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'We English men have wits,' wrote the clergyman Ralph Lever in 1573, and, 'we have also framed to ourselves a language.' Witcraft takes an original approach to the history of philosophy by overthrowing the standard narrative of canonical texts and thinkers and by concentrating on philosophy in one language - English. It contains compelling portraits of celebrated British and American philosophers, including Hobbes, Locke, Hume, Berkeley, Mill and James, but it broadens our understanding of philosophical activity by including the work of those usually thought of as literary authors such as Hazlitt, Coleridge, Emerson and George Eliot, and many men and women who thought philosophically, or whose lives were changed by philosophy, but are now forgotten. Some of those Ree uncovers include pioneers such as Mary Astell (the female virtuoso who advocated a philosophical college for women), Thomas Wirgman (the London goldsmith who offered tuition in Kantian philosophy), Harriet Martineau (the lady economist), Ragar Redbeard (who modelled himself on Nietzsche and proclaimed that nothing is true) and Thomas Davidson (perfective socialist and founder of the Fellowship of the New Life). Ree's description of philosophy in Britain and America reveals it to be colourful, diverse, inventive and cosmopolitan. It is not just an examination of great thinkers, but of ordinary men and women thinking for themselves, and reaching their own conclusions about religion, politics, art and everything else. It is full of stories and personalities as well as ideas, and shows philosophy springing from the life around it. Witty, erudite, provocative and engaging, it enables us to think freshly about the history of philosophy.
How did Nietzsche the philosopher come into being? The Nietzsche known today did not develop 'naturally', through the gradual maturation of some inborn character. Instead, from an early age he engaged in a self-conscious campaign to follow his own guidance, thereby cultivating the critical capacities and personal vision which figure in his books. As a result, his published works are steeped in values that he discovered long before he mobilised their results. Indeed, one could argue that the first work which he authored was not a book at all, but his own persona. Based on scholarship previously available only in German, this book examines Nietzsche's unstable childhood, his determination to advance through self-formation, and the ways in which his environment, notably the Prussian education system, alternately influenced and impeded his efforts to find his own way. It will be essential reading for all who are interested in Nietzsche.
'Why do I know a few more things? Why am I so clever altogether?' Self-celebrating and self-mocking autobiographical writings from Ecce Homo, the last work iconoclastic German philosopher Nietzsche wrote before his descent into madness. One of 46 new books in the bestselling Little Black Classics series, to celebrate the first ever Penguin Classic in 1946. Each book gives readers a taste of the Classics' huge range and diversity, with works from around the world and across the centuries - including fables, decadence, heartbreak, tall tales, satire, ghosts, battles and elephants.
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 new edition includes slightly revised translations, a revised introduction with expanded discussion of certain key themes in the work, and up-to-date guidance on further reading.
Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) remains one of the most challenging, influential and controversial figures in the history of philosophy. The New Cambridge Companion to Nietzsche provides a comprehensive and up-to-date guide to his most difficult ideas, including the will to power and the affirmation of life, as well as his treatment of truth, science, art and history. An accessible introduction sets out the nineteenth-century background of Nietzsche's life and work. Individual chapters are devoted to significant texts such as The Birth of Tragedy, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Beyond Good and Evil and On the Genealogy of Morality. Other chapters explore major influences such as Wagner and Schopenhauer, as well as examining Nietzsche's reception and investigating his enduring and often divisive legacy. The volume will be valuable for readers seeking to enhance their understanding of Nietzsche's philosophy and of his role in the development of Western thought.
One of the most iconoclastic philosophers of all time, Nietzsche dramatically rejected notions of good and evil, truth and God. Beyond Good and Evil demonstrates that the world is steeped in false piety and infected with a 'slave morality'. With wit and subversive energy, Nietzsche demands that the individual impose their own 'will to power' upon the world.
