Based on extensive new research and a bold interpretation of the man and his texts, The Passion of Michel Foucault is a startling look at one of this century's most influential philosophers. It chronicles every stage of Foucault's personal and professional odyssey, from his early interest in dreams to his final preoccupation with sexuality and the nature of personal identity.
One of the major intellectual figures of the twentieth century, Paul Ricoeur has influenced a generation of thinkers. In this, the first philosophically informed biography of Ricoeur, student, colleague, and confidant Charles E. Reagan provides an unusually accessible look at both the philosophy of this extraordinary thinker and the pivotal experiences that influenced his development.
"A valuable introduction to Ricoeur; highly recommended."—Library Journal
"[A] lively introduction to the life and thought of one of this century's most notable philosophers."—Norman Wirzba, Christian Century
"Reagan lucidly explains Ricoeur's difficult philosophy while shining overdue light on the personality behind it."—Carlin Romano, Philadelphia Inquirer
"Combines biographical and philosophical essays with a more personal memoir that makes Ricoeur's humane and magnanimous nature abundantly evident. Four revealing interviews, coupled with photographs, and an extensive bibliography of primary and secondary sources, complete this illuminating study."—Choice
Simone de Beauvoir; Edited by Margaret A. Simons with Marybeth Timmermann and Mary Beth Mader;Foreword by Sylvie Le Bon de Beauvoir University of Illinois Press, 2021 Library of Congress PQ2603.E362A6 2004 | Dewey Decimal 844.914
Despite growing interest in her philosophy, Simone de Beauvoir remains widely misunderstood. She is typically portrayed as a mere intellectual follower of her companion, Jean-Paul Sartre. In Philosophical Writings, Beauvoir herself shows that nothing could be further from the truth.
Beauvoir's philosophical work suffers from a lack of English-language translation or, worse, mistranslation into heavily condensed popular versions. Philosophical Writings provides an unprecedented collection of complete, scholarly editions of philosophical texts that cover the first twenty-three years of Beauvoir's career, including a number of recently discovered works. Ranging from metaphysical literature to existentialist ethics, Philosophical Writings brings together diverse elements of Beauvoir's work while highlighting continuities in the development of her thought. Each of the translations features detailed notes and a scholarly introduction explaining its larger significance.
Revelatory and long overdue, Philosophical Writings adds to the ongoing resurgence of interest in Beauvoir's thought and to her growing influence on today's philosophical curriculum.
We are living through a boom in autobiographical writing. Every half-famous celebrity, every politician, every sports hero—even the non-famous, nowadays, pour out pages and pages, Facebook post after Facebook post, about themselves. Literary theorists have noticed, as the genres of “creative nonfiction” and “life writing” have found their purchase in the academy. And of course psychologists have long been interested in self-disclosure. But where have the philosophers been? With this volume, Christopher Cowley brings them into the conversation.
Cowley and his contributors show that while philosophers have seemed uninterested in autobiography, they have actually long been preoccupied with many of its conceptual elements, issues such as the nature of the self, the problems of interpretation and understanding, the paradoxes of self-deception, and the meaning and narrative structure of human life. But rarely have philosophers brought these together into an overarching question about what it means to tell one’s life story or understand another’s. Tackling these questions, the contributors explore the relationship between autobiography and literature; between story-telling, knowledge, and agency; and between the past and the present, along the way engaging such issues as autobiographical ethics and the duty of writing. The result bridges long-standing debates and illuminates fascinating new philosophical and literary issues.
The first full-length study of Francesco Patrizi—the most important political philosopher of the Italian Renaissance before Machiavelli—who sought to reconcile conflicting claims of liberty and equality in the service of good governance.
At the heart of the Italian Renaissance was a longing to recapture the wisdom and virtue of Greece and Rome. But how could this be done? A new school of social reformers concluded that the best way to revitalize corrupt institutions was to promote an ambitious new form of political meritocracy aimed at nurturing virtuous citizens and political leaders.
