Another Other List
And here is Mark Pitely’s list:
1) Origin of Consciousness in the Breakdown of the Bicameral Mind – Julian Jaynes. Brilliant, eye-opening, and quite possibly wrong. It definitely changed by thinking, even my thinking processes.
2) How to Read a Book – Mortimer J. Adler. Fascinating. I love all of his library science efforts.
3) Fluid Concepts and Creative Analogies – Douglas Hofstadter (et al). My coding and AI leanings are showing. Great stuff here that it lightyears ahead of the rest in AI. His methodologies and tactics changed my approaches.
4) Cybernetics – Norbert Weiner. Complicated and varying, even unfocused, but a glimpse of how his mind worked.
5) Blood Rites: Origin and History of the Passions of War- Barbara Ehrenreich – Her own ideas in here were so potent they changed the intended nature of her work. It taught me to rethink my views on pre-historic man.
6) A Perfect Vacuum – Stanislaw Lem. Mind-blowing reviews of fictional books by fictional reviewers that simultaneously attack modern literary movements one by one despite using their tools.
7) The Dispossessed – Ursula K. LeGuin. Science Fiction, yes, but as political study of anarchy and capitalism, it belongs with Brave New World and 1984 – except it is better written.
8) The Man Without Qualities – Robert Musil. A meditation on the modern human condition.
9) Ada or Ardor: A Family Chronicle- Nabokov. Unbelievably high in content, feeling, beauty, style. Its existence raises the bar on everything.
10) Wuthering Heights – Emily Bronte. People would come looking for me if I didn’t mention this book. No other author has had such a profound effect upon me.