18

I'd go with Simon Blackburn's Think: A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy (Cambridge University Press 1999). Here's the blurb: This is a book about the big questions in life: knowledge, consciousness, fate, God, truth, goodness, justice. It is for anyone who believes there are big questions out there, but does not know how to approach them. Think ...


17

Dawkins and Hitchens aren't particularly philosophically sophisticated. Dawkins often attacks straw man versions of theistic arguments. (Search on this site for some discussion why his understanding of Aquinas's arguments for the existence of God miss the mark.) Further, they utterly fail to take into account criticism of their own epistemology. One crucial ...


16

Is it that New Atheism isn't philosophy? Yes -- it is not a philosophy; wikipedia describes it as "a social and political movement" first associated with Sam Harris, an American writer who holds a B.A. in philosophy and a Ph.D in neuroscience but does not practice either professionally in the sense of having academic tenure. Harris's works appear to be ...


9

Sophie's World by Jostein Gaarder polarises opinion as it is a history of philosophy wrapped up in a children's story. As long as you feel OK with this mixture (and for me at 40 something it was not a problem) then this offers a gentle introduction. What I found especially good was that the explanations of the various philosophers' thoughts were put into a ...


8

History of Western Philosophy by Bertrand Russell is usually recommended as a good place to start, haven't read it myself, but it gives you a thorough overview of philosophy and how it has changed over the times. It's usually recommended to read an overview book like this before jumping into a specific philosopher's work. On a side note: there is a sort of ...


6

Categorical logic is of contemporary interest . An (elementary) topos is a generalisation of set theory (without choice), and its internal logic is higher-order intuitionistic logic. It also has a geometric character: A sheaf of sets, is a topos, and is equivalently (which reveals it geometric character more clearly) an etale (projection is locally ...


6

Sorry for turning up so late to the party. The front door was locked so I had to climb through a window. Anyway, I've recently come across the following book: Tetralogue: I'm Right, You're Wrong Four people with radically different outlooks on the world meet on a train and start talking about what they believe. Their conversation varies from ...


6

I have enjoyed the DK Publishing's The Philosophy Book(1)(2). It is an intro, it is basically written, and covers most of the topics. To the complete novice learning about philosophy can be daunting - The Philosophy Book changes all that. With the use of powerful and easy to follow images, succinct quotations, and explanations that are easily ...


6

I know that Derrida writes on dissemination and has an original theory of it I think he uses the term in a reasonably conventional way; AFAIK it would be a bit of a red herring to say he has a distinct theory of it. Note that the book Dissemination is actually a compendium of ostensibly unrelated material, but much of it is an examination of Plato's ...


5

My colleague Colin Allen is a representative of a consistently naturalistic point of view. Are you looking for people with a specifically atheist response to Plantinga's arguments in particular? If so, which of AP's arguments? The more specific you can be with your question, the easier it will be to give you a useful answer.


5

As User10383 pointed out, Dissemination in Derrida should be contrasted with polysemy (among other things). An interpretation is constrained by polysemy if it considers only the various possible discrete meanings a text could have. For example, the two or more meanings of a pun. An interpretation recognizes the possibility of dissemination if it acknowledges ...


5

Work that is sometimes called "speculative realism" or "object oriented ontology" might interest you. Most (if not all) of it is directly in dialogue with Kant. Timothy Morton in particular deals with aesthetics. There is quite a bit of work on aesthetics since Kant. Aside from the above, Adorno's "Aesthetic Theory" comes to mind and more recently a good ...


5

Colin McGinn, in his book The Philosophy of Language, discusses at least four criticisms of Davidson's theory. Is it enough to say that knowledge of meaning is knowledge of truth conditions - especially when we restrict ourselves homophonic statements of truth conditions? Can't we ask what this knowledge of truth conditions itself involves? We need to ...


4

In terms of the pessimistic, anthropophobic aspect of Schopenhauer's philosophy, Ulrich Horstmann surely is one of his strongest living followers, though his writings are rather essayistic than scholarly philosophical. (Unfortunately, none has been translated into English as far as I know.) Horstmann even critizises Schopenhauer for being not radical (that ...


4

I really liked The Problems of Philosophy by Bertrand Russell for the following reasons: It studied the thought of past philosophers by investigating a particular subject (such as existence). It is very readable. It's freely available online at the above (and other) links.


