Cover Image: On Tyranny Graphic Edition

On Tyranny Graphic Edition

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Member Reviews

If I'm a reader with any sort of "influence," I can say with near certainty that the book I've influenced others to pick up the most is Timothy Snyder's 2017 publication, On Tyranny: Twenty Lessons from the Twentieth Century. 

Snyder is a professor at Yale and a historian of fascism, and On Tyranny is a 126-page guide for surviving and resisting America’s turn towards authoritarianism. I read it cover-to-cover twice in one sitting and then did something I almost never do - posted about it on my personal social media pages. While the book is unabashedly opposed to the 45th president of the United States (never mentioned by name), I have seen firsthand how its lessons have resonated with my friends on both sides of the aisle. 

The lessons are:
1. Do not obey in advance.
2. Defend institutions.
3. Beware the one-party state.
4. Take responsibility for the face of the world.
5. Remember professional ethics.
6. Be wary of paramilitaries.
7. Be reflective if you must be armed.
8. Stand out.
9. Be kind to our language.
10. Believe in truth. 
12. Make eye contact and small talk.
13. Practice corporeal politics.
14. Establish a private life.
15. Contribute to good causes.
16. Learn from peers in other countries.
17. Listen for dangerous words.
18. Be calm when the unthinkable arrives.
19. Be a patriot. 
20. Be as courageous as you can. 

For reasons not entirely clear to me, On Tyranny has now been given the graphic edition treatment where the text is interspersed with collage-style illustrations and photos. Art is of course subjective, but the style presented here struck me as a little rough and, for lack of a better word, odd. I still absolutely recommend the lessons being conveyed, though I'm not sure this spoonful of sugar will help the medicine go down any easier than the original text. 

On Tyranny (2017) = 5 stars
Graphic Edition update (2021) = 3 stars
= 4 stars

My thanks to Clarkson Potter/Ten Speed Press for the opportunity to review an advance edition via NetGalley. On Tyranny Graphic Edition is slated for US publication on October 5, 2021.
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On Tyranny is an important book. The history lessons blended with current events are impactful and informative. I want to give this book to all my friends and family and force them to read it over and over until they finally understand.

The graphics, while interesting, don't actually add that much. The different colors and fonts make it a more unique read, sometimes how the text was layout around an image made it a little confusing to read. Sometimes a paragraph would continue across, another time its continued down and around. The original version gets 5 stars from me, but only 4 for the graphic version.
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The original text of On Tyranny is a primer on spotting the slow creep of autocrats in our government. The graphic edition takes it one step further into accessibility - the vocabulary is college-level, so the graphic images make it a bit less intimidating.
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I didn’t read the novel in its original form, however, I thought the twenty points highlighted in this collection were well-researched, factual, and timely (at times I could see attempts of history repeating itself in real-time).  It was a reminder to the reader to become more mindful of what’s happening in the political world, how to assess the impact, and act accordingly as an individual.  This part of the book was well-presented and easy to digest - and I imagine this would be an excellent companion to the original work.

As far as the artwork/graphics - I suppose it’s a matter of taste.   While some of the pictures/photos synced with the references and examples used in the narrative, the overall form, styling, color, texture, font choices and overall presentation didn’t really work for me - again - it’s a personal issue. So, at best, while I loved the content, the ‘graphics’ or creative presentation came off a little flat/bland and at times more of a distraction.  Others may not feel this way, nevertheless, I encourage everyone to pick it up for the content alone.  

Thanks to NetGalley and Ten Speed Press for the opportunity to review.
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A very interesting read, with a curious (but effective) style of illustration to accompany it.  On Tyranny is a book that lists the different ways in which people can resist the insipid nature of the control practised by corporations, corrupt politicians and political parties, and those who would seek to say one thing while meaning another.  It begins with recognising that something is occurring, seeing that what is being said isn't always what is being done, and understanding how to be mindful of what you do in every part of your life.

The lessons are clear and to the point, an example of the thought process being examined, followed by examples of occasions when not being wary has resulted in terrible events occurring.  All the points made are well annotated and come from an unbiased perspective, although some degree of emotion comes into the writing when the subjects go closer to America, which is reasonable given that it's the authors home country.  

With this being a graphical representation of an existing book, I'm presuming that it's more designed to get younger readers in and start them on the path of critical thinking and questioning things for themselves, which can only be a good thing.  

The only reason it doesn't get a higher rating from me is because there is a clear bias in the book against certain things that were going on in the united states at the time at which the original book was written, and while I understand that emotions were definitely running high at the time, one of the lessons given by this book was "Be calm when the unthinkable happens", and I'm sure the rest of the book would have reached a wider audience had that bias not been there.

Not perfect, but a great primer on thinking for yourself.
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I have dogeared and annotated my personal copy of On Tyranny by Timothy Snyder, so I was really excited to read the graphic edition. The illustrations, most resembling collage work, were creatively done, but often distracting from the very important messages within the text. In fact, on several pages the illustrations cut the text in half vertically, creating columns of text that now seem disjointed. I found myself reading them as columns, as in a newspaper, then having to go back and reread across the page jumping over the illustration to better understand what I had misread. The entire thing reminded me of a zine from the early 90s, but with much more text. I am sorry to say, it was too chaotic for my liking, though I did like the individual chapter illustrations. I don't know what I was expecting, but this wasn't it. I suppose a question to be asked is who is the one being featured, the author or artist? At this time they are at odds with one another, rather than working synergistically. I would be curious to see a finished product before posting an official review.
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The graphic edition of On Tyranny is visually appealing to the point of amazing. The images and words coallesce with power and creativity, and the effect is not unlike a collage. Political, stylistic, and intriguing -- this book is a work of art, sure to provoke thought and discussion.
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I like how this covers the whole text of the original but in a more visual and dynamic way. Having had read On Tyranny some time ago, I adore that this is more engaging without losing any of the text like I was expecting
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Simply excellent graphic adaption of Timothy Snyder's brief but vital work, <i>On Tyranny</i>. The images used combine photography and illustrations (some complex, others almost rustic in their simplicity) and are extremely well chosen. Individuals who already own the non-graphic version of <i>On Tyranny</i> will certainly want to add this version as well.
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