The Beliefs of Cyclones

Don’t we shudder when we think that in a time of  popular emotion all it takes is a word, just one word imprudently spoken without hatred by an honest man, to provoke so horrible a murder? EUGÈNE SUE, THE WANDERING JEW The most illuminating book ever written about social media was published in 1895. It is called La Psychologie des foules — or, in the English translation that appeared a year later, The Crowd: A Study of the Popular Mind. The book is a work of social science that reads like the work of a seer. “A crowd in the process of formation does not always imply the simultaneous presence of several individuals in one place. Thousands of separated individuals can, at a given moment, under the influence of certain violent emotions…. acquire the characteristic of a psychological crowd. Some chance event uniting them then suffices for their behavior to

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