Alain Badiou is perhaps the world's most significant living philosopher. In his annual seminars on major topics and pivotal figures, Badiou developed vital aspects of his thinking on a range of subjects that he would go on to explore in his influential works. In this seminar, Badiou offers a tour de force encounter with a lesser-known seventeenth-century philosopher and theologian, Nicolas Malebranche, a contemporary and peer of Spinoza and Leibniz. The seminar is at once a record of Badiou's thought at a key moment in the years before the publication of his most important work, Being and Event, and a lively interrogation of Malebranche's key text, the Treatise on Nature and Grace. Badiou develops a rigorous yet novel analysis of Malebranche's theory of grace, retracing his claims regarding the nature of creation and the relation between God and world and between God and Jesus. Through Malebranche, Badiou develops a radical concept of truth and the subject. This book renders a seemingly obscure post-Cartesian philosopher fascinating and alive, restoring him to the philosophical canon. It occupies a pivotal place in Badiou's reflections on the nature of being that demonstrates the crucial role of theology in his thinking.
'We must learn to love, learn to be kind, and this from our earliest youth ... Likewise, hatred must be learned and nurtured, if one wishes to become a proficient hater' This volume contains a selection of Nietzsche's brilliant and challenging aphorisms, examining the pleasures of revenge, the falsity of pity, and the incompatibility of marriage with the philosophical life. Introducing Little Black Classics: 80 books for Penguin's 80th birthday. Little Black Classics celebrate the huge range and diversity of Penguin Classics, with books from around the world and across many centuries. They take us from a balloon ride over Victorian London to a garden of blossom in Japan, from Tierra del Fuego to 16th-century California and the Russian steppe. Here are stories lyrical and savage; poems epic and intimate; essays satirical and inspirational; and ideas that have shaped the lives of millions. Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900). Nietzsche's works available in Penguin Classics are A Nietzsche Reader, Beyond Good and Evil, Ecce Homo, Human, All Too Human, On the Genealogy of Morals, The Birth of Tragedy, The Portable Nietzsche, Thus Spoke Zarathustra, Twilight of Idols and Anti-Christ.
'Commit it then to the flames: for it can contain nothing but sophistry and illusion.' Thus ends David Hume's Enquiry concerning Human Understanding, the definitive statement of the greatest philosopher in the English language. His arguments in support of reasoning from experience, and against the 'sophistry and illusion' of religiously inspired philosophical fantasies, caused controversy in the eighteenth century and are strikingly relevant today, when faith and science continue to clash. The Enquiry considers the origin and processes of human thought, reaching the stark conclusion that we can have no ultimate understanding of the physical world, or indeed our own minds. In either sphere we must depend on instinctive learning from experience, recognizing our animal nature and the limits of reason. Hume's calm and open-minded scepticism thus aims to provide a new basis for science, liberating us from the 'superstition' of false metaphysics and religion. His Enquiry remains one of the best introductions to the study of philosophy, and this edition places it in its historical and philosophical context. ABOUT THE SERIES: For over 100 years Oxford World's Classics has made available the widest range of literature from around the globe. Each affordable volume reflects Oxford's commitment to scholarship, providing the most accurate text plus a wealth of other valuable features, including expert introductions by leading authorities, helpful notes to clarify the text, up-to-date bibliographies for further study, and much more.
Nietzsche's The Gay Science (1882/1887) is a deeply personal book, yet also an important work of philosophy. Nietzsche conceives it as a philosophical autobiography, a record of his own self-transformation. In beautifully composed aphorisms he communicates his central experience of overcoming pessimism and recovering the capacity to affirm joyfully the tragedy of life. On the basis of his experiments in living, Nietzsche articulates his most famous philosophical concepts and images: the death of God, the exercise of eternal recurrence, and the ideal of self-fashioning. This book explains the ancient and modern philosophical contexts that shape Nietzsche's central concern with the affirmation of life. It surveys Nietzsche's philosophy as a whole, explains the pivotal place of The Gay Science as the source of his ideal of tragic joy, and shows how he revives an ancient conception of philosophy as a way of life and the philosopher as physician.
Part One: The History (What do we know?) This brief historical introduction to Immanuel Kant explores the social, political and religious factors that formed the original context of his life and writings, and considers how those factors affected the way he was initially received. What was his impact on the world at the time and what were the key ideas and values connected with him? Part Two: The Legacy (Why does it matter?) This second part explores the intellectual and cultural `afterlife' of Immanuel Kant, and considers the ways in which his impact has lasted and been developed in different contexts by later generations. Why is he still considered important today? In what ways is his legacy contested or resisted? And what aspects of his legacy are likely to continue to influence the world in the future? The book has a brief chronology at the front plus a glossary of key terms and a list of further reading at the back.
