Socrates: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Christopher Taylor

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191540390

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

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Socrates has a unique position in the history of philosophy. It is no exaggeration to say that had it not been for his influence on Plato, the whole development of Western philosophy might have bee unimaginably different. Yet Socrates wrote nothing himself, and our knowledge of him is derived primarily from the engaging and infuriating figure who appears in Plato's dialogues. In this book, Christopher Taylor explores the relationship between the historical Socrates and the Platonic character, and examines the enduring image of Socrates as the ideal exemplar of the philosophic life - a thinker whose moral and intellectual integrity permeated every detail of his life, even in the face of betrayal and execution by his fellow Athenians. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Plato: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Julia Annas

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 019157922X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 120

View: 7087

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This lively and accessible introduction to Plato focuses on the philosophy and argument of his writings, drawing the reader into Plato's way of doing philosophy, and the general themes of his thinking. This is not a book to leave the reader standing in the outer court of introduction and background information, but leads directly into Plato's argument. It looks at Plato as a thinker grappling with philosophical problems in a variety of ways, rather than a philosopher with a fully worked-out system. It includes a brief account of Plato's life and the various interpretations that have been drawn from the sparse remains of information. It stresses the importance of the founding of the Academy and the conception of philosophy as a subject. Julia Annas discusses Plato's style of writing: his use of the dialogue form, his use of what we today call fiction, and his philosophical transformation of myths. She also looks at his discussions of love and philosophy, his attitude to women, and to homosexual love, explores Plato's claim that virtue is sufficient for happiness, and touches on his arguments for the immortality of the soul and his ideas about the nature of the universe. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Ancient Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Julia Annas

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 0192853570

Category: Philosophy

Page: 127

View: 8008

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Presents fundamental philosophical questions as posed by ancient philosophers, comparing and contrasting modern differences in approach and perspective.

Aristotle: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Jonathan Barnes

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 9780192854087

Category: Philosophy

Page: 160

View: 6637

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The influence of Aristotle, the prince of philosophers, on the intellectual history of the West is second to none. In this book Jonathan Barnes examines Aristotle's scientific researches, his discoveries in logic and his metaphysical theories, his work in psychology and in ethics and politics, and his ideas about art and poetry, placing his teachings in their historical context. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Presocratic Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Catherine Osborne

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192840940

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 3857

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This is a book about the invention of Western philosophy, and the first thinkers to explore ideas about the nature of reality, time, and the origin of the universe. It begins with the finding of the new papyrus fragment of Empedocles' poem, and uses the story of its discovery and interpretation to highlight the way our understanding of early philosophers is marked by their presentation in later sources. Generations of philosophers, both ancient and modern, have traced their inspiration back to the presocratics, even though we have very few of their writings left. In this book, Catherine Osborne invites her readers to dip their toes into the fragmentary remains of thinkers from Thales to Pythagoras, Heraclitus to Protagoras, to try to fill in the bits of a jigsaw that has been rejigged many times and in many different ways. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Animal Rights: A Very Short Introduction

Author: David DeGrazia

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 9780192853608

Category: Nature

Page: 131

View: 9483

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By presenting models for understanding animals' moral status and rights, and examining their mental lives and welfare, the author explores the implications for how we should treat animals in connection with our diet, zoos, and research.

Philosophy

Author: Edward Craig

Publisher: Sterling Publishing Company, Inc.

ISBN: 9781402768774

Category: Philosophy

Page: 186

View: 5119

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"Philosophy is more than an intellectual pastime, according to Edward Craig. His lively and engaging study shows that thinkers like Descartes, Hegel, Darwin, and de Beauvoir responded to real needs and events--and that many of their concerns shape our daily lives today"--Cover, p. 4.

Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Edward Craig

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 0192854216

Category: Philosophy

Page: 132

View: 7333

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Examines how philosophers including Plato, Descartes, Hobbes, Darwin, and de Beauvoir responded to real life situations, and how their responses continue to influence people today.

