Your cart is empty
Dignity is humanity's most prized possession. We experience the loss of dignity as a terrible humiliation: when we lose our dignity we feel deprived of something without which life no longer seems worth living. But what exactly is this trait that we value so highly? In this important new book, distinguished philosopher Peter Bieri looks afresh at the notion of human dignity. In contrast to most traditional views, he argues that dignity is not an innate quality of human beings or a right that we possess by virtue of being human. Rather, dignity is a certain way to lead one's life. It is a pattern of thought, experience and action in other words, a way of living. In Bieri's account, there are three key dimensions to dignity as a way of living. The first is the way I am treated by others: they can treat me in a way that leaves my dignity intact or they can destroy my dignity. The second dimension concerns the way that I treat other people: do I treat them in a way that allows me to live a dignified life? The third dimension concerns the view that I have of myself: which ways of seeing and treating myself allow me to maintain a sense of dignity? In the actual flow of day-to-day life these three dimensions of dignity are often interwoven, and this accounts in part for the complexity of the situations and experiences in which our dignity is at stake. So, why did we invent dignity and what role does it play in our lives? As thinking and acting beings, our lives are fragile and constantly under threat. A dignified way of living, argues Bieri, is humanity's way of coping with this threat. In our constantly endangered lives, it is important to stand our ground with confidence. Thus a dignified way of living is not any way of living: it is a particular way of responding to the existential experience of being under threat. It is also a particular way of answering the question: What kind of life do we wish to live? This beautifully written reflection on our most cherished human value will be of interest to a wide readership.
On April 27, 2007, the first Speculative Realism (SR) workshop was held at Goldsmiths, University of London, featuring four young philosophers whose ideas were loosely allied. Over the ensuing decade, the ideas of SR spread from philosophy to the arts, architecture, and numerous disciplines in the humanities and social sciences. SR has been arguably the most influential new current in continental philosophy since the works of Gilles Deleuze and F lix Guattari found their second wind in the 1990s. But what is SR? This book is the first general overview by one of its original members, focusing on the aesthetic, ethical, ontological, and political themes of greatest importance to the movement. Graham Harman provides a balanced but critical assessment of his original SR colleagues - Ray Brassier, Iain Hamilton Grant, and Quentin Meillassoux - along with a clear summary of his own Object-Oriented Ontology (OOO). A number of central philosophical questions tie the four chapters together: What exactly is "correlationism," the chief enemy of SR? What are the stakes of philosophical realism, and is such realism better served by mathematics and the natural sciences, or by a broader model of cognitive activity that includes aesthetics? This book covers both the historical and conceptual development of the movement, providing a first-rate introduction for students, aided by helpful end-of-chapter study questions chosen by Harman himself. SR, Harman shows, is a vital and fast-developing field in contemporary philosophy.
Sonic Intimacy asks us who-or what-deserves to have a voice, beyond the human. Arguing that our ears are far too narrowly attuned to our own species, the book explores four different types of voices: the cybernetic, the gendered, the creaturely, and the ecological. Through both a conceptual framework and a series of case studies, Dominic Pettman tracks some of the ways in which these voices intersect and interact. He demonstrates how intimacy is forged through the ear, perhaps even more than through any other sense, mode, or medium. The voice, then, is what creates intimacy, both fleeting and lasting, not only between people, but also between animals, machines, and even natural elements: those presumed not to have a voice in the first place. Taken together, the manifold, material, actual voices of the world, whether primarily natural or technological, are a complex cacophony that is desperately trying to tell us something about the rapidly failing health of the planet and its inhabitants. As Pettman cautions, we would do well to listen.
In his famous Wager, Blaise Pascal (1623-62) offers the reader an argument that it is rational to strive to believe in God. Philosophical debates about this classic argument have continued until our own times. This volume provides a comprehensive examination of Pascal's Wager, including its theological framework, its place in the history of philosophy, and its importance to contemporary decision theory. The volume starts with a valuable primer on infinity and decision theory for students and non-specialists. A sequence of chapters then examines topics including the Wager's underlying theology, its influence on later philosophical figures, and contemporary analyses of the Wager including Alan Hajek's challenge to its validity, the many gods objection, and the ethics of belief. The final five chapters explore various ways in which the Wager has inspired contemporary decision theory, including questions related to infinite utility, imprecise probabilities, and infinitesimals.
