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This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.


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This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern This scarce antiquarian book is a facsimile reprint of the original. Due to its age, it may contain imperfections such as marks, notations, marginalia and flawed pages. Because we believe this work is culturally important, we have made it available as part of our commitment for protecting, preserving, and promoting the world's literature in affordable, high quality, modern editions that are true to the original work.

41 review for Civilization: Its Cause and Cure and Other Essays

  1. 4 out of 5

    Forrest Kentwell

    Sat and read through the main essay "Civilization: Its Cause and Cure" writing an extensive 2500 word report on it, but i won't share that here. Essential takeaways: A) In 1889, Carpenter is part of a very small minority of white men in Europe or America who designate civilization in-and-of-itself is a disease. He is clear in his essay that there are not simple steps for Civilization to complete in order to be "cured" but rather all of civilization must "evolve" into a greater form of societal ex Sat and read through the main essay "Civilization: Its Cause and Cure" writing an extensive 2500 word report on it, but i won't share that here. Essential takeaways: A) In 1889, Carpenter is part of a very small minority of white men in Europe or America who designate civilization in-and-of-itself is a disease. He is clear in his essay that there are not simple steps for Civilization to complete in order to be "cured" but rather all of civilization must "evolve" into a greater form of societal existence. B) Carpenter is a product of his anthropologist schooling in Britain during this time, and he insists on Anglo-Saxon's being the highest and greatest "race" on the planet. While he promotes primitivism in a much more positive sense than many of his contemporaries, he nonetheless believes that human evolution is part of a linear progression at which white ppl are at the top. He even gives the afterward to famous Eugenicist Havelock Ellis if his leanings weren't clear enough. C) This belief leads him to ponder throughout the text "Why has Civilization appeared"? He notes how Civilization has constantly fallen across various places and times, but he believes strongly the Anglo-Saxon will evolve past civilization without crumbling down. D) His faith is that the future will be one where white's are walking barefoot on the earth, eating mainly tubular veggies and nuts, shaping nature in a more harmonious way where we are the gardeners of mutual exchange between all species of plant and animal alike. We will reject the fetishization of technology, and instead embrace a communal lifestyle across the planet focused on mutual exchange. His most hopeful line appearing on the last page: "developing, among others, a gospel of salvation by sandals and sunbaths!" Overall, it is refreshing to read something by a white man in the past so precisely critical of the Victorian era's (and by extension our own) issues with "Health/Dis-ease" and the various factors that lead to high rates of suicide within "civilization" when such existential fears are almost non-existent in non-civilized societies. There are two unfortunate things about this text. A) The sometimes overt, sometimes covert white supremacy. I believe such an attitude is very much part of the reason that his divine idea of "progress" past civilization fails. For someone who is openly gay, promoting essentially a vegan lifestyle, pushing for worker rights, higher pay, and away from civilization, we can see how all of these "progressive" values are rooted still in White Supremacy. A key lesson for our own times in 2020. B) That post-victorian period, aka Modernity-postmodernity the fetishization of technology and our rejection of the grass on our feet has only increased, so we sit inside an accept this latest "evolution" of the white man's society, something more insidious, more dis-eased than what Carpenter could have possibly imagined. What might he have come up with if he had calculated for white supremacy? That is the question i think we must ask ourselves.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Alger Smythe-Hopkins

    The main essay is an easy read that posits civilization as a kind of illness that inflicts humanity. This by necessity roots the cure in the Rousseau-ian primitivism to an extent, yet there are insights here. For anyone already rooted in post-positivism Carpenter is not revelatory when it comes to his views on science and certainty, but his conception of civilization generating the seeds of it sown problems is provocative. The following essays are similarly original, but not inspiring, given tha The main essay is an easy read that posits civilization as a kind of illness that inflicts humanity. This by necessity roots the cure in the Rousseau-ian primitivism to an extent, yet there are insights here. For anyone already rooted in post-positivism Carpenter is not revelatory when it comes to his views on science and certainty, but his conception of civilization generating the seeds of it sown problems is provocative. The following essays are similarly original, but not inspiring, given that 140 years on they have either been fed into the mainstream or proven false. One of Carpenter's greatest blind spots is his faith in the evolution of a more perfect and equitable society that would displace the ills of High Victorian civilization. As you would expect of an item of faith, this is an area where his philosophic rigor failed to penetrate.

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