The 48 Laws of Power by Robert Greene
Amoral, cunning, ruthless, and instructive, this book is the definitive manual for anyone interested in gaining, observing, or defending against ultimate control. If you don’t know these laws it is certain you are being controlled by someone else who does!
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The 48 Laws of Power Notes:
0:00 – Intro to 48 Laws of Power
- Underlying theme: How to acquire and maintain power over others
- Purpose of the book: To describe in detail and without moral bias the exact method various historical figures have used to gain power
- Intended audience: Those who want to learn how power is gained and lost
5:00 – How easy is the book to read?
- Easy reading, fascinating stories
- Print: 452 pages (15+ hours)
- Audio: 23 hours
6:00 – Reviews and significance
- Famous (2735 4½-star reviews on Amazon)
- Over 10,000 4.5 star reviews for Audible book
- #1 in Biographies of Historical & Political Figures
- #1 in Political History & Theory
10:00 – Bio of Robert Greene
- Greene was raised in Los Angeles. Graduated from University of Wisconsin with a degree in Classical Studies (aka Liberal Arts).
- He estimates he had “80 jobs before becoming an author,” including construction worker, translator, magazine editor and Hollywood movie writer.
- Influenced to write 48 Laws while working in Hollywood, watching the power plays at work around him every day.
- Arguably the single most popular author for rap artists. He’s been endorsed by Jay-Z, Kanye West, Busta Rhymes, Ludacris, Drake and many others.
- Has written several best-selling books, including :
- The Art of Seduction, October 2001
- Mastery, November 2012
12:30 – Major Themes of the Book
- Each of the 48 Laws is designed for achieving, maintaining or at the very least understanding power
- Book is fully amoral. There’s no “right” or “wrong” answers in this book and it requires your own moral compass to use these laws.
- Quick reference of all laws (for another browser tab)
15:30 – Jay’s Perspectives
- As a man who strives to live a highly moral life, the amoral nature of this book was very uncomfortable
- 48 Laws shows the inner workings of power in a way few others do
- Critique: Without your own moral compass this book will be very dangerous
- Related books: George R. R. Martin’s “Game of Thrones” Series
21:45 – Matt’s Perspectives
- This book is a wide description of power at big and small levels
- 48 Laws of Power teaches how to calculate the various political and personal moves that can be made at any time in your life
- Critique: None. 48 Laws is incredible.
- Question for Greene: What motivated him to study and write this book?
- Related books: Robert Greene’s “Mastery”
Jay’s favorite quote from “The 48 Laws of Power”
Law 28: Enter Action With Boldness: “If you are unsure of a course of action, do not attempt it. Your doubts and hesitations will infect your execution. Timidity is dangerous: Better to enter with boldness. Any mistakes you commit through audacity are easily corrected with more audacity. Everyone admires the bold; no one honors the timid.”
Matt’s favorite quote from “The 48 Laws of Power”
“Half of your mastery of power comes from what you do not do, what you do not allow yourself to get dragged into. For this skill you must learn to judge all things by what they cost you. As Nietzsche wrote, ‘The value of a thing sometimes lies not in what one attains with it, but in what one pays for it—what it costs us.’ Perhaps you will attain your goal, and a worthy goal at that, but at what price? Apply this standard to everything, including whether to collaborate with other people or come to their aid.”
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