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1. The Problems of Philosophy
2. An Introduction To Philosophy
3. The Religion of the Samurai A
4. A Short History of Greek Philosophy
5. Introduction to the Philosophy
6. A History of Western Philosophy
7. The Sunday Philosophy Club: An
8. Philosophy and religion: six lectures
9. The Elements of Moral Philosophy
10. Some Turns of Thought in Modern
11. The Story of Philosophy: The Lives
12. The Perennial Philosophy: An Interpretation
13. House and Philosophy: Everybody
14. Meditations on First Philosophy
15. The Philosophy of Sustainable
16. Philosophy for Dummies
17. The Consolations of Philosophy
18. How Philosophy Can Save Your Life:
19. Philosophy of Religion: Thinking
20. Mad Men and Philosophy: Nothing

1. The Problems of Philosophy
by Bertrand Russell
Paperback: 174 Pages (2010-03-31)
list price: US$12.95 -- used & new: US$12.95
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Asin: 1451582854
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Bertrand Russell's work on general problems of Philosophy - includes his famous article "On Denoting" ... Read more

Customer Reviews (35)

5-0 out of 5 stars A Stimulating Set of Problems
Bertrand Russell was one of the most prominent British mathematicians and philosophers from the beginning of the twentieth century. He is considered one of the founders of analytic philosophy. His varied interests have led him to become widely known even outside his own domains of professional specialization. In 1950 he was awarded the Nobel Prize for literature.

This book was written as some sort of an introduction to philosophy, having a general reader in mind. The topics and issues that are discussed herein are some of the most prominent and lasting ones in philosophy - what is knowledge, how are we able to acquire it, can we ever be completely certain of things that we know. Russell presents many of these topics from a historical perspective, introducing the reader to some of the most prominent philosophers who had previously dealt with them.

The writing in this book is lucid and precise, without becoming pedantic. This is by no means a light-hearted and watered-down survey of philosophy, so the reader should expect to have to be constantly intellectually engaged with the material presented here. However, the book is also not a technical work aimed at the experts, and no prior knowledge of philosophy is assumed. As long as the reader has a keen mind and appreciation for critical thinking, this book will be an enjoyable and stimulating adventure.

5-0 out of 5 stars Surprisingly Engaging; Appropriately Challenging
First off, I am nowhere near qualified to comment on the philosophical arguments posited by Russell about knowledge.However, as someone who has rediscovered philosophy in middle-age, having taken it in college and abandoned it shortly thereafter, I found Russell's writing eminently readable.Some of the concepts discussed are appropriately challenging and I was surprised at how clearly and engagingly Russell writes.I incorrectly assumed that a great philosophical mind like his would wrap his prose in incomprehensible philosophical jargon.Fortunately, I was wrong.The highlight for me was a passage in the concluding chapter, where Russell explains the purpose of the philosophical discipline, which is to bring a person outside their immediate world of daily concerns and crises, to the larger world around them of thoughts and ideas, and thereby enlarge their world to their benefit.My favorite sentence: "Every complete sentence must contain at least one word which stands for a universal, since all verbs have a meaning which is universal."Highly recommended as an introduction to some of the fundamental questions addressed by philosophy.

5-0 out of 5 stars Philosophy 101
A brief tour of epistemology and metaphysics. This book is directed at at those who are curious about the discipline of philosophy; it's only about 150 or so pages, but navigating through may not be easy. Russell starts of by wondering whether material objects seen in the world of sense data really exist and takes the reader through a brief analysis of the differing view points regarding the existence and the nature of matter. The view points of the idealists and empiricists are compared and contrasted as Russell tries to take his position. What one gets out of this is the way the topic is analyzed and how seemingly obvious and self-evident points are dissected and a question mark put on them; the opinion he arrives at (ex. why the idealists & Berkeley were in the wrong) is irrelevant. In any case, given the brief nature of the discussion here, you will have to supplement your reading with other materials to get a genuine and more than a verbal understanding of these various schools of thought; the objective here is merely to give you a broad outline. Russell then moves on to the process by which we acquire knowledge, our reliance on inductive reasoning and proceeds to talk about a priori knowledge, contribution of Kant and the debate surrounding the feasibility of a priori knowledge. Plato's Universals is covered in two chapters. If and onceyou get to the end of it, questions whether all of this is merely hairsplitting and devoid of any practical utility is addressed by Russell in the final chapter where he says that the role of philosophy is to keep alive the "speculative interest in the universe" otherwise which we would be confined to verifiable and ascertainable knowledge.

A well written introduction and if the flame still burns there is a list of books in the bibliographical note to take your interest further.

5-0 out of 5 stars The Problems of Epistemology
I've always enjoyed Russell's perspicuity, as displayed so generously in A History of Western Philosophy; none of it is lacking here.

Russell takes on several key concepts, such as idealism, knowledge by acquaintance versus knowledge by description, and sets forth a theory which clearly delineates what we can and cannot know.

It addresses the fundamental problems of epistemology, and as such should probably be read pretty early on by those who are interested in epistemology and philosophy in general.

5-0 out of 5 stars Dense ... And Free
Dense is probably the best way to describe Russel's writing style. He throws a lot of complicated ideas and thoughts at you all at once. That being said, this is a great book, that anyone will enjoy. It is free, that is the biggest plus. The formatting is great for the kindle. This book really makes you think about a lot of things, and thinking is good for you. It is not a light read, you must really focus on what is being said to understand it. However, understanding it is very rewarding. This is my first book by Russel, but it has sparked an intrest in me, and I plan to read more of his work. So, if you want to read some great philosophy, and have a kindle, then you should look no further than this wonderful book.

Did I mention it's free? ... Read more

2. An Introduction To Philosophy
by George Stuart Fullerton
 Paperback: 336 Pages (2010-09-10)
list price: US$24.76 -- used & new: US$24.08
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Asin: 1163619752
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This scarce antiquarian book is included in our special Legacy Reprint Series. In the interest of creating a more extensive selection of rare historical book reprints, we have chosen to reproduce this title even though it may possibly have occasional imperfections such as missing and blurred pages, missing text, poor pictures, markings, dark backgrounds and other reproduction issues beyond our control. Because this work is culturally important, we have made it available as a part of our commitment to protecting, preserving and promoting the world's literature. ... Read more

3. The Religion of the Samurai A Study of Zen Philosophy and Discipline in China and Japan
by Kaiten Nukariya
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-10-04)
list price: US$1.99
Asin: B002RKT3LI
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (2)

3-0 out of 5 stars Easy read, clarifies many things, reads current
My introduction to Buddhism came through the Eckhard Tolle books. I looked at this free book to better understand what Tolle talks about and I ended up submerged in an wealth of explanations (understandings) such as, where did the name Zen come from, what are the basic tenets, how is it different from others. The book reads as if written today except for the occasional dated grammar.

The book goes much beyond the roots of Zen. I spent the last hour reading the discussion on the nature of man. Is man fundamentally good, fundamentally bad? The book explores four options and then moves to explore the relationship of man to nature (the universe in my terminology). Wonderful and easy to read.

5-0 out of 5 stars Where are the words in a Kindle before its turned on?
This is a delightful book on the history of Zen in Japan. The author starts from the beginngs of zen philosophy in China and brings you right to the Kamakura period where zen became the fashion with the warrior class. I say fashion, but it was/is more than that. It is indeed a study of how a particular philosophy ( zen ) can take hold and flurish in a specific culture, in this case Japan. This was my first kindle book and I simply could not put in down ( rather turn it off!) If you are interested in Zen at all, you will enjoy this book! Highly recommended-and it's FREE to boot!! ... Read more

4. A Short History of Greek Philosophy
by John Marshall
Paperback: 134 Pages (2010-07-12)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$9.99
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Asin: B003YKFYM2
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A Short History of Greek Philosophy is presented here in a high quality paperback edition. This popular classic work by John Marshall is in the English language. If you enjoy the works of John Marshall then we highly recommend this publication for your book collection. ... Read more

5. Introduction to the Philosophy and Writings of Plato
by Thomas Taylor
Paperback: 66 Pages (2010-07-06)
list price: US$9.99 -- used & new: US$9.99
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Asin: B003VNKOUE
Average Customer Review: 1.0 out of 5 stars
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Introduction to the Philosophy and Writings of Plato is presented here in a high quality paperback edition. This popular classic work by Thomas Taylor is in the English language. If you enjoy the works of Thomas Taylor then we highly recommend this publication for your book collection. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (1)

1-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful book
My son needed this book for a paper for school and it worked great for him.Very informative!!!!! ... Read more

6. A History of Western Philosophy
by Bertrand Russell
Paperback: 895 Pages (1967)
list price: US$25.00 -- used & new: US$12.67
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Asin: 0671201581
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Since its first publication in 1945? Lord Russell's A History of Western Philosophy has been universally acclaimed as the outstanding one-volume work on the subject -- unparalleled in its comprehensiveness, its clarity, its erudition, its grace and wit. In seventy-six chapters he traces philosophy from the rise of Greek civilization to the emergence of logical analysis in the twentieth century. Among the philosophers considered are: Pythagoras, Heraclitus, Parmenides, Empedocles, Anaxagoras, the Atomists, Protagoras, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle, the Cynics, the Sceptics, the Epicureans, the Stoics, Plotinus, Ambrose, Jerome, Augustine, Benedict, Gregory the Great, John the Scot, Aquinas, Duns Scotus, William of Occam, Machiavelli, Erasmus, More, Bacon, Hobbes, Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Rousseau, Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, the Utilitarians, Marx, Bergson, James, Dewey, and lastly the philosophers with whom Lord Russell himself is most closely associated -- Cantor, Frege, and Whitehead, co-author with Russell of the monumental Principia Mathematica. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (102)

4-0 out of 5 stars Beautifully Written, With Occassional Misgivings
Russell's education, intelligence, style and wit are in abundant evidence. Although he does cover W. philosophy, it is in great bounds. And as much as I love Russell's piercing insights and dry wit, I occasionally cringed at the obvious British, 20th century perspective from which philosophies and philosophers were reviewed. This all works out just fine, if one knows better than to take some of his criticism as solid arguments. This book is a joy to read, even with occasional flaws.

