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This book is a systematic introduction to moral philosophy (or as it is also called: ethics) that aims at raising its readers' ethical literacy and competence. Starting from the nature and end of this science it examines the fundamental questions and concepts of ethics. The core chapters familiarise the reader with the elements of a human act, outline how these elements influence the ethical quality of such act and shed light on the standard of morality, i.e. the good. The book furthermore clarifies the concepts of duty, right as well as responsibility and explicates the moral duties and rights of the human person. In doing so it also elucidates the notions of human dignity and the common good. Last but not least, the book contains a range of practical tools that help the reader put ethical theory into practice. The comprehensive appendix contains chapters on the virtues, propositional logic and arguments.
Written by the great medieval Jewish philosopher Maimonides, The Guide of the Perplexed attempts to explain the perplexities of biblical language-and apparent inconsistencies in the text-in the light of philosophy and scientific reason. Composed as a letter to a student, The Guide aims to harmonize Aristotelian principles with the Hebrew Bible and argues that God must be understood as both unified and incorporeal. Engaging both contemporary and ancient scholars, Maimonides fluidly moves from cosmology to the problem of evil to the end goal of human happiness. His intellectual breadth and openness makes The Guide a lasting model of creative synthesis in biblical studies and philosophical theology.
This book provides a fresh reading of Aquinas' metaphysics in the light of insights from the works of Frege. In particular, Ventimiglia argues that Aquinas' doctrine of being can be better understood through Frege's distinction between the 'there is' sense and the 'present actuality' sense of being, as interpreted by Peter Geach and Anthony Kenny. Aquinas' notion of essence becomes clearer in the light of Frege's distinction between objects and concepts and his account of concepts as functions. Aquinas' doctrine of trancendentals is clarified with the help of Frege's accounts of assertion and negation. Aquinas after Frege provides us with a new Aquinas, which pays attention to his texts and their historical context. Ventimiglia's development of 'British Thomism' furnishes us with a lucid and exciting re-reading of Aquinas' metaphysics.
Throughout its eleven chapters, this volume deals with an abundance of sources confronting the problem of teleology in nature over the lengthy period from the 9th to the 17th century, considering this issue from the perspective of the history of philosophy. In this context, the studies within this book analyse the central themes of nature-rationality, nature-causality, nature-teleology and normativity. These themes emerge in the speculative efforts of human rationality in order to achieve, in its intellection of the world, a reading of nature, of its intrinsic composition and its projections into the philosophy of mankind as well as into the domain of its perfective development. On this basis, it becomes possible to see that the intelligibility of the nature of the world and of the nature of the human being constitute a vox which can express various levels of rationality.
John Perry revisits the cast of characters of his classic A Dialogue on Personal Identity and Immortality in this absorbing dialogue on consciousness. Cartesian dualism, property dualism, materialism, the problem of other minds . . . Gretchen Weirob and her friends tackle these topics and more in a dialogue that exemplifies the subtleties and intricacies of philosophical reflection. Once again, Perry's ability to use straightforward language to discuss complex issues combines with his mastery of the dialogue form. A Bibliography lists relevant further readings keyed to topics discussed in the dialogue. A helpful Glossary provides a handy reference to terms used in the dialogue and an array of clarifying examples.
"Johnson After Three Centuries: New Light on Texts and Contexts" examines several aspects of Johnson's career through fresh perspectives and original interpretations by some of the best-known and widely-repsected scholars of our time. Included are essays by James Basker, James Engell, Nicholas Hudson, Jack Lynch, and Allen Reddick.
"The Limits of Utilitarianism " was first published in 1982. Minnesota Archive Editions uses digital technology to make long-unavailable books once again accessible, and are published unaltered from the original University of Minnesota Press editions.
Many philosophers have argued that utilitarianism is an unacceptable moral theory and that promoting the general welfare is at best only one of the legitimate goals of public policy. Utilitarian principles seem to place no limits on the extent to which society may legitimately interfere with a person's liberties - provided that such actions can be shown to promote the long-term welfare of its members. These issues have played a central role in discussions of utilitarianism since the time of Bentham and Mill. Despite criticisms, utilitarianism remains the most influential and widely accepted moral theory of recent times.
In this volume contemporary philosophers address four aspects of utilitarianism: the principle of utility; utilitarianism vis-a-vis contractarianism; welfare; and voluntary cooperation and helping others. The editors provide an introduction and a comprehensive bibliography that covers all books and articles published in utilitarianism since 1930.
