Books
Daniel Smith

The Little Book of Big Ideas

An exploration of some of the most important and enduring ideas in human history — from religion, science, philosophy, medicine, psychology, politics, economics and art — each presented in brief, accessible form.

‘Big’ ideas are those concepts and theories that have radically transformed our understanding of the world we live in, our place in that world and the ways we have shaped the past and will shape the future. They are the ideas that have had a huge impact on human civilization — and they come from all disciplines of human ingenuity.

Topics covered range widely and include Creation Mythology, Existentialism, The Elements, Relativity, Space Travel, Geometry, Ethics, Behaviourism, Genetics, Warfare, The Nation State, Anarchism, Capitalism, Classical Art and Architecture, The Renaissance — and much more.

This concise, accessible and multi-faceted book provides an essential introduction to 150 of the most important principles of Western thought.
326 printed pages
Copyright owner
Michael O'Mara Books
Publication year
2017
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Quotes

  • Sofie Rahbekhas quoted9 months ago
    It is sometimes said that love or perhaps money makes the world go round, but ideas have a much better claim to keeping us all spinning on our axis. Ideas are the great currency of life, driving progress and nurturing understanding – of ourselves and of the world around us – and, arguably, are the defining characteristic that elevates our species above all others. We may not be the only creature to entertain ideas – one need only glimpse a squirrel striving to liberate a feast of nuts from a bird feeder to see that – but we have the biggest and best ideas, not to mention the wherewithal to bring them to fruition. As the great architect Frank Lloyd Wright put it ‘An idea is salvation by imagination
  • Sofie Rahbekhas quoted9 months ago
    In the words of the American writer Ursula K. Le Guin: ‘It is of the nature of idea to be communicated: written, spoken, done. The idea is like grass. It craves light, likes crowds, thrives on crossbreeding, grows better for being stepped on.’
  • Maria Perniahas quoted2 years ago
    ‘A pile of rocks ceases to be a rock pile when somebody contemplates it with the idea of a cathedral in mind.’

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