5-0 out of 5 stars Bertrand Russell's humorous take on western philosophy
This is the one of the most entertaining books that I have ever read!Bertrand Russell breaths life into a subject that is often depicted as somewhat dry.Russell pokes gentle fun at various philosophers and their ideas.I was especially amused by his description of Leibnitz view where the universe was something like a fancy mechanical clock where various figures (i.e. automatons) moved about in a synchronized dance when the hour was about to be struck.Indeed, Leibnitz seemed to believe that events occurred not because of cause and effect, but because of some preordained plan that was followed to the letter.Perhaps it is analogous to the present day when people often imagine that living beings are analogous to computers complete with hardware and software.It should be noted that in Leibnitz day this sort of elaborate mechanical clock was novel and state of the art, and so one might model the universe in a was that reflected the advanced technology of the day.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best single volume on philosophy
Best book on philosophy that I know of. But don't get the idea that it's simple: Russell's style is clear, and he is witty, and this can lead readers to think his material is simple; but Russell now and then puts in very sharp and complicated theory-of-types analysis. Its divided mostly into names, which is handy for anyone dipping into the views of Parmenides, Plato, Bacon, Descartes, Locke, Leibniz, Spinoza, John Stuart Mill, Marx, Nietzsche... there's a long list. Russell is happy to admit that academic philosophers have usually been cowardly types, and admits many names (e.g. Byron) not normally considered philosophers.

Russell's style is so convincing he was often plagiarised - unconscious imitation being the sincerest form of flattery. Joad (who copied Russell on Marx), and Aldous Huxley (who based Brave New World on a Russell work) are just two examples.

There are innumerable asides, which I presume (he wrote and assembled this book aged about 70) were the fruit of discussions in his youth and middle age; on psychology, groups, sex, emotions, animals, ethics, totalitarianism, adventures, trade - a vast range of topics.

I recommend this to everyone willing to take some trouble. I've met many people who would have benefitted from its intellectual stiffening - for example a gifted physics man who couldn't seem to grasp that atoms are mostly holes, even though they don't look that way. And who had never understood that the square root of two is 'irrational'. Hoary problems - 'universals', 'analytical' and 'synthetic', 'induction', 'teleology', 'determinism' - appear here and there, and it can do no harm to know about them. Russell also is good at picking out the odd practical effects of beliefs: just one example: Stoics and Christians both believed (supposedly) in personal virtue: if external circumstances cannot prevent a man from being virtuous, there is no need to seek a 'just' social system.

There are omissions, all I think to do with demarcation problems - the boundaries of philosophy, apart from politics, history, science, economics, and psychology. Darwin isn't here (much). Freud isn't here - but then Russell regarded the idea of unconscious motivation as the only significant part of Freud. Adam Smith isn't in. Marx is only treated as a philosopher: his economics is looked at by Russell in another book. Note that Russell seemed to regard Marx as 'socialistic'. All Russell's history in a sense is official: there must be innumerable people who were censored or killed or otherwise silenced; but Russell doesn't really bother with them. His book is a bit like commentary on a tidy, ordered library.

Russell's history is typical 20th century western: prehistory, with Egypt, Babylon and the rest regarded as 'oriental despotisms'. Rather inconsistently, the Bible is admitted. There's a conspiracy of silence about Jewish beliefs. Then Greece, then Rome; then the dark ages, and 'middle ages'; Russell accepts that Islam was a transmitter, though I'm not sure he makes a good case. Finally, modern enlightenment and science. Not much was known about many chunks of history, so this schema appeared satisfactory. Some of his historical comments are typically Victorian: the dislike of Rousseau from hatred of the French revolution, and of Rousseau as the supposed origin of romanticism and silliness. Rousseau and Nietzsche and Carlyle were supposed to have led to extremism and Auschwitz; Plato and Sparta to Stalin.

When eras change, Russell usually finds transitional people or ideas as exemplars: the Greeks treated in the then-usual awed way as a mix of peoples; Christianity as taking in Platonic and Judaic elements; Europe as church vs monarchs and feudal nobility and knights; Machiavelli, Erasmus and More at about the Renaissance. ...

Russell himself doubted his success in describing the relation of philosophy to social events when science became important. Russell mostly knew maths, but was notoriously hopeless in practical activities; he literally couldn't make a cup of tea. Such things as the rise and fall of the idea of phlogiston, the growth of chemistry, changes in transport, and such things as anaesthesia, aren't really covered but taken for granted, in rather the way unreflective people seem to think motor cars and piped water and printing have always existed.

Some accuse Russell of bias; typically these are:-

[1] Catholics often can't face the rationalistic side of Russell. (They don't seem to know that Russell wrote a lot on mysticism).

[2] People who like Kant and Hegel, and Nietzsche. Russell was not keen on German philosophy - when he was young, all official philosophers were Hegelians. He followed G E Moore in 'climbing down'.

[3] Supporters of Wittgenstein. Russell was a friend of his, and liked his work when it was new, but decided later it was rather trivial

[4] Supporters of Sartre and other existentialists. Russell dismissed it in a sentence: based emotionally on exasperation, and intellectually on errors of syntax.

[5] 'Linguistic' philosophers of the Gilbert Ryle type - 'just another clever man' according to Russell.

Note that, near the end of his life, Russell spent years on the problem of nuclear weapons, Kennedy's assassination, and, later, the Americans and the Vietnam War. For this reason he's partly censored, still.

It's a pity there is no equivalent book on eastern philosophies... that would be something.Incidentally 'Sophie's World' is based on Russell.

2-0 out of 5 stars Too detailed for Introductory book
My goal with this book is to get better understanding of what philosophy is. I found this book going into too many details and it was a hard read for me. If you what to understand the development of philosophy that could be a good book, but not as introduction.

2-0 out of 5 stars A shame it is so popular
This book is horribly biased and even downright wrong in many places. Recommended only for people very experienced in WEstern philosophy who are able to recognize and see past Russell's biases. This is a good book for a quick reference for writing papers, but DO NOT read this book to get a general understanding of philosophy. ... Read more

7. The Sunday Philosophy Club: An Isabel Dalhousie Novel (1) (Isabel Dalhousie Mysteries)
by Alexander Mccall Smith
Paperback: 272 Pages (2005-07-12)
list price: US$14.00 -- used & new: US$2.55
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Asin: 1400077095
Average Customer Review: 3.0 out of 5 stars
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Introducing Isabel Dalhousie the heroine of the latest bestselling series from the author of the No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency.Isabel, the editor of the Review of Applied Ethics and an occasional detective, has been accused of getting involved in problems that are, quite frankly, none of her business.

In this first installment, Isabel is attending a concert in the Usher Hall when she witnesses a man fall from the upper balcony.Isabel can’t help wondering whether it was the result of mischance or mischief.Against the best advice of her no-nonsense housekeeper Grace, her bassoon playing friend Jamie, and even her romantically challenged niece Cat, she is morally bound to solve this case.Complete with wonderful Edinburgh atmosphere and characters straight out of a Robert Burns poem, The Sunday Philosophy Club is a delightful treat from one of our most beloved authors. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (162)

4-0 out of 5 stars Charming & Delightful
I've yet to read The Number 1 Ladies' Detective Agency, or any books in that series.This is the starting novel of a different mystery series by Alexander McCall Smith.

The protagonist, Isabel Dalhousie, is the editor of The Review of Applied Ethics.In spite of some fascinating philosophical and ethical tangents, this book is a light-hearted mystery with a wonderful array of characters against the backdrop of Edinburgh, Scotland.As with most popular fiction, don't expect much by way of substance.This book is pure brain-candy, but it was nonetheless a delightful read.

4-0 out of 5 stars Introducing Isabel Dalhousie
This is the first of the series of cozy mysteries featuring Isabel Dalhousie, a resident of Edinburgh, Scotland, and editor of a journal devoted to philosophy.Isabel had suffered through an unhappy marriage as a young woman and chosen to avoid further romantic entanglements.Now in her forties, and of independent means Isabel has found herself with a certain amount of free time, even allowing for the demands of her editorship.She had the means and time to visit art galleries and attend concerts.It was after a concert that Isabel witnessed a young man fall from the upper balcony to his death.Understandably the event disturbed her greatly, so much so that days later she felt compelled to begin to find out about the unfortunate young man.As Isabel learned more about the man and the circumstances surrounding his death she began to wonder if it had really been an accident.

The mystery aspect of this story takes a secondary role to the characters, Isabel, her niece Cat, her friend Jamie and her housekeeper Grace.As an introductory novel much time has been spent establishing these characters and defining their relationships, as well as dropping tantalizing little tidbits of possible future stories.