This book presents an anti-intellectualist view of how the cognitive-mental dimension of human intellect is rooted in and interwoven with our embodied-internal components including emotion, perception, desire, etc., by investigating practical forms of thinking such as deliberation, planning, decision-making, etc. With many thought-provoking statements, the book revises some classical notions of rationality with new interpretation: we are "rational animals", which means we have both rational capabilities, such as calculation, evaluation, justification, etc., and more animal aspects, like desire, emotion, and the senses. According to the traditional position of rationalism, we use well-grounded reason as the fundamental basis of our actions. But this book argues that we simply perform our practical intellect intuitively and spontaneously, just like playing music. By this the author turns the dominant metaphor of "architecture" in understanding of human rationality to that of "music-playing". This book presents a groundbreaking and compelling critique of today's pervasively reflective-intellectual culture, just as Bernard Williams, Charles Taylor and other philosophers diagnose, and makes any detached notion of rationality and formalized understanding of human intellect highly problematic.Methodologically, it not only reconciles the phenomenological-hermeneutic tradition with analytical approaches, but also integrates various theories, such as moral psychology, emotional studies, action theory, decision theory, performativity studies, music philosophy, tacit knowledge, collective epistemology and media theory. Further, its use of everyday cases, metaphors, folk stories and references to movies and literature make the book easy to read and appealing for a broad readership.
In this wide-ranging and authoritative volume, leading scholars engage with the philosophy and writings of Wilhelm Dilthey, a key figure in nineteenth-century thought. Their chapters cover his innovative philosophical strategies and explore how they can be understood in relation to their historical situation, as well as presenting incisive interpretations of Dilthey's arguments, including their development, their content, and their influence on later thought. A key focus is on how Dilthey's work remains relevant to current debates around art and literature, the biographical and autobiographical self, knowledge, language, science, culture, history, society, and psychology and the embodied mind. The volume will be important for researchers in hermeneutics, aesthetics, practical philosophy, and the history of German philosophy, providing a valuable introduction to Dilthey's work as well as detailed critical analysis of its ongoing significance.
Crucial texts, many available in English for the first time, written before and during the Bolshevik Revolution by the radical biopolitical utopianists of Russian Cosmism. Cosmism emerged in Russia before the October Revolution and developed through the 1920s and 1930s; like Marxism and the European avant-garde, two other movements that shared this intellectual moment, Russian Cosmism rejected the contemplative for the transformative, aiming to create not merely new art or philosophy but a new world. Cosmism went the furthest in its visions of transformation, calling for the end of death, the resuscitation of the dead, and free movement in cosmic space. This volume collects crucial texts, many available in English for the first time, by the radical biopolitical utopianists of Russian Cosmism. Cosmism was developed by the Russian philosopher Nikolai Fedorov in the late nineteenth century; he believed that humans had an ethical obligation not only to care for the sick but to cure death using science and technology; outer space was the territory of both immortal life and infinite resources. After the revolution, a new generation pursued Fedorov's vision. Cosmist ideas inspired visual artists, poets, filmmakers, theater directors, novelists (Tolstoy and Dostoevsky read Fedorov's writings), architects, and composers, and influenced Soviet politics and technology. In the 1930s, Stalin quashed Cosmism, jailing or executing many members of the movement. Today, when the philosophical imagination has again become entangled with scientific and technological imagination, the works of the Russian Cosmists seem newly relevant. Contributors Alexander Bogdanov, Alexander Chizhevsky, Nikolai Fedorov, Boris Groys, Valerian Muravyev, Alexander Svyatogor, Konstantin Tsiolkovsky, Anton Vidokle, Brian Kuan Wood A copublication with e-flux, New York
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.;The Father of Existentialism, Kierkegaard transformed philosophy with his conviction that we must all create our own nature; in this great work of religious anxiety, he argues that a true understanding of God can only be attained by making a personal leap of faith'.
This entirely new translation of Critique of Pure Reason is the most accurate and informative English translation ever produced of this epochal philosophical text. Though its simple, direct style will make it suitable for all new readers of Kant, the translation displays a philosophical and textual sophistication that will enlighten Kant scholars as well. This translation recreates as far as possible a text with the same interpretative nuances and richness as the original.
