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The Crowd

The Crowd

A Study of the Popular Mind and Mass Formation

By Gustave Le Bon

158 pp

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About the Book

"The masses have never thirsted after the truth. Whoever can supply them with illusions is easily their master; whoever attempts to destroy their illusions is always their victim." Thus writes Gustave Le Bon in The Crowd, widely regarded as one of the most insightful works of social psychology of the past 150 years. First published in 1896, The Crowd had a profound influence on many important figures of the 20th century, and its observations have been employed by politicians and dictators alike to exert their will over the popular mind. Central to Le Bon's analysis is his belief that the individual immersed in the crowd finds himself in a "hypnotized state," in which his beliefs and morals are held captive.

Today, the capabilities of mass formation and control far exceed even what Le Bon could have imagined, and his analysis of the nature of crowds takes on a whole new light in the age of instant communication and information transfer. Whether you are trying to influence a crowd, or keep out of its clutches, Le Bon's book will prove an invaluable read.

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