Monthly Archives: December 2018

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay

Extraordinary Popular Delusions and the Madness of Crowds by Charles Mackay

Men, it has been well said, think in herds; it will be seen that they go mad in herds, while they only recover their senses slowly, and one by one.” “In reading the history of nations, we find that, like individuals, they have their whims and their peculiarities; their seasons of excitement and recklessness, when they care not what they do. We find that whole communities suddenly fix their minds upon one object, and go mad in its pursuit; that millions of people become simultaneously impressed with one delusion, and run after it, till their attention is caught by some new folly more captivating than the first.

The book chronicles and vilifies its targets in three parts: “National Delusions”, “Peculiar Follies”, and “Philosophical Delusions”.

The subjects of Mackay’s debunking include alchemy, beards (influence of politics and religion on), witch-hunts, crusades and duels. Present day writers on economics, such as Andrew Tobias, laud the three chapters on economic bubbles. (summary from wikipedia)

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Inca Land

Inca Land by Hiram Bingham

Inca Land by Hiram Bingham

Prof. Hiram Bingham of Yale Makes the Greatest Archaeological Discovery of the Age by Locating and Excavating Ruins of Machu Picchu on a Peak in the Andes of Peru.

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