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How is ‘race’ determined? Is it your DNA? The community that you were raised in? The way others see you or the way you see yourself? In Race Otherwise: Forging A New Humanism For South Africa, Zimitri Erasmus questions the notion that one can know ‘race’ with one’s eyes, or through racial categories and or genetic ancestry tests. She moves between the intimate probing of racial identities as we experience them individually, and analysis of the global historical forces that have created these identities and woven them into our thinking about what it means to be ‘human’.
Starting from her own family’s journeys through regions of the world and ascribed racial identities, she develops her argument about how it is possible to recognise the pervasiveness of race thinking without submitting to its power. Drawing on the theoretical work of Frantz Fanon, Sylvia Wynter and others, Erasmus argues for a new way of ‘coming to know otherwise’, of seeing the boundaries between racial identities as thresholds to be crossed, through politically charged acts of imagination and love.
'Ten times, an elderly grey-haired man gets up on the stage. Ten times puffing and sighing. Ten times slowly tracing out strange multi-coloured arabesques that interweave, curling with the meanders of his speech, by turns fluid and uneasy. A whole crowd looks on, transfixed by this enigma-made-man, absorbing the ipse dixit and anticipating some illumination that is taking its time to appear. Non lucet. It's shady in here, and the Th odores go hunting for their matches. Still, they say, cuicumque in sua arte perito credendum est, whosoever is expert in his art is to be lent credence. At what point is a person mad? The master himself poses the question. That was back in the day. Those were the mysteries of Paris forty years hence. A Dante clasping Virgil's hand to be led through the circles of the Inferno, Lacan took the hand of James Joyce, the unreadable Irishman, and, in the wake of this slender Commander of the Faithless, made with heavy and faltering step onto the incandescent zone where symptomatic women and ravaging men burn and writhe. An equivocal troupe was in the struggling audience: his son-in-law; a dishevelled writer, young and just as unreadable back then; two dialoguing mathematicians; and a professor from Lyon vouching for the seriousness of the whole affair. A discreet Pasipha was being put to work backstage. Smirk then, my good fellows! Be my guest. Make fun of it all! That's what our comic illusion is for. That way, you shall know nothing of what is happening right before your very eyes: the most carefully considered, the most lucid, and the most intrepid calling into question of the art that Freud invented, better known under its pseudonym: psychoanalysis'. Jacques-Alain Miller
`Wonderful and timely ... Hugely recommended' STEPHEN FRY What do you and an ancient philosopher have in common? It turns out much more than you might think... Aristotle was an extraordinary thinker yet he was preoccupied by an ordinary question: how to be happy. In this handbook to his timeless teachings, Professor Edith Hall shows how ancient thinking is precisely what we need today, even if you don't know your Odyssey from your Iliad. In ten practical lessons you can learn how to make good decisions, how to ace an interview, how to choose a partner and how to face death. This is advice that won't go out of fashion. `A beguiling cross between Mary Beard and Mary Poppins' Observer
A sparkling and up-to-date new cover for one of Fontana Press's strongest-selling titles. `Jung was on a giant scale...he was a master physician of the soul in his insights, a profound sage in his conclusions. He is also one of Western Man's great liberators.' J. B. Priestly, Sunday Telegraph `Jung can sometimes rise to the heights of a Blake or a Nietzsche or a Kierkegaard...like any true prophet or artist, he extended the range of the human imagination...to be able to share Jungian emotions is surely an almost necessary capacity of the free mind.' Philip Toynbee, Observer This compact volume of extracts from the twenty volumes of Jung's published writings presents him clearly, in his own words and in precis. Jung's writing is the key to understanding 20th-century psychology, psychiatry and psychoanalysis. Most of the terms of reference now used (`extrovert', `collective unconscious', `archetype') are Jungian. This is essential reading for both students of psychology and the general reader.
Soren Kierkegaard, one of the most passionate and challenging of modern philosophers, is now celebrated as the father of existentialism - yet his contemporaries described him as a philosopher of the heart. Over about a decade in the 1840s and 1850s, writings poured from his pen analysing love and suffering, courage and anxiety, religious longing and defiance, and forging a new philosophical style rooted in the inward drama of being human. As Christianity seemed to sleepwalk through a changing world, Kierkegaard dazzlingly revealed its spiritual power while exposing the poverty of official religion. His restless creativity was spurred on by his own failures: his relationship with the young woman whom he promised to marry, then left to devote himself to writing, haunted him throughout his life. Though tormented by the pressures of celebrity, he deliberately lived amidst the crowds in Copenhagen, known by everyone but, he felt, understood by no one. When he collapsed exhausted at the age of 42, he was still pursuing the question of existence: how to be a human being in this world? Clare Carlisle's innovative and moving biography writes Kierkegaard's remarkable life as far as possible from his own perspective, conveying what it was like to be this Socrates of Christendom - as he put it, living life forwards yet only understanding it backwards.