Alexander McCall Smith is better known for his NO. 1 LADIES DETECTIVE AGENCY series.While this new series is also a character driven cozy there are distinct differences between Precious Ramotswe and Isabel Dalhoiusie.Isabel is a much tougher person than Precious, and not nearly as charming.In fact she has much more in common with M. C. Beaton's Agatha Raisin.

5-0 out of 5 stars Another lovely book from AMS
Isabel Dalhousie is enchanting, and the book is enchanting as well. For me, the "hook" of these books aren't the mysteries, but the relationships between the people. So the mystery of the falling young man serves as a backdrop to the complexity of both the relationships in his (former) life and the relationships in Isabel's. That, I think, is what makes AMS's books so charming. You want to know what happens in the mystery, sure, but ultimately you're invested in the characters as people. Not to mention the charm of Edinburgh as a backdrop!

I highly recommend this book.

3-0 out of 5 stars NOBODY is Mma Ramotswe
There's noone like Mma Ramotswe, the effortlessly profound and genuine heroine of McCall Smith's No. 1 Ladies' Detective Agency series. It's hardly Isabel Dalhousie's fault if she disappoints in comparison.Like Precious Ramotswe, Isabel is a survivor (or a relic) of a childhood with her widowed, well-heeled father. Isabel is a believer in the rightness of Old Edinburgh (sweetly drawn through the eyes of an author who loves the place) but she's tolerant of its changing ways.Isabel is rooted in traditional (if superstitious) attitudes of her housekeeper Grace but equally curious about liberal and volatile lives of the Young People she "investigates."It's her affection for them -- especially her conflicted feelings about her 20-something niece and boyfriend Jamie -- that makes the book at all compelling.It's a poignant glimpse of a middle-aged woman wondering if she's lonely:Isabel sees the (married) Ladies Who Lunch and wonders -- are they any happier? The housekeepers -- the successful professionals -- women having affairs and falling in love?

This book is more of a genre Mystery than McCall Smith's Botswana books, and it keeps pace as a decent (if formulaic) page-turner.As a mystery it's a bit naive (like Mma Ramotswe, Isabel knows a bad guy when she sees him -- she just "knows," end of chapter). But I won't complain that it avoids gratuitous melodrama and plotting. Unfortunately, it's weighted down more than a bit by Isabel's ponderous philosophy. I'd rather see the characters do something interesting than listen to Isabel agonize over her moral decisions.She's sweet-enough, but tedious, like a friend I don't dislike but regularly get bored with.I like her just enough to feel a little sad that I'll never love her.

1-0 out of 5 stars Boring, painful novel - unlikeable main character
I kept waiting for this book to improve, but as the number of pages left to read became fewer and fewer, I realized it never would improve. In fact, it got worse :(

The overall plot went nowhere, and took quite a while to get there.

The main character, Isabel, prized philosophy and living morally very highly, but was quite a hypocrite when it came to actual deeds versus words. She often bent her philosophy to justify whatever course of action she wanted to take (following Cat's boyfriend, telling Cat about her boyfriend, etc). She lives a privileged life - she doesn't seem to work very often and she has a housekeeper that comes for several hours each day despite the fact the Isabel is the only one who lives in the house. I find her completely uninteresting and extremely unlikeable. ... Read more

8. Philosophy and religion: six lectures delivered at Cambridge
by Hastings Rashdall
Paperback: 218 Pages (2010-08-06)
list price: US$24.75 -- used & new: US$18.14
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Asin: 1176930443
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Mind and Matter - The Universal Cause - God and the Moral Consciousness - Difficulties and Objections - Revelation - Christanity ... Read more

9. The Elements of Moral Philosophy
by James Rachels, Stuart Rachels
Paperback: 193 Pages (2009-02-27)
-- used & new: US$29.99
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Asin: 0073386715
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Firmly established as the standard text for undergraduate courses in ethics, this concise, lively book takes the reader on an in-depth tour of the major moral theories, always illustrating abstract ideas with concrete examples. Separate, self-contained chapters examine such theories as Egoism, Kantianism, Utilitarianism, Virtue Ethics, and the Social Contract Theory. Through this conceptual framework, the text addresses timely and provocative issues, including abortion, racism, euthanasia, poverty, marijuana, homosexuality, the death penalty, and vegetarianism. The text's versatility makes it an ideal choice for use not only in ethical theory courses, but also in applied ethics courses of all kinds. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (42)

4-0 out of 5 stars interesting stuff
I got this for a class on philosophical inquiry. It is a nice overview of different theories/conceptions of morality.

5-0 out of 5 stars AMAZING
This book is really worth buying even if its used. Honestly it looks new and the quality is amazing!
So I recommend people to buy this book(:

4-0 out of 5 stars Intense Reading for Ethics..
This book is in great condition.. but wow, it really makes you think. But that's Philosophy for you. Rachels is a great Edition to Ethics

5-0 out of 5 stars amazing service!!!!!!
ordered the book on the 6th and received it by the 11th! superfast service and the book was more than what i expected!
thank you!

5-0 out of 5 stars Great customer service!
Order was shipped immediately after placing the order.The book arrived in good condition, and even contained compensation for a few highlighting marks.Thanks for the great customer service! I would highly recommend this seller. ... Read more

10. Some Turns of Thought in Modern Philosophy Five Essays
by George Santayana
Kindle Edition: Pages (2009-10-04)
list price: US$1.99
Asin: B002RKSMJM
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This book was converted from its physical edition to the digital format by a community of volunteers. You may find it for free on the web. Purchase of the Kindle edition includes wireless delivery. ... Read more

11. The Story of Philosophy: The Lives and Opinions of the World's Greatest Philosophers
by Will Durant
Mass Market Paperback: 528 Pages (1991-01-01)
list price: US$7.99 -- used & new: US$4.34
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Asin: 0671739166
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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The Story of Philosophy chronicles the ideas of the great thinkers, the economic and intellectual environments which influenced them, and the personal traits and adventures out of which each philosophy grew.Amazon.com Review
Easily the most engaging writer of Western intellectualhistory in the English language, Will Durant breathes life intophilosophers and their ideas. He is colorful, witty, and above all,informative. Beginning with Socrates and ending with Americanphilosopher John Dewey, Durant summarizes the lives and influence ofphilosophy's greatest thinkers, painting them with humanity and addinga few of his own wise platitudes. Seventy-some years after its firstprinting, The Story of Philosophy still stands as one of thebest of its kind. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (87)

5-0 out of 5 stars Clear, precise, and insightful!
I am currently a student in high school who is on the debate team. I became interested in philosophy about a year ago because of a certain type of debate I do; Lincoln Douglas, or L.D. This type of debating focuses heavily on philosophy. Before I purchased this book I already knew a bit of this and that about philosophy and a couple of the main philosophers because of L.D. I Purchased this book because I wanted to deepen my knowledge of philosophy. This book is wonderfully written and very understandable. Before I would be confused between who Plato, Socrates, and Aristotle were and who exactly said what. After reading this I'm very clear on the differences between each. This is a wonderful book. If you're looking for something to clarify, deepen, and broaden your knowledge of philosophy this is the book to get. It also suggests further reading you can do on each philosopher it covers. I only wish this book covered eastern philosophy! If the author ever writes a book on eastern philosophy or already has I'm definitely going to get it! It's worth the money and pays for itself over and over again!

5-0 out of 5 stars Intro to Western Philosophers
Great intro to philosphy-as far as knowing some of the most important philosphers and their basic ideas.

3-0 out of 5 stars Bias
This is a worthy book for what it covers.It is seriously hampered from telling the "story of philosophy" by what it does not cover.

What does it skip?Well, pretty much all pre-Platonic philosophy.This is unfortunate, but forgivable.You can explore a wide range of philosophical thought as long as you start with Plato and Aristotle.You can't explore much of anything without them.

The most glaring, and truly unforgivable, omission is all late Roman and medieval philosophy.You think I jest?I wish I were.All thought between ~332BC and ~1560AD is boiled into around three pages of generalizations and then roundly dismissed with the line, "The result was subtlety, not wisdom."I am glad Mr. Durant knows, so that he could spare us the bother of reading.

If one didn't know better, you'd think nothing had happened for 90 generations running.What you had in fact was the waxing an waning of whole schools of philosophy, from Stoicism (Aurelius at least rates a passing mention) to the Plato-inspired St. Augustine and the scholastic/nominalist William of Ockham.St. Augustine doesn't even merit an entry in the index or a single footnote, and yet we have sections dedicated to Herbert Spencer and John Dewey?That alone should tell the reader that something has gone wrong in telling anything like the "story of philosophy."

While that leads me to distrust Mr. Durant as biased, it is still a book worth having.I often find myself reading philosophical works close to my own views.It helps to have a nudge now and again, a quick reminder and distillation of other, different views, so that everything doesn't become self-reinforcing.

That is, it is a book worth having for exactly the same reason that I say Mr. Durant composed it so poorly.It is worth seeing and understanding other viewpoints, rather than dismissing them without even a glance.

5-0 out of 5 stars Best Intro to Philosophy (Creates Interest)
Of course, Coppleston's 11 volumes is the most complete history of philosophy, but if one is looking to dabble in philosophy.... or looking for a beautifully written overview of philosophy that is relatively short and thought provoking, this is the book. He explains some of the philosophers better than anyone else (clear and simple explanations) and also includes entertaining descriptions of their personal lives, etc.

If someone dabbled in philosophy and were looking for a book on the history, this would be the first I recommend. If they liked it they could move on to Coppleston and some of the other histories. This is the case even though Durant neglects most of 20th Century philosophy, much of the medieval period, and so on... It's a beautiful intro to philosophy that will probably motivate the beginner to learn more about philosophy (more so than other histories).

