100 Best Nonfiction


The Board’s List

  1. THE EDUCATION OF HENRY ADAMS by Henry Adams
  2. THE VARIETIES OF RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE by William James
  3. UP FROM SLAVERY by Booker T. Washington
  4. A ROOM OF ONE’S OWN by Virginia Woolf
  5. SILENT SPRING by Rachel Carson
  6. SELECTED ESSAYS, 1917-1932 by T. S. Eliot
  7. THE DOUBLE HELIX by James D. Watson
  8. SPEAK, MEMORY by Vladimir Nabokov
  9. THE AMERICAN LANGUAGE by H. L. Mencken
  10. THE GENERAL THEORY OF EMPLOYMENT, INTEREST, AND MONEY by John Maynard Keynes
  11. THE LIVES OF A CELL by Lewis Thomas
  12. THE FRONTIER IN AMERICAN HISTORY by Frederick Jackson Turner
  13. BLACK BOY by Richard Wright
  14. ASPECTS OF THE NOVEL by E. M. Forster
  15. THE CIVIL WAR by Shelby Foote
  16. THE GUNS OF AUGUST by Barbara Tuchman
  17. THE PROPER STUDY OF MANKIND by Isaiah Berlin
  18. THE NATURE AND DESTINY OF MAN by Reinhold Niebuhr
  19. NOTES OF A NATIVE SON by James Baldwin
  20. THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF ALICE B. TOKLAS by Gertrude Stein
  21. THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE by William Strunk and E. B. White
  22. AN AMERICAN DILEMMA by Gunnar Myrdal
  23. PRINCIPIA MATHEMATICA by Alfred North Whitehead and Bertrand Russell
  24. THE MISMEASURE OF MAN by Stephen Jay Gould
  25. THE MIRROR AND THE LAMP by Meyer Howard Abrams
  26. THE ART OF THE SOLUBLE by Peter B. Medawar
  27. THE ANTS by Bert Hoelldobler and Edward O. Wilson
  28. A THEORY OF JUSTICE by John Rawls
  29. ART AND ILLUSION by Ernest H. Gombrich
  30. THE MAKING OF THE ENGLISH WORKING CLASS by E. P. Thompson
  31. THE SOULS OF BLACK FOLK by W.E.B. Du Bois
  32. PRINCIPIA ETHICA by G. E. Moore
  33. PHILOSOPHY AND CIVILIZATION by John Dewey
  34. ON GROWTH AND FORM by D’Arcy Thompson
  35. IDEAS AND OPINIONS by Albert Einstein
  36. THE AGE OF JACKSON, Arthur Schlesinger by Jr.
  37. THE MAKING OF THE ATOMIC BOMB by Richard Rhodes
  38. BLACK LAMB AND GREY FALCON by Rebecca West
  39. AUTOBIOGRAPHIES by W. B. Yeats
  40. SCIENCE AND CIVILIZATION IN CHINA by Joseph Needham
  41. GOODBYE TO ALL THAT by Robert Graves
  42. HOMAGE TO CATALONIA by George Orwell
  43. THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MARK TWAIN by Mark Twain
  44. CHILDREN OF CRISIS by Robert Coles
  45. A STUDY OF HISTORY by Arnold J. Toynbee
  46. THE AFFLUENT SOCIETY by John Kenneth Galbraith
  47. PRESENT AT THE CREATION by Dean Acheson
  48. THE GREAT BRIDGE by David McCullough
  49. PATRIOTIC GORE by Edmund Wilson
  50. SAMUEL JOHNSON by Walter Jackson Bate
  51. THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MALCOLM X by Alex Haley and Malcolm X
  52. THE RIGHT STUFF by Tom Wolfe
  53. EMINENT VICTORIANS by Lytton Strachey
  54. WORKING by Studs Terkel
  55. DARKNESS VISIBLE by William Styron
  56. THE LIBERAL IMAGINATION by Lionel Trilling
  57. THE SECOND WORLD WAR by Winston Churchill
  58. OUT OF AFRICA by Isak Dinesen
  59. JEFFERSON AND HIS TIME by Dumas Malone
  60. IN THE AMERICAN GRAIN by William Carlos Williams
  61. CADILLAC DESERT by Marc Reisner
  62. THE HOUSE OF MORGAN by Ron Chernow
  63. THE SWEET SCIENCE by A. J. Liebling
  64. THE OPEN SOCIETY AND ITS ENEMIES by Karl Popper
  65. THE ART OF MEMORY by Frances A. Yates
  66. RELIGION AND THE RISE OF CAPITALISM by R. H. Tawney
  67. A PREFACE TO MORALS by Walter Lippmann
  68. THE GATE OF HEAVENLY PEACE by Jonathan D. Spence
  69. THE STRUCTURE OF SCIENTIFIC REVOLUTIONS by Thomas S. Kuhn
  70. THE STRANGE CAREER OF JIM CROW by C. Vann Woodward
  71. THE RISE OF THE WEST by William H. McNeill
  72. THE GNOSTIC GOSPELS by Elaine Pagels
  73. JAMES JOYCE by Richard Ellmann
  74. FLORENCE NIGHTINGALE by Cecil Woodham-Smith
  75. THE GREAT WAR AND MODERN MEMORY by Paul Fussell
  76. THE CITY IN HISTORY by Lewis Mumford
  77. BATTLE CRY OF FREEDOM by James M. McPherson
  78. WHY WE CAN’T WAIT by Martin Luther King by Jr.
  79. THE RISE OF THEODORE ROOSEVELT by Edmund Morris
  80. STUDIES IN ICONOLOGY by Erwin Panofsky
  81. THE FACE OF BATTLE by John Keegan
  82. THE STRANGE DEATH OF LIBERAL ENGLAND by George Dangerfield
  83. VERMEER by Lawrence Gowing
  84. A BRIGHT SHINING LIE by Neil Sheehan
  85. WEST WITH THE NIGHT by Beryl Markham
  86. THIS BOY’S LIFE by Tobias Wolff
  87. A MATHEMATICIAN’S APOLOGY by G. H. Hardy
  88. SIX EASY PIECES by Richard P. Feynman
  89. PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK by Annie Dillard
  90. THE GOLDEN BOUGH by James George Frazer
  91. SHADOW AND ACT by Ralph Ellison
  92. THE POWER BROKER by Robert A. Caro
  93. THE AMERICAN POLITICAL TRADITION by Richard Hofstadter
  94. THE CONTOURS OF AMERICAN HISTORY by William Appleman Williams
  95. THE PROMISE OF AMERICAN LIFE by Herbert Croly
  96. IN COLD BLOOD by Truman Capote
  97. THE JOURNALIST AND THE MURDERER by Janet Malcolm
  98. THE TAMING OF CHANCE by Ian Hacking
  99. OPERATING INSTRUCTIONS by Anne Lamott
  100. MELBOURNE by Lord David Cecil

