9. The Origins of Totalitarianism by Hannah Arendt
At the time of writing, The Origins of Totalitarianism was sold out on Amazon.com and ranked in the top 100 chart for book sales–not too shabby for a 600-page historical tome first published in 1951. Beginning with the rise of European anti-Semitism in the 19th century, the iconic German political theorist Arendt explores the inner-workings of totalitarian movements, focusing both on Nazism and Stalinism. Already considered a seminal work of political philosophy, Origins' surge in popularity in the Trump era speaks to its value as a contemporary compass, explaining both how we got here, and hopefully how we can course-correct.
10. The Penultimate Truth by Philip K. Dick
An underrated piece of resistance literature from the Philip K. Dick canon, The Penultimate Truth explored the notion of "fake news" long before it became a political reality. The book finds the majority of the world's population living in underground bunkers, driven into hiding by news of an imminent World War III which turns out to be entirely fake. Meanwhile, on the surface, rich white men reap the rewards of the largely abandoned world, living in luxury–until a band of rebels discovers the truth. A parable about the power of propaganda, the novel makes a strong case for the idea that fear is the only political weapon more powerful than hope.
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