This classic study is one of the few books to explore extensively the many facets of envy—“a drive which lies at the core of man’s life as a social being.” Ranging. 23 May Library of Congress Cataloging-in-Publication Data. Schoeck, Helmut. Envy: a theory of social behaviour. Translation of: Der Neid. Reprint. Envy was first published in German in , then in an English translation in This classic study is one of the few books to explore extensively the many.

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Yoav Lang rated it liked it Jun 13, Mark rated it it was amazing Mar 28, As I read it, in all honesty the book just keept getting better. The eighteenth-century middle class was rich, in a position to fill almost any employment, almost as powerful as the nobility. Twenty years earlier there had schoecj no hope for the future; in no anxiety was felt about it.

My library Helmutt Advanced Book Search. In the envious the thirst for social advancement is insatiable. Bojana Djuric rated it really liked it Dec 06, Paperbackpages. In Ancient Greece, citizens who received too much good fortune were often ostracized: We should, of course, always distinguish that merely negative envy which begrudges others their cshoeck from the positive ambition that leads men to active emulation, competition, and creative effort of their own.

Concessions merely whet its appetite for more concessions.

Published December 1st by Liberty Fund Inc. The envious person perceives the fact that the envied person possesses wealth or privilege as being the cause that prevents the envious person from obtaining it. Ingratitude and resentment toward the benefactor is actually the rule.

Common terms and phrases able achieve aggression American arouse Azande Beatrice Webb become behaviour believe Billy Budd black magic cause Claggart concept conflict criticism culture economic egalitarian emotional envious envy-avoidance envy-free envy-motive equality ethical existence experience fact fate favour fear feeling of envy fellow hence Herman Melville hostility human incest taboo income Indians individual inequality inhibition innovation instance jealous justice kibbutz kibbutzim kind L.


Nemesis was a Greek god that punished the arrogant envj greedy. It is sociological rather than philosophical, so it spends more time describing society and the impact of envy than it does saying what the response of society should be to envy.

Lucas Pattison rated it it was amazing Oct 02, For the mere fact that certain abuses have been remedied draws attention to the others and they now appear more galling; people may suffer less, but their sensibility is exacerbated In primitive societies, schoexk is difficult for the individual to spend personal time alone.

Return to Book Page. Envy is the motive behind vandalism.

Envy: A Theory of Social Behaviour

Justice Homes and Harold J. The Israeli kibbutzim also opposed personal privacy, because people who spent time alone were seen as hoarding their time to themselves, instead of sharing it with others.

People who fear being envied often respond by hiding what they have. Superstitious people feared that the gods would punish them for being too wealthy. Books by Schoecj Schoeck.

In the French Revolution ofa woman coal-heaver is said to have remarked to a richly dressed lady: All this does not mean that we should hesitate to take any measure truly calculated to relieve hardship and reduce poverty. An extraordinary, surprising, brilliant book. Jn rated it really liked it May 05, InHelmut Schoeck, professor of sociology at the University of Mainz, devoted a scholarly and penetrating book to the subject, to which most future discussion is likely to be indebted.

Inhe taught philosophy at Fairmont State Collegefollowed by a two-year stint at Yale. Acts of generosity are often responded to not with gratitude, but with ingratitude. Such measures, betraying weakness and a guilty conscience, only lead to more far-reaching and even ruinous demands. From inside the book. I might have been in his place. During the European Middle Ages, envy was involved in witchcraft in two ways: It must be obvious how such a man, even if only prompted by his unconscious, would carefully evade the phenomenon of envy or try to belittle it!


The author criticizes researchers in the social sciences of having paid too little attention to envy. Carl Fliegelman rated it it was amazing Sep 02, Arthur L Doggett rated it really liked it Jun 13, Almost no one is completely satisfied with his status in relation to his fellows. Is the proposed measure intended primarily to help the poor, or to penalize the rich?

In particular, envy as a motivation for crime. The lighter a yoke, the more it seems insupportable; what exasperates is not the crushing burden but the impediment; what inspires to revolt is not oppression but humiliation.

This is the actual effect of steeply progressive income taxes and confiscatory inheritance taxes. Debora Pistola rated it liked it Sep 12, Read long and it was great. As soon as they have risen one rung in the social or economic ladder, their eyes are fixed upon the next.

Envy: A Theory of Social Behaviour by Helmut Schoeck

Sidney and Beatrice Webb: A thought-provoking and in-depth study schoekc a vastly neglected topic. John rated it really liked it Dec 09, Views Read Edit View history. An amazing book, a must read for anyone who wants to understand humans, society and especially for those pretending to change the world ‘in better’!