Orphaned at the age of 5, he went blind at 7. But interestingly enough, Eric Hoffer, a self educated field hand and longshoreman, is more than a match for him.
At other times, however, those same elements come together in the service of evil. He keeps groping for extremes What motivated Hoffer to write The True Believer? Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements was written by Eric Hoffera very unconventional man and a freethinker. When we feel superior to our tormentors, we are likely to despise them, even pity them, but not hate them He gives examples of how the same forces that give rise to true believer mass movements can be channelled in more positive ways: Among the other unifying factors, hatred and coercion were clearly the dominant elements for the members of the Khmer Rouge.
The people who populate these movements are the true believers. At times these elements combine to form dynamic, sweeping changes that result in tremendous progress. We expect that the deeper we go, the firmer the answers become, but the opposite is true.
Mass movements require three distinctly different types of personalities in order to succeed at different stages: That a particular belief is morally, or even selfishly, good? For Hoffer though, as I would assume for the rest of us these days, the free, or autonomous, man is real hero of society.
He seems to use words as if he were ignorant of their true meaning. In fairness to Hoffer, let it be noted that he applied this logic to all mass movements, including Christianity, not just to Communism or Nazism.
For those who remained within the favored factions of the Khmer Rouge, the torment of the population was a source of dark satisfaction. Their thirst for a new millenium was clear in their proclamation that the dawn of the revolution was "Year Zero.
The men of words feel unjustly excluded from or mocked and oppressed by the existing powers in society, and they relentlessly criticize or denigrate present institutions.
As Hoffer so well understood, True Believers think alike, regardless of the content of their thoughts. There is thus an illiterate air about the most literate true believer. But they did not have practical men of action. If the isolated individual lacks opportunities for personal advancement, development of talents, and action such as those found on a frontierhe will seek substitutes.
It is in no way possible to address all the ideas that he broaches, so let me just try a couple. The once fearless Khmer Rouge fighters became powerless and lost. Only a wise man knows when to get off. Think of Osama Bin Laden and the al Qaeda network. Free men are aware of the imperfection inherent in human affairs, and they are willing to fight and die for that which is not perfect.
Proselytizing is more a passionate search for something not yet found than a desire to bestow upon the world something we already have. The manner in which a mass movement starts out can also have an effect on the duration and mode of termination of the active phase of the movement.
While mass movements idealize the past and glorify the future, the present world is denigrated: What could lead them to justify in their own minds committing mass atrocities? Instead he sweeps over history, sometimes making unfair generalizations or skipping past obvious counterarguments.
Can one make a love of democracy and the advocacy of individualism a holy cause itself?Main Thesis: Eric Hoffer’s seminal text, The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements, was published in and offered insight into the cultural phenomenon surrounding public movements and what dynamics.
“The quality of ideas seems to play a minor role in mass movement leadership. What counts is the arrogant gesture, the complete disregard of the opinion of others, the singlehanded defiance of the world.”.
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“[Eric Hoffer] is a student of extraordinary perception and insight. The range of his reading and research is vast/5(). A Macat Analysis of Eric Hoffer's The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements Audible Audiobook – Unabridged Jonah S. Rubin (Author), mi-centre.com (Narrator), Macat International Limited.2/5(1).
The work, entitled The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements was written by Eric Hoffer (), a very unconventional man and a freethinker.
The son of Alsatian immigrants to the United States, he was born in New York City. Book Review: The True Believer – Thoughts on The Nature of Mass Movements Posted on August 14, March 4, in Book reviews by Scott Berkun Somewhere back in college I became familiar with The True Believer: Thoughts on the .Download