Straw Dogs | Granta

Straw Dogs

John Gray

Straw Dogs is a radical work of philosophy that sets out to challenge our most cherished assumptions about what it means to be human. From Plato to Christianity, from the Enlightenment to Nietzsche and Marx, the Western tradition has been based on arrogant and erroneous beliefs about human beings and their place in the world. Philosophies such as liberalism and Marxism enthrone humankind as a species whose destiny is to transcend natural limits and conquer the Earth. Even in the present day, despite Darwin’s discoveries, nearly all schools of thought take as their starting point the belief that humans are radically different from other animals. In Straw Dogs, John Gray argues that this humanist belief in human difference is an illusion and explores how the world and human life look once humanism has been finally abandoned.

  • Published: 01/09/2003
  • Paperback
  • ISBN: 9781862075962
  • 129x20mm, 246 pages

This powerful and brilliant book is an essential guide to the new Millennium. Straw Dogs challenges all our assumptions about what it is to be human, and convincingly shows that most of them are delusions. Who are we, and why are we here? John Gray's answers will shock most of us deeply. This is the most exhilarating book I have read since Richard Dawkins' The Selfish Gene

J. G. Ballard

My book of the year was Straw Dogs. I read it once, I read it twice and took notes. I arranged to meet its author so I could publicize the book - I thought it that good ... a devastating critique of liberal humanism, and all of it set out in easy-to-digest (although hard-to-swallow) apercus

Will Self, New Statesman

One of the most important books published this year, and will probably prove to be one of the most important this century ... nobody can hope to understand the times in which we live unless they have read Straw Dogs

Sue Corrigan, Mail on Sunday

The Author

John Gray is is Emeritus Professor of European Thought at the London School of Economics. He is a regular contributor to the Guardian and the Times Literary Supplement and the author of over a dozen books, including Heresies and the best-selling Straw Dogs which has been translated into 16 languages. False Dawn has been translated into fifteen languages.

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