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What Is Man? and Other Essays

Mark Twain

Book Overview: 

"What Is Man?" is a dialogue between a young man and an older man jaded to the world. It involves ideas of destiny and free will, as well as of psychological egoism. The Old Man asserted that the human being is merely a machine, and nothing more. The Young Man objects, and asks him to go into particulars and furnish his reasons for his position. This collection of short stories covers a wide range of Twain's interests: the serious, the political and the ironically humorous.

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Book Excerpt: 
. . .Moral Sense. It is a large question. Let us finish with what we are about now, before we take it up.

Y.M. Very well. You have seemed to concede that you place Man and the rat on A level. What is it? The intellectual?

O.M. In form—not a degree.

Y.M. Explain.

O.M. I think that the rat's mind and the man's mind are the same machine, but of unequal capacities—like yours and Edison's; like the African pygmy's and Homer's; like the Bushman's and Bismarck's.

Y.M. How are you going to make that out, when the lower animals have no mental quality but instinct, while man possesses reason?

O.M. What is instinct?

Y.M. It is merely unthinking and mechanical exercise of inherited habit.

O.M. What originated the habit?

Y.M. The first animal started it, its descendants have inherited it.

O.M. How did the first one come to start it?

Y.M. I don't know; but . . . Read More

Community Reviews

كتاب بمثابة صفعات متوالية
تعيد ترتيب الأشياء في ذهنك ..

رغم قل عدد الصفحات .. إلا أن الكتاب أستغرق صاحبه
زمناً طويلاً .. درساً ، بحثا ، و مراجعة .!

أحببت أسلوب مارك توين كثيراً ..
أسلوب سلس مميز و فريد ..

تدور فكرة الكتاب حول الإجابة عن سؤال :

" ما الإنسان ؟ "

الإجابات رغم معرفتنا بها .. إلا أنها اتخذ...more

Twain gives a powerful argument in this work about the nature of man. Through a dialogue between an old man and a young man, Twain argues through the voice of the former that everything about a man is the product of his 'conditioning', that (get this) "From his cradle to his grave a man never doe...more

What Is Man?

Apparently man is a selfish prick that can't think for himself and relies on "outside influences". He is a chameleon. He is nothing but a mere machine. Well, at least according to Twain. Man is a fraud and only lives for himself. He is really driving home this point that everyone is s...more

الكتاب مثير وممتع وصريح وحقيقي بنسبة 99% يناقش مجموعة من الاسئلة في حوار بين شاب وشيخ ..
ما الانسان ؟ هل هو ألة ؟ هل يقدر علي خلق افكار جديدة من العدم ؟ هل نتوقع أن يتغير أم أن الانسان ابن بيئته ؟
هل الانسان يسعي لارضاء نفسه وتقدير ذاته أم يضحي من أجل الآخرين ؟ هل الانسان يبحث عن الحقيقة أم يحاول...more

“It isn’t a philosophy, it’s a fact.”

Without wanting to enter into a debate on whether facts and philosophy are necessarily at odds with each other, in that a fact can never be grasped by philosophy, I have to confess that I read Mark Twain’s essay What Is Man? with bated breath and found most of...more

(Dikkat, bu yazı şevk kırıcı öğeler barındırabilir. Kitabı listenize yeni eklediyseniz ve yakın zamanda okuma niyetiniz varsa bu uyarıyı göz önünde bulundurarak ilerleyin. Müessesemiz kaybolan hevesinizden sorumlu değildir.)

Kitap, biri ihtiyar (Y.A.) biri genç (G.A.) iki kişinin ara ara buluşup i...more

"... Bu kasvetli bir öğreti; ilham verici, şevke getirici, moral yükseltici değil. İnsanın içindeki görkemi götürüyor, içindeki gururu götürüyor, içindeki kahramanlığı götürüyor, onu tüm kişisel itibarından, tüm alkıştan mahrum bırakıyor; onu bir makinaya indirgemekle kalmıyor, onun makina üzerin...more

Benim okuduğum İlgi Kültür Yayınları'na ait olan baskısıydı, öncelikle onu belirteyim. Dedalus Yayınlarında sadece İnsan Nedir isimli deneme var yaklaşık 100 sayfalık. Benim okuduğum versiyondaysa başka denemeler de yar alıyor.

Bu beş yıldızı da İnsan Nedir isimli kısma verdim. Bir Youtube kanalın...more

بداخلنا نحن متأكدين ان ما نسميه تضحية للغير ما هو الا تضحية للنفس راحة للضمير ورضى للذات الا اننا كانسان غير كامل نبحث عن التقدير الذاتي عن المدح ... جبلة الانسان وليس عيبا..... الكتاب ذو طابع فلسفي في قالب حوار بين شيخ وشاب يدور حول الانسان فكره واعماله اهي خاضعة للنفس ام لقوى خارجية ومدى تأثىنا...more

"ما الإنسان؟"

رحلة فكرية شيقة في أعماق الإنسان من خلال
محادثة طويلة جدلية بين شيخ عجوز وشاب
حول عدة موضوعات مثل الارادة الحرة ،الضمير
الغريزة والتفكير والفطرة

يمكن تلخيص الكتاب في جملة واحدة

"إن الدافع الوحيد للإنسان ضمان إرضاء الذات"

____
"اقتباسات"
____
-من المهد إلى اللحد لا يقوم الإنسان بأي عمل إلا...more

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