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The Madness of Crowds

Gender, Race and Identity
Narrated by: Douglas Murray
Length: 11 hrs and 23 mins
Categories: Non-fiction, Politics
5 out of 5 stars (759 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In his devastating new book The Madness of Crowds, Douglas Murray examines the 21st century’s most divisive issues: sexuality, gender, technology and race. He reveals the astonishing new culture wars playing out in our workplaces, universities, schools and homes in the names of social justice, identity politics and ‘intersectionality’.  

We are living through a postmodern era in which the grand narratives of religion and political ideology have collapsed. In their place have emerged a crusading desire to right perceived wrongs and a weaponisation of identity, both accelerated by the new forms of social and news media.

Narrow sets of interests now dominate the agenda as society becomes more and more tribal - and, as Murray shows, the casualties are mounting.   

Readers of all political persuasions cannot afford to ignore Murray’s masterfully argued and fiercely provocative book, in which he seeks to inject some sense into the discussion around this generation’s most complicated issues. 

He ends with an impassioned call for free speech, shared common values and sanity in an age of mass hysteria.

©2019 Douglas Murray (P)2019 Bloomsbury Publishing Plc

Critic Reviews

"Simply brilliant. Reading it to the end, I felt as though I’d just drawn my first full breath in years. At a moment of collective madness, there is nothing more refreshing - or, indeed, provocative - than sanity. (Sam Harris, author of five New York Times best-sellers and host of the Making Sense podcast)

"Whether one agrees with him or not, Douglas Murray is one of the most important public intellectuals today." (Bernard-Henri Lévy) 

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Thank you for attacking these subjects Douglas.

If Douglas wasn't gay then he might be attacked for even contemplating some of these subjects. Being a white 'privileged'' male & not Trans, no doubt there will be plenty of other accusations. To those potential accusers, I recommend they read the book in it's entirety. "A brave assault on those that seem to find meaning by ranting on social media"

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Oh Douglas :')

The book this world needs.
Never laughed while being angered and frustrated by the content(world we live in)
Everyone should listen to this.

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A book of the moment

As the books title suggests, the internet and social media have truely enabled what may have been minority views previously, to be broadcast far and wide. This has brought with it keyboard warriors who are emboldened to drive a specific PC culture gone mad, and call out those who aren’t towing the relevant tribal line of the moment.

The book does an excellent job of bringing up the most current egregious examples of, typically far left wing, “wokeness” gone mad.

For the uninitiated, this book would be particularly enlightening to see the hypocrisy, inconsistency, and absurdity of many of the positions held by social justice groups in the modern day. The book also continually highlights the dangers each of the various examples brings with it, were society to adopt the views whole cloth.

One area I would have loved to have seen more time dedicated to is what as a society are we to do about all this. Murray does a great job of carrying the reader along narratively, however only devotes a small portion to what we should do next. Considering how much of a problem this extreme PC culture is having today on many aspects of a persons daily life, it seems there is ample ground (and appetite) to explore more deeply how we could dig ourselves out of this mess.

I certainly enjoyed the book, and Murray’s oral performance was engaging. I’d recommend the book most to those who either don’t see the problem being as big as it seems, or those who have brushed up against the social justice narrative but are confused about what’s going on more broadly.

For those who have been engaged with the subject area, and may already listen to podcasts like Joe Rogan, Sam Harris, Ben Shapiro, Eric Weinstein (all mentioned in the book), you’ll find a lot of familiar ground. Even then though, I still enjoyed the way all of the issues were wrapped together as a whole, and some of the interesting inconsistencies Murray highlighted that I’d never considered.

4 people found this helpful

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The Problem with Intersectionality

Douglas Murray’s critique of intersectionalism shows its incoherence as a form of politics because the claims of the various groups whose interests it claims to champion conflict and undermine one another. Chapters on gay, women’s, race-based and transgender rights survey the current scene and focus on the internal contradictions within each campaign’s political narratives and the conflicts between the different groups. Valuable reading when looking for insight about these issues.

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Brilliant

An extremely relevant read in 2020. I can't stress enough that anyone interested in the changes happening and being pushed by the 'woke' crowd should read this book

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Finally someone had the guts to say something

I feel inspired to stand up against the so called bullies. Yeah, the water's not that cold after all

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Thorough, rational and essential

Excellent coverage of the topic, explored in a sensible, rational way. Should be required reading for all.

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Incredible

Douglas Murray would have to be one of the most interesting and important authors of our time. He has a unique and intelligent ability to uncover and unravel the trip wires being laid at the feet of humanity by those wanting to divide and conquer with brutish bullying and totalitarianism. With wit and depth he shows up the utter stupidity of the current zeitgeist delivering the clear and present danger that lies within acceptance of this world view. Humanity is at stake.