The Reader’s List

  1. THE VIRTUE OF SELFISHNESS by Ayn Rand
  2. DIANETICS:THE MODERN SCIENCE OF MENTAL HEALTH by L. Ron Hubbard
  3. OBJECTIVISM: THE PHILOSOPHY OF AYN RAND by Leonard Peikoff
  4. 101 THINGS TO DO TIL THE REVOLUTION by Claire Wolfe
  5. THE GOD OF THE MACHINE by Isabel Paterson
  6. AYN RAND: A SENSE OF LIFE by Michael Paxton
  7. THE ULTIMATE RESOURCE by Julian Simon
  8. ECONOMICS IN ONE LESSON by Henry Hazlitt
  9. SEND IN THE WACO KILLERS by Vin Suprynowicz
  10. MORE GUNS, LESS CRIME by John R. Lott
  11. PSYCHIATRY: THE ULTIMATE BETRAYAL by Bruce Wiseman
  12. FINGERPRINTS OF THE GODS by G. Hancock
  13. CLASSICAL INDIVIDUALISM: THE SUPREME IMPORTANCE OF EACH HUMAN BEING by Tibor Machan
  14. FREE TO CHOOSE by Milton and Rose Friedman
  15. AIN’T NOBODY’S BUSINESS IF YOU DO by Peter McWilliams
  16. THE ROAD TO SERFDOM by F. A. Hayek
  17. FREEDOM IN CHAINS by James Bovard
  18. AMERICA’S GREAT DEPRESSION by Murray N. Rothbard
  19. THE ROOSEVELT MYTH by John T. Flynn
  20. THE TRUE BELIEVER by Eric Hoffer
  21. VINDICATING THE FOUNDERS by Thomas West
  22. THE DECLARATION OF INDEPENDENCE by Carl L. Becker
  23. COGNITIVE THERAPY AND THE EMOTIONAL DISORDERS by Aaron T. Beck
  24. DEATH by GOVERNMENT by R. J. Rummel
  25. A ROOM OF ONE’S OWN by Virginia Woolf
  26. LONGITUDE by Dava Sobel
  27. ORDINARILY SACRED by Lynda Sexson
  28. SPEAK, MEMORY by Vladimir Nabokov
  29. THE ART OF MEMORY by Frances Yates
  30. DUMBING US DOWN by John Taylor Gatto
  31. THE GOLDEN BOUGH by James Frazer
  32. UNDAUNTED COURAGE: MERIWETHER LEWIS, THOMAS JEFFERSON, AND THE OPENING OF THE AMERICAN WEST by Stephen E. Ambrose
  33. A MODERN PROPHET by Harold Klemp
  34. THE FLUTE OF GOD by Paul Twitchell
  35. REAL PRESENCES by George Steiner
  36. OUT OF AFRICA by Isak Dinesen
  37. WAYS OF SEEING by John Berger
  38. THE SHADOW UNIVERSITY: THE BETRAYAL OF LIBERTY ON AMERICA’S CAMPUSES by Alan Charles Kors
  39. PROPERTY MATTERS: HOW PROPERTY RIGHTS ARE UNDER ASSAULT AND WHY YOU SHOULD CARE by James V. De Long
  40. STORMING HEAVEN by Jay Stevens
  41. THE TEXAN by C. S. Barrios
  42. HOMAGE TO CATALONIA by George Orwell
  43. THE VARIETIES OF RELIGIOUS EXPERIENCE by Williams James
  44. HOW TO LIE WITH STATISTICS by Darrell Huff
  45. BUT IS IT TRUE? by Aaron Wildavsky
  46. A MATHEMATICIAN READS THE NEWSPAPER by John Allen Paulos
  47. ANATOMY OF CRITICISM by Northrop Frye
  48. THE MAINSPRING OF HUMAN PROGRESS by Henry Grady Weaver
  49. MODERN TIMES by Paul Johnson
