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am 14. August 2016
The best book to learn about human behavior and how to work with that. Suddenly your colleagues'/friends'/... behavior will not seem so strange anymore.
0Kommentar| Eine Person fand diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 15. Juli 2000
This is a naughty book. It teaches the would-be proponent of the power game, to be mean and nasty, and how to get ahead in life. To this end, the book sets out The 48 Laws of Power.
The 48 Laws of Power is highly common-sensical, realistic and practical. Notwithstanding the meanness of the 48 Laws, I found this book to be a valuable guide to getting on in life. Politics and human relations are inevitable matters which we have to deal with in life. The sooner one learns and masters the 48 Laws, the better.
Personally, I would not advocate actively practising the 48 Laws. But knowing what these 48 Laws are, is imperative. They more one is aware of these Laws, the better one is able to identify life's dangers and avoid or defend oneself from potential troubles.
I like how each chapter focuses on a specific Law of Power. The chapters follow a common systematic and organised template which makes reading easy. The chapters are packed with loads of lessons and historic examples, illustrating how each Law works. Beside learning the Laws of Power, I also learnt a great deal of history from this book. And if you are a student of Sun-Tzu, Machiavelli or Clausewitz, you will love this book.
When I first read this book back in November 1998, I had the opportunity to reflect on and observe the workings of The 48 Laws of Power. Dr Mahathir, Prime Minister of Malaysia had just then sacked his Deputy the charismatic Anwar Ibrahim. Interestingly, a copy of Asiaweek in or about that time showed a picture of Dr Mahathir, in his office, shaking hands with his new Deputy, Badawi - in the foreground of the picture, on Dr Mahathir's desk, a copy of The 48 Laws of Power could be found.
0Kommentar| 9 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 4. März 2017
The idea and the rules are interessting but the way the book is written is soo boring! I would check if there are other books with the same topic first if I were you.
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am 11. Februar 2008
This book is focused predominantly on Machiavellian strategies of power. As such, it is a very interesting read. Each "law of power" is illustrated with sample stories and some of the stories may be too much for the faint of heart - they are utterly ruthless.

Power is so seductive - the effects of it like chasing, fighting for and owning the "one ring that rules them all" from Talkien's "Lord of the Rings". It seems so irresistible, so sweet, but watch out how far you go, because while setting a trap for another, you can find yourself unnoticeably getting caught in it.

There is a saying that the absolute power corrupts. That is not exactly true of the "real" power - but the "real" power is not based on fear, only the perceived power is based on fear and that is what Machiavellian power is based upon. After all his motto was that it is better to be feared than to be loved. And if you invest yourself totally in being feared, one day you just find yourself ending all alone. There is yet another and better way - but that one takes another route. It is based on higher knowledge.

I am glad that Robert Green has added the "reversals" - the way you can find this double edged sword of power stuck in your own back if you're not careful.

This book is a lovely compendium of use and abuse of power with plenty of stories drawn from history. It is nice to be aware of possible consequences when using the laws of power before you become power crazy and find yourself in a ditch. With great power comes great responsibility.

Another reviewer mentioned that there is no "how to" in this book - well, even each heading clearly points out the modus operandi, which is further illustrated through the stories.

And not all the laws in the book are devious, even thought that may seem to be the main flavor of the book. Some of the laws are good common-sense advice as in "avoid free lunch", "plan all the way", "concentrate your forces", "master the art of timing", etc.

As you read this book, I'll just like to mention a story of a man who felt rather shy and powerless and who figured that the best way out for him to feel like somebody would be if he gets other people to be afraid of him. He found a book on mind-power and sat down to practice. It didn't take long, before he was apparently wielding power and people around him felt rather anxious in his presence. Eventually they all began finding excuses for staying away from him and in the end he was all alone - no one wanted him around.