A fascinating history that reveals the ways in which the pursuit of rationality often leads to an explosion of irrationality It (TM)s a story we can (TM)t stop telling ourselves. Once, humans were benighted by superstition and irrationality, but then the Greeks invented reason. Later, the Enlightenment enshrined rationality as the supreme value. Discovering that reason is the defining feature of our species, we named ourselves the oerational animal. But is this flattering story itself rational? In this sweeping account of irrationality from antiquity to today "from the fifth-century BC murder of Hippasus for revealing the existence of irrational numbers to the rise of Twitter mobs and the election of Donald Trump "Justin Smith says the evidence suggests the opposite. From sex and music to religion and war, irrationality makes up the greater part of human life and history. Rich and ambitious, Irrationality ranges across philosophy, politics, and current events. Challenging conventional thinking about logic, natural reason, dreams, art and science, pseudoscience, the Enlightenment, the internet, jokes and lies, and death, the book shows how history reveals that any triumph of reason is temporary and reversible, and that rational schemes, notably including many from Silicon Valley, often result in their polar opposite. The problem is that the rational gives birth to the irrational and vice versa in an endless cycle, and any effort to permanently set things in order sooner or later ends in an explosion of unreason. Because of this, it is irrational to try to eliminate irrationality. For better or worse, it is an ineradicable feature of life. Illuminating unreason at a moment when the world appears to have gone mad again, Irrationality is fascinating, provocative, and timely.
Timeless wisdom on controlling anger in personal life and politics from the Roman Stoic philosopher and statesman Seneca In his essay oeOn Anger (De Ira), the Roman Stoic thinker Seneca (c. 4 BC "65 AD) argues that anger is the most destructive passion: oeNo plague has cost the human race more dear. This was proved by his own life, which he barely preserved under one wrathful emperor, Caligula, and lost under a second, Nero. This splendid new translation of essential selections from oeOn Anger, presented with an enlightening introduction and the original Latin on facing pages, offers readers a timeless guide to avoiding and managing anger. It vividly illustrates why the emotion is so dangerous and why controlling it would bring vast benefits to individuals and society. Drawing on his great arsenal of rhetoric, including historical examples (especially from Caligula (TM)s horrific reign), anecdotes, quips, and soaring flights of eloquence, Seneca builds his case against anger with mounting intensity. Like a fire-and-brimstone preacher, he paints a grim picture of the moral perils to which anger exposes us, tracing nearly all the world (TM)s evils to this one toxic source. But he then uplifts us with a beatific vision of the alternate path, a path of forgiveness and compassion that resonates with Christian and Buddhist ethics. Seneca (TM)s thoughts on anger have never been more relevant than today, when uncivil discourse has increasingly infected public debate. Whether seeking personal growth or political renewal, readers will find, in Seneca (TM)s wisdom, a valuable antidote to the ills of an angry age.
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.
Gottlob Frege (1848-1925) is one of the founding figures of analytic philosophy, whose contributions to logic, philosophical semantics, philosophy of language, and philosophy of mathematics set the agenda for future generations of theorists in these and related areas. Dale Jacquette's lively and incisive biography charts Frege's life from its beginnings in small-town north Germany, through his student days in Jena, to his development as an enduringly influential thinker. Along the way Jacquette considers Frege's ground-breaking Begriffschrift (1879), in which he formulated his 'ideal logical language', his magisterial Grundgesetze der Arithmetik (1893 and 1903), and his complex relation to thinkers including Husserl and especially Russell, whose Paradox had such drastic implications for Frege's logicism. Jacquette concludes with a thoughtful assessment of Frege's legacy. His rich and informative biography will appeal to all who are interested in Frege's philosophy.
The Atlantis story remains one of the most haunting and enigmatic tales from antiquity, and one that still resonates very deeply with the modern imagination. But where did Atlantis come from, what was it like, and where did it go to? Atlantis was first introduced by the Greek philosopher Plato in two dialogues the Timaios and Kritias, written in the fourth century BC. As he philosophises about the origins of life, the Universe and humanity, the great thinker puts forward a stunning description of Atlantis, an island paradise with an ideal society. But the Atlanteans degenerate and become imperialist aggressors: they fight against antediluvian Athens, which heroically repels their mighty forces, before a cataclysmic natural disaster destroys the warring states. His tale of a great empire that sank beneath the waves has sparked thousands of years of debate over whether Atlantis really existed. But did Plato mean his tale as history, or just as a parable to help illustrate his philosophy? The book is broken down into two main sections plus a coda - firstly the translations/commentaries which will have the discussions of the specifics of the actual texts; secondly a look at the reception of the myth from then to now; thirdly a brief round-off bringing it all together.
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.
