Posted on 10 November 2010.
A lot of books have been written which have had a profound impact on the philosophy of people across the world who have read them. The authors of these books changed the world. While some did it purposely, others were not even aware of the strength of their words. Here are some books which had an adverse impact on the world.
1. Malleus Maleficarum by Heinrich Kramer and Jacob Sprenger
This book was basically a guide-book for those who called themselves witch-hunters. Over 36 editions have been released and it is believed that it single-handedly gave rise to out-of-control witch hunts.
2. Coming of Age in Samoa by Margaret Mead
Margaret Mead interviewed several teenage girls in Samoa who told her made-up stories about their sexual promiscuity. However, Mead did not know that and she reported them all in her book as fact.
3. The Prince by Niccolò Machiavelli
This book is now considered to be a guide-book full of rules for those who want their society to live in tyranny. It talks about how a ‘prince’ need not have morals or scruples as long as he can pretend to have them. He also points out how society can be made to understand that evil is more beneficial than good. This book impacted the likes of Hitler and Stalin.
4. Mein Kampf by Adolf Hitler
This book by Adolf Hitler was not accepted by any publishing house but once he rose to power, it was circulated all over the world. Mein Kampf talks about Hitler’s plan to remove each and every Jew from the world in order to allow the Germans to live peacefully.
5. The Pivot of Civilization by Margaret Sanger
Margaret Sanger supported the use of contraceptive because she felt that inferior human beings had no right to live and that the superior category should solely survive so that the world could be filled with only intelligent and able-bodied people. She lists out the benefits of eugenics as well as purity amongst different races.