There are some dry spots, but if the reader continues he will find one oasis after another. (That's my lame attempt to write like Durant)

3-0 out of 5 stars Old and limited
This book is nearly 100 years old now.While called the Story of Philosophy, it really only covers European philosophers.It is, however, quite readable and a good introduction to the subject. ... Read more

12. The Perennial Philosophy: An Interpretation of the Great Mystics, East and West (P.S.)
by Aldous Huxley
Paperback: 352 Pages (2009-08-01)
list price: US$14.99 -- used & new: US$8.44
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0061724947
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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An inspired gathering of religious writings that reveals the "divine reality" common to all faiths, collected by Aldous Huxley

"The Perennial Philosophy," Aldous Huxley writes, "may be found among the traditional lore of peoples in every region of the world, and in its fully developed forms it has a place in every one of the higher religions."

With great wit and stunning intellect—drawing on a diverse array of faiths, including Zen Buddhism, Hinduism, Taoism, Christian mysticism, and Islam—Huxley examines the spiritual beliefs of various religious traditions and explains how they are united by a common human yearning to experience the divine. The Perennial Philosophy includes selections from Meister Eckhart, Rumi, and Lao Tzu, as well as the Bhagavad Gita, Tibetan Book of the Dead, Diamond Sutra, and Upanishads, among many others.

... Read more

Customer Reviews (42)

5-0 out of 5 stars Mystic Gold, But be Warned
I would not recommend this book if you have not already studied a lot of philosophy (especially the philosophy of mystics) or if you have not practiced mystical teachings for some time, as most of this book will probably just then come off as a bunch of meaningless - though well articulated - thoughts spoken by some dead and maybe drug-buzz-happy monk from a thousand years ago.

This might seem like a counter-intuitive recommendation, since this book is the 'perennial' philosophy and exposes you to such a wide range of philosophical subjects, but the words are spoken by those who (presumably...and probably) have come to understand these concepts through incredibly extensive thought and practice over many, many years.

The essay at the end of this book by Huxley is actually where I would start if you come from a western culture (as I do). I think you'll find that it speaks in a way that feels a lot more readable.

Sometimes these ideas hurt. Honestly, they do. Walking in circles can make you dizzy, nauseous, and sometimes vomit all over the sidewalk, where everyone sees you and its very embarrassing. But eventually, I believe, after A LOT of struggle, you will begin to assimilate and understand these ideas into your everyday thought, and you'll realize that when you grasp them, you start to feel very still, calm, and that you'll probably never puke ever again. Unless you get food poisoning, or maybe become pregnant.

5-0 out of 5 stars Perennial Philosophy Aldous Huxley
The Most needed and enlightening book in our individual search for meaning and desperately spiritual seeking age. A book for the heart as well as the mind.

4-0 out of 5 stars Not too bad
The book came in good quality but because I ordered it for a gift, it took forever to get here and I missed giving it to them on their birthday. Good thing they are forgiving. Overall good sale.

5-0 out of 5 stars Mystic Heroism
At the beginning of the book Huxley says that the heart of the actual world is Absolute Mind. To integrate your own mind with that of the Absolute Mind, you have to give up your own self, and hence your own mind. Therefore, you wil never objectively be able to describe the Absolute Mind, because, once you have given up your own mind, you no longer have any distance toward the Absolute: you just become it. You cannot speak about 'our world' as the absolute mindbecause when you have become the servant of the Absolute your world has been transfigured, and you do not share it with 'us' any longer.

Throughout, Huxley insists that 'this world' is the Real world, and that we must not think of despising it, or rereating.

At the end, Huxley, with the paternal care typical of writers from a distant era, and with the disdain for our modern age typical of such relics as he (and I), says that when somebody can give up their self or personality, they become a saint. The saintly mystic alone keeps the decadent West going, and has made himself a conduit for Godhead to come on to earth.

What an inconceivably great task, and yet here and so simple: to give up being yourself so that you can become what you really are, what you were really made for. So few have and will ever achieve it. This book makes you think that it is possible, and that the Absolute Mind within our paltry world is really there. So sweet a book. A masterpiece.

I would like to challenge anybody to say that this is not the meaning of life. But laying down such a challenge would constitute an affirmation of my own personality, and would not be right.

4-0 out of 5 stars Metaphorically speaking: A main branch
that comes directly from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.What Huxley has done in a nearly apotheosis like manner, is bring to the fore the common threads which pervade and are deeply inherent in all major religions.Quoting sources from such manifold schools of thought as: Hinduism, Buddhism, Zen, Islam, Christian Mysticism ad infinitum, the author clearly demonstrates that the roots of these major religions are quite similar and that the main tenant of these practices is singular - in order to turn towards God one must turn away from the self.

This work is quite grand in scope and hybridized in that it is part philosophy, part religious study, part historical review with a healthy smattering of psychological and sociological discourse thrown in for good measure.And while this work is replete with excellent insights and wisdom it harbors certain detractions and distractions as well.For example: it is abundantly clear the author is highly intelligent and a gifted writer, yet the way he formulates and communicates his thoughts is inordinately complex owing to superfluous content.Huxley routinely uses multi - compound sentences complete with parenthetical thoughts and hyphenated asides, which too often served to confound this reader.It is said that 90% of the English language is redundant; well, that point is well evidenced in this book.The next most prominent distraction found in Aldous' writing style is his use of undefined quotes and/or statements given in foreign languages such as Latin, French, and I think there were a couple in Spanish.

This book is of high value, but is a rather slow study, thus I offer 4 stars for this perennial masterpiece.
... Read more

13. House and Philosophy: Everybody Lies (The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series)
by Henry Jacoby
Paperback: 272 Pages (2008-12-03)
list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$9.64
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0470316608
Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
An unauthorized look at the philosophical issues raised by one of today's most popular television shows: House

House is one of the top three television dramas on the air, pulling in more than 19 million viewers for each episode. This latest book in the popular Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series takes a deeper look at the characters and issues raised in this Emmy Award-winning medical drama, offering entertaining answers to the fascinating ethical questions viewers have about Dr. Gregory House and his medical team.

Henry Jacoby (Goldsboro, NC) teaches philosophy at East Carolina University. He has published articles primarily on the philosophy of mind and was a contributor to South Park and Philosophy
(978-1-4051-6160-2). ... Read more

Customer Reviews (21)

4-0 out of 5 stars Interesting essays, could have used a larger scope (Kindle edition)
This was another solid entry in the Pop Culture and Philosophy series. There were several particularly strong essays, including individual essays discussing Cameron's ethics of care, the inherent selfishness of House and Wilson's friendship, and several essays examining House's disregard of patient consent and autonomy. However, many of the essays seemed to cover content from the same handful of episodes and many also reiterated the same basic philosophical concepts (i.e., utilitarianism and the Socratic method). It seems as though a stronger editor could have better controlled introduction of those topics and excised the repetitive content of multiple essays. Additionally, this was seemingly written before the bulk of season 5 aired so there isn't much content addressing the role of the new fellows. Still, I found this a worthwhile read.

Kindle edition: Like all the Pop Culture and Philosophy books, paragraph spacing is a bit excessive. It can be a bit frustrating, particularly as font size increases. However, the book also features working footnotes and no noticeable OCR or typographical errors.

4-0 out of 5 stars Wonderful
This book came in excellent condition. I haven't had the chance to read the whole thing yet, but so far its very interesting and I love it!

4-0 out of 5 stars Fascinating reading
I find this series of books "... & philosophy" an interesting concept and would be curious to read another in the series to see if the editor chose to make the collection of essays more cohesive. Some of these contradict each other, which is Ok in one sense as they are all individual pieces and having different opinions give the reader the opportunity to think about what they believe, but it was still a bit jarring for the overall book and I would have liked it if the final chapter tied things together somehow; much like the introduction tries to. Some of the pieces were highly entertaining, some thought provoking and some as dry as desert dust. The least successful piece, for me, was "The Sound of One House Clapping: The Unmannerly Doctor as Zen Rhetorician"; this was way too dry and abstract, too much focus on the meaning of the philosophy and not enough examples to tie it to House.
The most interesting essay was one where the reasoning of House and Sherlock Holmes is compared (made me want to go back and read Holmes!)

5-0 out of 5 stars Everything you wanted to know about House is in this book
If you find the television show, House entertaining then this book should provide insights and intrigues for you about the characters of House and his medical team. The writings are brief and have an even flow that can capture your interest - a great read for the evening.

5-0 out of 5 stars A christmas read
i know my partner will love this and spend the christmas reading it was in perfect condition and came sooner than expected ... Read more

14. Meditations on First Philosophy
by Rene Descartes
Paperback: 110 Pages (2010-06-13)
list price: US$6.95 -- used & new: US$6.94
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Asin: 1453611924
Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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Meditations on First Philosophy by Rene Descartes is widely considered to be one of the top philosophical books of all time. For many, Meditations on First Philosophy is required reading for various courses and curriculums. And for others who simply enjoy reading timeless pieces of classic philosophical literature, this gem by Rene Descartes is highly recommended. Meditations on First Philosophy would make an ideal gift and it should be a part of everyone's personal library. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (15)

4-0 out of 5 stars Synopsis
Proof that God exists. "It is manifest by the natural light that there must be at least as much [reality] in the efficient and total cause as in the effect of that cause" (p. 28) and "that the ideas in me are like images which can easily fall short of the perfection of the things from which they are taken, but which cannot contain anything greater or more perfect" (p. 29). But I am finite and God is infinite and perfect, and "my perception of the infinite, that is God, is in some way prior to my perception of the finite, that is myself. For how could I understand that I doubted or desired---that is, lacked something---and that I was not wholly perfect, unless there were in me some idea of a more perfect being which enabled me to recognize my own defects by comparison?" (p. 31). "So from what has been said it must be concluded that God necessarily exists." (p. 31).

