great philosophers books

I certainly agree that both the Analects and Epictetus should be here. Relativist, atheist, existentialist, Nazi. I see David Hume, very much as a kind of successor to Aristotle. Hume was the first western philosopher to work within a non-theological framework. This September (2020) our philosophy editor, Nigel Warburton, asked Brian about some of the latest Nietzsche books, notable works that have come out in the decade since we first spoke to him. Professor Melissa Lane of Princeton University recommends the best books to get a better understanding of the Greek philosopher Plato, including his most famous work, the Republic. (I especially recommend Deleuze’s Expressionism in Philosophy.) But he only had himself to blame, says philosophy professor and Rousseau scholar Chris Bertram. And yet, he made important contributions to a number of areas of philosophy and had a deep influence on other philosophers. In The Birth of Tragedy and The Genealogy of Morals, he explores the conflict between a moral and aesthetic approach to life as well as the meaning and functions of religion, science, nihilism, and the dichotomy between Apollo and Dionysus. Simone de Beauvoir is remembered today as the pioneering feminist author of The Second Sex and a close companion of Jean Paul Sartre. To compile a list of the most important philosophy books ever written, we needed to assemble a panel of incredible minds who span the subject of philosophy from a multitude of angles. Taking to his cherished second-hand desk with a hatchet because a drawer won’t open, Victor Eremita, Kierkegaard’s pseudonymous editor of Either/Or, finds a stash of papers hidden in a secret compartment. A pioneering figure in analytic philosophy, Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951) is a clear example of philosophical genius. But one of the most remarkable features of Aristotle’s corpus is its range, and no single work by him can really testify to this. The Baruch Poll of Great Philosophy in the Twentieth Century, Douglas P. Lackey, Philosophical Forum 30(4): 329–346 (1999). It's an important book to revisit right now, especially considering the implications of climate change. In other words, if you're a beginner and just want to get a foundational understanding, or you're interested in studying but aren't sure which direction you'll take, this book will fit the bill. Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep? The book has exposed male dominance in philosophy. It's a horrifying look into the impact of technology on human consciousness, redemption and freedom, and good versus evil. In 1968, David returned to England to study philosophy at Cambridge and then completing a PhD on conceptual change and scientific rationality. Which books have shaped how we view philosophy today? Does it even matter? He is also a prolific writer. Orientalism is considered essential reading in pretty much every humanities department, from history to media studies and philosophy. Perhaps the enterprise makes sense. His first book, The Infinite, was considered an ‘authoritative overview of a topic of considerable philosophical importance’. It helps us rediscover biblical Christianity as a whole-life philosophy, one that addresses our greatest human questions and helps us … You can expect decadence, debauchery, and all things grotesque in this metafictional portrait of a young man who is obsessed with beauty, art, and everything else skin deep. Few people make it through Jean-Paul Sartre’s most famous work Being and Nothingness from cover to cover because it’s dreadfully heavy and convoluted in places. For example, the ability to have a baby does not automatically mean that one must be a mother and housewife. True, it is sometimes extraordinarily difficult—more difficult, no doubt, than it needs to be. I’m not sure that this will have the same lasting significance as my first two choices, but it has certainly changed the way philosophy has been done in my lifetime. Or maybe she seeks it out, manifests it or imagines it—it's relatively unclear. © 2020 TheReadingLists.com™ TheReadingLists.com is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for us to earn fees by linking to Amazon.com and affiliated sites. If Saul Kripke merits a place on this list, then surely there’s room for Mary Wollstonecraft, Simone Weil, Edith Stein, Hannah Arendt, or Elizabeth Anscombe? But, we also see the high emphasis placed on the value of harmony; in particular social harmony. Hume rejected the Cartesian rationalism which believed that by pure reason alone we could achieve knowledge of what matters in life. This is another classic book you'll find on every philosophy 101 syllabus since it's a great introduction to the many facets of the discipline. Think of it as the moral equivalent of going to the gym to develop your (ethical) muscles. To take part in all that soul-searching and to work our intellectual muscle, we rounded up the best philosophy books for beginners, experts, and generally curious minds. I struggled for a long time about what to include as the third item on my list. Plato was very aspiring to the universal, absolute, unchanging truth – which he thought resided in the world of the forms. (I think he meant it as a compliment.). It was this, as well as his exploration of the personal passionate subjective human experience that retrospectively earned him the reputation of being the first existential philosopher, and his radically different approach to philosophising was why Jean-Paul Sartre called him an anti-philosopher. Philosophers are listed by order of birth. It was about becoming good, by habit, and that being a good person required avoiding extremes. He has written many books, and his most recent book is Conscience and Its Enemies. Comparative Literature: East & West. Ars Aeterna. They bridge Plato and Buddha, and require a willingness to think out of the box and beyond tradition. and also Hegel’s Phenomenology of Spirit . , a Schopenhauer expert at the University of Warwick, talks us through his choice of books on the life and work of this remarkable thinker. He was also, among other things, a misogynist. Browse our reading lists to find out what books to read about individual philosophers from Confucius (born around 550BCE) onwards. Professor of political theory, Terrell Carver, takes us through the most influential books, in English, about Marx, Marxism and his friend, publicist and financial backer, Friedrich Engels. But the scope of her intellectual contribution has long been underestimated, argues her latest biographer Kate Kirkpatrick, who offers an introduction to the landscape of Beauvoir’s works, from fiction to philosophy to life writing.

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