The greatest thinker in this tradition of virtue politics was Francesco Patrizi of Siena, a humanist philosopher whose writings were once as famous as Machiavelli’s. Patrizi wrote two major works: On Founding Republics, addressing the enduring question of how to reconcile republican liberty with the principle of merit; and On Kingship and the Education of Kings, which lays out a detailed program of education designed to instill the qualities necessary for political leadership—above all, practical wisdom and sound character.
The first full-length study of Patrizi’s life and thought in any language, Political Meritocracy in Renaissance Italy argues that Patrizi is a thinker with profound lessons for our time. A pioneering advocate of universal literacy who believed urban planning could help shape civic values, he concluded that limiting the political power of the wealthy, protecting the poor from debt slavery, and reducing the political independence of the clergy were essential to a functioning society. These ideas were radical in his day. Far more than an exemplar of his time, Patrizi deserves to rank alongside the great political thinkers of the Renaissance: Machiavelli, Thomas More, and Jean Bodin.
Simone de Beauvoir; Edited by Margaret A. Simons and Marybeth Timmermann; Foreword by Sylvie Le Bon de Beauvoir University of Illinois Press, 2021 Library of Congress PQ2603.E362A2 2012 | Dewey Decimal 844.914
Political Writings offers an abundance of newly translated essays by Simone de Beauvoir that demonstrate a heretofore unknown side of her political philosophy.
The writings in this volume range from Beauvoir's surprising 1952 defense of the misogynistic eighteenth-century pornographer, the Marquis de Sade, to a co-written 1974 documentary film, transcribed here for the first time, which draws on Beauvoir's analysis of how socioeconomic privilege shapes the biological reality of aging. The volume traces nearly three decades of Beauvoir's leftist political engagement, from exposés of conditions in fascist Spain and Portugal in 1945 and hard-hitting attacks on right-wing French intellectuals in the 1950s, to the 1962 defense of an Algerian freedom fighter, Djamila Boupacha, and a 1975 article arguing for what is now called the "two-state solution" in Israel.
Together these texts prefigure Beauvoir's later feminist activism and provide a new interpretive context for reading her multi-volume autobiography, while also shedding new light on French intellectual history during the turbulent era of decolonization.
Soren Kierkegaard's influence has been felt in many areas of human thought from theology to psychology. The nearly one hundred of his prayers gathered here from published works and private papers, not only illuminate his own life of prayer, but speak to the concerns of Christians today.
The second part of the volume is a reinterpretation of the life and thought of Kierkegaard. Long regarded as primarily a poet or a philosopher, Kierkegaard is revealed as a fundamentally religious thinker whose central problem was that of becoming a Christian, of realizing personal existence. Perry D. LeFevre's penetrating analysis takes the reader to the religious center of Kierkegaard's world.
Marking the tercentenary of David Hume's birth, Annette Baier has created an engaging guide to the philosophy of one of the greatest thinkers of Enlightenment Britain. Drawing deeply on a lifetime of scholarship and incisive commentary, she deftly weaves Hume’s autobiography together with his writings and correspondence, finding in these personal experiences new ways to illuminate his ideas about religion, human nature, and the social order.
Excerpts from Hume’s autobiography at the beginning of each chapter open a window onto the eighteenth-century context in which Hume’s philosophy developed. Famous in Christian Britain as a polymath and a nonbeliever, Hume recounts how his early encounters with clerical authority laid the foundation for his lifelong skepticism toward religion. In Scotland, where he grew up, he had been forced to study lists of sins in order to spot his own childish flaws, he reports. Later, as a young man, he witnessed the clergy’s punishment of a pregnant unmarried servant, and this led him to question the violent consequences of the Church’s emphasis on the doctrine of original sin. Baier’s clear interpretation of Hume’s Treatise of Human Nature explains the link between Hume’s growing disillusionment and his belief that ethics should be based on investigations of human nature, not on religious dogma.
Four months before he died, Hume concluded his autobiography with a eulogy he wrote for his own funeral. It makes no mention of his flaws, critics, or disappointments. Baier’s more realistic account rivets our attention on connections between the way Hume lived and the way he thought—insights unavailable to Hume himself, perhaps, despite his lifelong introspection.