So, when you engage into experimenting with these laws of power, temper them with love and wisdom - else you may not be too happy with your creation. Machiavelli, too, ended up in exhile and all alone.
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am 14. April 2000
The book is well written, engaging in concept, and it gets its points across well. It is also very useful and practical. It is, of course, also quite evil. The very essense of it in fact. Please understand that I don't usually speak in such black and white terms, or religious terms, but this book struck me as that - pure evil. Despite it's title, however, it is not really about true power. True power is about leadership, vision, and conviction. This is merely about the immoral and unethical tricks, manipulations and deceptions that some people use to work themselves into positions of influence and authority over others. Since these people and their tactics certainly exist however, this book is an excellent guide to tell you exactly what to look for in others and so help you plan your defenses. Some of the laws are common sense and relatively harmless (like law 1 - never outshine the master, or another: do not show your weaknesses, keep your mystery) but some are ruthless, unethical, immoral and I could never follow them (like - having others do your work for you and then taking credit for their work, or: targeting weaker people as demonstrations for your power by setting them up for public attack, etc.) Even if you do not plan to use the techniques yourself, it is good to know about them. It is useful to be able to form an effective defense against them for when they do come up in life. Add to this the fact that the book is entertaining to read, and you have a worthwhile purchase. Like looking at the opposite team's playbook.
More knowledge is good I think. I feel somewhat wiser for having read it.
0Kommentar| 23 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 26. Mai 1999
This is one of the best books that I have ever read. Unfortunately it is also one that can easily be misunderstood or misused. First let me say what the book is. The book is a guide to amoral methods of gaining power. It gives 48 different "laws" to use to accomplish that. The 1st misunderstanding of the book is purely the fault of the authors. "Laws" is very misleading in this case. "Strategies" works much better, but isn't quite as marketable. Anyone who tries to follow all 48 laws simultaneously all the time will be sorely dissapointed. The book will not make you an expert power player. Yes, the book does contradict itself, but in real life different strategies are needed in different situations. It's still up to you which ones to use. This brings me to the next point. Yes, the book is a distillation of many great masters of power. And, as with any distillation, the end result is not as good. But the simple fact is that the great masters are fairly difficult and boring to take straight. The book is best used almost as a primer course. It makes reading the actual texts by Machiavelli and Sun Tzu much easier. Next, the book does not advocate the use of these ideas. It does not say "Here, everyone should do this." In fact, in expressly says that these laws are not right for everyone. Those who morals tell them not to act this way, shouldn't. The book is a study of strategies for gaining power which have worked for those in the past. The book also does not advocate any particular use for power. It does not say that one should gain power for its own sake, or that one should gain power to help others. It just says that if you want to have power, here are some ways to do it. It's up to you how to use the power. The cold, hard truth is that the methods described in the book do work. Every major wielder of power in history has used some of the rules to get that power. Gandhi was a master of the use of power - Law 6 "Court Attention At All Costs", Law 8 "Make Other's Come To You", Law 9 "Win Through Your Actions", Law 16 "Use Absence to Increase Respect." These were all methods used by Gandhi to take power from the British. The most important law in my opinion is Law 19, "Know Who You're Dealing With, Do Not Offend the Wrong Person." The person who does not treat the methods in hear with the proper respect and uses them rashly will violate this law over and over. The wise reader, however, will take Law 19 to heart and learn when to and when not to use the strategies, The laws themselves are neither moral nor immoral. How they are used defines their morality. I found the book to be a wealth of ideas and examples of what works and what doesn't work. The immorality of many of the laws is balanced by the fact that the more immoral your course of action seems, the more likely you are to violate Law 19. I recomend this book on many levels. It is a fascinating study of power, and the historical examples they use are equally interesting. I would have read it for that alone. On a larger scale it is a guidebook for those who feel that they are capable of gaining power, for whatever purporse, and are also prepared to accept the risk of failure and the pain that comes with it.
0Kommentar| 4 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 17. April 1999
Jaguar Mark 2? Pshaw! Chateau Latour '49? Snort!
You'll have to excuse me, I'm practising Law 36: "Disdain the things you cannot have". Frankly, it doesn't work.
