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Opening Minds – the Secret World of Manipulation, Undue Influence and Brainwashing

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Opening Minds by Jon Atack shows how we can be cajoled into accepting unethical, uninvited and often harmful influence. With this book, you can help your friends and your children to resist or escape from manipulation.

We live in an age where unethical persuasion is applied every day, all day long, to bypass reasoning through direct appeals to our emotions. Throughout history, people have been unwittingly influenced to act against their own best interests. But today, ever more sophisticated forms of influence are being devised, posing a significant threat to a free and open society. It is persuasion so sinister and subtle that it can derail critical thinking and overwhelm even the most intelligent of people, reducing them into unthinking compliance.

Manipulation, undue influence and brainwashing, or whatever we call this exploitive persuasion, challenges the very notion of human rights. The use of it by unscrupulous cults, totalitarian groups and abusive individuals is growing at an alarming rate. But such influence is also used on a daily basis by marketing organizations and Internet promoters, targeting young people and interfering with their reasoning skills. It is surprising to find that undue influence remains a well-kept secret in the media and for the general public. This book shows in detail how we are cajoled into submitting to unethical, uninvited external influence.

The knowledge in this book is vital for those who wish to help their loved ones spot, resist and escape from the many traps of undue influence in our world.