point that we take it for granted, and we forget how provocative and challenging its ideas once ... More »

3. The Age of Revolution: 1789-1848 (4 Volume History of the Modern World)

By Eric Hobsbawm | Used Price: 60% Off

The Age of Revolution is a book by Eric Hobsbawm. It's the first of 3 books about "the long 19th century", and The Age of Extremes: The Short Twentieth Century, is the sequel to the trilogy. More »

The Age of Revolution: 1789-1848 (4 Volume History of the Modern World)
Eichmann in Jerusalem

4. Eichmann in Jerusalem

By Hannah Arendt | Used Price: 80% Off

The controversial journalistic analysis of the mentality that fostered the Holocaust Originally appearing as a series of articles in The New Yorker, Hannah Arendt’s authoritative and stunning report on the trial of Nazi leader Adolf Eichmann sparked a flurry of debate upon its publication. This revised edition includes material that ... More »

5. A History of Western Philosophy

By Bertrand Russell | Used Price: 70% Off

Hailed as “lucid and magisterial” by The Observer, this book is universally acclaimed as the outstanding one-volume work on the subject of Western philosophy.Considered to be one of the most important philosophical works of all time, the History of Western Philosophy is a dazzlingly unique ... More »

A History of Western Philosophy
The Story of Art

6. The Story of Art

By E. H. Gombrich | Used Price: 50% Off

The Story of Art, one of the most famous and popular books on art ever written, has been a world bestseller for over four decades. Attracted by the simplicity and clarity of his writing, readers of all ages and backgrounds have found in Professor Gombrich a true master, ... More »

7. The Lonely Crowd

By David Riesman | Used Price: 80% Off

The Lonely Crowd is considered by many to be the most influential book of the twentieth century. Its now-classic analysis of the 'new middle class' in terms of inner-directed and other-directed social character opened exciting new dimensions in our understanding of the psychological, political, and economic problems that ... More »

The Lonely Crowd
QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter

8. QED: The Strange Theory of Light and Matter

By Richard Feynman | Used Price: 60% Off

Celebrated for his brilliantly quirky insights into the physical world, Nobel laureate Richard Feynman also possessed an extraordinary talent for explaining difficult concepts to the general public. Here Feynman provides a classic and definitive introduction to QED (namely, quantum electrodynamics), that part of quantum field theory describing the ... More »

9. Discourses on Livy

By Niccolo Machiavelli | Used Price: 70% Off

Discourses on Livy, written in 1531, is as essential to an understanding of Machiavelli as his famous treatise, The Prince. Equally controversial, it reveals his fundamental preference for a republican state. Comparing the practice of the ancient Romans with that of his contemporaries provided Machiavelli ... More »

Discourses on Livy
Guns, Germs, and Steel

10. Guns, Germs, and Steel

By Jared Diamond | Used Price: 80% Off

The Pulitzer Prize winning Guns, Germs and Steel looks over the entirety of human history and explains why geography and available resources are determining factors in the success of any given civilisation. As such Diamond shows that race is not a determining factor in the success or failure ... More »

11. American Power and the New Mandarins

By Noam Chomsky | Under $1.00

Back in print, the seminal work by "arguably the most important intellectual alive" (The New York Times). American Power and the New Mandarins is Noam Chomsky's first political book, widely considered to be among the most cogent and powerful statements against the American war in Vietnam. Long ... More »

American Power and the New Mandarins
Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution

12. Mutual Aid: A Factor of Evolution

By Peter Kropotkin | Used Price: 50% Off

In this cornerstone of modern liberal social theory, Peter Kropotkin states that the most effective human and animal communities are essentially cooperative, rather than competitive. Kropotkin based this classic on his observations of natural phenomena and history, forming a work of stunning and well-reasoned scholarship. Essential to the ... More »

13. The Peloponnesian War

By Thucydides | Used Price: 70% Off

he History of the Peloponnesian War is a history of war of two factions, one led by Athens, the other led by Sparta. It was written by a former Athenian general, Thucydides. The account of the war is generally considered a classic in large part because Thucydides took ... More »

The Peloponnesian War
Eros and Civilization

14. Eros and Civilization

By Herbert Marcuse | Rock-bottom Price: $0.01

 In this classic work, Herbert Marcuse takes as his starting point Freud's statement that civilization is based on the permanent subjugation of the human instincts, his reconstruction of the prehistory of mankind - to an interpretation of the basic trends of western civilization, stressing the philosophical and sociological ... More »