Free Speech: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Nigel Warburton

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199232350

Category: Philosophy

Page: 115

View: 6308

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Voltaire's comment - 'I disapprove of what you say, but I will defend to the death your right to say it' - is frequently quoted by defenders of free speech. Yet it is rare to find someone prepared to defend all freedom of speech, especially if the views expressed are obnoxious or obviously false. So where do the limits lie? How important really is our right to freedom of speech? Here, Nigel Warburton offers a concise guide to the important questions facing modern society about free speech: Should a civilized society set limits on the freedom of speech? How can we square free speech with the sensitivities of religious and minority groups? Does copyright law clash with our right to free speech? And how have new technologies such as the Internet changed the debate? This Very Short Introduction is a thought-provoking, accessible, and up-to-date examination of the liberal assumption that free speech is worth preserving at any cost.

Existentialism: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Thomas Flynn

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0192804286

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 144

View: 7336

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Sartre, Nietzsche, Heidegger, Kierkegaard, de Beauvoir, Merleau-Ponty, and Camus were some of the most important existentialist thinkers. This book provides an account of the existentialist movement, and of the themes of individuality, free will, and personal responsibility which make it a 'philosophy as a way of life'.

Nietzsche: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Michael Tanner

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191540404

Category: Philosophy

Page: 128

View: 2535

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The philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900) was almost wholly neglected during his sane life, which came to an abrupt end in 1889. Since then he has been appropriated as an icon by an astonishingly diverse spectrum of people, whose interpretations of his thought range from the highly irrational to the firmly analytical. Thus Spoke Zarathustra introduced the 'superman' and The Twilight of the Idols developed the 'Will to Power' concept; these term, together with 'Sklavenmoral' and 'Herrenmoral', became confused with the rise of nationalism in Germany. Idiosyncratic and aphoristic, Nietzsche is always bracing and provocative, and temptingly easy to dip into. Michael Tanner's readable introduction to the philosopher's life and work examines the numerous ambiguities inherent in his writings. It also explodes the many misconceptions fostered in the hundred years since Nietzsche wrote, prophetically: 'Do not, above all, confound me with what I am not!' ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Heidegger: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Michael Inwood

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 019160657X

Category: Philosophy

Page: 168

View: 4487

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Martin Heidegger (1889-1976) is probably the most divisive philosopher of the twentieth century. Considered by some to be the greatest charlatan ever to claim the title of 'philosopher', by some as an apologist for Nazism, he was also an acknowledged leader and central figure to many philosophers. Michael Inwood's lucid introduction to Heidegger's thought focuses on his most important work, 'Being and Time', and its major themes of existence in the world, inauthenticity, guilt, destiny, truth, and the nature of time. These themes are then reassessed in the light of Heidegger's later work, together with the extent of his philosophical importance and influence. This is an invaluable guide to the complex and voluminous thought of a major twentieth-century existentialist philosopher. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Thomas Aquinas: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Fergus Kerr

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0199556644

Category: Biography & Autobiography

Page: 127

View: 1694

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Thomas Aquinas, one of the most famous and highly thought of Christian thinkers, was a controversial figure who was exposed and engaged in conflict. This Very Short Introduction looks at Aquinas in a historical context, and explores the Church and culture into which Aquinas was born. It also ask why Aquinas matters now.

Stoicism: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Brad Inwood

Publisher: Oxford University Press

ISBN: 0191090301

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 6209

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Stoicism is two things: a long past philosophical school of ancient Greece and Rome, and an enduring philosophical movement that still inspires people in the twenty-first century to re-think and re-organize their lives in order to achieve personal satisfaction. What is the connection between them? This Very Short Introduction provides an introductory account of Stoic philosophy, and tells the story of how ancient Stoicism survived and evolved into the movement we see today. Exploring the roots of the school in the philosophy of fourth century BCE Greece, Brad Inwood examines its basic history and doctrines and its relationship to the thought of Plato, Aristotle and his successors, and the Epicureans. Sketching the history of the school's reception in the western tradition, he argues that, despite the differences between ancient and contemporary Stoics, there is a common core of philosophical insight that unites the modern version not just to Seneca, Epictetus, and Marcus Aurelius but also to the school's original founders, Zeno, Cleanthes, and Chrysippus. Inwood concludes by considering the place of Stoicism in modern life. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Metaphysics: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Stephen Mumford

