How should we live? What really exists? And how do we know for sure? In this lively and engaging study, Edward Craig argues that learning philosophy is merely a matter of broadening and deepening what most of us do already. But he also shows that philosophy is no mere intellectual pastime: thinkers such as Plato, the Buddhist sages, Descartes, Hobbes, Hume, Hegel, Darwin, Mill, and de Beauvoir responded to real needs and events—and many of their concerns shape our daily lives.
The Shorter REP presents the very best of the acclaimed ten volume Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy in a single work. By selecting and presenting--in full--the most important entries for the beginning philosopher and truncating the rest of the entries to survey the breadth of the field, The Shorter REP will be the only desk reference on philosophy that anyone will need. Comprising over 900 entries and covering the major philosophers and philosophical topics, The Shorter REP includes the following special features: (...) *Over 130 comprehensive, in-depth entries as they appear in the ten volume Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy *Unrivalled coverage of major philosophers, themes, movements and periods making the volume indispensable for any student or general reader *Revised versions of many of the most important entries, including fresh suggestions for further reading *Over 20 brand new entries on important new topics *Entries by many leading philosopherssuch as Bernard Williams, Martha Nussbaum, Richard Rorty, Onora O'Neill, T.M.Scanlon and Anthony Appiah. (shrink)
How ought we to live? What really exists? How do we know? This book introduces important themes in ethics, knowledge, and the self, via readings from Plato, Hume, Descartes, Hegel, Darwin, and Buddhist writers. It emphasizes throughout the point of doing philosophy, explains how different areas of philosophy are related, and explores the contexts in which philosophy was and is done.
In this illuminating study Craig argues that the standard practice of analyzing the concept of knowledge has radical defects--arbitrary restriction of the subject matter and risky theoretical presuppositions. He proposes a new approach similar to the "state-of-nature" method found in political theory, building the concept up from a hypothesis about its social function and the needs it fulfills. Shedding light on much that philosophers have written about knowledge, its analysis and the obstacles to its analysis, and the debate over skepticism, (...) this compelling work will be of interest to students and scholars of epistemology and the philosophy of language. (shrink)
What is the connection between philosophy as studied in universities and those general views of man and reality which are commonly considered "philosophy"? Through his attempt to rediscover this connection, Craig offers a view of philosophy and its history since the early 17th century. Craig discusses the two contrary visions of man's essential nature that dominated this period--one portraying man as made in the image of God and required to resemble him as closely as possible, the other depicting (...) man as the autonomous creator of his own environment and values--and uses this context to clarify previously opaque textual detail. Illustrating how general concepts embodied by philosophical thought can be embodied in other media--especially literary--the author brings together disparate disciplines; he also reveals striking similarities between Anglo-American and certain 20th-century continental European lines of thought. (shrink)
David Hume (1711–1776) was born in Scotland and attended Edinburgh University. In 1734, after a brief spell in a merchant's office in Bristol, he went to France to write A Treatise of Human Nature, published anonymously in 1739 (Books I and II) and 1740 (Book III). An Abstract, also anonymous and written as if by someone other than the author of the Treatise, appeared about the same time, and provides an invaluable account, in a brief compass, of what Hume thought (...) most important about the Treatise. The Treatise was not well received, and Hume was unsuccessful in his candidature for the chair of moral philosophy at Edinburgh. He rewrote Book I of the Treatise, adding a controversial discussion of miracles and providence; and a revision of this was published as An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding in 1748. His Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals, which was a rewriting of Book III of the Treatise, was published in 1751, and his Dissertation on the Passions, corresponding to Book II of the Treatise, but with significant omissions, such as the account of the psychological mechanism of sympathy, in 1757. In 1752 he had been made keeper of the Advocates' Library at Edinburgh, and wrote his History of England which, at the time, brought him more approbation than his philosophy. During this time, he wrote the Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, published posthumously in 1779. In 1763 he became secretary to the British Embassy in Paris. He returned to London in 1766, and a year later was Undersecretary of State. In 1769 he returned to Edinburgh and worked on final editions of his writings, and on an autobiography, dated 18 April 1776, a few months before his death. (shrink)
This is an introduction to hume's doctrines of impressions and ideas and of the acquisition of belief by association and enlivenment, with some critical discussion and an explanation of the way in which hume's historical position made these topics centrally important for him.