Can't say I'm surprised I'm only the second person to rate this doorstopper - this is 900 pages long, written by50 plus authors, and I was actually hoping a mock diploma on political philosophy would appear out of thin air once you finished reading this. But, alas, nothing of the sort happened. I mean, not that I'm aware of.

As you can see in the index, the book is divided into three parts: "Disciplinary contributions" (mainly the different kinds of philosophers and scientists interested in politics), "ideologies" (I'll let you guess what this is about), and "special topics" (i.e. everything else). The first two parts were very thorough, and the last one is made up of smaller chapters.

I've learned quite a lot, even about my own field (the chapter on "discourse" mentions a history of linguistics that we linguists usually neglect). The chapters are all written for complete beginners, so even a hopeless ignoramus about politics can learn from it (trust me on that one, I'm a living proof!). The first two parts are splendid, but some of the chapters on the third part felt a bit random, but with fun titles (the chapter titled "Dirty Hands" felt like a mini-treatise on applied ethics). By far, the second part about the ideologies is what most people think of when someone says "politics": from liberalism and socialism to conservatism and fundamentalism, it's all there.

There's so much information here it's hard to make sense of it all at once, but it was well worth it. From now on though, I guess I'll read shorter books... like the Bible.