'A ripping read ... fascinating, charming, enjoyably unorthodox' Daily Telegraph Was Niccolo Machiavelli really the cynical schemer of legend - or was he a profound ethical thinker, who tried to save the democratic freedom of Renaissance Florence as it was threatened by ruthless dynasties? This revelatory biography shows us a man of fox-like dissimulation: a master of disguise in dangerous times. 'A gripping portrait of a brilliant political thinker, who understood the dangers of authoritarianism and looked for ways to curb them' The New Yorker 'Compelling ... this unconventional biography questions whether the philosopher deserves his reputation as an advocate for tyranny' Julian Baggini, Financial Times
An accessible modern translation of essential speeches from Thucydides (TM)s History that takes readers to the heart of his profound insights on diplomacy, foreign policy, and war Why do nations go to war? What are citizens willing to die for? What justifies foreign invasion? And does might always make right? For nearly 2,500 years, students, politicians, political thinkers, and military leaders have read the eloquent and shrewd speeches in Thucydides (TM)s History of the Peloponnesian War for profound insights into military conflict, diplomacy, and the behavior of people and countries in times of crisis. How to Think about War presents the most influential and compelling of these speeches in an elegant new translation by classicist Johanna Hanink, accompanied by an enlightening introduction, informative headnotes, and the original Greek on facing pages. The result is an ideally accessible introduction to Thucydides (TM)s long and challenging History. Thucydides intended his account of the clash between classical Greece (TM)s mightiest powers "Athens and Sparta "to be a oepossession for all time. Today, it remains a foundational work for the study not only of ancient history but also contemporary politics and international relations. How to Think about War features speeches that have earned the History its celebrated status "all of those delivered before the Athenian Assembly, as well as Pericles (TM)s funeral oration and the notoriously ruthless oeMelian Dialogue. Organized by key debates, these complex speeches reveal the recklessness, cruelty, and realpolitik of Athenian warfighting and imperialism. The first English-language collection of speeches from Thucydides in nearly half a century, How to Think about War takes readers straight to the heart of this timeless thinker.
'This is a blast of fresh air' Jonathan Clark, TLS 'Thank goodness for Gottlieb' Daily Telegraph 'A joy to read' Economist The author of the celebrated The Dream of Reason vividly explains the rise of modern thought from Descartes to Rousseau In a short period - from the early 1640s to the eve of the French Revolution - Descartes, Hobbes, Spinoza, Locke, Leibniz, and Hume all made their mark on Western thought. The Dream of Enlightenment tells their story and that of the birth of modern philosophy. What does the advance of science entail for our understanding of ourselves and for our ideas of God? How should a government deal with religious diversity - and what is government actually for? Their questions remain our questions, and it is tempting to think these philosophers speak our language and live in our world; but to understand them properly, we must step back into their shoes. Gottlieb puts readers in the minds of these frequently misinterpreted figures, elucidating the history of their times while engagingly explaining their arguments and assessing their legacy. Gottlieb creates a sweeping account of what they amounted to, and why we are still in their debt.
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.
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.
In 399 BC Socrates was prosecuted, convicted, sentenced to death and executed. These events were the culmination of a long philosophical career, a career in which, without writing a word, he established himself as the figure whom all philosophers of the next few generations wished to follow. The Apologies (or Defence Speeches) by Plato and Xenophon are rival accounts of how, at his trial, Socrates defended himself and his philosophy. This edition brings together both Apologies within a single volume. The commentary answers literary, linguistic and philosophical questions in a way that is suitable for readers of all levels, helping teachers and students engage more closely with the Greek texts. The introduction examines Socrates himself, the literature generated by his trial, Athenian legal procedures, his guilt or innocence of the crimes for which he was executed, and the rivalry between Xenophon and Plato.
'I'll stop doing it as soon as I understand what I'm doing.' Somewhere between a historical account and work of philosophy, Socrates' Defence details the final plea of Plato's beloved mentor. 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. Plato (474 BC-347 BC). Plato's works available in Penguin Classics are Republic, The Last Days of Socrates, The Laws, Phaedrus, Protagoras and Meno, Timaeus and Critias, Theaetetus, Early Socratic Dialogues, The Symposium and Gorgias.
'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.
"Columbia Companion to Twentieth-Century Philosophies" is the first guide to cover both the Anglo-American analytic and European continental traditions. Organized thematically, the volume thoroughly discusses the major movements and fields of each tradition and features the contributions of highly distinguished specialists in their fields.
This book is divided into three sections. The first is devoted to highlighting the multidimensional work of philosophers identified with the analytic tradition, with Nicholas Rescher writing on neoidealism, Josephine Donovan commenting on feminist philosophy, Tyler Burge discussing the philosophy of language and mind, and Robert Hanna reflecting on Kant's legacy. The second section presents the thought of those who identified themselves with the continental tradition, featuring Jean Grondin on hermeneutics, Leonard Lawlor on phenomenology, Charles Scott on postmodernism, and Babette Babich on the philosophy of science.
This volume also covers logical positivism, naturalism, pragmatism, aesthetics, existentialism, Marxism, the Frankfurt School, structuralism, psychoanalysis, political philosophy, ethics, and the philosophy of religion. The final section addresses concurrent trends in Indian, Chinese, Japanese, and African philosophy, and a comprehensive introduction by the editor not only provides a thorough outline of the problems and issues of the analytic and continental traditions but also boldly challenges the conviction that the two approaches must be rivals. "Columbia Companion to Twentieth-Century Philosophies" is an invaluable overview of the ideas that have shaped a monumentally important century in the history of philosophy, offering an unusually panoramic perspective that allows readers to form their own interpretations of original materials.
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.
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