15. The Black Jacobins

By C.L.R. James | Used Price: 70% Off

The Black Jacobins is the authoritative history of the Haitian Revolution of 1794, the first revolution in the Third World."The prospect of a Black Republic is equally disturbing to the Spanish, the English and the Americans. Jefferson has promised that on the instant the French army has arrived ... More »

The Black Jacobins
Microbe Hunters

16. Microbe Hunters

By Paul de Kruif | Used Price: 80% Off

This science classic by Paul de Kruif chronicles the pioneering bacteriological work of the first scientists to see and learn from the microscopic world.   Paul de Kruif's Microbe Hunters is a timeless dramatization of the scientists, bacteriologists, doctors, and medical technicians who discovered microbes and invented ... More »

17. The Wretched of the Earth

By Frantz Fanon; Jean-Paul Sartre | 50% Off

A distinguished psychiatrist from Martinique who took part in the Algerian Nationalist Movement, Frantz Fanon was one of the most important theorists of revolutionary struggle, colonialism, and racial difference in history. Fanon’s masterwork is a classic alongside Edward Said’s Orientalism or The Autobiography of Malcolm X, and it ... More »

The Wretched of the Earth
Goddesses, Whores, Wives, and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity

18. Goddesses, Whores, Wives, and Slaves: Women in Classical Antiquity

By Sarah Pomeroy | Used Price: 70% Off

"The first general treatment of women in the ancient world to reflect the critical insights of modern feminism. Though much debated, its position as the basic textbook on women's history in Greece and Rome has hardly been challenged."--Mary Beard, Times Literary Supplement. Illustrations. More »

19. The Shock of the New

By Robert Hughes | Used Price: 70% Off

A beautifully illustrated hundred-year history of modern art, from cubism to pop and avant-guard. More than 250 color photos. More »

The Shock of the New
Growing Up Absurd: Problems of Youth in the Organized Society

20. Growing Up Absurd: Problems of Youth in the Organized Society

By Paul Goodman | Used Price: 70% Off

Paul Goodman’s Growing Up Absurd was a runaway best seller when it was first published in 1960, and it became one of the defining texts of the New Left. Goodman was a writer and thinker who broke every mold and did it brilliantly—he was a novelist, poet, and ... More »

21. The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire

By Edward Gibbon | Used Price: 70% Off

Edward Gibbon's The History of the Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire is a magisterial history of Rome, from its beginnings through to the fall of the Byzantine Empire. It's considered to be one of the greatest works written during the enlightenment, and due to Gibbon's ... More »

The Decline and Fall of the Roman Empire
Fowler's Modern English Usage

22. Fowler's Modern English Usage

By Henry Watson Fowler; Robert Burchfield

Why literally shouldn't be taken literally.Why Americans think home in on something is a mistake and Brits think hone in is.Is it OK to spell OK okay?What's wrong with hence why?Was Alanis Morrisette ever ironic?Fowler's Dictionary of Modern English Usage is the world-famous guide to English usage, loved ... More »

23. The Interpretation of Dreams

By Sigmund Freud | Used Price: 50% Off

What are the most common dreams and why do we have them? What does a dream about death mean? What do dreams of swimming, failing, or flying symbolize?First published by Sigmund Freud in 1899, The Interpretation of Dreams considers why we dream and what it means in the ... More »

The Interpretation of Dreams
The Tragedy of Great Power Politics

24. The Tragedy of Great Power Politics

By John J. Mearsheimer | Used Price: 80% Off

"A superb book....Mearsheimer has made a significant contribution to our understanding of the behavior of great powers."—The National Interest, Barry R. Posen A decade after the cold war ended, policy makers and academics foresaw a new era of peace and prosperity, an era in which democracy and open ... More »

25. Lives of a Cell

By Lewis Thomas | Rock-bottom Price: $0.01

Elegant, suggestive, and clarifying, Lewis Thomas's profoundly humane vision explores the world around us and examines the complex interdependence of all things.  Extending beyond the usual limitations of biological science and into a vast and wondrous world of hidden relationships, this provocative book explores in personal, poetic essays ... More »