  50. MEN TO MATCH MY MOUNTAINS by Irving Stone
  51. THE EDUCATION OF HENRY ADAMS by Henry Adams
  52. THE GREAT BRIDGE by David McCullough
  53. AMERICAN GAY by Stephen O. Murray
  54. THE DOUBLE HELIX by James D. Watson
  55. THE SENSE OF AN ENDING by Frank Kermode
  56. THE GNOSTIC GOSPELS by Elaine Pagels
  57. EROS THE BITTERSWEET by Anne Carson
  58. THE WESTERN CANON by Harold Bloom
  59. THE WHITE GODDESS by Robert Graves
  60. HEALING OUR WORLD by Mary Ruwart
  61. SILENT SPRING by Rachel Carson
  62. PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK by Annie Dillard
  63. SEXUAL PERSONAE by Camille Paglia
  64. THINK AND GROW RICH by Napoleon Hill
  65. A LIFE OF ONE’S OWN by David Kelley
  66. DOORS OF PERCEPTION by Aldous Huxley
  67. THE DISCOVERY OF FREEDOM by Rose Wilder Lane
  68. MORE LIBERTY MEANS LESS GOVERNMENT by Walter Williams
  69. LIBERTARIANISM: A PRIMER by David Boaz
  70. BEYOND LIBERAL AND CONSERVATIVE by William Maddox and Stuart Lilie
  71. A CONFLICT OF VISIONS: IDEOLOGICAL ORIGINS OF POLITICAL STRUGGLES by Thomas Sowell
  72. PARLIAMENT OF WHORES by P. J. O’Rourke
  73. SEPARATING SCHOOL AND STATE: HOW TO LIBERATE AMERICA’S FAMILIES by Sheldon Richman
  74. THE FUTURE AND ITS ENEMIES by Virginia Postrel
  75. THE ELEMENTS OF STYLE by William Strunk and E.B. White
  76. ORIENTALISM by Edward Said
  77. ECOTERROR by Ron Arnold
  78. WHY GOVERNMENT DOESN’T WORK by Harry Browne
  79. OUT OF THE CRISIS by W. Edwards Deming
  80. NOT OUT OF AFRICA by Mary Lefkowitz
  81. THE END OF RACISM by Dinesh D’Souza
  82. BEHIND THE MASK by Ian Buruma
  83. IN A DARK WOOD by Alston Chase
  84. PRIVATE PARTS by Howard Stern
  85. THE TELEPHONE BOOK by Avital Ronell
  86. THE MINUTEMAN: RESTORING AN ARMY OF THE PEOPLE by Gary Hart
  87. WAKING AND DREAMING by Joseph Hart
  88. THE GREATEST STORY NEVER TOLD by Lana Cantrell
  89. RADICAL SON by David Horowitz
  90. UNDER THE SIGN OF SATURN by Susan Sontag
  91. THE AUTOBIOGRAPHY OF MALCOLM X by Alex Haley and Malcolm X
  92. A FEELING FOR BOOKS by Janice Radway
  93. THE HERO WITH A THOUSAND FACES by Joseph Campbell
  94. THE JOB by William Burroughs
  95. SILENT INTERVIEWS by Samuel R. Delany
  96. SLATS GROBNIK AND SOME OTHER FRIENDS by Mike Royko
  97. RISE OF THE UNMELTABLE ETHNICS by Michael Novack
  98. REVERSE ANGLE by John Simon
  99. PLACING MOVIES by Jonathon Rosenbaum
  100. RIGHT FROM THE BEGINNING by Patrick J. Buchanan

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