According to Jonathon Ray Spinney, our current economy is fatally flawed. American corporations are destroying community economies as well as State and Federal tax bases. Increasingly, large corporations are cutting back employee hours to part time. They are phasing out good paying jobs, hiring at lower wages, cutting benefits and health care which effectively destroys community economies. On the other end, corporations manipulate their tax liabilities and often pay little or nothing to State and Federal governments -- governments that are now struggling to deal with the increasing social/economic needs of people. People are being forced into social welfare and large corporations are contributing little or nothing into the social welfare system putting individuals, communities and governments into ever increasing debt. Now is the time to begin creating a bridge to new economic prosperity by: creating and sustaining a new economic/philosophic model based on the actual deeds and meaningful human actions of sharing and working towards a common humanitarian vision of peace and prosperity for all; eventually removing paper (valueless) money from community economies and replace it with a form of economic compensation that is rich with human purpose, social/economic equality and humanitarian advancement. The economic compensation or credit/reward that United Credit envisions would be far more valuable than money something that would never be affected by inflation, bank failures, or economic collapse. United Credit proposes a new economic philosophy and bridge ideas to creating a blanket security system that could provide for the needs of all people who are willing to enter a new humanitarian age of helping others.
Actuality and potentiality, substantial form and prime matter, efficient causality and teleology are among the fundamental concepts of Aristotelian philosophy of nature. Aristotles Revenge argues that these concepts are not only compatible with modern science, but are implicitly presupposed by modern science. Among the many topics covered are the metaphysical presuppositions of scientific method; the status of scientific realism; the metaphysics of space and time; the metaphysics of quantum mechanics; reductionism in chemistry and biology; the metaphysics of evolution; and neuroscientific reductionism. The book interacts heavily with the literature on these issues in contemporary analytic metaphysics and philosophy of science, so as to bring contemporary philosophy and science into dialogue with the Aristotelian tradition.
Giordano Bruno (1548-1600) is one of the great figures of early
modern Europe, and one of the least understood. Ingrid D. Rowland's
biography establishes him once and for all as a peer of Erasmus,
Shakespeare, and Galileo--a thinker whose vision of the world
"A loving and thoughtful account of Bruno's] life and thought,
satires and sonnets, dialogues and lesson plans, vagabond days and
star-spangled nights. . . . Ingrid D. Rowland has her reasons for
preferring Bruno to Copernicus, Tycho Brahe, Johannes Kepler, even
Galileo and Leonardo, and they're good ones."--John Leonard,
This anthology provides a set of distinctive, influential views that explore the mysteries of human nature from a variety of perspectives. It can be read on its own, or in conjunction with Joel Kupperman's text, Theories of Human Nature .
An important milestone of 20th Century philosophy was the rise of personalism. After the crimes and atrocities against millions of human beings in two World Wars, especially the Second, some philosophers and other thinkers began to seek arguments showing the value of each human being, to expose and denounce the folly of political structures that violate the inalienable rights of the individual person. Karol Wojty?a appeals to the ancient concept of 'person' to emphasize the particular value of each human being. The person is unique because of their subjectivity by which they possesses an unrepeatable interior world in the history of humanity. Their rational nature grants them a special character among living beings, among which is the transcendence to the infinite. Wojty?a magisterially shows how each human being's personhood is rooted in a conscious and free subjectivity, which is marked also by personal and social responsibility. Wojty?a's original philosophical analysis takes for its starting point the human act, in which consciousness and experience consolidate voluntary choices, which are objectively efficacious. By their acts, the person determines their own personhood. This self-dominion manifests the person and enables them to live together in a community in which one's neighbor can be a companion on the voyage of life. This work provides a clear guide to Karol Wojty?a's principal philosophical work, Person and Act, rigorously analyzing the meaning that the author intended in his exposition. An important feature of the work is that the authors rely on the original Polish text, Osoba i czyn, as well as the best translations into Italian and Spanish, rather than on a flawed and sometimes misleading English edition of the work. Besides the analysis of Wojty?a's masterwork, this volume offers three chapters examining the impact of Wojty?a's anthropology on the relationship between faith and reason.
This remarkable book shows the seminal Western mystic Meister Eckhart as the great teacher of the birth of God in the soul. It is at once an exposition of Eckhart's mysticism -- perhaps the best in English -- and also an exemplary work of contemporary philosophy.
