By Max Borders
Ten Books that Capture the Spirit of Voice & Exit
This list is not exhaustive. In fact, it’s designed to give those who’ve been inspired by Voice & Exit to go deeper. So, take any of these for a test drive. We think you’ll enjoy the ride.
- Tomorrowland by Steven Kotler
Can you look out on the horizon without squinting? In Tomorrowland, Steven Kotler takes us on a tour of the future. From radical life extension to augmenting our brains and bodies, survey the landscape of exponential tech and exponential evolution.
- Exit, Voice & Loyalty by Albert Hirschman
How did Voice & Exit get its name? From the human algorithm set out in this classic book by political economist Albert Hirschman. When you’re in a system — any human system — exercise expression to make change (voice). If expression doesn’t work… leave the system and create a new model (exit).
- Theory of Everything by Ken Wilber
Building on Claire Graves and Don Beck’s Spiral Dynamics, Ken Wilber offers a view of psycho-social and spiritual development that requires us to think outside life’s binaries. “Integrate” the important, healthy values of the past, but “transcend” them and discover new values for a complex world.
- Be the Solution by Michael Strong
In this exploration of contemporary issues, Voice & Exit advisory board member Michael Strong asks us to look for win-win-win situations in areas that seem dogged by conflict. Lose the cruder ways of thinking — like “left” and “right” — and think in ways that all humanity truly to progress in a pluralistic world that is nevertheless poised for an age of abundance.
- Conscious Capitalism by John Mackey
Voice & Exit 2015 speaker John Mackey founded one of the most successful retail chains in America in Whole Foods. But he didn’t do it the say old ways. Instead, he created a company with an ethos. Is it possible to balance profits with a deeper purpose — all while creating conditions of shared abundance in the company ecosystem? Mackey delivers a philosophy of business and life that applies integral thinking to a new paradigm.
- The Ego is the Enemy by Ryan Holiday
At the beginning of our careers, we can be dogged by self-doubt. After we’re successful, we can let our ego cause us to rest on our laurels instead of upping our game. Ryan Holiday tells the stories of the greats — the people with the discipline to put ego into its place, and not allow it to tell the tales that hold us back on our journeys.
- Holacracy by Brian Robertson
We’re entering a new stage of human social organization. That stage is marked primarily by command-and-control hierarchies giving way to lateral-relationship networks. Brian Robertson sets out one such organizational model in his book Holacracy. Robertson argues that organizations can be more dynamic and flexible when adopting these new models. The question is: If we can get rid of bosses locally, can we get rid of them globally?
- Man’s Search for Meaning by Viktor Frankl
In this classic text, holocaust surviver and psychologist Viktor Frankl argues that human beings are not motivated primarily by pleasure, but rather meaning. Indeed, this is one of the bedrock assumptions of our festival and our V&E community.
- Stealing Fire by Steven Kotler and Jamie Wheal
We haven’t even read this yet. But it’s on our holiday wish list. Kotler and Wheal are both V&E speaker alumni and they have devoted a significant portion of their careers to operationalizing different conscious states. The metaphor of the promethean fire should burn hot for those on a path to personal and organizational improvement.
- Design in Nature by Adrian Bejan and J. Peder Zane
From the vascular system of your body, to the tributaries of river basins, the world expresses a law of flow that is all around us. Adrian Bejan presents a controversial 4th Law of Thermodynamics in his “constructal law”. But if Bejan and Zane are correct, the implications of this law are staggering across a number of domains — including biology, law, and physics.