This comprehensive, historically organized introduction to philosophy communicates the richness of the discipline and provides the student with a working knowledge of the development of Western philosophy. New co-author James Fieser has brought this classic text up-to-date both chronologically and stylistically while preserving the thoughtful, conceptual characteristics that have made it so successful. The text covers all periods of philosophy, lists philosophers alphabetically and chronologically on the end-papers, and features an exceptional glossary of key concepts.
Eleven leading contemporary French philosophers give here more or less direct presentations and exemplifications of their work. All the essays, with one exception, were specifically written for this volume and for an English-speaking readership - the exception is the first publication anywhere of Jacques Derrida's defence of his thèse d'e;tat in 1980, based on his published works. As a collection the essays convey the style, tone and preoccupations, as well as the range and diversity, of French philosophical thinking as it (...) is being practised today. They will stimulate and inform the rapidly growing interest in this area outside France. (shrink)
The twelve essays in this volume are not only introductions to some of the most influential thinkers in human history but are also invitations for the reader to participate in a living debate. "What is justice?" "What is truth?" These questions, first posed by Socrates two and a half millennia ago, have lost none of their power to baffle. And while many philosophers have claimed to answer them, ultimately the questions return, compelling us once again. The authors of these essays (...) are distinguished philosophers in their own right. They engage with philosophical ideas rather than merely relaying them. By choosing a specific aspect of their subject's work, they liberate the great philosophers from textbook cliche;s--revealing them in all their freshness and originality. (shrink)
What is philosophy? -- Theory of knowledge -- Metaphysics and philosophy of mind -- Philosophy of science -- Ethical theory -- Social and political philosophy -- Philosophy of art -- Philosophy of religion.
An enormous intellectual adventure. In this groundbreaking new book, the American biologist Edward O. Wilson, considered to be one of the world's greatest living scientists, argues for the fundamental unity of all knowledge and the need to search for consilience--the proof that everything in our world is organized in terms of a small number of fundamental natural laws that comprise the principles underlying every branch of learning. Professor Wilson, the pioneer of sociobiology and biodiversity, now once again breaks out of (...) the conventions of current thinking. He shows how and why our explosive rise in intellectual mastery of the truths of our universe has its roots in the ancient Greek concept of an intrinsic orderliness that governs our cosmos and the human species--a vision that found its apogee in the Age of Enlightenment, then gradually was lost in the increasing fragmentation and specialization of knowledge in the last two centuries. Drawing on the physical sciences and biology, anthropology, psychology, religion, philosophy, and the arts, Professor Wilson shows why the goals of the original Enlightenment are surging back to life, why they are reappearing on the very frontiers of science and humanistic scholarship, and how they are beginning to sketch themselves as the blueprint of our world as it most profoundly, elegantly, and excitingly is. (shrink)
Widely acclaimed as the most authoritative and accessible one-volume dictionary available in English (and now with translations into Chinese, Korean, Russian, Italian, and Spanish underway) this second edition offers an even richer, more comprehensive, and more up-to-date survey of ideas and thinkers written by an international team of 436 contributors. Includes the most comprehensive entries on major philosophers, 400 new entries including over 50 on preeminent contemporary philosophers, extensive coverage of rapidly developing fields such as the philosophy of mind and (...) applied ethics, more entries on non-Western philosophy than any comparable volume, and increased coverage of Continental philosophy. (shrink)
In the aptly titled The Call and the Response, renowned philosopher and theologian Jean-Louis Chrétien revisits a favorite theme: how human life is shaped by the experience of call and response, explored using art as a context. For Chrétien, art is about acts in response to what the artist sees or hears and how these acts provoke responses from viewers. Deeply spiritual and intellectual without being academic, his arguments are unique, in both style and content.
This book is the latest addition to the Odeon series, a multidisciplinary series devoted to original works and translations by European writers in the areas of literature, criticism, philosophy, history and politics. An English translation of the German best-seller Abschied vom Prinzipiellen, the book offers a series of essays that present a philosophy of human morality critical of philosophical utopianism. Marquard, widely considered the heir of Gadamer, Habermas, and Blumenberg, describes his role as "skeptical philosopher" and discusses the 18th-century formation (...) of such themes and disciplines as aesthetics, philosophical anthropology, philosophy of history, the nature of myth and attempts to account for it, and hermeneutics. (shrink)
Barry Stroud's work has had a profound impact on a very wide array of philosophical topics, including epistemological skepticism, the nature of logical necessity, the interpretation of Hume, the interpretation of Wittgenstein, the possibility of transcendental arguments, and the metaphysical status of color and value. And yet there has heretofore been no book-length treatment of his work. The current collection aims to redress this gap, with 13 essays on Stroud's work by a diverse group of contributors including some of his (...) most distinguished interlocutors and promising recent students. All but one essay is new to this volume. -/- The essays cover a range of topics, with a particular focus on Stroud's treatments of skepticism and subjectivism. There are also chapters on Stroud's views on meaning and rule-following, on Hume on personal identity, and on the role of desires in the explanation of action. Despite the diversity, the essays are unified by the thematic unity in Stroud's own writings. Stroud approaches every philosophical problem by attempting to get as clear as possible on the nature and source of that problem. He aims to determine what kind of understanding philosophical questions are after, and what the prospects for achieving that understanding might be. This theme--of the nature and possibility of philosophical understanding--is introduced in the opening essay of this volume and recurs in different ways throughout the remaining chapters. -/- In recent years, there has been a renewed interest in the philosophy of philosophy. As these essays show, one important source of insight on this subject is the thought of Barry Stroud, for whom pursuit of the philosophy of philosophy has always been indistinguishable from pursuit of philosophy as such. (shrink)
