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Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics had a profound influence on generations of later philosophers, not only in the ancient era but also in the medieval period and beyond. In this book, Anthony Celano explores how medieval authors recast Aristotle's Ethics according to their own moral ideals. He argues that the moral standard for the Ethics is a human one, which is based upon the ethical tradition and the best practices of a given society. In the Middle Ages, this human standard was replaced by one that is universally applicable, since its foundation is eternal immutable divine law. Celano resolves the conflicting accounts of happiness in Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, demonstrates the importance of the virtue of phronesis (practical wisdom), and shows how the medieval view of moral reasoning alters Aristotle's concept of moral wisdom.
This work argues that teleological motives lie at the heart of Kant's critical philosophy and that a precise analysis of teleological structures can both illuminate the basic strategy of its fundamental arguments and provide a key to understanding its unity. It thus aims, through an examination of each of Kant's major writings, to provide a detailed interpretation of his claim that philosophy in the true sense must consist of a teleologia rationis humanae.The author argues that Kant's critical philosophy forged a new link between traditional teleological concepts and the basic structure of rationality, one that would later inform the dynamic conception of reason at the heart of German Idealism. The process by which this was accomplished began with Kant's development of a uniquely teleological conception of systematic unity already in the precritical period. The individual chapters of this work attempt to show how Kant adapted and refined this conception of systematic unity so that it came to form the structural basis for the critical philosophy.
'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
This sixth of seven volumes devoted to the Adages in the Collected Works of Erasmus completes the translation and annotation of the more than 4000 proverbs gathered and commented on by Erasmus in his Adagiorum Chiliades (Thousands of Adages, usually known more simply as the Adagia). This volume's aim, like that of the others, is to provide a fully annotated, accurate, and readable English version of Erasmus' commentaries on these Greek and Latin proverbs, and to show how Erasmus continued to expand this work, originally published in 1508, until his death in 1536. An indication of Erasmus' unflagging interest in classical proverbs is that almost 500 of the 951 adages translated in this volume did not make their first appearance until the edition of 1533. Following in the tradition of meticulous scholarship for which the Collected Works of Erasmus is widely known, the notes to this volume identify the classical sources and illustrate how the content of his commentaries on the adages often reflects Erasmus' scholarly and editing interests in the classical authors at a particular time. The work was highly acclaimed and circulated widely in Erasmus' time, serving as a conduit for transmitting classical proverbs into the vernacular languages, in which many of the proverbs still survive to this day.
Alasdair MacIntyre is one of the few professional philosophers whose writings span both technical analytical philosophy and those general moral or intellectual questions that laymen often suppose to be the province of philosophy but that are seldom discussed within its bounds. The unity of this book-made up both of original and previously published pieces-lies in its attempt to expose this dichotomy and to link beliefs and moral theories with philosophical criticism. The author successively criticizes Christianity, Marxism, and psychoanalysis for their failure to express the forms of thought and action that constitute our contemporary social life, and argues that a greater understanding of our complex world will require a more thorough inquiry into the philosophy of the social sciences.
Substance and the Fundamentality of the Familiar explicates and defends a novel neo-Aristotelian account of the structure of material objects. While there have been numerous treatments of properties, laws, causation, and modality in the neo-Aristotelian metaphysics literature, this book is one of the first full-length treatments of wholes and their parts. Another aim of the book is to further develop the newly revived area concerning the question of fundamental mereology, the question of whether wholes are metaphysically prior to their parts or vice versa. Inman develops a fundamental mereology with a grounding-based conception of the structure and unity of substances at its core, what he calls substantial priority, one that distinctively allows for the fundamentality of ordinary, medium-sized composite objects. He offers both empirical and philosophical considerations against the view that the parts of every composite object are metaphysically prior, in particular the view that ascribes ontological pride of place to the smallest microphysical parts of composite objects, which currently dominates debates in metaphysics, philosophy of science, and philosophy of mind. Ultimately, he demonstrates that substantial priority is well-motivated in virtue of its offering a unified solution to a host of metaphysical problems involving material objects.
This book bridges medieval and contemporary philosophical thinkers, examining the relationship between fiction and philosophy for bringing about social change. Drawing on the philosophical reading and writing practices of medieval author Christine de Pizan and twentieth-century philosopher Luce Irigaray, and through an engagement with Hans-Georg Gadamer's work on tradition and hermeneutics, it develops means to re-write the stories and ideas that shape society. It argues that reading for change is possible; by increasing our capacity to perceive and engage tradition, we become more capable of positively shaping the forces that shape us. Following the example of the two women whose work it explores, Story and Philosophy works through philosophy and narrative to deeply transform the allegorical, political, and continental tradition it engages. It is essential reading for students and scholars interested in medieval studies, feminist studies, and critical theory.
This book explores the tangled relationship between literary production and epistemological foundation as exemplified in one of the masterpieces of Italian literature. Filippo Andrei argues that Giovanni Boccaccio's Decameron has a significant though concealed engagement with philosophy, and that the philosophical implications of its narratives can be understood through an epistemological approach to the text. He analyzes the influence of Dante, Petrarch, Thomas Aquinas, Aristotle, and other classical and medieval thinkers on Boccaccio's attitudes towards ethics and knowledge-seeking. Beyond providing an epistemological reading of the Decameron, this book also evaluates how a theoretical reflection on the nature of rhetoric and poetic imagination can ultimately elicit a theory of knowledge.
This lively and highly accessible introduction to the thought of
Thomas Aquinas focuses on his philosophy while making clear its
openness to theology as reflection on Revelation.
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