Friedrich Nietzsche is one of the most influential thinkers of the past 150 years and On the Genealogy of Morality (1887) is his most important work on ethics and politics. A polemical contribution to moral and political theory, it offers a critique of moral values and traces the historical evolution of concepts such as guilt, conscience, responsibility, law and justice. First published in 1994, and revised in 2006, the third edition of this best-selling, concise introduction and translation has been revised and updated throughout, to take account of recent scholarship. Featuring an expanded introduction, an updated bibliography and a guide to further reading, the third edition also includes timelines and biographical synopses. The Cambridge Texts in the History of Political Thought edition of Nietzsche's major work is an essential resource for both undergraduate and graduate courses on Nietzsche, the history of philosophy, continental philosophy, history of political thought and ethics.
Between 1878 and 1882, Nietzsche published what he called 'the free spirit works': Human, All Too Human; Assorted Opinions and Maxims; The Wanderer and His Shadow; Daybreak; and The Gay Science. Often approached as a mere assemblage of loosely connected aphorisms, these works are here re-interpreted as a coherent narrative of the steps Nietzsche takes in educating himself toward freedom that executes a dialectic between scientific truth-seeking and artistic life-affirmation. Matthew Meyer's new reading of these works not only provides a more convincing explanation of their content but also makes better sense of the relationship between them and Nietzsche's larger oeuvre. His argument shows how these texts can and should be read as a unified project even while they present multiple, in some cases conflicting, images of the free spirit. The book will appeal to anyone who is interested in Nietzsche's philosophy and especially to those puzzled about how to understand the peculiarities of the free spirit works.
The Joyous Science is a liberating voyage of discovery as Nietzsche's realization that 'God is dead' and his critique of morality, the arts and modernity give way to an exhilarating doctrine of self-emancipation and the concept of eternal recurrence. Here is Nietzsche at his most personal and affirmative; in his words, this is a book of 'exuberance, restlessness, contrariety and April showers'. With its unique voice and style, its playful combination of poetry and prose, and its invigorating quest for self-emancipation, The Joyous Science is a literary tour de force and quite possibly Nietzsche's best book.
"The Limits of Utilitarianism " was first published in 1982. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
Many philosophers have argued that utilitarianism is an unacceptable moral theory and that promoting the general welfare is at best only one of the legitimate goals of public policy. Utilitarian principles seem to place no limits on the extent to which society may legitimately interfere with a person's liberties - provided that such actions can be shown to promote the long-term welfare of its members. These issues have played a central role in discussions of utilitarianism since the time of Bentham and Mill. Despite criticisms, utilitarianism remains the most influential and widely accepted moral theory of recent times.
In this volume contemporary philosophers address four aspects of utilitarianism: the principle of utility; utilitarianism vis-a-vis contractarianism; welfare; and voluntary cooperation and helping others. The editors provide an introduction and a comprehensive bibliography that covers all books and articles published in utilitarianism since 1930.
With an Introduction by Dr Richard Serjeantson, Trinity College, Cambridge Since its first publication in 1651, Thomas Hobbes's Leviathan has been recognised as one of the most compelling, and most controversial, works of political philosophy written in English. Forged in the crucible of the civil and religious warfare of the mid-seventeenth century, it proposes a political theory that combines an unequivocal commitment to natural human liberty with the conviction that the sovereign power of government must be exercised absolutely. Leviathan begins from some shockingly naturalistic starting-points: an analysis of human nature as being motivated by vain-glory and pride, and a vision of religion as simply the fear of invisible powers made up by the mind. Yet from these deliberately unpromising elements, Hobbes constructs with unparalleled forcefulness an elaborate, systematic, and comprehensive account of how political society ought to be: ordered, law-bound, peaceful. In Leviathan, Hobbes presents us with a portrait of politics which depicts how a state that is made up of the unified body of all its citizens will be powerful, fruitful, protective of each of its members, and - above all - free from internal violence.