Philosophical Dilemmas: A Pro and Con Introduction to the Major Questions, 2/e, is a lucidly written and comprehensive introduction to philosophy featuring sixty brief essays arranged in pairs. Each pair answers one of the standard philosophical questions, such as "Does God exist?" or "Is morality relative?," with affirmative and negative responses. Each essay takes a definite stand and promotes it vigorously, creating a sharp contrast between the two positions and giving each abstract theory a more personal and believable "voice." While (...) the essays often employ traditional arguments of great philosophers, they present the ideas in contemporary language with vivid examples. The accessible style and conflicting answers encourage students to examine the different positions and to think carefully about which essay makes the stronger case. While other textbooks present a series of excerpts and theories without attempting to coordinate them into a larger picture, Philosophical Dilemmas teaches students about the process of thinking philosophically and encourages them to construct their own coherent worldviews. This second edition features new sections on race, gender, euthanasia, and Buddhist philosophy, showing students how philosophy applies to issues that they may encounter in their own lives. The text incorporates numerous pedagogical features including a list of historical parallels, key terms, chapter summaries, a glossary, an introduction to each issue, and critical questions following each essay. Brief sections throughout the book describe numerous critical thinking techniques demonstrated by the essays. An annotated bibliography of historical examples for each issue and useful lists of contemporary sources further enhance the text's utility. An Instructor's Manual, including chapter summaries, writing assignments, and test questions, is available. (shrink)
Philosophy is a dangerous profession, risking censorship, prison, even death. And no wonder: philosophers have questioned traditional pieties and threatened the established political order. Some claimed to know what was thought unknowable; others doubted what was believed to be certain. Some attacked religion in the name of science; others attacked science in the name of mystical poetry; some served tyrants; others were radical revolutionaries. This historically based collection of philosophers' reflections--the letters, journals, prefaces that reveal their hopes and hesitations, their (...) triumphs and struggles, their deepest doubts and convictions--allow us to witness philosophical thought-in-process. It sheds light on the many--and conflicting--aims of philosophy: to express skepticism or overcome it, to support theology or attack it, to develop an ethical system or reduce it to practical politics. As their audiences differed, philosophers experimented with distinctive rhetorical strategies, writing dialogues, meditations, treatises, aphorisms. Ranging from Plato to Hannah Arendt, with contributions from 44 philosophers (Augustine, Maimonides, AlGhazali, Descartes, Pascal, Leibniz, Voltaire, Rousseau, Hobbes, Hume, Kant, Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Wittgenstein, among others) this remarkable collection documents philosophers' claim that they change as well as understand the world. In her introductory essay, "Witnessing Philosophers," Amelie Rorty locates philosophers' reflections in the larger context of the many facets of their other activities and commitments. (shrink)
In this collection, a wide variety of American philosophers attempt to explain why they were drawn to philosophy and the difference it has made in their lives. Among the contributors are: Henry E. Kyburg, Jr., Joel Feinberg, Alfred Mele, Walter B. Gulick, Robert Solomon, Robert G. Shoemaker, and David D. Karnos.
What does it mean for someone to exist? What is truth? Are we free to choose to think or act? What is consciousness? Is human cloning justifiable? These are just some of the questions philosophers have attempted to answer, striking right at the heart of what it means to be human. This important new books shows that philosophy need not be dry or intimidating. Its highly original treatment, combining philosophical analysis, historical and biographical background and thought-provoking illustrations, simultaneously informs and (...) stimulates the reader. Western Philosophy: An Illustrated Guide is structured thematically, in terms of major issues, with chapters on World, Mind and Body, Knowledge, Faith, Ethics and Aesthetics, and Society. Cutting across this organization by theme is a parallel organization that focuses on the great thinkers and their influence, as well as the schools or "-isms" to which they subscribed. A highly accessible introduction to the subject, founded upon impeccable academic scholarship, Western Philosophy: An Illustrated Guide offers life-changing perspectives on what really matters. (shrink)
Certainty and doubt -- Sources of conviction -- Rationalism -- Rationalism versus relativism in morals -- Induction and deduction -- The retreat from certainty -- Utilitarianism -- Kantian ethics -- Empiricism -- Beyond empiricism -- Objectivity -- Materialism and dualism -- Morality for naturalists -- Deep illusions -- Realism.
The book offers a conception of philosophy as a form of self-enquiry which begins not in reflection, but in silence and meditation, conceived as conditions for the emergence and cessation of contending states of mind which influence perception and action. The philosopher thus becomes a kind of cartographer of a shifting interior landscape. This underlying perspective explains the personal nature of the writing and its mixing of genres. The book draws on both the Greek and Buddhist traditions, recognising that it (...) is time for Western thinkers to acknowledge and respond to an intercultural canon. It aims to integrate ethics and a non-theistic philosophy of religion through the medium of aesthetics, mapping Buddhist 'mindfulness' and the Greek virtues and vices of temperance and licentiousness, continence and incontinence, onto an account of the development of moral sentiments and their relation to practical judgement in the context of oppressive political and social realities. (shrink)
Philosophy as it is frequently taught in classrooms bears little relation to the impassioned and immensely practical search for self-knowledge conducted by not only its ancient avatars but also by men and woman who seek after truth today. In The Heart of the Philosophy, Jacob Needleman provides a "user's guide" for those who would take philosophy seriously enough to understand its life-transforming qualities.