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At the beginning of the twenty-first century, evil remains as potent and radical a force in the world as it has ever been. We all know evil when we encounter it-in the villains of history like Hitler and Stalin, in the routine brutality that makes the nightly news, in the hateful violence of terrorists and sociopaths-but the phenomenon of evil has long resisted explanation. In this singular survey of this mysterious but all too often palpable force, veteran Time magazine essayist Lance Morrow offers a sustained look at the unmistakable ways evil manifests itself in history and in the human heart. This is a provocative meditation on the role evil plays in shaping human history, a timely analysis of how this primitive force can be understood in a modern society of high-tech, sensationalized brutality, and a daring exploration of why evil may be necessary in the world.

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