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Necessary Reading

Whether we want to know or not what's going on in social politics in the world around us, we all need to. This is a great and thought provoking starting point.

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My first read of a Douglas Murray book

Tantalisingly controversial for a left leaner such as myself, but Mr. Murray presents his arguments carefully and at times, convincingly. Beautifully read (albeit a little snidely at times) and well written, this is a must read for woke inner city lefty Get Up blow ins and Sky News presenters, RWNJs and Murdoch aficionados alike. After a somewhat bleak litany of social ills he finishes the book thoughtfully leaving the reader feeling stimulated and contemplative, itching to get deep and meaningful at the next dinner party. Warning - you may hate him.

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  • Wayne
  • 10-02-2020

Rebutting on SJW craziness!

Douglas Murray does a great job of taking on and destroying the madness of social justice warriors in THE MADNESS OF CROWDS. The final summarizing chapters are especially strong. Murray does a nice job of narrating his audio book.

18 people found this helpful

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  • RBS
  • 03-12-2019

This book destroys WOKE MADNESS. Read it today.

I laughed more listening to this book than I have during many comedy shows. Frankly, Murray shows the Intersectional, Woke, blah-blah, academic-term-here movement to BE the comedy show. Social Justice Warriors should be questioned - they won't have facts - and then laughed at. The only way to reverse the madness.

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  • Murray
  • 25-02-2020

Fun but weak

Having interesting insights on the one side, on the other side it verges on conspiracy thinking when speaking of Marxism or the "left". The audiobook was fun to listen to, however, it lacks depth, rigor and accuracy.

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  • Nexus X Humectress
  • 07-12-2019

Eloquent Explication

If you get one book this year, this is the one. Tells how social justice is antisocial and fosters injustice.

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  • Christian C.
  • 13-04-2020

Some light of hope in a fog of madness

The book is excellent. The content is logical, well written and shocking at times. The reader does an excellent job and fit the tone of the book. I learned about many frightening events that resemble the beginning of terrible moments of history. I used to be on the left side of politics, now I am gradually moving towards the center. I am glade I listened to this book and I am pretty sure I will listen to it again many more times.

It is refreshing and comforting to see someone courageous, intelligent and articulated enough to tackle the viper's nest that is identity politics. Murray knows what he is talking about and proves with many examples and facts the absurdity of almost any politics based on gender, race or sexual orientation. Some people will say that Murray is just showing one side of the medal, but we know about the other side, it's every where and every day in all the media. Why wast time explaining what is so omnipresent in our everyday life. Also, nobody will ever grudge a lawyer for not defending the other side.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 02-12-2019

Ends on a note of hope.

Douglas Murray is indeed a prolific author and commentator on the tribulations of the relationship modern social justice activism has developed with the populous. In this book he offers an insight to the listener into the world of that is constantly outraged. From the pitfalls of elite institutions of humanities in the west in their exercise of affirmative action to the modern activists cannibalizing and outcasting an older generation of activists.
Murray does offer a glimmer of hope at the end, one rooted the Christian traditions of the west.

Although Murray does a great job of jotting down the madness of the twitter verse and offers a sobering insight into the complexities of human sexuality, when it comes to the brewing madness of right-wing populist movements around the world and especially in Europe and America, he does what most politicians do - condemns it has a blot on the providence of the developed world and moves on. Maybe it’s too difficult or degrading a topic to broach for Murray’s genuine efforts to help any young person grow out of or navigate what he calls the trip wires of the social justice mine field and the real-world consequences one might have to face for stepping on them.

Although Murray’s performance is great and the book is wonderful to listen to, it does feel at times a tedious commentary on social media scandals, filibusters that Murray offers and the quite un-relatable schadenfreude on western academics and corporate diversity boards. Murray does end on a note of hope and positivity that really does make the book worth listening to and reading. Kudos to him for writing this book.

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  • C. Streetzel
  • 12-04-2020

Highly recommend

This book is a fantastic summary of the ideas that are causing Western Culture to spiral out of control. I have started buying hard copies of this book for close friends and family. I extended my thanks to the author.

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  • Aaron
  • 15-05-2020

Nothing new or particularly insightful

If you’ve been following the pushback to the progressivism that has been taking place the past few decades, nothing of this book will be of much worth to you. I found this book surprisingly unscholarly and not honestly addressing the issues that the people he is criticizing are discussing. Perhaps it was unintentional, but it seems as though he tackles the most shallow viewpoints of his ideological opponents and thus fails to make a convincing case.

