Immanuel Kant's Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals ranks alongside Plato's Republic and Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics as one of the most profound and influential works in moral philosophy ever written. In Kant's own words its aim is to search for and establish the supreme principle of morality, the categorical imperative. Kant argues that every human being is an end in himself or herself, never to be used as a means by others, and that moral obligation is an expression (...) of the human capacity for autonomy or self-government. This edition presents the acclaimed translation of the text by Mary Gregor, together with an introduction by Christine M. Korsgaard that examines and explains Kant's argument. (shrink)
The Metaphysics of Morals is Kant's major work in applied moral philosophy in which he deals with the basic principles of rights and of virtues. It comprises two parts: the 'Doctrine of Right', which deals with the rights which people have or can acquire, and the 'Doctrine of Virtue', which deals with the virtues they ought to acquire. Mary Gregor's translation, revised for publication in the Cambridge Texts in the History of Philosophy series, is the only complete translation of the (...) whole text, and includes extensive annotation on Kant's difficult and sometimes unfamiliar vocabulary. A new introduction by Roger Sullivan sets the work in its historical and philosophical context. This volume will be of wide interest to students of ethics and of legal and political philosophy. (shrink)
Ralph Cudworth (1617-1688) deserves recognition as one of the most important English seventeenth-century philosophers after Hobbes and Locke. In opposition to Hobbes, Cudworth proposes an innatist theory of knowledge which may be contrasted with the empirical position of his younger contemporary Locke, and in moral philosophy he anticipates the ethical rationalists of the eighteenth century. A Treatise Concerning Eternal and Immutable Morality is his most important work, and this volume makes it available, together with his shorter Treatise of Freewill, in (...) its first modern edition, with a historical introduction, a chronology of his life, and an essay on further reading. (shrink)
Religion within the Boundaries of Mere Reason is a key element of the system of philosophy which Kant introduced with his Critique of Pure Reason, and a work of major importance in the history of Western religious thought. It represents a great philosopher's attempt to spell out the form and content of a type of religion that would be grounded in moral reason and would meet the needs of ethical life. It includes sharply critical and boldly constructive discussions on topics (...) not often treated by philosophers, including such traditional theological concepts as original sin and the salvation or 'justification' of a sinner, and the idea of the proper role of a church. This volume presents it and three short essays that illuminate it in new translations by Allen Wood and George di Giovanni, with an introduction by Robert Merrihew Adams that locates it in its historical and philosophical context. (shrink)
The first modern treatise of political philosophy, The Prince remains one of the world’s most influential and widely read books. Machiavelli, whose name has become synonymous with expedient exercises of will, reveals nothing less than the secrets of power: how to gain it, how to wield it, and how to keep it. But curiously, this work of outspoken clarity has, for centuries, inspired myriad interpretations as to its author’s true message. The Introduction by noted Italian Renaissance scholar Albert Russell Ascoli (...) provides a perfect opening to Peter Constantine’s illuminating new translation of this seminal work. "Constantine elegantly captures in English the pith of Machiavelli’s brilliant Italian prose." –Edward Muir, Clarence L. Ver Steeg Professor in the Arts and Sciences, Northwestern University “Peter Constantine’s excellent translation belongs in everyone’s library. Perhaps now more than ever we have much to learn from this Renaissance thinker, present at the birth of the modern world.” –John Jeffries Martin, professor of history, Duke University. (shrink)
This volume contains a new translation of Against the Ethicists, together with an introduction and extensive commentary. Those who have discussed this work in the past have tended to underestimate it, regarding its main position as essentially the same as that of Sextus's better-known Outlines of Pyrrhonism, Richard Bett shows that this text proposes a distinct and previously unnoticed philosophical outlook, associated with a phase of Pyrrhonian Scepticism predating Sextus himself.
The struggle which Plato has Socrates recommend to his interlocutors in Gorgias - and to his readers - is the struggle to overcome the temptations of worldly success and to concentrate on genuine morality. Ostensibly an enquiry into the value of rhetoric, the dialogue soon becomes an investigation into the value of these two contrasting ways of life. In a series of dazzling and bold arguments, Plato attempts to establish that only morality can bring a person true happiness, and to (...) demolish alternative viewpoints. It is not suprising that Gorgias is one of Plato's most widely read dialogues. Philosophers read it for its coverage of central moral issues; others enjoy its vividness, clarity and occasional bitter humour. This new translation is accompanied by explanatory notes and an informative introduction. (shrink)
This new edition brings Farquharson's authoritative 1944 translation up to date and includes a helpful introduction and notes for the student and general reader. Rutherford includes a selection of letters from Marcus to his tutor Fronto--most of which date from his earlier years--that offer personal detail and help to fill out the somber portrait of the emperor that is found in the Meditations.
This volume offers clear and forceful contemporary translations of the most important of Seneca's 'Moral Essays': On Anger, On Mercy, On the Private Life and the first four books of On Favours. They give an attractive, full picture of the social and moral outlook of an ancient Stoic thinker intimately involved in the governance of the Roman empire in the mid first century of the Christian era. A general introduction describes Seneca's life and career and explains the fundamental ideas underlying (...) the Stoic moral, social and political philosophy that informs the essays. Individual introductions, footnotes and biographical notes place the essays in their historical and philosophical contexts, and further assistance to students is provided by section headings in the translations which organize the principal transitions in the argument and the more unfamiliar aspects of Seneca's writing. (shrink)
This is the first ever English rendition of the classic statement of divine right absolutism, published in 1707. Jacques-Benigne Bossuet argues in the Politics that a general society of the entire human race, governed by Christian charity, has given way (after the Fall) to the necessity of politcs, law, and absolute hereditary monarchy. That monarchy - seen as natural, universal and divinely ordained (beginning with David and Solomon) is defended in the first half of the book. The last part, added (...) soon before Bossuet's death, goes on to take up the rights of the Church, the distinction between absolutism and arbitrariness, and causes of just war. Patrick Riley has provided full supporting materials including a chronology, guide to further reading, and a lucid introduction placing Bossuet in his historical and intellectual context. (shrink)
In his introduction to this new translation by Russell Price, Professor Skinner presents a lucid analysis of Machiavelli's text as a response both to the world of Florentine politics, and as an attack on the advice-books for princes published by a number of his contemporaries. This new edition includes notes on the principal events in Machiavelli's life, and on the vocabulary of The Prince, as well as biographical notes on characters in the text.