This being the basis for all further knowledge. From the existence of God "I can see a way forward to the knowledge of other things" (p. 37), because "[God] cannot be a deceiver, since it is manifest by the natural light that all fraud and deception depend on some defect." (p. 35). "And since God does not wish to deceive me, he surely did not give me the kind of faculty which would ever enable me to go wrong while using it correctly." (pp. 37-38). What does it mean to use one's faculties "correctly"? "If ... I simply refrain from making a judgement in cases where I do not perceive the truth with sufficient clarity and distinctness, then it is clear that I am behaving correctly and avoiding error. But if in such cases I either affirm or deny, the I am not using my free will correctly ... since it is clear by the natural light that the perception of the intellect should always precede the determination of the will." (p. 41).

Proofs of the existence of corporeal things and "the distinction between the human soul and the body" (p. 12). "I do not see how God could be understood to be anything but a deceiver if the ideas [of corporeal things] were transmitted from a source other than corporeal things. It follows that corporeal things exist." (p. 55). Proof that the soul is not a corporeal thing: "On the one hand I have a clear and distinct idea of myself, in so far as I am simply a thinking, non-extended thing; and on the other hand I have a distinct idea of body, in so far as this is simply an extended, non-thinking thing. And accordingly, it is certain that I am really distinct from my body, and can exist without it." (p. 54). Second proof: "There is a great difference between the mind and the body, inasmuch as the body is by its very nature always divisible, while the mind is utterly indivisible. ... This one argument would be enough to show me that the mind is completely different from the body, even if I did not already know as much from other considerations." (p. 59).

Why it is a good thing that the latter proofs are so crappy. "The great benefit of these arguments [for the existence of corporeal things etc.] is not, in my view, that they prove what they establish---namely that there really is a world, and that human beings have bodies and so on---since no sane person has ever seriously doubted these things. The point is that in considering these arguments we come to realize that they are not so solid and as transparent as the arguments which lead us to knowledge of our own minds and of God, so that the latter are the most certain and evident of all possible objects of knowledge for the human intellect. Indeed, this is the one thing that I set myself to prove in these Meditations." (p. 11).

5-0 out of 5 stars good service
The book I received was in exellent shape and it came in a very short time.

2-0 out of 5 stars Be careful!
Be Careful!This is NOT the translation described in the Amazon reviews.It is a the unreadable one by Heffernan.This edition is useful only for its Latin text.The facing English can be used as an aid to the reader, but is often so stiff and convoluted as to be unreadable as English.The fifty-page introduction is full of trivia and misinterpretations.The volume is quite justifiably out of print!

5-0 out of 5 stars The roots of the Scientific Method
I really am pleased that I read this book because within its pages you can see the birth of our modern world.

Despite the fact that Rene contorted himself to try to prove that God exists; he still managed to create a great work.He began the inquiry into reality wherein we try to understand the world through experimentation.I think he failed in many ways to develop a coherent philosophical structure due to his attempts to please the Church but given the social conditions of the day this was the best that he could do.Even in this flawed analysis Rene paved the way for what would later become the Scientific Method.

I only wish that he could live today and write without fears of reprisal from religious entities.

5-0 out of 5 stars Magesterial work which profoundly changed history
In the 17th century, the world underwent dramatic and incredible changes.The Scientific Revolution was gathering pace, Europeans had experienced the Reformation and the Renaissance, and boundaries and horizons in all areas were being expanded and changed at a breakneck pace.

Into this time of upheaval comes Descartes, one of the greatest Philosophers to ever live anywhere in the world.While 'modern' philosophy, which broke off its roots from Scholasticism, does not necessarily begin only with Descartes, it is true in Descartes the agenda of post-Scholastic philosophy is most clearly and beautifully expressed in logical terms.

Descartes's project is to take into account the implications of the scientific revolution for philosophy; for Descartes, it is no longer religious authority or pure philosophical speculation which tells us the most accurate truths about the cosmos, but science based on observation and the use of mathematical and logical methods employed by the aid of natural human reason.

Descartes sets into motion an astonishing project into motion; to basically remove Scholasticism and its corrupt and inept attempts to understand the universe and replace it with a complete and unified system of knowledge, based on certain truths clear and knowable to anyone, whatever their class or background.

Descartes, following a plan of 'meditation', withdraws from the senses and attempts to consider the universe as it is to the intellect.Descartes carefully invokes several skeptical doubts about our knowledge, the existence of the external world, and our own existence and attempts to set out what he felt was true and what is not.The famous phrase 'Cogito ergo sum' is one result, though Descartes's overall system and arguments are more complex.

Descartes argues that the cogito, along with the goodness of God who does not make a creature merely in order to decieve it, ensures there are certain and indutible truths about ourselves and the world which will ensure his project will be a successful one.But Descartes encourages the reader not merely to accept his arguments but to put them into practice themselves, hoping in doing so they will discover new truths about the universe which will be plain to anyone using the light of reason.

Descartes in his other works uses this method as a justification for his approach to science and mathematics.Descartes was in every sense a polymath; a trained lawyer, an excellent writer, a student of human anatomy (in which Descartes made many pioneering experiments and observations), a brilliant philosopher and (for his time) physicist, and a mathematician of genius.However, while much of his science is now plainly wrong and was superseded by better scientists such as Galileo and Newton, the agenda Descartes set for philosophy remains much the same even today, especially in the Analytic tradition.Philosophy owes to Descartes two great achievements, one, in applying more rigorous logical methods to philosophical problems while paying attention to the results of science, and second, the re-introduction of skepticism into philosophy which provides a valuable check against dogmatism, but which would only truely be extended to its fullest possible means by David Hume.

Whether or not one ultimately agrees with Descartes's arguments, it must be acknowledged he is a great geius who stands shoulder to shoulder with people like David Hume, Liebniz, Spinoza and Kant, who all radically changed the way philosophers look at the world and the problems it poses. ... Read more

15. The Philosophy of Sustainable Design
by Jason F. McLennan
Hardcover: 325 Pages (2004-06)
list price: US$29.95 -- used & new: US$21.56
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0974903302
Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars
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In the Philosophy of Sustainable Design, McLennan outlines the major ideas and issues that have emerged in the growing movement of green architecture and sustainable design over the last thirty years. This book is intended as a starting point for anyone involved in the building industry on a journey to learn how they can build more responsibly. The book is rooted in practical knowledge but rather than being a ‘how to book’ asks individuals to understand how the philosophy of sustainable design can affect their own work. Part Sustainable Design 101 and part manifesto this book lays the groundwork and philosophical basis for more technical study. McLennan relies on his extensive experience with sustainable design having consulted to dozens of projects and design teams all over the country. Tapping into the work of many pioneers and ‘green design philosophers’ McLennan clearly presents a framework for people to understand Sustainable Design and how ultimately it will become the future of architecture and design. ... Read more

Customer Reviews (8)

5-0 out of 5 stars A must-read for novice green warriors
This book should definitely be on the must-read list for anyone interesting in sustainability.Describes a plethora of green building technologies, concepts, and practices without being overly technical.Although focused on green building, the discussion includes and applies to many other industries.

5-0 out of 5 stars Sustainability Design
This is an awesome book.It has changed the way I think about the way we lookat 'green' products and sustainability.

5-0 out of 5 stars Can Be Considered "Ref A" or the Prime Directive
I came late to bioneering, after I was inspired by Herman Daly's Ecological Economics: Principles And Applications, Brian Czech's Shoveling Fuel for a Runaway Train: Errant Economists, Shameful Spenders, and a Plan to Stop them All; and everything by Paul Hawkin, but especially The Ecology of Commerce.

I have had an interest in the intersection of global science, sustainable political and social and economic orders, and the vulnerability of the nation-state in the face of growing complexity for some time, and many of my other reviews focus on these literatures, as well as the literatures of collective intelligence, global assemlages, wealth of networks, localized resilience, and so on.

I make mention of that broader literature to add emphasis to my view that this book is one of the most extraordinary I have ever encountered.I made a mistake when I first got it months ago and put it sight unseen into my "hard and dense, save for intercontinental trip."This book is not hard, not dense, and it is both easy to read and intellectually elegant.I can easily see this book as the single mandatory first year or summer pre-reading at any level--undergraduate or graduate--along with contextual books such as:
High Noon 20 Global Problems, 20 Years to Solve Them
Plan B 3.0: Mobilizing to Save Civilization, Third Edition
The Future of Life
The leadership of civilization building: Administrative and civilization theory, symbolic dialogue, and citizen skills for the 21st century and
Collective Intelligence: Creating a Prosperous World at Peace

The sixteen chapters and five appendices are elegant--concise, clear key points, short, just the right mix of photos (including color in a center spread) figures, and text.

The publisher has been criminally remiss in failing to load the varied items that Amazon allows, such as the table of contents.I am increasingly disenchanted with publishers and of the view that Amazon should get into the book publishing business, sending digital copies to FedExKinko's, helping authors self publish (full disclosure: BOTH Fred Smith at FedEx and Jeff Bezos at Amazon blew me off--these guys are simply not serious about innovation).