This is the first book to provide a comprehensive overview of the entire career of one of Britain's greatest men of letters. It sets in biographical and historical context all of Hume's works, from A Treatise of Human Nature to The History of England, bringing to light the major influences on the course of Hume's intellectual development, and paying careful attention to the differences between the wide variety of literary genres with which Hume experimented. The major events in Hume's life are fully described, but the main focus is on Hume's intentions as a philosophical analyst of human nature, politics, commerce, English history, and religion. Careful attention is paid to Hume's intellectual relations with his contemporaries. The goal is to reveal Hume as a man intensely concerned with the realization of an ideal of open-minded, objective, rigorous, dispassionate dialogue about all the principal questions faced by his age.
Based on the new and much acclaimed two volume Cambridge edition of The Philosophical Writings of Descartes by Cottingham, Stoothoff, and Murdoch, this anthology of essential texts contains the most important and widely studied of those writings, including the Discourse and Meditations and substantial extracts from the Regulae, Optics, Principles, Objections and Replies, Comments on a Broadsheet, and Passions of the Soul.
In Fear and Trembling, Soren Kierkegaard's infamous and controversial work made a lasting impression on both modern Protestant theology and existentialist philosophers such as Sartre and Camus. This Penguin Classics edition is translated from the Danish with an introduction by Alistair Hannay. Writing under the pseudonym of 'Johannes de silentio', Kierkegaard expounds his personal view of religion through a discussion of the scene in Genesis in which Abraham prepares to sacrifice his son Isaac at God's command. Believing Abraham's unreserved obedience to be the essential leap of faith needed to make a full commitment to his religion, Kierkegaard himself made great sacrifices in order to dedicate his life entirely to his philosophy and to God. The conviction shown in this religious polemic - that a man can have an exceptional mission in life - informed all Kierkegaard's later writings. His 'teleological suspension of the ethical' challenged the contemporary views of Hegel's universal moral system, and was also hugely influential for both protestant theology and the existentialist movement. Alastair Hannay's introduction evaluates Kierkegaard's philosophy and the ways in which it conflicted with more accepted contemporary views. This edition also includes detailed notes to complement this groundbreaking analysis of religion, and a new chronology. Danish-born Scren Kierkegaard (1813-55) wrote on a wide variety of themes, including religion, psychology, and literature. He is remembered for his philosophy, which pioneered the idea of the Absurd, and was influential and in the development of 20th century existentialism. His other works include The Sickness unto Death, Either/Or, and Papers and Journals, all of which are available in Penguin Classics. If you enjoyed Fear and Trembling, you might like Kierkegaard's The Sickness unto Death, also available in Penguin Classics.
Published in 1785, 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 identify and corroborate the supreme principle of morality, the categorical imperative. He argues that human beings are ends in themselves, never to be used by anyone merely as a means, and that universal and unconditional obligations must be understood as an expression of the human capacity for autonomy and self-governance. As such, they are laws of freedom. This volume contains Mary Gregor's acclaimed translation of the text into English, revised by Jens Timmermann, and an accessible, updated introduction by Christine Korsgaard.
This book focuses on the unity, diversity, and centrality of the notion of law as it is employed in Kant's theoretical and practical philosophy. Eric Watkins argues that, by thinking through a number of issues in various historical, scientific, and philosophical contexts over several decades, Kant is able to develop a univocal concept of law that can nonetheless be applied to a wide range of particular cases, despite the diverse demands that these contexts give rise to. In addition, Watkins shows how Kant comes to view both the generic conception of law which he develops and its different particular instances as crucial components of his systematic philosophy as a whole. This volume's new and unified account of a major current running through Kant's work will be important for scholars interested in numerous aspects of his philosophy, from the theoretical and abstract to the practical and empirical.
Of all the major philosophical works, Kant's Critique of Pure Reason is one of the most rewarding, yet one of the most difficult. Norman Kemp Smith's Commentary elucidates not only textural questions and minor issues, but also the central problems which arise, he contends, from the conflicting tendencies of Kant's own thinking. Kemp Smith's Commentary continues to be in demand with Kant scholars, and it is being reissued here with a new introduction by Sebastian Gardner to set it in its contemporary context.
Throughout history, some books have changed the world. They have transformed the way we see ourselves and each other. They have inspired debate, dissent, war and revolution. They have enlightened, outraged, provoked and comforted. They have enriched lives and destroyed them. Now Penguin brings you the works of the great thinkers, pioneers, radicals and visionaries whose ideas shook civilization, and helped make us who we are.
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