Schurmann shows us that Eckhart is our contemporary. Writing from experience, he describes the threefold movement of detachment, releasement, and "dehiscence" (splitting open) that leads to the experience of "living without a why" in which all things are in God and which is sheer joy. Going beyond that, he describes the transformational force of approaching the Godhead, the God beyond God.
Alone among Thomas Aquinas' works, the Summa Theologiae contains well-developed and integrated discussions of metaphysics, ethics, law, human action, and the divine nature. The essays in this volume, by scholars representing varied approaches to the study of Aquinas, offer thorough, cutting-edge expositions and analyses of these topics and show how they relate to Aquinas' larger system of thought. The volume also examines the reception of the Summa Theologiae from the thirteenth century to the present day, showing how scholars have understood and misunderstood this key text - and how, even after seven centuries of interpretation, we still have much to learn from it. Detailed and accessible, this book will be highly important for scholars and students of medieval philosophy and theology.
Mark Rowlands was a young philosophy professor, rootless and searching for life s greater meaning. Shortly after arriving at the University of Alabama, he noticed a classified ad in the local paper advertising wolf cubs for sale, and decided he had to investigate, if only out of curiosity. It was love at first sight, and the bond that grew between philosopher and wolf reaffirms for us the incredible relationships that exist between man and animal. When Mark welcomed his new companion, Brenin, into his home, but more than just an exotic pet, Brenin exerted an immense influence on Rowlands both as a person, and, strangely enough, as a philosopher, leading him to reevaluate his attitude toward love, happiness, nature, death, and the true meaning of companionship.
E. M. Cioran confronts the place of today's world in the context of human history--focusing on such major issues of the twentieth century as human progress, fanaticism, and science--in this nihilistic and witty collection of aphoristic essays concerning the nature of civilization in mid-twentieth-century Europe. Touching upon Man's need to worship, the feebleness of God, the downfall of the Ancient Greeks and the melancholy baseness of all existence, Cioran's pieces are pessimistic in the extreme, but also display a beautiful certainty that renders them delicate, vivid, and memorable. Illuminating and brutally honest, "A Short History of Decay" dissects Man's decadence in a remarkable series of moving and beautiful pieces.
Ramon Llull was a highly original medieval writer and thinker. Direct contact with Moslem culture during his early years in Majorca, soon after the Christian reconquest, furnished him with a vision of the "Other" quite unique among medieval European intellectuals. It was not, however, until his thirties that he abandoned the courtly life, immersed himself in theological and philosophical studies and began his sustained campaign of conversion. He travelled on many occasions throughout Europe in search of royal and papal support and undertook several missions to north Africa, in the course of one of which he was stoned and imprisoned. Despite his many travels he found time to compose more than 260 works, in Catalan and Latin, many of which related to his famous "Art," a method for religious discussion with scientific and logical applications that subsequently influenced Giordano Bruno and Liebniz. When he was almost eighty years old, Llull dictated the story of his life to a group of Carthusians in Paris, leaving us this fascinating autobiography. This edition includes both an English translation and the original Latin version. Published in association with Editorial Barcino. ANTHONY BONNER is a translator and scholar who has published extensively on Ramon Llull.
Thomas More remains one of the most enigmatic thinkers in history, due in large part to the enduring mysteries surrounding his best-known work, Utopia. He has been variously thought of as a reformer and a conservative, a civic humanist and a devout Christian, a proto-communist and a monarchical absolutist. His work spans contemporary disciplines from history to politics to literature, and his ideas have variously been taken up by seventeenth-century reformers and nineteenth-century communists. Through a comprehensive treatment of More's writing, from his earliest poetry to his reflections on suffering in the Tower of London, Joanne Paul engages with both the rich variety and some of the fundamental consistencies that run throughout More's works. In particular, Paul highlights More's concern with the destruction of what is held 'in common', whether it be in the commonwealth or in the body of the church. In so doing, she re-establishes More's place in the history of political thought, tracing the reception of his ideas to the present day. Paul's book serves as an essential foundation for any student encountering More's writing for the first time, as well as providing an innovative reconsideration of the place of his works in the history of ideas.
Logic of John Buridan - Acts of the 3rd European Symposium on Medieval Logic & Semantics, Copenhagen 16-21 November 1975
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