Preface: Philosophical Beginnings
Chapter 1: The Philosophy of Sustainable Design
Chapter 2: The Evolution of Sustainable Design
Chapter 3: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Biomimicry)
Chapter 4: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Human Vitality)
Chapter 5: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Ecosystem/Bioregional)
Chapter 6: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Seven Generations)
Chapter 7: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Energy/True Cost)
Chapter 8: The Principles of Sustainable Design (Holistic Thinking)
Chapter 9: The Technologies and Components of Sustainable Design
Chapter 10: Shades of Green--Levels of Sustainability
Chapter 11: Productivity and Well-Being
Chapter 12: Greening Your Organization
Chapter 13: Green Economics
Chapter 14: The Sustainable Design Process--Holistic Thinking
Chapter 15: The Aesthetics of Sustainable Design
Chapter 16: The Future of Architecture
Appendix A: The Green Warrior Reading List
Appendix B: Who's Who in Green Design
Appendix C: The Phases of Green Design
Appendix D: The Elements of Green Design Methodology
Appendix F: The Principles of Sustainable Design--Summary

I put this book down with several thoughts:

1)Enormously impressed with the University of Oregon in Eugene, to the point of trying to get my oldest to take his computer and creative skills there.

2)Profoundly delighted with the deep philosophical underpinning that one finds throughout the book, without pretense or pomposity.

3)The one appendix I would have liked to see that is not there is the one entitles: Green to Gold--Bottom-Line Dollar Savings Over Time, and then a whole range of the elements of sustainable design by climate zone.

This is an extremely satisfying book to read.My last throught: it's time to write the Operating Manual for Spaceship Earth.Read more about this at Earth Intelligence Network.This book by Jason McLennan is a perfect model for what the larger systemsbook should strive to be.

See also the literatures under panarchy, resilience, sustainability.

5-0 out of 5 stars I will recommend this book!
A great book to understand what green and sustainable environment exactly mean!a lot of good informations.

4-0 out of 5 stars High Quality Publication for Learning the Basics of Sustainable Design
A very easy to read book that will help anyone, with or without an architecture or design background, to understand the basics of Sustainable Design.Well written, with very precise, intelligent, and oftentimes humorous commentary.Mr. McLennan knows his stuff, and the only thing in my mind that he could be faulted for is not going deep enough on some of the topics.That is the nature of the book, however.It is mean to be a high level overview of all aspects of Sustainable Design.Mr. McLennan has been very thorough, though, in including tons of references for those of us looking for a deeper understanding of any of the topics mentioned in the book.A must have for any aspiring architect or designer and a fabulous addition to any arcophile's library! ... Read more

16. Philosophy for Dummies
by Tom Morris
Paperback: 384 Pages (1999-09-17)
list price: US$19.99 -- used & new: US$9.41
(price subject to change: see help)
Asin: 0764551531
Average Customer Review: 3.5 out of 5 stars
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Product Description
Philosophy at its best is an activity more than a body of knowledge. In an ancient sense, done right, it is a healing art. It’s intellectual self-defense. It’s a form of therapy. But it’s also much more. Philosophy is map-making for the soul, cartography for the human journey. It’s an important navigational tool for life that too many modern people try to do without.

Philosophy For Dummies is for anyone who has ever entertained a question about life and this world. In a conversational tone, the book's author – a modern-day scholar and lecturer – brings the greatest wisdom of the past into the challenges that we face now. This refreshingly different guide explains philosophical fundamentals and explores some of the strangest and deepest questions ever posed to human beings, such as

  • How do we know anything?
  • What does the word good mean?
  • Are we ever really free?
  • Do human beings have souls?
  • Is there life after death?
  • Is there a God?
  • Is happiness really possible in our world?

    This book is chock full of all those questions you may have long wanted to think about and talk with someone about, but have never had the time or opportunity to tackle head on. Philosophy For Dummies invites you to discuss the issues you find in the guide, share perspectives, and compare thoughts and feelings with someone you respect. You'll find lots of material to mull over with your friends or spouse, including thoughts on

  • When to doubt, and when to doubt our doubts
  • The universal demand for evidence and proof
  • The four dimensions of human experience
  • Arguments for materialism
  • Fear of the process of dying
  • Prayers and small miracles
  • Moral justification for allowing evil

    The ancient philosopher Socrates (fifth century, B.C.) thought that, when it comes to the Ultimate Questions, we all start off as dummies. But if we are humbly aware of how little we actually know, then we can really begin to learn. Philosophy For Dummies will put you on the path to wising up as you steer through the experience called life. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (105)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Kind of misses the point.
    If you are interested in philosophy, go find the books of William S Sahakian.History of Philosophy is a good start.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Philosophy for Dummies
    I need this for school, and its perfect. Got here in time and everything. Thanks!

    1-0 out of 5 stars Meh
    I'm in 100% agreement with all the poor reviews here. I was hoping to learn about different philosophical theories -- and I'm not interested in following Morris through his attempt at proving the existence of a Christian god. If you're already of the Christian persuasion, you'll probably be eating out of Morris's hands. Morris isn't subtle about his world-view and the book is just utterly disappointing.

    2-0 out of 5 stars Too Biased and Self-Promoting
    Too biased. The author disregards many philosophies with merely a paragraph while pushing his own ideas (how convenient). The author's attempts to make the reader swallow his 'Principle of Belief Conservation', or as I have re-named it, the 'La-Di-Da I Can't Hear You Principle', left a bad taste in my mouth.

    His oft-repeated degree-dropping line of "While at Yale" made me wonder if he tried to title the book "Philosophy for Dummies. Hey, I graduated from Yale. Yep, that Yale."

    5-0 out of 5 stars Good report
    This book was in a "like new" condition at a great price, and OH it is a great book for the amatuer philosopher. ... Read more

  • 17. The Consolations of Philosophy
    by Alain De Botton
    Paperback: 272 Pages (2001-04-03)
    list price: US$15.95 -- used & new: US$6.78
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0679779175
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    From the internationally heralded author of How Proust Can Change Your Life comes this remarkable new book that presents the wisdom of some of the greatest thinkers of the ages as advice for our day to day struggles.

    Solace for the broken heart can be found in the words of Schopenhauer. The ancient Greek Epicurus has the wisest, and most affordable, solution to cash flow problems. A remedy for impotence lies in Montaigne. Seneca offers advice upon losing a job. And Nietzsche has shrewd counsel for everything from loneliness to illness. The Consolations of Philosophy is a book as accessibly erudite as it is useful and entertaining.
    Amazon.com Review
    "It is common," Alain de Botton writes in The Consolations ofPhilosophy, "to assume that we are dealing with a highly intelligentbook when we cease to understand it. Profound ideas cannot, after all,be explained in the language of children." While his easygoingexploration of philosophers from Socrates to Nietzsche isn't exactlywritten for the Blue's Clues set, few readers will cease tounderstand it. Furthermore, it's a joy to read. De Botton's 1997 HowProust Can Change Your Life forged a new kind of lit crit: anexploration of Remembranceof ThingsPast, delivered in the sweet-gummed envelope of an advice book.He returns to the self-help format here, this time plundering thegreat thinkers to puzzle out the way we ought to live.

    What was stunning about the Proust book was de Botton's brazenannexing of a hallowed novelist to address lite emotional problems. Thatformat is less arresting when applied to the philosophers, since whichearnest philosophy major has not, from time to time, tried to apply thealpine heights of thought to his own humble worries? Usually, sophomoricattempts to turn to, say, Kant for advice on love tend to be unmitigateddisasters. In de Botton's case, however, he is able to find consolationfor a broken heart in Schopenhauer, consolation for inadequacy inMontaigne. Epicurus, usually associated with a love of luxury, is a solacefor those of us without much money--and de Botton learns from him that"objects mimic in a material dimension what we require in a psychologicalone. We need to rearrange our minds but are lured towards new shelves. Webuy a cashmere cardigan as a substitutefor the counsel of friends."

    Lest the reader become burdened by all this philosophizing, the book ispeppered with illustrations--the section on Nietzsche of course includesa DC Comics drawing of Superman. And it's further leavened by theauthor's personal anecdotes and winning confessional tone. Early on, forinstance, he admits his own gnawing need for popularity: "A desire toplease led me to laugh atmodest jokes like a parent on the opening night of a school play."Before he became a medicine man for the soul, de Botton was a first-ratenovelist, and it shows in his writing. --Claire Dederer ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (108)

    1-0 out of 5 stars ORDER WAS STOLEN - PLEASE HELP
    I live in a large building, and this book was stolen from the lobby. Is there any way to get a replacement??

    5-0 out of 5 stars THE tipping point Philosophy manuscript for post-post modern hipsters
    Not to be confused with Boethius's 'Consolation of Philosophy', this book comes with pictures, and lots of them, as it is geared for the digital aged consumer and attending attention span.

    But wait.this is no cute little tome begging us to read about white, anglo-saxon nothern european philosophers who truly didn't discover life until they vacationed in the southern climes, this is a nugget of genuine Wisdom!

    Eschewing the normal branches of philosophy such as epistemology, ontology, metaphysics and so on (I forget the others), Mr. de Botton corrals his philosophers around such modern topics as 'Unpopularity', 'Not Having Enough Money' and 'Happiness', all day to day pragmatic subjects we all can feel comfortable delving into, as opposed to Occham's razor, which just doesn't sound right to begin with, now does it?

    de Botton not only loves the philosophy, but the philosopher as well and in this wonderful book provides slice of life sketches of Socrates, Aristotle, Epicurus, Seneca, Montaigne, Schopenhauer and finally and ironically perhaps the most endearing and engendering, Nietzsche.