Lives of a Cell
The Affluent Society

26. The Affluent Society

By John Kenneth Galbraith | 80% Off

John Kenneth Galbraith's classic investigation of private wealth and public poverty in postwar America   With customary clarity, eloquence, and humor, Harvard economist John Kenneth Galbraith gets at the heart of what economic security means in The Affluent Society. Warning against individual and societal complacence about economic inequity, ... More »

27. The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger

By Richard G. Wilkinson; Kate Pickett | 60% Off

It is a well-established fact that in rich societies the poor have shorter lives and suffer more from almost every social problem. The Spirit Level, based on thirty years of research, takes this truth a step further. One common factor links the healthiest and happiest societies: the degree ... More »

The Spirit Level: Why Greater Equality Makes Societies Stronger
The Power Elite

28. The Power Elite

By C. Wright Mills | Used Price: 70% Off

First published in 1956, The Power Elite stands as a contemporary classic of social science and social criticism. C. Wright Mills examines and critiques the organization of power in the United States, calling attention to three firmly interlocked prongs of power: the military, corporate, and political elite. The ... More »

29. What Evolution Is

By Ernst Mayr | Under $1.00

At once a spirited defense of Darwinian explanations of biology and an elegant primer on evolution for the general reader, What Evolution Is poses the questions at the heart of evolutionary theory and considers how our improved understanding of evolution has affected the viewpoints and values of modern ... More »

What Evolution Is
Studies in Iconology

30. Studies in Iconology

By Erwin Panofsky | Used Price: 80% Off

In Studies in Iconology, the themes and concepts of Renaissance art are analysed and related to both classical and medieval tendencies. More »

31. China Along the Yellow River: Reflections on Rural Society

By Cao Jinqing

This text had a major impact in its original Chinese version. Reviewed in the Far East Economic Review as 'one of the richest portraits of the Chinese countryside published in the reform era', it charts a long journey through the hinterland region of the Yellow River undertaken by ... More »

China Along the Yellow River: Reflections on Rural Society
The Republic

32. The Republic

By Plato | Under $1.00

The central work of one of the West's greatest philosophers, The Republic of Plato is a masterpiece of insight and feeling, the finest of the Socratic dialogues, and one of the great books of Western culture. This new translation captures the dramatic realism, ... More »

33. Lawless World

By Philippe Sands

Lawless World: America and the Making and Breaking of Global Rules is a book by the British attorney and author, Philippe Sands. It was published by Viking Adult in October 2005. Sands is a professor of international law at University College London. Among other issues, the book discusses the ... More »

Lawless World
Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism

34. Bad Samaritans: The Myth of Free Trade and the Secret History of Capitalism

By Ha-Joon Chang | Used Price: 80% Off

“Lucid, deeply informed, and enlivened with striking illustrations, this penetrating study could be entitled ‘Economics in the Real World.’ Chang reveals the yawning gap between standard doctrines concerning economic development and what really has taken place from the origins of the industrial revolution until today. His incisive analysis ... More »

35. Hell and High Water: Climate Change, Hope and the Human Condition

By Alastair McIntosh | Used Price: 80% Off

Climate change is the greatest challenge that the world has ever faced. In this groundbreaking new book, Alastair McIntosh summarises the science of what is happening to the planet - both globally and using Scotland as a local case study. He moves on, controversially, to suggest that politics ... More »

Hell and High Water: Climate Change, Hope and the Human Condition
Against Method

36. Against Method

By Paul Feyerabend

Paul Feyerabend’s globally acclaimed work, which sparked and continues to stimulate fierce debate, examines the deficiencies of many widespread ideas about scientific progress and the nature of knowledge. Feyerabend argues that scientific advances can only be understood in a historical context. He looks at the way the philosophy ... More »

37. Mythologies

By Roland Barthes

“No denunciation without its proper instrument of close analysis,” Roland Barthes wrote in his preface to Mythologies. There is no more proper instrument of analysis of our contemporary myths than this book—one of the most significant works in French theory, and one that has transformed the way readers ... More »

A Revolution of the Mind: Radical Enlightenment and the Intellectual Origins of Modern Democracy

38. A Revolution of the Mind: Radical Enlightenment and the Intellectual Origins of Modern Democracy

By Jonathan I. Israel

Democracy, free thought and expression, religious tolerance, individual liberty, political self-determination of peoples, sexual and racial equality--these values have firmly entered the mainstream in the decades since they were enshrined in the 1948 U.N. Declaration of Human Rights. But if these ideals no longer ... More »