For those open to the possibility that philosophical thought can improve life, David Hume's Essays: Moral, Political, and Literary have something to say. In the first comprehensive study of the Essays, Margaret Watkins engages closely with these neglected texts and shows how they provide important insights into Hume's perspective on the breadth and depth of human life, arguing that the Essays reveal his continued commitment to philosophy as a discipline that can promote both social and individual progress. Addressing topics such as politics, war, slavery, the priesthood, the development of industry, aesthetics, emotional disorders, egoism, friendship, sexuality, gender relations, and the nature of philosophy itself, the volume examines Hume's purposes and aims against the backdrop of the eighteenth century society in which he lived. It will be of interest to scholars of modern thought in philosophy, politics, history, and economics.
In a focused assessment of one of the founding members of the liberal tradition in philosophy and a self-proclaimed Under-Labourer working to support the scientific revolution of the seventeenth century, the author maps the full range of John Locke s highly influential ideas, which even today remain at the heart of debates about the nature of reality and our knowledge of it, as well as our moral and political rights and duties. * Comprehensive introduction to the full range of Locke s ideas, providing an up-to-date account that acknowledges issues raised by recent scholarship over the past decade * A well-rounded perspective on one of the intellectual giants of the western philosophical tradition * Provides detailed coverage of Locke s two key works, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding and The Two Treatises of Government. * A sophisticated analysis by a highly respected academic * A vital addition to the Blackwell Great Minds series
'The most esteemed philosopher to have produced a general introduction to his discipline since Bertrand Russell' Independent In these essays, one of the most important thinkers of the twentieth century writes about communism and socialism, the problem of evil, Erasmus and the reform of the Church, reason and truth, and whether God is happy. Accessible and absorbing, the essays in Is God Happy? deal with some of the eternal problems of philosophy and the most vital questions of our age. Leszek Kolakowski has also written on religion, Spinoza, Bergson, Pascal and seventeenth-century thought. He left communist Poland after his expulsion from Warsaw University for anti-communist activities. From 1970 he was a fellow of All Souls College, Oxford. 'His distinctive mix of irony and moral seriousness, religious sensibility and epistemological scepticism, social engagement and political doubt was truly rare ... a true Central European intellectual-perhaps the last' Tony Judt, The New York Times Review of Books
A lavishly illustrated publication to present the radical prophet of modernity. For the first time in North America, the exhibition and catalogue also include a comprehensive series of early editions of Nietzsche's most influential books. Around 1900, a small group of influential patrons, critics, writers, and artists turned Weimar into a utopian centre of modern art and thought. Several artists and writers sought to create a 'New Weimar' and position Friedrich Nietzsche at its head, as the radical prophet of modernity. In 1902, two years after the philosopher's death, Max Klinger was commissioned to carve Nietzsche's portrait where his cult was organised. Starting from a heavily reworked death mask, Klinger executed the famous marble herm that still today adorns the reception room of the Nietzsche Archive. Only three monumental bronze versions were cast, one of which is now in the collection of the National Gallery of Canada. With this sculpture in focus, accompanied by a series of paintings, drawings, plaster casts, and small bronzes, Radical Modernism will show how Klinger and his patrons invented the 'official' Nietzsche, transforming a highly expressionist portrait into an idealised classical cult image. The exhibition and this catalogue will also include a comprehensive series of early editions of Nietzsche's most influential books and will bring together work by the other protagonists of the 'New Weimar', in order to shed light on this extraordinary artistic and cultural constellation of modernism for the first time in North America.
Modern philosophy originates during the scientific revolution, and Michael Jacovides provides an engaging account of how this scientific background influences one of the foremost figures of early modern philosophy, John Locke. With this guiding thread, Jacovides gives clear and accurate answers to some of the central questions surrounding Locke's Essay Concerning Human Understanding. Why does he say that we have an obscure idea of substance? Why does he think that we perceive a two-dimensional array of color patches? Why does he think that matter can't naturally think? Why does he analyze secondary qualities as powers to produce ideas in us? Jacovides' method also allows him to trace the effects of Locke's scientific outlook on his descriptions of the way things appear to him and on his descriptions of the boundaries of conceivability. By placing Locke's thought in its scientific, religious, and anti-scholastic contexts, Jacovides explains not only what Locke believes but also why he believes it, and he thereby uncovers reveals the extra-philosophical sources of some of the central aspects of Locke's philosophy.
Presenting an unparalleled collection of primary texts in two flexible, portable volumes, The Norton Anthology of Western Philosophy also provides the rich editorial apparatus-introductions, headnotes, explanatory annotations, bibliographies-for which Norton Anthologies have been known and trusted by professors and students alike for more than fifty years. A comprehensive history of both the European interpretive tradition in one volume and the Anglo-American analytic tradition in the other, this anthology belongs on every philosopher's bookshelf.
