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One of the world's greatest thinkers tells the heroic story of human progress - and why we neglect it at our peril.

Is modernity really failing? Or have we failed to appreciate progress and the ideals that make it possible?

If you follow the headlines, the world in the 21st century appears to be sinking into chaos, hatred and irrationality. Yet, as Steven Pinker shows, if you follow the trendlines, you discover that our lives have become longer, healthier, safer and more prosperous - not just in the West, but worldwide. Such progress is no accident: it's the gift of a coherent value system that many of us embrace without even realizing it. These are the values of the Enlightenment: of reason, science, humanism and progress. The challenges we face today are formidable. But the way to deal with them is not to sink into despair or try to lurch back to a mythical idyllic past; it's to treat them as problems we can solve, as we have solved other problems in the past. This is the case for an Enlightenment newly recharged for the 21st century.

Reviews

This is the biggest story of our time. It's about the many ways in which the world is improving, and why we don't believe it

Fraser Nelson, Spectator

Exhilarating, magnificent, uplifting

Economist

Pinker is right. Not just a bit right, but completely, utterly, incontrovertibly right . . . for most people, life is better, even if they don't realise it

Dominic Sandbrook, Daily Mail

A goldmine of startling graphs and killer facts about the way we live now. Everyone should read this book and, just for once, be enthralled by what humankind has achieved

Iain Macwhirter, Herald

Awesome. The confidence with which Pinker tears through the issues that cause such deep anxiety today is compelling

William Davies, Guardian

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Formats & editions

  • Paperback

    9780141979090

    January 8, 2019

    Penguin Press

    576 pages

    RRP $24.99

    Online retailers

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    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Trade Paperback

    9780241337011

    February 13, 2018

    Allen Lane

    576 pages

    RRP $35.00

    Online retailers

    • Amazon
    • Angus & Robertson Bookworld
    • Booktopia
    • Dymocks
    • Abbey's Bookshop
    • Boomerang Books
    • Collins Booksellers
    • Books Kinokuniya
    • QBD
    • Readings
    • Robinsons Bookshop
    • The Nile
    Or

    Find your local bookstore at booksellers.org.au

  • Enlightenment Now: The Case for Reason, Science, Humanism, and Progress
    Steven Pinker

    EBook

    9780141979106

    February 27, 2018

    Penguin eBooks

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    • eBooks