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$58 £43 €49
This volume constitutes an attempt at bringing together philosophies of time—or more precisely, philosophies on time and, in a concomitant way, history—emerging from Christianity’s and Islam’s intellectual histories. Starting from the Neoplatonic heritage and the voice of classical philosophy, the volume enters the Byzantine and Arabic intellectual worlds up to Ibn Al-Arabi’s times. A conscious choice in this volume is not to engage with, perhaps, the most prominent figures of Christian and Arabic philosophy, i.e., Augustine on the one hand and Avicenna/Ibn Sina on the other, precisely because these have attracted so much attention due to their prominence in their respective traditions—and beyond. In a certain way, Maximus the Confessor and Ibn Al-Arabi—together with Al-Fārābi—emerge as alternative representatives of their two traditions in this volume, offering two axes for this endeavor. The synthesis of those approaches on time and history, their comparison rather than their mere co-existence, is left to the reader’s critical inquiry and philosophical investigation.
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$67 £50 €57
This collection is about composing thought at the level of modernism and decomposing it at the postmodern level where many cocks might crow with African philosophy as a focal point. It has two parts: part one is titled ‘The Journey of Reason in African Philosophy’, and part two is titled ‘African Philosophy and Postmodern Thinking’. There are seven chapters in both parts. Five of the essays are reprinted here as important selections while nine are completely new essays commissioned for this book. As their titles suggest, in part one, African philosophy is unfolded in the manifestation of reason as embedded in modern thought while in part two, it draws the effect of reason as implicated in the postmodern orientation. While part one strikes at what V. Y. Mudimbe calls the “colonising structure” or the Greco-European logo-phallo-euro-centricism in thought, part two bashes the excesses of modernism and partly valorises postmodernism. In some chapters, modernism is presented as an intellectual version of communalism characterised by the cliché: ‘our people say’. Our thinking is that the voice of reason is not the voice of the people but the voice of an individual. The idea of this book is to open new vistas for the discipline of African philosophy. African philosophy is thus presented as a disagreement discourse. Without rivalry of thoughts, Africa will settle for far less. This gives postmodernism an important place, perhaps deservedly more important than history of philosophy allocates to it. It is that philosophical moment that says ‘philosophers must cease speaking like gods in their hegemonic cultural shrines and begin to converse across borders with one another’. In this conversation, the goal for African philosophers must not be to find final answers but to sustain the conversation which alone can extend human reason to its furthermost reaches.
R. T. Allen et al.
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After the Editor's General Introduction, the extracts include central elements of Blaga’s metaphysics, general epistemology, philosophies of science, history, religion, language and especially metaphor, the experience of space and time, art, and finally culture which includes all of them, especially the presence in all of ‘style’ and distinctive ways of practising them. All these extracts are linked by his general epistemology, especially his distinction between two types of knowledge: ‘paradisiac’ or Type 1, which is that of everyday awareness and the current methods, concepts and presuppositions of the sciences of nature and humanity, plus mathematics and philosophy, and accumulates in ‘plus knowledge’ and resolves problems in standard ways; and ‘Luciferican’ or Type 2, which opens up the ‘mysteries’ of new realms of reality which do not fit the current methods, concepts and presuppositions, and so results in ‘minus’ knowledge, the awareness that there are things which at the moment we cannot understand. For these ‘mysteries’ new methods, concepts and presuppositions are required, which ‘abyssal’ categories can supply, ones below those we normally employ and may be aware of. It is part of man’s role in the cosmos to reveal such mysteries. They are also linked by Blaga's awareness of historical changes, especially ‘dogmatic aeons’ in which a prevailing framework of categories, etc., guides knowledge and research, and ones in which Type 2 knowledge dominates and new frameworks are eventually created. Each extract has its own Introduction which places it in the context of the rest of his interlinked philosophy. They show how Blaga, with both general themes and concepts and also with particular examples, combines much of the concerns and methods of Analytic and Continental philosophy, and how his historical perspective applied especially to modern times long before anyone spoke of 'postmodernism', and thus as in his lifetime.
Peter A. DePergola II, University of Massachusetts Medical School; College of Our Lady of the Elms
$64 £48 €54
The first philosophical monograph on the ethics of memory manipulation (MM), Forget Me Not: The Neuroethical Case Against Memory Manipulation contends that any attempt to directly and intentionally erase episodic memories poses a grave threat to the human condition that cannot be justified within a normative moral calculus. Grounding its thesis in four evidential effects – namely, (i) MM disintegrates autobiographical memory, (ii) the disintegration of autobiographical memory degenerates emotional rationality, (iii) the degeneration of emotional rationality decays narrative identity, and (iv) the decay of narrative identity disables one to seek, identify, and act on the good – DePergola argues that MM cannot be justified as a morally licit practice insofar as it disables one to seek, identify, and act on the good. A landmark achievement in the field of neuroethics, this book is a welcome addition to both the scholarly and professional community in philosophical and clinical bioethics.
Unlike the vast majority of existing literature on Plato, the main claim of this book is that Liberty constitutes the central notion and preoccupation of his thought, and that indeed his theory of ideas is a theory of liberty. Plato's thought is at once the thought of liberty and a theory of liberation. What is more, this thought of liberty tends to be all-encompassing in the sense that it makes repeated efforts to find both the ideal liberty and the conditions and possibility of its existence in the so-called real (material and phenomenal) world. Hence the emphasis on ontology as the very grounds of his political philosophy and anthropology, as well as on the structural unity of all three. Furthermore, understood from such a perspective, Platonic philosophy appears as primarily an investigation, articulation and establishment of the relationships between the individual and the collective, a relationship which is taken to be the natural, the original and originary framework for any conception and exercise of human liberty, and especially democratic theory and politics. By treating Plato’s philosophy as a continuous effort to find modes and dimensions of liberation in and through different forms of the relationship between the individual and the collective, our hope is not only to engage in the discussion about the meaning of Platonic ontological-political insights on different grounds, but also to provide a different perspective for the evaluation of its relevance for the central contemporary issues and problems regarding liberty, liberation, democracy and politics in general. This book will be an interesting reading for both undergraduate students and experienced scholars and researchers, as well as for the general public interested in philosophy, classics and political theory.