    Montaigne is the centerpiece of this work and rightfully so.His philosophy of life and urbane language written from the foothills of France, is a good capstone for the entire book, which comes early, leaving the rest to Schopenhauer (and his beloved poodles) and Nietzsche.

    The questions of life, there is no end for the sensitive, and this book brooks many of the themes we all deal with on a day to day, minute to minute basis.

    From the late greeks Socrates, Aristotle and Epicurus, we learn to think for ourselves in a right-minded fashion.From the late Roman Seneca we learn to withstand the blows of fickle Fortune.Montaigne breaks with tradition (no later than the 1560s, mind you,) in refusing to admire Plato and Aristotle simply because his fellow schoolmen did, and instead chooses a living, breathing philosophy that is couched in terms of the vernacular.Schopenhauer and Nietzsche, our two Romantics, provide us with a healthy dose of pessimism, while if one reads between the dark black lines, he can find Hope pouring in at the oddest moments and places.

    what a wonderful survey of western philosophy this is, and the pictures are pretty nice as well!

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Consolations of Philosophy
    I find Mr. de Botton's writings very interesting and helpul, and at times humorous, in his analysis of the great philosophers.I first heard of Mr. de Botton in a PBS special on TV, and that's how I ended up buying the book.I am so glad I did, I love this little book.It is, for me, a real "Consolation"

    4-0 out of 5 stars Used as a High School graduation gift for a prospective college student
    Nice, user-friendly, intro to basic Philosophy.Engaging and makes philosophy relevant to everyday life.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Relevant insights for modern life
    Magnificent work by de Button. Once again, he manages to focus ancient knowledge into modern life in a simple, relevant and intimate manner. I strongly recommend this book if you are looking for new perspectives on what to concentrate your efforts on. ... Read more

    18. How Philosophy Can Save Your Life: 10 Ideas That Matter Most
    by Marietta McCarty
    Paperback: 352 Pages (2009-12-01)
    list price: US$14.95 -- used & new: US$3.48
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: B003VWC4E4
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Product Description
    Discover how great philosophers can help you live a more purposeful and peaceful life.

    This inspiring new book from the bestselling author of Little Big Minds reveals how the heartbeats of philosophy- clear thinking, quiet reflection, and good conversation- are essential ingredients in a well-lived life. Full of great discussion ideas and activities you can do with a group, How Philosophy Can Save Your Life is framed around ten "big ideas"-themes that, according to McCarty, are necessary to grasp if one wants to live a truly fulfilling life. They are:

    1. Simplicity (philosophers include Epicurus and Charlotte Joko Beck)
    2. Communication (philosophers include bell hooks and Karl Jaspers)
    3. Perspective (philosophers include Bertrand Russell and Mary Wollstonecraft)
    4. Flexibility (philosophers include Socrates, Plato and Alan Watts)
    5. Empathy (philosophers include the Dalai Lama and Martin Luther King, Jr.)
    6. Individuality (philosophers include Jean-Paul Sartre and Elizabeth Spelman)
    7. Belonging (philosophers include Albert Camus and Rita Manning)
    8. Serenity (philosophers include Epictetus and Lao Tzu)
    9. Possibility (philosophers include John Stuart Mill and Simone de Beauvoir)
    10. Joy (philosophers include Shunryu Suzuki and Jane Addams)

    So join the greatest thinkers of all time to discover the ideas that will help you live a happier, healthier life! ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (9)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Good idea, faulty execution
    I know, I know, previous reviews rate the book as one of the best books on "practical Philosophy" ever written, however I believe it is not, here is why: let's consider the structure of the book: for each chapter or idea there comes a light introduction about how miserable and lacking our life is in that respect, then comes what this or that philosopher(s) said about it, finally there comes some truly superficial activities for working in groups. The problem with the first section (introduction plus exposition of the philosopher's thinking) is that it is very short and superficial, no real discussion of the idea, but just one point of view and that's it, even worse, sometimes this single point of view is explained in a poor, not even coherent way, as for example when the author talks about Jaspers' ideas on communication.

    Now, the section that disappointed me most is the homework: full of trivial, sometimes even silly suggestions that I honestly doubt even people who gave the book 5 stars would take seriously. On the other hand, the section called "Discussion Questions" does indeed contain some interesting and important questions, but wait a minute, should not the author -a philosopher herself- at least have tried to answer some of them? No, not in this life!, all that hard work is left to the reader.

    In general my view is this: the author is well intended, she really tries to put philosophy to the level of basically everybody but she did it in a wrong way, they way she did it makes philosophy look more like the cheap, good for nothing self-help books that can be found by thousands. The extremes are bad, hard, academic Philosophy is not easy to understand, with no practical application in sight, on the other hand philosophy as presented here is too superficial, trying to make Philosophy accessible is "accomplished" by paying a high price: a complete lack of depth, a lack of real arguments therefore, the result is not surprisingly disappointing.

    I honestly believe Philosophy do matter, actually whether we like it or not it is always with us because we live our lives according to a particular form of it (understood as a set of principles, values and shared views that guide our thinking, decisions and behavior and therefore our social project). In our case, we live under the unwritten philosophy of modern capitalism. Not being truly aware of this, not thinking about it in a reflexive, highly critical way so we can take action can lead us to our own destruction because many of its core values put the survival and the continuing functioning of the system right above basically everything else.

    Well, too harsh a review maybe, but in the author's favor I have to say that at least she made the word philosophy visible again, and perhaps made many people think, which is good of course. In general, her commentaries and advise are OK, the problem starts when she mixes it with light, too superficial philosophical arguments, in this respect the title and especially the editorial review are misleading, creating expectations the book does not fulfill.

    4-0 out of 5 stars A Deep Self-Help Book?
    //How Philosophy Can Save Your Life// by Marietta McCarty is an engaging mix of philosophical discourse and self-help strategies blended together in one handy volume. While perhaps not as deep as some philosophical treatises, McCarty's work, unlike many self-help guides, is not the least bit shallow.

    McCarty has subtitled her book //10 Ideas That Matter Most//, and each chapter addresses one of these ideas: simplicity, communication, perspective, flexibility, empathy, individuality, belonging, security, possibility, and joy. Each chapter, in turn, includes an overview of the main idea, a description and analysis of what famous philosophers have said on the topic, and, lastly, discussion questions and homework. This arrangement may sound a bit too much like a text book, but it allows for a full understanding of the philosophical ideas and how to incorporate them into one's life.

    McCarty's goal is to bring philosophy out of the classroom and into the real world. She wants to show that philosophy has real, practical import, and can be a means for making one's life more rich and meaningful. She also wants to expose readers to a wide range of thinkers, from Socrates to the Dalai Lama. In //How Philosophy Can Save Your Life//, she succeeds on all counts.

    Reviewed by Doug Robins

    5-0 out of 5 stars Improve your quality of life with philosophy
    Philosophy underlies how we think, what we believe, who we are. Marietta McCarty, who teaches philosophy at a community college in Virginia, has come up with 10 areas where philosophy helps us live fulfilling lives: simplicity, communication, perspective, flexibility, empathy, individuality, belonging, serenity, possibility and joy. For each of them she chooses two philosophers' work, pairing the famous (the Dalai Lama and Martin Luther King Jr. on empathy, for example) along with the unfamiliar or surprising (Shunryu Suzuki and Jane Addams on joy).

    But the real strength of the book is in the "homework," extensive exercises, suggestions and questions for personal growth and group discussion. They encompass music, literature, experience and thought in exhilarating, far-ranging combinations. "Flexibility," for instance, contrasts "Old Man River" from Show Boat with the Moldau by Bedrich Smetana while also invoking David Bowie, John Cage, Jimi Hendrix, Pink Floyd, Chubby Checker, Enya, Haydn and seven others -- and that is just the music. Also cited are works of poetry, prose, drama and documentary. This book could keep you exploring your personal path for years.

    -- Fran Gardner, New Connexion Journal

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Mix:Excitement and Contentment
    In my life so far, questions have always arisen - usually without answers, but this book "How Philosophy Can Save Your Life:10 Ideas That Matter Most," provides other interesting and, in some cases, exciting perspectives on how values and one's own thoughts pertain to so many conflicting cultural values in our country and around the world.Even if we set a path for ourselves when young, have we considered the options?Do we know we have choices?Do we know we have choices as we come to the end of life?Marietta McCarty wants to send us on our own ways - not hers, accompanied by the philosophers she introduces, but she hopes we will find friends and acquaintances to share the dialogue, listen to the music, and read the poetry along our own journeys in search of contentment in living.The end-of-chapter suggestions provide an abundance of opportunities to deepen our own understandings and appreciation of each of the ten ideas.

    5-0 out of 5 stars Philosophy Is Fun

    Who knew philosophy could be fun, accessible, poignant, illuminating, and helpful?In the past, boring, complex, and unattainable were some of the adjectives that came to mind whenever someone mentioned philosophy.That was before I read "How Philosophy Can Save Your Life" ("HPCSYL") by Marietta McCarty.Today, when I hear the word philosophy I think:curiosity, discovery, community, happiness....