However, it's fortunate for people as ambitious and venal as you and I, that most of Robert Greene's other laws are ideal guides for modern behaviour, particularly in business or politics. Indeed, we can quickly build careers based on Law 7: "Get others to do the work for you but always take the credit."
With the morals of vultures but the faces of angels (more of that asset later), we will quietly circle a stooge before winging down and tearing off gobbets of glory. Our hero should be Thomas Edison who allowed a naïve European scientist named Nikola Telsa to work 18-hour days, on the promise of a $50,000 bonus, to redesign Edison's primitive dynamos. When Telsa finally produced the new product and asked for his money Edison explained: "You don't understand our American humour", and offered a small pay rise instead.
Guglielmo Marconi joined in the Telsa-baiting fun by broadcasting a signal across the English Channel in 1899 while making use of a patent Telsa had filed two years previously. Once again Telsa received no money and no credit.
Law 7 segues nicely into Law 26: "Keep your hands clean". By using scapegoats and cat's-paws, our hands will never be soiled by mistakes or nasty deeds. The term cat's-paw, incidentally, comes from the fable in which the Monkey grabs the paw of his friend, the Cat, and uses it to scoop chestnuts out of the fire. While scapegoats are easily found (in fact I can loan you a couple), cat's-paws are more of a challenge to identify.
Don't be put off. Follow the example of Cleopatra who had a double success with the cat's-paw method. She convinced Julius Caesar and later Marc Antony to decimate her unruly family members at little risk to herself.
Mao Tse-tung also recognised the charm of Law 26. During the civil war, he convinced his rival Chiang Kai-shek to join forces against the invading Japanese. Chiang thought Mao had gone soft. Chiang believed that, once the combined Chinese forces had defeated the Japanese, the Nationalists could get back to the task of trouncing the Communists. With that delicious prospect in mind, Chiang agreed and ordered his troops into a conventional, debilitating war against the Japanese. The Communists on the other hand used less demanding hit-and-run guerrilla tactics to harry the Japanese.
After the Japanese were finally shooed from the country, the weakened Nationalists found themselves confronted and finally beaten by the fighting-fit Communists.
But what if prissy onlookers, watching you and I behave Monkey-like on the corporate or political stages, take umbrage at our anti-social, insensitive lifestyles? Well, phooey to them. In fact the angrier our enemies become the calmer and more objective we should stay. That's the essence of Law 30: "Stir up waters to catch fish". Be aware that anger and emotion are strategically counter productive. Tantrums neither intimidate nor inspire loyalty, they only create doubts and uneasiness about your power. Green points out that Napoleon lost more than his cool when, in front of his government ministers, he screamed at a serene Talleyrand: "You, by the way, are nothing but shit in silk stockings!" As they watched the apoplectic Napoleon become more and more unhinged, the ministers realised Tallyerand had successfully humiliated their leader by not responding in anger.
While we are on the subject of counter-intuitive behaviour, remember the paranoid and the wary are often the easiest to deceive. Even if they hate you, pretend to be their friends. This is Law 3: "Conceal your intentions". Win your opponents' trust in one area and you have a smoke screen that blinds their view in another.
Haile Selassie adopted this approach throughout his political life, luring his victims with sweet smiles and obsequiousness before attacking. In 1927, for example, the future Ethiopian emperor found only one warlord, Balcha, opposed him. To show his apparent willingness to be flexible, Selassie invited the recalcitrant Balcha to a banquet. Balcha sensed a plot and, leaving his army near Selassie's fort, brought along 600 loyal fighters to the event. But the extravagant banquet was trouble-free and a cocky Balcha saw an opportunity to return to crush seemingly intimidated Selassie.
But when Balcha reached to his army's base, he found it deserted. While Balcha was at the banquet. another army allied with Selassie had arrived at the base with gold and cash, and bought all the weapons carried by Balcha's troops.
Then, as Balcha and his remaining men attempted to flee, they found the escape routes blocked by the allied army and Selassie's soliders.
Selassie, knowing that Balcha would sense the banquet was ploy and would bring his best fighters, had check-mated his enemy. Balcha was forced to surrender and enter a monastery. Not that your enemies are always the real threat. Author Greene, whose work in Hollywood and the media no doubt made him wary of the Janus mentality of friends, encourages those of you without enemies to make them. Once again, if you're running short, I can loan you some.
Despite Green's often prim writing style (possibly be an in-joke as his sentence structure often resembles stiff translations of the works of Machiavelli and Sun-tzu) he is eminently readable. He has an excellent eye for a salutary history lesson. For example, he outlines how Talleyrand turned to his most hated enemy Fouché, head of the secret police, in an attempt to overthrow Napoleon. Bound by a common cause, rather than friendship, the two men went about their dastardly, if ultimately unsuccessful, deeds.
