Eyewitness Companions: Philosophy (Eyewitness Companion Guides)
Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub
Covering not only the history of Western thought, but also the traditions of Eastern philosophy and schools of thought from the Indian subcontinent, this companion combines philosophical analysis with historical and biographical information to explain and explore the major issues, theories, and problems at the heart of all philosophies.
of an unknowable reality lying behind appearances, but embraced a wild, irrational core to human experience. Nietzsche also opposed the Enlightenment idea of reason as the key force in life, and Kierkegaard stressed the reality of individual subjective consciousness. Throughout Europe, social inequalities led to unrest and revolt. Emile Zola’s novel Germinal (here in a scene from the 1995 film version) explored this theme through the story of a bitter miners’ strike in France. 1969 Astronauts
would be to violate a duty. wrong by its consequences. Most deontological theories Actions are understood in recognize two classes of duties. terms of intentions. For First, there are general duties example, a person may kill toward other human beings. someone else, but not all These are mostly prohibitions: “killings” are the same type do not lie, do not murder, of action, morally speaking. and so forth. But some may If the person deliberately be positive, such as helping intended to kill
tangy smell, the But it is, at least in principle, distinctively sweet taste of possible for you to observe what its flesh. They form just a tiny is going on inside it. You might part of the extraordinarily use a fiber-optic probe to rich world of conscious When you see an apple, it seems that view the brain directly, your experience of its color, texture, experience to which you or use a CAT (computed and other qualities is uniquely your have access. axial tomography) own. No one else can access
streets they must centres for work, shopping, act in their community. and leisure. The result is congestion, accidents, and Critics of liberalism want to return SOCIAL ANIMALS political debate and communal pollution. The response Communitarian ideas can of communitarians might decision-making to the heart of be traced all the way back civic life, as in previous centuries. be to limit or even ban to Aristotle (see pp.248–9), car use in cities, and encourage who claimed that “man is a political
are they just “useful fictions?” T THE BALANCE OF EVIDENCE Some of the most central and important questions addressed by philosophers of science concern confirmation. Scientists construct theories they believe are The discovery of DNA, a momentous breakthrough by Watson, Wilkins (pictured), and Crick, signalled a “paradigm shift” in scientific thought. Philosophers consider the implications of new ways of thinking. confirmed by what they observe. Such confirmation, however, comes in degrees. A