8 Books That Changed the World

Words have always had the ability to shape the world we live in. To change it for the better or for worse. To influence the way people think and act. Used to defined society, to shape relationships. Here is a list of ten books that changed the world.

The Bible

With estimated total sales of over 5 billion copies, the Bible is widely considered to be the best-selling book of all time. A hundred million copies are sold each year. Not only that, but this collection of sacred texts has influenced Christians for close to two millennia.

The Quran

The central religious text of Islam, The Quran is believed by Muslims to have been verbally revealed by God to Muhammad through the angel Gabriel over a period of approximately 23 years, beginning on 22 December 609 CE, when Muhammad was 40, and concluding in 632, the year of his death.

On the Origin of Species

Published in 1859, this groundbreaking work of scientific literature by Charles Darwin is considered to be the foundation of evolutionary biology. Darwin’s book introduced the scientific theory that populations evolve over the course of generations through a process of natural selection.

The Summa Theologiæ

Saint Thomas Aquinas wrote this book as guide for theology students, a compendium of all the main theological teachings of the Catholic Church. It presents the reasoning for almost all points of Christian theology in the West.

Rights of Man

Published in 1791, this book by Thomas Paine affirms that popular political revolution is permissible when a government does not safeguard the rights of its people.


The first published work of the Danish philosopher Søren Kierkegaard, published in two volumes in 1843, Either/Or outlines a theory of human development in which consciousness progresses from an essentially hedonistic, aesthetic mode to one characterized by ethical imperatives arising from the maturing of human conscience.

The Communist Manifesto

The 1848 political pamphlet by German philosophers Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels summarises their theories about the nature of society and politics. It also briefly features their ideas for how the capitalist society of the time would eventually be replaced by socialism.

The Second Sex

Often regarded as a major work of feminist literature, The Second Sex is a 1949 book by the French existentialist Simone de Beauvoir, in which the author discusses the treatment of women throughout history.


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