I can’t say I wouldn’t recommend this book to anyone, but I can’t think of to whom I would. If you are looking for a vast collection of different perspectives in the cultures of LGBT+, then maybe this could be worth a read (or listen to, rather).

I enjoy the reading though, has a soothing voice, if you care about that stuff.

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  • Anonymous User
  • 15-05-2020

terrible

Truly a story that didn't need to be told. Absolute nonsense. Douglas Murray should be embarrassed.

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  • Paul D. Everts
  • 10-04-2020

Wish We Would Use This With High School Students

Wow!! Mr. Murray does a great job sharing his views on the "evil" of crowds. Sure. There are plenty of examples of good with crowds. Yet, we need to teach our children to recognize when a crowd goes too far. Unless, of course, the student loses his / her ability to be the individual. We want students to recognize the evil of crowds before they choose to be in a crowd. I am grateful for Mr. Murray's courage. Thank you!

4 people found this helpful

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  • Tamar P.
  • 05-03-2020

A right wing polemic

Racism and sexism don't exist apparently, it's a wild fantasy of the "victims". It'd be laughable if it weren't so dangerous.

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  • MR CHRIS BOWIE
  • 01-11-2019

Congratulations Douglas, a masterpiece.

This is required reading/listening for anyone interested in society, politics, or the media.

Douglas nails the hypocrisy of the SJW's in today's confused world, and asks very challenging and thought provoking questions of the listener. His section on the lack of forgiveness for example has been something I have been thinking on for days - he is absolutely right and has made me consider problems I had not thought about before. At turns through this, I have been angered by some of the historical abuses that Douglas documents, through to heartened that Douglas has raised these important topics in such a thorough, diligent and rational way, without excessive emotion nor rancour.

I also applaud Douglas's vocal performance. His nuanced delivery of irony is a remarkable picture of understatement, and all the more delicious for it. Furthermore, he has perfected the cadence of his speech: slow enough to allow the listener to properly consider and digest the sentence, without being so slow as to be boring.

I would urge anyone sitting on the fence about buying this to dive in and be prepared to be both angered and enlightened.

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  • James Bear
  • 26-10-2019

Impressions

Voice mpressions by Douglas Murray of both Nicki Minaj and Renée Zellwegger are top drawer!

28 people found this helpful

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  • martin
  • 24-10-2019

A breath of fresh air

I hope Douglas’ compassionate honestly allows people to start having the conversations they are having in private, in public.

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  • Yorkshire mum
  • 26-02-2020

Fine if you don't like women. At all.

I could hear the misogyny in every word he spat out. The fake nipples, wtf?

24 people found this helpful

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  • Kindle Customer
  • 26-10-2019

Essential listening

Thanks Douglas, it was sobering to find out just how mad the world is becoming and why.

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  • Amazon Customer
  • 25-10-2019

Everyone should read

I have never said this about a book: should be required reading. The best book on this topic

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  • Dr. Stephen Harvey
  • 11-12-2019

Why did your recommend this crap to me?

Why did Audible recommend this crap to me? Yes intelligent crap, but crap nonetheless. I will now retire to my liberal / socialist bubble.

19 people found this helpful

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  • Judy Corstjens
  • 25-11-2019

An angel rushes in where fools fear to tread

Douglas Murray picks up dozens of half-formulated thoughts and ill-defined objections strewn around my brain, puts them into neat piles and labels them for me. Two examples: in the 1970s my grandmother told me she was a feminist and explained what this meant. I immediately agreed that I was a feminist too. Later I sensed that I was no longer a feminist and felt vague unease wrt my late grandma. But Douglas explains that I simply alighted the feminist train once it reached a place that gave me the opportunities, the freedom and respect that I needed to live a happy and fulfilled life. The feminist train then (to use DM’s analogy) picked up speed and steamed on to other destinations and obsessions that had nothing to do with the aspirations of my Grandma.
Forgiveness. I’ve always somewhat taken the view that ‘forgiveness is for wimps’. Not being a religious person I don’t think anyone has ever presented me the logical case for forgiveness. DM put this right. We are forced to live in action. We do not always understand all the consequences of our actions, we may also act rashly or emotionally, but we can never undo an action. This implies that unless we want to be paralysed into inaction we must have the possibility of forgiveness to release us from regretted actions. As in business dealings we need contract law to bind us, but we also need bankruptcy laws to release us and forgive debts if things do go badly wrong. Hmm, I may have been rather harsh to a few people.

Narration. Douglas has a terribly posh voice, but I love it. Every perfectly articulated syllable.

18 people found this helpful

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  • Carol
  • 26-10-2019

great book

great to hear such eloquent common sense. Hi e reminds us that it isn't us who are out of step with the world.

15 people found this helpful