39. Coming of Age in the Milky Way

By Timothy Ferris | Used Price: 70% Off

From the second-century celestial models of Ptolemy to modern-day research institutes and quantum theory, this classic book offers a breathtaking tour of astronomy and the brilliant, eccentric personalities who have shaped it. From the first time mankind had an inkling of the vast space that surrounds us, those ... More »

Coming of Age in the Milky Way
Godel, Escher, Bach

40. Godel, Escher, Bach

By Douglas R. Hofstadter | 60% Off

Douglas Hofstadter’s book is concerned directly with the nature of “maps” or links between formal systems. However, according to Hofstadter, the formal system that underlies all mental activity transcends the system that supports it. If life can grow out of the formal chemical substrate of the cell, if ... More »

41. Democracy And Education

By John Dewey | Used Price: 50% Off

John Dewey's best-known and still-popular classic, Democracy and Education, is presented here as a new edition in Volume 9 of the Middle Works. Sidney Hook, who wrote the introduction to this volume, describes Democracy and Education: It illuminates directly or indirectly all the basic issues that are central ... More »

Democracy And Education
The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance of Fairy Tales

42. The Uses of Enchantment: The Meaning and Importance of Fairy Tales

By Bruno Bettelheim | Used Price: 60% Off

Bruno Bettelheim was one of the great child psychologists of the twentieth century and perhaps none of his books has been more influential than this revelatory study of fairy tales and their universal importance in understanding childhood development.Analyzing a wide range of traditional stories, from the tales of ... More »

43. The Second Sex

By Simone de Beauvoir | Used Price: 50% Off

Newly translated and unabridged in English for the first time, Simone de Beauvoir’s masterwork is a powerful analysis of the Western notion of “woman,” and a groundbreaking exploration of inequality and otherness.  This long-awaited new edition reinstates significant portions of the original French text that were cut in ... More »

The Second Sex
The Autobiography of Malcolm X

44. The Autobiography of Malcolm X

By Malcolm X; Alex Haley | 70% Off

From hustling, drug addiction and armed violence in America's black ghettos Malcolm X turned, in a dramatic prison conversion, to the puritanical fervour of the Black Muslims. As their spokesman he became identified in the white press as a terrifying teacher of race hatred; but to his direct ... More »

45. Ideas And Opinions

By Albert Einstein | Used Price: 50% Off

A new edition of the most definitive collection of Albert Einstein's popular writings, gathered under the supervision of Einstein himself. The selections range from his earliest days as a theoretical physicist to his death in 1955; from such subjects as relativity, nuclear war or peace, and religion and ... More »

Ideas And Opinions
Pericles Of Athens And The Birth Of Democracy

46. Pericles Of Athens And The Birth Of Democracy

By Donald Kagan | Used Price: 60% Off

"Kagan, faithful to his lifelong fascination with Pericles . . . gives us an accessible and invaluable account of his life and deeds".--Allan Bloom, author of "The Closing of the American Mind". More »

47. The Varieties of Religious Experience

By William James | Used Price: 80% Off

'Is life worth living? Yes, a thousand times yes when the world still holds such spirits as Professor James.' - Gertrude Stein A classic of American thought, William James’ The Varieties of Religious Experience is an extraordinary study of human spirituality in all its forms and one ... More »

The Varieties of Religious Experience
The Great War and Modern Memory

48. The Great War and Modern Memory

By Paul Fussell | Rock-bottom Price: $0.01

The Great War and Modern Memory is a book that describes the literary works by English participants in World War I to their experiences in trench warfare. Fussell describes how the futility and insanity of war defined the thinking of a generation and led England away from Romantacism. The book won the ... More »

49. On Growth and Form

By D'Arcy Wentworth Thompson | 70% Off

Why do living things and physical phenomena take the form they do? D'Arcy Thompson's classic On Growth and Form looks at the way things grow and the shapes they take. Analysing biological processes in their mathematical and physical aspects, this historic work, first published in 1917, has also ... More »

On Growth and Form

50. Orientalism

By Edward W. Said | Used Price: 70% Off

Orientalism examines how the West has historically perceived the East and how Western imperialism has shaped these perceptions. Published in 1978, Said's work is a landmark in post-colonial studies. More »

