Eric Hoffer Quotes

A collection of quotes by Eric Hoffer.

Eric Hoffer (1902-1983) was an American social philosopher and longshoreman who gained recognition for his insightful writings on mass movements and the human nature of obedience and political fanaticism. Born in New York City to immigrant parents, Hoffer grew up in poverty and experienced a tumultuous early life, working in various manual jobs before eventually joining the International Longshoremen's Association, where he worked as a dockworker for over twenty-five years.

Despite his lack of formal education, Hoffer was a prolific writer and self-taught intellectual. He published his first book, "The True Believer: Thoughts on the Nature of Mass Movements," in 1951, which explored the psychological and social dynamics behind individuals' inclination towards joining extremist groups or mass movements. This seminal work brought him critical acclaim and established him as a respected commentator on the human condition.

Throughout his career, Hoffer penned several other influential books, including "The Ordeal of Change," "The Passionate State of Mind," and "Working and Thinking on the Waterfront." His writings were characterized by their accessible style, drawing on personal anecdotes and observations to provide insight into the complexities of human behavior and the underlying forces that shape society.

Eric Hoffer's unique perspective and profound observations earned him the Presidential Medal of Freedom in 1983, shortly before his death. His contributions to social philosophy continue to be widely studied and appreciated, shedding light on the psychological and sociological aspects of mass movements and the influence they have on individuals and societies.