Caroline of Ansbach (1683-1737), Augusta of Saxe-Gotha (1719-1772), and Charlotte of Mecklenberg-Strelitz (1744-1818) were three German princesses who became Queens Consort-or, in the case of Augusta, Queen in Waiting, Regent, and Princess Dowager-of Great Britain, and were linked by their early years at European princely courts, their curiosity, aspirations, and an investment in Enlightenment thought. This sumptuously illustrated book considers the ways these powerful, intelligent women left enduring marks on British culture through a wide range of activities: the promotion of the court as a dynamic forum of the Hanoverian regime; the enrichment of the royal collection of art; the advancement of science and industry; and the creation of gardens and menageries. Objects included range from spectacular state portraits to pedagogical toys to plant and animal specimens, and reveal how the new and novel intermingled with the traditional.
'The profoundest book there is, born from the innermost richness of truth, an inexhaustible well into which no bucket descends without coming up with gold and goodness.' Thus Spoke Zarathustra (1885) was Nietzsche's own favourite among all his books and has proved to be his most popular, having sold millions of copies in many different languages. In it he addresses the problem of how to live a fulfilling life in a world without meaning, in the aftermath of 'the death of God'. Nietzsche's solution lies in the idea of eternal recurrence which he calls 'the highest formula of affirmation that can ever be attained'. A successful engagement with this profoundly Dionysian idea enables us to choose clearly among the myriad possibilities that existence offers, and thereby to affirm every moment of our lives with others on this 'sacred' earth. This translation of Zarathustra (the first new English version for over forty years) conveys the musicality of the original German, and for the first time annotates the abundance of allusions to the Bible and other classic texts with which Nietzsche's masterpiece is in conversation. 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.
Consciousness has been described as one of the most mysterious things in the universe. Scientists, philosophers, and commentators from a whole range of disciplines can't seem to agree on what it is, generating a sizeable field of contemporary research known as consciousness studies. Following its forebear Music and Consciousness: Philosophical, Psychological and Cultural Perspectives (OUP, 2011), this volume argues that music can provide a valuable route to understanding consciousness, and also that consciousness opens up new perspectives for the study of music. It argues that consciousness extends beyond the brain, and is fundamentally related to selves engaged in the world, culture, and society. The book brings together an interdisciplinary line up of authors covering topics as wide ranging as cognitive psychology, neuroscience, psychoanalysis, philosophy and phenomenology, aesthetics, sociology, ethnography, and performance studies and musical styles from classic to rock, trance to Daoism, jazz to tabla, and deep listening to free improvisation. Music and Consciousness 2 will be fasinating reading for those studying or working in the field of musicology, those researching consciousness as well as cultural theorists, psychologists, and philosophers.
During the long eighteenth century the moral and socio-political dimensions of family life and gender were hotly debated by intellectuals across Europe. John Millar, a Scottish law professor and philosopher, was a pioneer in making gendered and familial practice a critical parameter of cultural difference. His work was widely disseminated at home and abroad, translated into French and German and closely read by philosophers such as Denis Diderot and Johann Gottfried Herder. Taking Millar's writings as his basis, Nicholas B. Miller explores the role of the family in Scottish Enlightenment political thought and traces its wider resonances across the Enlightenment world. John Millar's organisation of cultural, gendered and social difference into a progressive narrative of authority relations provided the first extended world history of the family. Over five chapters that address the historical and comparative models developed by the thinker, Nicholas B. Miller examines contemporary responses and Enlightenment-era debates on polygamy, matriarchy, the Amazon legend, changes in national character and the possible futures of the family in commercial society. He traces how Enlightenment thinkers developed new standards of evidence and crafted new understandings of historical time in order to tackle the global diversity of family life and gender practice. By reconstituting these theories and discussions, Nicholas B. Miller uncovers hitherto unexplored aspects of the Scottish contribution to European debates on the role of the family in history, society and politics.
Early German Romanticism sought to respond to a comprehensive sense of spiritual crisis that characterised the late eighteenth century. The study demonstrates how the Romantics sought to bring together the new post-Kantian idealist philosophy with the inheritance of the realist Platonic-Christian tradition. With idealism they continued to champion the individual, while from Platonism they took the notion that all reality, including the self, participated in absolute being. This insight was expressed, not in the language of theology or philosophy, but through aesthetics, which recognised the potentiality of all creation, including artistic creation, to disclose the divine. In explicating the religious vision of Romanticism, this study offers a new historical appreciation of the movement, and furthermore demonstrates its importance for our understanding of religion today.