51. Democracy

By Charles Tilly | Used Price: 80% Off

Charles Tilly's Democracy identifies the general processes causing democratization and de-democratization at a national level across the world over the last few hundred years. It singles out integration of trust networks into public politics, insulation of public politics from categorical inequality, and suppression of autonomous coercive power centers ... More »


52. Freefall

By Joseph Stiglitz | Used Price: 80% Off

The New York Times bestseller: "A lucid account" (New York Times) of the recent financial crisis and the way forward by the Nobel Prize-winning economist, with a new afterword. The Great Recession, as it has come to be called, has impacted more people worldwide than any crisis since ... More »

53. The Originality of the Avant-Garde and Other Modernist Myths

By Rosalind E. Krauss | Used Price: 60% Off

Co-founder and co-editor of October magazine, a veteran of Artforum of the 1960s and early 1970s, Rosalind Krauss has presided over and shared in the major ... More »

The Originality of the Avant-Garde and Other Modernist Myths
The Basic Works of Aristotle

54. The Basic Works of Aristotle

By Aristotle; Richard McKeon | 60% Off

Preserved by Arabic mathematicians and canonized by Christian scholars, Aristotle’s works have shaped Western thought, science, and religion for nearly two thousand years. Richard McKeon’s The Basic Works of Aristotle–constituted out of the definitive Oxford translation and in print as a Random House hardcover for sixty years–has long ... More »

55. Man, the State, and War

By Kenneth N. Waltz | Used Price: 60% Off

What are the causes of war? To answer this question, Professor Waltz examines the ideas of major thinkers throughout the history of Western civilization. He explores works both by classic political philosophers, such as St. Augustine, Hobbes, Kant, and Rousseau, and by modern psychologists and anthropologists to discover ... More »

Man, the State, and War
Silent Spring

56. Silent Spring

By Rachel Carson | Used Price: 80% Off

Rachel Carson’s Silent Spring was first published in three serialized excerpts in the New Yorker in June of 1962. The book appeared in September of that year and the outcry that followed its publication forced the banning of DDT and spurred revolutionary changes in the laws affecting our ... More »

57. The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II

By Fernand Braudel | Used Price: 60% Off

The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II is the most influencial work of the great 20th century historian Fernand Braudel, a leader of the Annales School. This work perfectly demonstrates Braudel’s l'histoire totale, writing history from as many perspectives as possible, including ... More »

The Mediterranean and the Mediterranean World in the Age of Philip II
The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money

58. The General Theory of Employment, Interest and Money

By John Maynard Keynes | Used Price: 90% Off

In 1936 Keynes published the most provocative book written by any economist of his generation. Arguments about the book continued until his death in 1946 and still continue today. This new edition, published 70 years after the original, features a new introduction by Paul Krugman which discusses the ... More »

59. Democracy in America

By Alexis de Tocqueville | 80% Off

 Democracy in America has had the singular honor of being even to this day the work that polit?ical commentators of every stripe refer to when they seek to draw large conclusions about the soci?ety of the United States. Alexis de Tocqueville, a young French aristocrat, came to the ... More »

Democracy in America
How the Mind Works

60. How the Mind Works

By Steven Pinker | Used Price: 80% Off

“A model of scientific writing: erudite, witty, and clear.” —New York Review of Books In this Pulitzer Prize finalist and national bestseller, one of the world's leading cognitive scientists tackles the workings of the human mind. What makes us rational—and why are we so often irrational? How do ... More »

61. Tristes Tropiques

By Claude Levi-Strauss | Used Price: 60% Off

A milestone in the study of culture from the father of structural anthropology. This watershed work records Claude Lévi-Strauss's search for "a human society reduced to its most basic expression." From the Amazon basin through the dense upland jungles of Brazil, Lévi-Strauss found ... More »

Tristes Tropiques
Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism

62. Democracy Incorporated: Managed Democracy and the Specter of Inverted Totalitarianism

By Sheldon S. Wolin

Democracy is struggling in America--by now this statement is almost cliché. But what if the country is no longer a democracy at all? In Democracy Incorporated, Sheldon Wolin considers the unthinkable: has America unwittingly morphed into a new and strange kind of political hybrid, ... More »

63. The City in History

By Lewis Mumford | Used Price: 80% Off

The City in History: Its Origins, Its Transformations, and Its Prospects, by Lewis Mumford, charts the rise of various types of cities throughout human history. The text won the National Book Award in 1961 and was included on the Modern Library's 100 Best Nonfiction books list. More »