4

Contemporary Consensus is hard to come by in Truth given its broad interest, but the philosophical literature around it is very much motivated by Paradox phenomena following from truth as a component of language. If Truth is taken to have a semantic character, such that it indicates a "real" property in a baseline metaphysics, then we might read proposed ...


4

I would think that Whitehead would be what you want. From Wikipedia... Beginning in the late 1910s and early 1920s, Whitehead gradually turned his attention from mathematics to philosophy of science, and finally to metaphysics. He developed a comprehensive metaphysical system which radically departed from most of western philosophy. Whitehead argued that ...


4

The science that studies a be-ing is, for Heidegger, ontic [ontique], and it is necessary to distinguish it from the science of the being of a be-ing which alone is ontological [ontologique]. Let us examine these distinctions more closely. The attributes of a be-ing make it to be of this or that determination. In identifying its attributes, we say what ...


4

What I'm asking is what is the impact of video games on philosophy. Can I read somewhere about it? I am simply posting some materials which may be useful. Playing with Good and Evil: Video games and Moral Philosophy by Peter E. Rauch ABSTRACT; Despite an increasingly complex academic discourse, the video game medium lacks an agreed-upon definition. ...


3

I use the noun 'exordium (plural exordia)' to mean introductions to philosophy < 500 pages for people with 0 experience in philosophy. My personal (though amateur) experience suggests this order of reading (where 1 is the easiest). What Does it All Mean?    by Thomas Nagel Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction (Oxford University Press)   by Edward ...


3

I'm going to answer my own question with Will Durant's The Story of Philosophy, just to see how many votes it gets. Easily the most engaging writer of Western intellectual history in the English language, Will Durant breathes life into philosophers and their ideas. He is colorful, witty, and above all, informative. Beginning with Socrates and ending with ...


3

It seems that Heidegger, in his later texts, turns to poetical writing as the most adequate form of language to "unveil the world", in this way, poetic language would fulfill his work that started in a philosophical ground. I'm not sure whether he considers this as a merging of philosophy and poetry, but I think this is a good reference for the subject. ...


3

I read this guy's Part II where he fits together the 4 formulae, the 4 discourses and topology as Lacan puts it forth in L'etourdit. The argument is that in no way is Lacan's use of topology metaphorical. http://www.academia.edu/5984726/Sexuated_Topology_and_the_Suspension_of_Meaning_A_Non-Hermeneutical_Phenomenological_Approach_to_Textual_Analysis


3

W.D. Hart's Engines of the Soul (1980) gives a book-length defense for the indivisibility of mind and its substantial distinction from matter (as opposed to more modern property dualism). Unlike many works which merely analyze dualism Hart develops a full proposal for how minds/souls can be distinct from matter and how psycho-physical causation can work. He ...


3

I would say that the "ordinary individual" would find it easier to read the older philosophers in their original texts, while contemporary philosophers would be very difficult for such a person to follow. Contemporary philosophy has gotten very technical and typically one requires a lot of prerequisites to understand what is being said. The older authors on ...


3

I'd say no, but this is mostly just a matter of definition. Analytic philosophy is a particular modern strain of the western philosophical tradition. Its canonical writers are all Europeans and Americans writing in response to each other and earlier generations of European philosophers. "Western" denotes a cultural and historical group. There aren't non-...


3

There is a particular philosophy of the mind that draws a (porous) dividing life through the mind, calling one part of it conscious and the other unconscious. Likewise, it may be the case that everyone has a 'personal philosophy' most of which is unconscious and can only be understood by examining that persons life, his actions and his intentions; this, in ...


3

Shimon Malin’s “Nature Loves to Hide: Quantum Physics and the Nature of Reality, a Western Perspective” offers Whitehead as a 20th century philosopher that might be what you are looking for. Schrodinger and Heisenberg would be others. His book attempts to explain the collapse of the wave function by linking fields of atemporal potentiality with the ...


2

Well, according to Wikipedia, Michael Martin is such a philosopher. Also, the ontological argument in every form has been pretty thoroughly eviscerated by any number of philosophers--atheist and otherwise. I wouldn't restrict myself to just atheists when looking for well reasoned arguments against Plantinga.


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