This is a close and meditative consideration of a deeply intellectual friendship shared between two extraordinary thinkers, Jewish philosopher Martin Buber and scholar Maurice Friedman.
In Leviathan, one of the greatest works of political philosophy of all time, English philosopher Thomas Hobbes created the idea of a social contract and set out to explicate a doctrine for the foundation of states and legitimate forms of government. In On Hobbes, Alan Ryan explains how Hobbes created the secular conception of the state and politics in one of the first truly modern works of political philosophy. Inverting Aristotle s view of politics, Hobbes argued that humans organize themselves into political communities not out of any sociable impulse to pursue the good life in common, but rather out of an unsociable fear of one another and for the sake of avoiding the greatest evil of all: death. Ryan explicates how modern notions of individual rights, sovereignty, representative government, and almost all liberal political theory find their foundation in the work of Hobbes.
Excerpted here are: Leviathan, The Elements of Law."
Hegel's "highway of despair," introduced in his Phenomenology of Spirit, represents the tortured path traveled by "natural consciousness" on its way to freedom. Despair, the passionate residue of Hegelian critique, also indicates fugitive opportunities for freedom and preserves the principle of hope against all hope. Analyzing the works of an eclectic cast of thinkers, Robyn Marasco considers the dynamism of despair as a critical passion, reckoning with the forms of historical life forged along Hegel's highway. The Highway of Despair follows Theodor Adorno, Georges Bataille, and Frantz Fanon as they each read, resist, and reconfigure a strand of thought in Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit. Confronting the twentieth-century collapse of a certain revolutionary dialectic, these thinkers struggle to revalue critical philosophy and recast Left Hegelianism within the contexts of genocidal racism, world war, and colonial domination. Each thinker also re-centers the role of passion in critique. Arguing against more recent trends in critical theory that promise an escape from despair, Marasco shows how passion frustrates the resolutions of reason and faith. Embracing the extremism of what Marx, in the spirit of Hegel, called the "ruthless critique of everything existing," she affirms the contemporary purchase of radical critical theory, resulting in a passionate approach to political thought.
Are there such things as merely possible people, who would have lived if our ancestors had acted differently? Are there future people, who have not yet been conceived? Questions like those raise deep issues about both the nature of being and its logical relations with contingency and change. In Modal Logic as Metaphysics, Timothy Williamson argues for positive answers to those questions on the basis of an integrated approach to the issues, applying the technical resources of modal logic to provide structural cores for metaphysical theories. He rejects the search for a metaphysically neutral logic as futile. The book contains detailed historical discussion of how the metaphysical issues emerged in the twentieth century development of quantified modal logic, through the work of such figures as Rudolf Carnap, Ruth Barcan Marcus, Arthur Prior, and Saul Kripke. It proposes higher-order modal logic as a new setting in which to resolve such metaphysical questions scientifically, by the construction of systematic logical theories embodying rival answers and their comparison by normal scientific standards. Williamson provides both a rigorous introduction to the technical background needed to understand metaphysical questions in quantified modal logic and an extended argument for controversial, provocative answers to them. He gives original, precise treatments of topics including the relation between logic and metaphysics, the methodology of theory choice in philosophy, the nature of possible worlds and their role in semantics, plural quantification compared to quantification into predicate position, communication across metaphysical disagreement, and problems for truthmaker theory.
You may like...
Race Otherwise - Forging A New Humanism…
Zimitri Erasmus Paperback (1)
High Weirdness - Drugs, Esoterica, and…
Erik Davis Hardcover
The Making of Friedrich Nietzsche - The…
Daniel Blue Paperback
The Infidel and the Professor - David…
Dennis C. Rasmussen Paperback
Albert Schinz Paperback R401 Discovery Miles 4 010
French Theory in America
Sylvere Lotringer, Sande Cohen Paperback R719 Discovery Miles 7 190
Cambridge Companions to Philosophy - The…
Tom Stern Paperback
Michel Foucault - Beyond Structuralism…
Hubert L Dreyfus Paperback R704 Discovery Miles 7 040
Columbia Companion to Twentieth-Century…
Constantin V. Boundas Paperback R1,132 Discovery Miles 11 320
Witcraft - The Invention of Philosophy…
Jonathan Ree Hardcover