Folks like Jason Boog and Ken Knabb have recently posted personalized selections of available free texts, intended as virtual annexes to the great Occupy Wall Street Library that can be found at the northeast corner of Zuccotti Park in New York City. Here is my own selection of worthwhile texts available for free download.
While these are meant to be enjoyed by any reader in the world, I made my selection by considering what classic texts might feel especially relevant to a person navigating the intensely interactive and idealistic scene on the street at Occupy Wall Street or any other Occupy protest.
Because this protest movement envisions a better society, I’m kicking the list off with five philosophical books that explore notions of community, society, morality and shared belief. Next are two of my favorite novels about the foibles of modern ethics, both of them highly satirical (strangely, I could only find a digital copy of Franz Kafka’s The Castle in its original German, so it appears here as Der Schloss). Finally, I’m including a modern translation of the most powerful book of political philosophy of all time, Lao Tzu’s Tao Te Ching (in a slightly quirky modern translation). Enjoy!
- The Republic by Plato
- The Genealogy of Morals by Friedrich Nietzsche
- The Will to Believe by William James
- Man and His Symbols by Carl Jung
- A History of Classical Sociology by Igor Kon
- Notes From Underground by Fyodor Dostoevsky
- Der Schloss by Franz Kafka
- Tao Te Ching (a modern interpretation by Ron Hogan)