The City in History
Imagined Communities

64. Imagined Communities

By Benedict Anderson | Used Price: 60% Off

Imagined Communities: Reflections on the Origin and Spread of Nationalism is the most read book on nationalism. It's a historical, political and sociological analysis of nations which are really imagined communities or socially constructed communities. More »

65. Capital

By Karl Marx | Used Price: 70% Off

A landmark work in the understanding of capitalism, bourgeois society and the economics of class conflict, Karl Marx's Capital is translated by Ben Fowkes with an introduction by Ernest Mandel in Penguin Classics. One of the most notorious works of modern times, as well as one ... More »

A Theory of Justice

66. A Theory of Justice

By John Rawls

A Theory of Justice is a work of political philosophy and ethics by John Rawls. It was originally published in 1971 and revised in both 1975 (for the translated editions) and 1999. In A ... More »

67. King Solomon's Ring

By Konrad Lorenz | Used Price: 80% Off

Solomon, the legend goes, had a magic ring which enabled him to speak to the animals in their own language. Konrad Lorenz was gifted with a similar power of understanding the animal world. He was that rare beast, a brilliant scientist who could write (and indeed draw) beautifully. ... More »

King Solomon's Ring
The Psychology of Intelligence

68. The Psychology of Intelligence

By Jean Piaget

Think of developmental psychology, and the name of Jean Piaget immediately springs to mind. His theory of learning lies at the very heart of the modern understanding of the human learning process, and he is celebrated as the founding father of child psychology. A prolific writer, is ... More »

69. The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb

By Gar Alperovitz | Used Price: 80% Off

Was the atomic bombing of Japan necessary? Gar Alperovitz argues, using evidence for the US Government archives, that it was not. Instead, Truman dropped the bomb as a warning to Soviets to help deal with them after the war. For more on this topic also see Racing ... More »

The Decision to Use the Atomic Bomb
Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty

70. Taking the Risk Out of Democracy: Corporate Propaganda versus Freedom and Liberty

By Alex Carey

In this lucid and compelling account, Alex Carey documents the 20th century history of corporate propaganda as practiced by U.S. businesses, and its export to and adoption by other western democracies, chiefly the United Kingdom and Australia. The collection examines how and why the business elite has successfully ... More »

71. The Origin of Species

By Charles Darwin | Used Price: 70% Off

In The Origin of Species (1859) Darwin challenged many of the most deeply-held beliefs of the Western world. Arguing for a material, not divine, origin of species, he showed that new species are achieved by "natural selection." The Origin communicates the enthusiasm of original thinking in an ... More »

The Origin of Species
Homage to Catalonia

72. Homage to Catalonia

By George Orwell | Used Price: 70% Off

'Every line of serious work that I have written since 1936 has been written, directly or indirectly, against totalitarianism and for democratic Socialism as I understand it'. Thus wrote Orwell following his experiences as a militiaman in the Spanish Civil War, chronicled in Homage to Catalonia. Here he ... More »

73. The Sources of Social Power

By Michael Mann

While Marx considered economics to be the driving force in the evolution of societies, and Weber believed religion played a role, with his protestant ethic theory, In the Sources of Social Power, Mann identifies 4 different forces - economic, military, ideological and political - and demonstrates their role ... More »

The Sources of Social Power
Science and the Modern World

74. Science and the Modern World

By Alfred North Whitehead | 70% Off

Alfred North Whitehead's SCIENCE AND THE MODERN WORLD, originally published in 1925, redefines the concept of modern science. Presaging by more than half a century most of today's cutting-edge thought on the cultural ramifications of science and technology, Whitehead demands that readers understand and celebrate the contemporary, ... More »

75. The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic

By Chalmers Johnson | Rock-bottom Price: $0.01

"Impressive . . . a powerful indictment of U.S. military and foreign policy." -Los Angeles Times Book Review, front page In the years after the Soviet Union imploded, the United States was described first as the globe's "lone superpower," then as a "reluctant sheriff," next as the "indispensable ... More »

The Sorrows of Empire: Militarism, Secrecy, and the End of the Republic
The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine

76. The Ethnic Cleansing of Palestine

By Ilan Pappe

Here the famous Israeli historian Ilan Pappe offers Israeli archival evidence that Palestinians were ethnically cleansed between 1947 and 1949. More »

77. Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945

By Tony Judt | Used Price: 70% Off

Tony Judt's Postwar is an inimitable history of Europe since 1045. Postwar ties together the histories of over 40 European nations, both Eastern and Western, in a grand narrative that also serves as a history of the development of the European Union. More »

Postwar: A History of Europe Since 1945
An Essay on the History of Civil Society

78. An Essay on the History of Civil Society

By Adam Ferguson | Used Price: 90% Off

Adam Ferguson's Essay on the History of Civil Society (first published in 1767) is a classic of the Scottish--and European--Enlightenment. Drawing on such diverse sources as classical authors and contemporary travel literature, Ferguson combines a subtle analysis of modern commercial society with a critique of its abandonment of ... More »

79. News of a Kidnapping

By Gabriel Garcia Marquez | Under $1.00

In 1990, fearing extradition to the United States, Pablo Escobar – head of the Medellín drug cartel – kidnapped ten notable Colombians to use as bargaining chips. With the eye of a poet, García Márquez describes the survivors’ perilous ordeal and the bizarre drama of the negotiations for ... More »

News of a Kidnapping
The Origins of The Second World War

80. The Origins of The Second World War

By A.J.P. Taylor

The Origins of the Second World War is a history book by A.J.P. Taylor. In it he looks at the causes of World War II. It was controversial at the time for holding all sides to account for the outbreak of war, but has since been recognised as ... More »

81. The Contours of American History

By William Appleman Williams | 70% Off

William Appleman Williams was one of the greatest opponents of US imperialism. The Modern Library chose The Contours of American History as one of the best 100 nonfiction books of the Twentieth Century. More »

The Contours of American History
The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

82. The Elementary Forms of Religious Life

By Emile Durkheim | Used Price: 50% Off

In The Elementary Forms of Religious Life (1912), Emile Durkheim sets himself the task of discovering the enduring source of human social identity. He investigates what he considered to be the simplest form of documented religion - totemism among the Aborigines of Australia. ... More »

83. 13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown

By Simon Johnson; James Kwak | Price: $0.01

Even after the ruinous financial crisis of 2008, America is still beset by the depredations of an oligarchy that is now bigger, more profitable, and more resistant to regulation than ever. Anchored by six megabanks—Bank of America, JPMorgan Chase, Citigroup, Wells Fargo, Goldman Sachs, and Morgan Stanley—which together ... More »

13 Bankers: The Wall Street Takeover and the Next Financial Meltdown
The Wealth of Nations

84. The Wealth of Nations

By Adam Smith | Used Price: 80% Off

Adam Smith's The Wealth of Nations was recognized as a landmark of human thought upon its publication in 1776. As the first scientific argument for the principles of political economy, it is the point of departure for all subsequent economic thought. Smith's theories of capital accumulation, growth, and ... More »

85. The Making of the English Working Class

By E. P. Thompson | Used Price: 60% Off

This book transformed our understanding of English social history. Thompson revealed how working class people were not merely victims of history, moved by powerful forces outside of themselves, but were also active in creating their own culture and future, during the degradation of the industrial revolution. More »

The Making of the English Working Class
The Education of Henry Adams

86. The Education of Henry Adams

By Henry Adams | Used Price: 60% Off

As a journalist, historian, and novelist born into a family that included two past Presidents, Henry Adams was forever focused on the experiences and expectations unique to America. A prompt bestseller and Pulitzer Prize-winner, The Education of Henry Adams (1918) recounts his own and his country's development from ... More »

87. The Selfish Gene

By Richard Dawkins | Used Price: 60% Off

Richard Dawkins' brilliant reformulation of the theory of natural selection has the rare distinction of having provoked as much excitement and interest outside the scientific community as within it. His theories have helped change the whole nature of the study of social biology, and have forced thousands ... More »

The Selfish Gene
The Discovery of India

88. The Discovery of India

By Jawaharlal Nehru | Used Price: 80% Off

The Discovery of India begins with chapters on the Intellectual and spiritual tradition of India. It then gives a complete account of the regions history with an excellent analysis of the tragic forced economic, moral and intellectual decline through British rule. Nehru and Gandhi both worked for liberation ... More »

