God, Darwin, and the Meaning of Life
Philip Appleman, poet and Darwin scholar, reflects on the struggles of our complex, highly evolved brains as we try to make sense of our human predicament. In particular, he argues, it is through our hypocrisies about religious belief that ‘toadstools of neurosis spring up in the dank labyrinths of our psyches’. He therefore proposes ways of valuing more highly our ephemeral existence and creating a more equitable society free from religious animosities and ‘pious bigotry’.
Should You Judge This Book by Its Cover?
100 Fresh Takes on Familiar Sayings and Quotations
Let sleeping dogs lie – but why? Julian Baggini, co-founder and editor of The Philosopher’s Magazine, presents a selection of 100 proverbs and familiar quotations that are often used without much thought. Baggini subjects them to thought-provoking scrutiny and discussion with the aim of making the phrases ‘speak their wisdom afresh’, while dispelling some of the misunderstandings that cling to them.
Crystal & Dragon
The Cosmic Dance of Symmetry & Chaos in Nature, Art & Consciousness
Presenting his argument for the dualistic interpretation of nature – order and disorder, symmetry and asymmetry – David Wade explores the interplay of form and energy and seeks to show how modern science is turning away from deterministic and inflexible views of the universe to embrace ancient philosophical traditions. He traces prevailing conceptions about the nature of the universe in religion, history, philosophy, science and art, and graphically illustrates their interconnectedness.
The Consolation of Queen Elizabeth I
The Queen's Translation of Boethius's De Consolatione Philosophiae
In 1593, Elizabeth I became one of several leading figures who translated Boethius’ Consolation. Its themes, particularly predestination and free will, made it one of the most important and most popular philosophical works in the medieval and early modern periods. This diplomatic edition of the text is accompanied by Quan Manh Ha’s introduction discussing Elizabeth’s reading and translation of the Consolation, parallels between her life and that of the imprisoned Boethius, and the manuscript itself. No jacket.
The Silence of Animals
On Progress and Other Modern Myths
John Gray’s cult classic Straw Dogs challenged our assumptions about what it is to be human. In this provocative sequel he discusses passages from such diverse authors as Conrad, Simenon, Borges and Freud, who explore human reactions to extreme experiences. Using their insights to attack humanism’s optimistic faith in the idea of our species’ progress, he ends with a plea for us to become more like other animals by seeking silence and contemplation.
The Social Contract
Or Principles of Political Right
One of the most profoundly influential works in the history of political theory, Rousseau's Social Contract (1762) advocated equality and popular sovereignity in which the 'general will' directs the energies of the state for the common good. It provided the great rallying cry of reform and revolution: 'Man is born free; and everywhere he is in chains'. This edition presents the 1954 translation by Willmoore Kendall, with a new introduction by Roger Scruton.
How to Be a Philosopher
or How to Be Almost Certain that Almost Nothing is Certain
In his practical guide to philosophizing, Gary Cox explains philosophical ideas – on metaphysics, epistemology, solipsism, transcendental idealism etc – with examples drawn from great works including Family Guy, Monty Python's Flying Circus and The Matrix. He also argues that learning to philosophize will help you think more clearly and honestly about your own life, and even offers advice on how to make a living from philosophy.
A Brief Guide to Philosophical Classics
In this concise introduction to 66 of the most thought-provoking books ever written, James Russell deals with the great classics of philosophy in the traditional, modern and continental traditions – from Plato to Derrida – but also includes 'outsiders and gatecrashers' such as Kierkegaard and Nietzsche, literary 'meditations' and psychology, so that books under discussion range from Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics to Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.