In the 2007 CBC Massey Lectures, Alberto Manguel leads us back into our literary tradition to find insight about one of the most contentious issues of our time: the rise of ethnic nationalism. The end of ethnic nationalism — building societies around sets of common values — seems like a good idea. But something is going wrong. Manguel suggests we should look at what stories have to teach us about society. With wit and erudition, Manguel looks at what visionaries, poets, novelists, essayists, and filmmakers have to say about building societies. From Cassandra to Jack London, the Epic of Gilgamesh to the computer Hal in 2001: A Space Odyssey, Don Quixote to Atanarjuat: The Fast Runner, Manguel draws fascinating and revelatory parallels between the personal and political realities of our present-day world and those of myth, legend, and story.