Greene's sharply cynical offering, which is slightly at odds with his observation: "Do not be the court cynic ... you will irritate (people)", is crisply packaged by book designer Joost Elffers. The black and red typefaces - fit for a wiley Cardinal - are austere and elegant.
But enough about them, let's talk about you and your angelic face. I'm going to let you into one of Green's little secrets. He believes you are perfect for the power game. The mistake many people make is to assume that deceivers are distressingly obvious as they spin their elaborate lies. In fact, the best deceivers utilise a bland front and avoid suspicion-raising extravagant words and gestures.
That's why, armed with this book and with an eye on the Main Chance, you and I will be an unbeatable team.
It's just a pity I can't trust you.
0Kommentar| 2 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 16. September 1999
I do give Greene and Elffers credit for their recollection of historical figures and events. What he usually failed to note was that pride led to the essential downfalls of the empires and tycoons i.e. Napoleon, Caesar, etc. While there is a lot of truth of what they said, I found that Greene and Elffers manipulated the data of the historical events and forced these events to fit their "laws". Also the laws contradicted themselves ex: Law 34 "Be Royal In your Own Fashion: Act Like a King To Be Treated Like A King: Be Royal In Your Own Fasion" and Law 46 "Never Appear Too Perfect". This is one of many "pulls" in contradicting directions that this book has. No doubt that there are coniving people in business, but "jumping" in their game neither commands respect or will get you ahead. When dishing out power tactics as Greene condones remember with manipulative practices: "For every action there is an equal and opposite reaction" what comes around goes around and tactless, manipulative actions may grant short-term gratification, but remember "the higher up you climb the further and harder the fall when one of Greenes Laws comes back and bites you in the A$$". I don't recommend this book and it shocked me that people actually stoop to these tactics. If this is the way to success, maybe you should question if you want "power". With publications like this don't be surprised with instances like Columbine HS in Col., or the Atlanta Shootings happen because according to Greene's philosophy it would be "Fair game" probabally these work shootings in the US someone was the blunt of one of these laws. I recommend reading Dale Carnegie, or Frank Betger, Joe Girard, Lou Holtz, or Rick Pitino for Motivatioanl books. These men have true "power" and real success what qualifications do Greene and Elffers have anyway to back the success of these laws in their own accomplishments anyway? They can only use historical events shaped like they want them to be. Don't read!
0Kommentar| 2 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden
am 11. Februar 1999
After 44 years in the corp world of DuPont, General Electric, Black & Decker, Sunbeam, and Steelcase, I relate to all of the laws one way or another.
Many of my mistakes in my career could have been avoided if I had this book at my desk side.
I was a naive, honest, ethical engineer, manager, V.P., and President.......and was blind sided by my inability to see the manipulations, dishonesty, political, manipulations of my trusted leaders. My wisdom came too late.
Business ethics be damned.........the game is winning and gaining power forgetting the customer, company, the employees and pleasing the shareholders and Wall Street above all to gain personal reputation and be hailed by Fortune, Forbes, Business Week, etc. feeding the ego trips of top management, taking credit for all that is good and shedding the blame on others when things go bad.
This should be preferred reading in the Business Schools.
A great job done by the Authors.
Al Lehnerd
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am 28. April 1999
The great thing about this book is that the authors are the ones who are reaping the profits not the people who buy the book. It is also a sad fact that people have to go as low as this book to succeed. In my opinion people should just relax and do to others as you would like to be done to you (assuming you don't like pain). I'll tell you what this book will help you achieve. It's called getting whacked. That's right, you do this stuff to other people and when you hit the wrong guy or girl you will suffer the consequences. There are a lot more psychos out there today, just look at the Colorado school shootings.
Also, I am intrigued in the way the author has reversals at the end of the majority of chapters. In other words, the same law he just gave you does not work all the times. Therefore, the exact opposite must be done in order to succeed. In other words each law in the book is basically right and wrong. That's my whole point. You don't need this book, just relax. Remember the majority of the rules are neutralized.
People feel that buying a book is going to help them. If you can't help yourself, then a book is not going to help either.
0Kommentar| 4 Personen fanden diese Informationen hilfreich. War diese Rezension für Sie hilfreich?JaNeinMissbrauch melden