    "HPCSYL" is an invitation to explore and celebrate valuable ideals. It is a cookbook of savory philosophy and thoughtful activities to help individuals cultivate a meaningful or "good life".Enjoy it on your own, preferably from in a comfy seat with a choice beverage, then give one to friends and family.When it is shared with others, the book comes alive, growing from a personal treasure into an attractive starting point for valuable conversation and connection.

    In "HPCSYL", McCarty makes seemingly complex and meaningful topics approachable, understandable, dissectible.She carefully samples diverse philosophers, including eastern and western, ancient and modern, male and female.Her skillful style, insight and dashes of humor make her distillation of philosophy enjoyable and accessible.Her message to me:Philosophy isn't old, dusty and limited those in ivory towers;it can be clean, modern and for everyone!Her questions and suggestions encourage personal exploration, creative pursuits, and help strike up life-changing conversations.Ideas and exchanges ensue, helping to grow and focus personal perspectives and journeys.

    "HPCSYL" walks the walk.It highlights the importance of community and belonging and becomes a great tool for connecting groups of people.Recently, we hosted a town-wide book group to discuss the first chapter of "HPCSYL".Over thirty people gathered together at our local library to form one big philosophy circle.What a sight!Ultimately, we broke up into smaller circles and we will continue to meet biweekly, discussing each chapter's topic.Local artists have jumped on board to show their "perspectives" via their individual mediums.The "possibilities" for enjoying this book and your own philosophical quest are endless. ... Read more

    19. Philosophy of Religion: Thinking About Faith (Contours of Christian Philosophy)
    by C. Stephen Evans, R. Zachary Manis
    Paperback: 244 Pages (2009-09-15)
    list price: US$17.00 -- used & new: US$10.74
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0830838767
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Editorial Review

    Product Description
    With over 40,000 copies in print since its original publication in 1982, Steve Evans's Philosophy of Religion has served many generations of students as a classic introduction to the philosophy of religion from a Christian perspective. Over the years the philosophical landscape has changed, and in this new edition Zach Manis joins Evans in a thorough revamping of arguments and information, while maintaining the qualities of clarity and brevity that made the first edition so appreciated.New material on divine foreknowledge and human freedom has been added as well as on Reformed epistemology. The discussions on science now cover new developments from cognitive psychology and naturalism as well as on the fine-tuning of the cosmos. The chapter on faith and reason has been expanded to include consideration of evidentialism. The problem of evil now forms its own new chapter and adds a discussion of the problem of hell.The standard features remain: a survey of the field, an examination of classical arguments for God's existence, and an exploration of contemporary challenges to theism from the social sciences and philosophy as well as the natural sciences. The meaning and significance of personal religious experience, revelation and miracles--all within the realm of contemporary religious pluralism--are likewise investigated.A classic introduction thoroughly updated and refreshed for today's student. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (5)

    5-0 out of 5 stars Thanks!
    The product arrived in a timely manner and in very good condition. I will remember this vendor for my future purchases.

    3-0 out of 5 stars Not for the faint of mind!
    This is a very Difficult read. It attempts to set forth a conprehensive method of thinking about faith. It shows from various angles how faith is thought of and attempts to dissolve the atheistic mindset to a certain degree. However, if I was looking for a treatment of evidence for the existence of God or even further the existence of the God presented in the bible I did not find it here. What i got was a basic understanding that Atheism's claim that God does not exist was not reasonable and that Theism should not be thought of as unreasonable. There was no distinct, clear, statement showing that God oes indeed exist but there was quite a bit of speculative thought throughout the book. It shows one different ways of thinking through faith but does not do justice in validating the Christian Faith.

    5-0 out of 5 stars level headed reading
    this work is clear, well thought out and makes good sense.It is a great smaller sized treatment of this subject.It comes from a slightly semi-conservative theistic stance, but does so most intelligently.

    4-0 out of 5 stars good servey
    It gives a good survey of the agruement of the existence of God. Though it does not cover all views completely, this 184-page book is a good for those who are "new" in this field of study.

    5-0 out of 5 stars A new level of critical thinking
    Evans clarifies many inconsistancies in our world view thinking to free us up to be more deliberate.His teaching on world view confusion has enabled the reader to make understandable an often blurred analysis of inclusiveworld views.Much confusion abounds over inclusive religious teachingsthat assert the "many roads" to truth perspective.Evans showsthat this is surely confusion in and of itself.An inclusive world viewcannot simply "borrow" truth claims from an exclusive world viewto build its case. ... Read more

    20. Mad Men and Philosophy: Nothing Is as It Seems (The Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture Series)
    Paperback: 272 Pages (2010-06-01)
    list price: US$17.95 -- used & new: US$10.44
    (price subject to change: see help)
    Asin: 0470603011
    Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars
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    Product Description
    A look at the philosophical underpinnings of the hit TV show, Mad Men

    With its swirling cigarette smoke, martini lunches, skinny ties, and tight pencil skirts, Mad Men is unquestionably one of the most stylish, sexy, and irresistible shows on television. But the series becomes even more absorbing once you dig deeper into its portrayal of the changing social and political mores of 1960s America and explore the philosophical complexities of its key characters and themes. From Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle to John Kenneth Galbraith, Milton Friedman, and Ayn Rand, Mad Men and Philosophy brings the thinking of some of history's most powerful minds to bear on the world of Don Draper and the Sterling Cooper ad agency. You'll gain insights into a host of compelling Mad Men questions and issues, including happiness, freedom, authenticity, feminism, Don Draper's identity, and more.

    • Takes an unprecedented look at the philosophical issues and themes behind AMC's Emmy Award-winning show, Mad Men
    • Explores issues ranging from identity to authenticity to feminism, and more
    • Offers new insights on your favorite Mad Men characters, themes, and storylines

    Mad Men and Philosophy will give Mad Men fans everywhere something new to talk about around the water cooler. ... Read more

    Customer Reviews (3)

    3-0 out of 5 stars Not bad, but not great either..
    I discovered Mad Men after picking up season 1 and 2 through one of Amazon's sales, and finished watching them just in time to speed through season 3 and catch Mad Men season 4 on tv.I picked up this book thinking it would give insight into the period and backstory of mad men.In it's defense, it does point out a bit about the comparison between real life and the tv show.BUT, by in large, it's a step by step analysis of season 1 and 2 character actions in reference to philosophical themes.To me, it feels a lot like a philosophy textbook with Mad Men examples instead of examples of random people.For example, one section goes into - if Betty thinks Dick is Don, she doesn't KNOW it, she only BELIEVES it.

    I don't want to make this sound like a bad book.It's quite good as a method of learning or re-examining philosophy. Having had both psych and sociology in college, I would have rather seen a more in-depth discussion of the characters that examines why they do what they do, instead of just lessons with a little mad men backstory. This book reminds me a little of when the professors would ask "what was the writer thinking here".But it's not really answering that question either.

    5-0 out of 5 stars The Way We Were
    Like another reviewer I was introduced to Madmen by my daughter and immediately became hooked.I don't normally watch series with the exception of the Sopranos in which I see the same exceptional qualities of outstanding ensemble casting and realistic portrayal of quotidian life in the milieu of larger societal cultural issues.Hence,I got the book and was not disappointed.Written as a series of articles dealing with both the philosophical and social aspects of the age ,this is one fun read. The philosophical backdrop ranges from classical Greek to the existentialists with due note to Kant,Nietzche, and others,all arranged around major themes of knowledge and freedom,meaning,ethics and happiness,and social dynamics.Larger philosophic issues devolve intriguingly around the characters such as "The Existential Void of Roger Sterling","Is Don Draper a Good Man".The latter is indicative of the general tone of evenhanded non judgemental analysis and one I found particularly thoughtful.While written primarily from an Aristotelian and Platonic framework,his conclusion ,to me ,was refreshingly existential and in an eastern context,very Taoistic.On a personal note,as a newly minted M.B.A. ,I entered the business world on the shank end of this era and readily relate and identify.While on the one hand distant,change a few details and major cultural shifts and you have the offices and characters of latter day NY big bizz,be it adguys(or gals now) or Wall Street. So...Is this a "better" time ,are we "happier"? Hmmm...Before rushing to judgement I propose an interesting 'thought experiment". Produce a current version of Madmen and televise it to the characters on the show back in the 60's.What would a "Madmen and Philosophy" of 2010 read likein a similaranalysis in the 60's?.. Perhaps the conclusion would similarly mirror that of "Is Don Draper a Good Man or a Bad Man". ....OR....A Taoistic"It just is". In conclusion,what a fun and interesting read.If nothing else ,it assuages any guilt in sitting around watching TV and elevating it to cultural,societal,philosophic commentary :>)

    5-0 out of 5 stars A Trip Down Memory Lane
    My 20-something daughter suggested I watch "Mad Men" on [...]:Like a 13-hour movie, she said.So well done.Originally, she thought I would love the depth, excellent production values and of course, the fashion.It was so much more.You see, I majored in Philosophy at a major State university from 1968 - 1972 and went on from there to law school and a wonderful career that spanned poverty and technology law from the late 70s to early 90s.This book is a marvelous survey of the existentialist presentation that permeates "Mad Men".I'm only halfway through (reading on the Kindle; absolute pleasure), and savoring every chapter.Memories of Heidegger, Camus, Sartre, Nietzsche, de Beauvoir, and company flourish through this book.If you didn't major in philosophy, it will all come alive for you in the context of this excellent TV series.And a secret be told, we've never had a TV --- I watch subscribing to iTunes and then purchasing the DVDs for the fascinating commentaries.Enjoy! ... Read more

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