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191640263

Category: Philosophy

Page: 128

View: 9206

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Metaphysics is one of the traditional four main branches of philosophy, alongside ethics, logic and epistemology. It is also an area that continues to attract and hold a fascination for many people yet it is associated with being complex and abstract. For some it is associated with the mystical or religious. For others it is known through the metaphysical poets who talk of love and spirituality. This Very Short Introduction goes right to the heart of the matter, getting to the basic and most important questions of metaphysical thought in order to understand the theory: What are objects? Do colours and shapes have some form of existence? What is it for one thing to cause another rather than just being associated with it? What is possible? Does time pass? By using these questions to initiate thought about the basic issues around substance, properties, changes, causes, possibilities, time, personal identity, nothingness and emergentism, Stephen Mumford provides a clear and simple path through this analytical tradition at the core of philosophical thought. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Classics: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Mary Beard,John Henderson

Publisher: Oxford Paperbacks

ISBN: 9780192853851

Category: Literary Criticism

Page: 145

View: 2847

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Explores the relationship between the contemporary world and the ancient one.

Aristotle

Author: Jonathan Barnes

Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA

ISBN: N.A

Category: Language Arts & Disciplines

Page: 101

View: 6667

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Derrida: A Very Short Introduction

Author: Simon Glendinning

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191619973

Category: Philosophy

Page: 144

View: 9040

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Jacques Derrida, the French philosopher, developed his critical technique known as 'deconstruction'. His work is associated with ideas surrounding both post-structuralism and post-modern philosophy, and he was known to have challenged some of the unquestioned assumptions of our philosophical tradition. In this Very Short Introduction, Simon Glendinning explores both the difficulty and significance of the work of Derrida. He presents Derrida's challenging ideas as making a significant contribution to, and providing a powerful reading of, our philosophical heritage. Defending Derrida against many of the charges that were placed against him, he attempts to show why Derrrida's work causes such extreme reactions. Glendinning explains Derrida's distinctive mode of engagement with our philosophical tradition, and shows that this is not a merely negative thing. By exploring his most famous and influential texts, Glendinning shows how and why Derrida's work of deconstruction is inspired not by a 'critical frenzy', but by a loving respect for philosophy. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Wittgenstein: A Very Short Introduction

Author: A. C. Grayling

Publisher: OUP Oxford

ISBN: 0191540382

Category: Philosophy

Page: 160

View: 2742

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Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889-1951) was an extraordinarily original philospher, whose influence on twentieth-century thinking goes well beyond philosophy itself. In this book, which aims to make Wittgenstein's thought accessible to the general non-specialist reader, A. C. Grayling explains the nature and impact of Wittgenstein's views. He describes both his early and later philosophy, the differences and connections between them, and gives a fresh assessment of Wittgenstein's continuing influence on contemporary thought. ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Ancient Philosophy

A Contemporary Introduction

Author: Christopher Shields

Publisher: Routledge

ISBN: 1136627588

Category: Philosophy

Page: 264

View: 701

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In this re-titled and substantially revised update of his Classical Philosophy (2003), Christopher Shields expands his coverage to include the Hellenistic era, and now offers an introduction to more than 1,000 years of ancient philosophy. From Thales and other Pre-Socratics through Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle, and on to Epicureanism, Stoicism, and Scepticism, Ancient Philosophy traces the important connections between these periods and individuals without losing sight of the novelties and dynamics unique to each. The coverage of Plato and Aristotle also has been expanded. It now includes, for example, updated coverage of Plato's allegories of the cave and the divided line and the metaphor of the sun as well as features of Plato's epistemology. Shields also adds new discussion on Aristotle's theory of virtue and his approach to the Socratic problem of akrasia, or weakness of will. In terms of its structure, Ancient Philosophy is presented so that each philosophical position receives: (1) a brief introduction, (2) a sympathetic review of its principal motivations and primary supporting arguments, and (3) a short assessment, inviting readers to evaluate its plausibility. The result is a book that brings the ancient arguments to life, making the introduction truly contemporary. It will serve as both a first stop and a well visited resource for any student of the subject. Ancient Philosophy offers a vivid picture of the ideas that flourished at philosophy's long birth and considers their relevance, both to the historical development of the Western philosophical tradition, and to philosophy today.