89. The Kingdom of God Is Within You

By Leo Tolstoy | Used Price: 60% Off

"The Kingdom Of God Is Within You" is one of the most provocative anti-establishment and anti-authoritarian pieces of literature ever written. In the context of a sincere and scathing account of what is living and dead in modern Christianity, Tolstoy presents a view of history and society that ... More »

The Kingdom of God Is Within You
A History of Chinese Civilization

90. A History of Chinese Civilization

By Jacques Gernet | Used Price: 90% Off

When published in 1982, this translation of Professor Jacques Gernet's masterly survey of the history and culture of China was immediately welcomed by critics and readers. This revised and updated edition includes a detailed chronology that has been updated through 1993, a new bibliography, and an expanded ... More »

91. Quicksand: America's Pursuit of Power in the Middle East

By Geoffrey Wawro | Under $1.00

An unprecedented history of our involvement in the Middle East that traces our current quandaries there-in Iraq, Israel, Iran, Afghanistan, and elsewhere-back to their roots almost a century ago. Geoffrey Wawro approaches America's role in the Middle East in a fundamentally new way-by encompassing the last ... More »

Quicksand: America's Pursuit of Power in the Middle East
On War

92. On War

By Carl von Clausewitz | Used Price: 60% Off

On War is the most significant attempt in Western history to understand war, both in its internal dynamics and as an instrument of policy. Since the work's first appearance in 1832, it has been read throughout the world, and has stimulated generations of soldiers, statesmen, and intellectuals. More »

93. Being And Nothingness

By Jean-Paul Sartre | Used Price: 80% Off

Being and Nothingness is without doubt one of the most significant books of the twentieth century. The central work by one of the world's most influential thinkers, it altered the course of western philosophy. Its revolutionary approach challenged all previous assumptions about the individual's relationship with the world. ... More »

Being And Nothingness
The Superorganism: The Beauty, Elegance, and Strangeness of Insect Societies

94. The Superorganism: The Beauty, Elegance, and Strangeness of Insect Societies

By E. O. Wilson; Bert Holldobler | 60% Off

The Pulitzer Prize-winning authors of The Ants render the extraordinary lives of the social insects in this visually spectacular volume.The Superorganism promises to be one of the most important scientific works published in this decade. Coming eighteen years after the publication of The Ants, this new volume expands ... More »

95. The Strange Death of Liberal England: 1910-1914

By George Dangerfield

The Strange Death of Liberal England, written by George Dangerfield, examines the causes of the fall of the British Liberal Party, from 1910 to 1914. The book was listed in the Modern Library's top 100 best nonfiction books. More »

The Strange Death of Liberal England: 1910-1914
The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time

96. The Great Transformation: The Political and Economic Origins of Our Time

By Karl Polanyi | Used Price: 50% Off

In Polanyi's classic work of economic history and sociology, he examines societal changes since the Industrial Revolution and expertly explains the inadequacies of the free market. Published in 1944, it is as relevant as today as ever, with Harvard Professor Stephen Walt recommending it in his Top 10 ... More »

97. The Cultural Contradictions Of Capitalism

By Daniel Bell | Used Price: 70% Off

With a new afterword by the author, this classic analysis of Western liberal capitalist society contends that capitalism—and the culture it creates—harbors the seeds of its own downfall by creating a need among successful people for personal gratification—a need that corrodes the work ethic that led to their ... More »

The Cultural Contradictions Of Capitalism
A People's History of the United States

98. A People's History of the United States

By Howard Zinn | Used Price: 70% Off

A People's History of the United States is an attempt by Howard Zinn to present an alternative history of America from below. It's a view of US history from the perspective of ordinary and oppressed people. It's extremely popular and - in addition to being on many high ... More »

99. The Periodic Table

By Primo Levi | Used Price: 50% Off

(Book Jacket Status: Jacketed)The Periodic Table is largely a memoir of the years before and after Primo Levi’s transportation from his native Italy to Auschwitz as an anti-Facist partisan and a Jew. It recounts, in clear, precise, unfailingly beautiful prose, the story of the Piedmontese Jewish community ... More »

The Periodic Table
The Rise of the West

100. The Rise of the West

By William H. McNeill | Used Price: 80% Off

The Rise of the West, winner of the National Book Award for history in 1964, is famous for its ambitious scope and intellectual rigor. In it, McNeill challenges the Spengler-Toynbee view that a number of separate civilizations pursued essentially independent careers, and argues instead that human cultures interacted ... More »

Author: David Thomson