John Gray (philosopher)  

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"If human beings were potentially capable of applying reason in their lives they would show some sign of learning from what they had done wrong in the past, but history and everyday practice show them committing the same follies over and over again. They would alter their beliefs in accordance with facts, but clinging to beliefs in the face of contrary evidence is one of the most powerful and enduring human traits." --"Believing in Reason is Childish" - John Gray


“It is a truism that socialism is dead, and an irony that it survives most robustly as a doctrine not in Paris, where it has suffered a fate worse than falsification by becoming thoroughly unfashionable, nor in London, where it has been abandoned by the Labour Party, but in the universities of capitalist America, as the ideology of the American academic nomenklatura.” (John Gray, "The End of History, Again?" (1989)

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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.
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Train wreck at Montparnasse (October 22, 1895) by Studio Lévy and Sons.

John Nicholas Gray (born 17 April 1948) is an English political philosopher with interests in analytic philosophy and the history of ideas. He retired as School Professor of European Thought at the London School of Economics and Political Science. Gray contributes regularly to The Guardian, The Times Literary Supplement and the New Statesman, where he is the lead book reviewer.

Gray has written several influential books, including False Dawn: The Delusions of Global Capitalism (1998), which argues that free market globalization is an unstable Enlightenment project currently in the process of disintegration, Straw Dogs: Thoughts on Humans and Other Animals (2003), which attacks philosophical humanism, a worldview which Gray sees as originating in religious ideologies, and Black Mass: Apocalyptic Religion and the Death of Utopia (2007), a critique of utopian thinking in the modern world. Gray sees volition, and hence morality, as an illusion, and portrays humanity as a ravenous species engaged in wiping out other forms of life. Gray writes that 'humans ... cannot destroy the Earth, but they can easily wreck the environment that sustains them.'

He is an atheist.

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