Philosophers Explore The Matrix / Edition 1

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The Matrix trilogy is unique among recent popular films in that it is constructed around important philosophical questions--classic questions which have fascinated philosophers and other thinkers for thousands of years. Editor Christopher Grau here presents a collection of new, intriguing essays about some of the powerful and ancient questions broached by The Matrix and its sequels, written by some of the most prominent and reputable philosophers working today. They provide intelligent, accessible, and thought-provoking examinations of the philosophical issues that support the films.

Philosophers Explore The Matrix includes an introduction that surveys the use of philosophical ideas in the film. Topics that the contributors tackle include: how a collaborative dream could differ from hallucination, the difference between the Matrix and the "real" world; why living in the Matrix would be considered "bad"; the similarities between the Matrix and Plato's Cave; the moral status of artificially created beings, whether one can behave immorally in illusory circumstances, and the true nature of free will and responsibility. This volume also includes an appendix of classic philosophical writing on these issues by Plato, Berkeley, Descartes, Putnam, and Nozick.

Philosophers Explore The Matrix will fascinate any fan of the films who wants to delve deeper into their themes, as well as any student of philosophy who desires an accessible entry into this challenging and profoundly vital world of ideas.

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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Philosophers Explore The Matrix is of great value to students of philosophy who have already decided to see how far the rabbit hole goes, and, as Grau suggests, want to go a bit deeper. To that end, Philosophers Explore The Matrix is a noteworthy and respectable contribution to philosophy."--The Journal of Value Inquiry

"A broad and diverse collection...the book is a great success."--Alex Bussey Thames Valley University

"Several volumes have emerged since the film was released offering discussions of the philosophical issues that arise out of the film (and its sequels), but Grau's collection is by far the of the film with an interest in philosophy should without hesitation procure a copy-- Grau's collection features leading contemporary philosophers discussing some of the most exciting issues in philosophy, at a level accessible to any intelligent non-philosopher."-- Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"This book is a rare thing: an anthology on a highly popular topic that actually includes many intellectually excellent contributions, and is at the same time engaging and intelligible to the non-academic public."--Ned Block, New York University

"This is an excellent collection by well-known philosophers ...uniformly intelligent, and well-written. The volume constitutes a genuinely excellent route into the subject. Amateurs who enjoyed the movie in part because it got them thinking about deep issues will be challenged by the book, and they will profit considerably from working through it." --Gideon Rosen, Princeton University

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780195181074
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press, USA
  • Publication date: 8/1/2005
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 352
  • Sales rank: 1,151,964
  • Product dimensions: 8.10 (w) x 5.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Christopher Grau is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Florida International University.

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Table of Contents

1 Introduction 3
2 Bad dreams, evil demons, and the experience machine : philosophy and The Matrix 10
3 Morpheus and Berkeley on reality 24
4 What's so bad about living in the Matrix? 40
5 The Matrix of dreams 62
6 Existential phenomenology and the brave new world of The Matrix 71
7 Reality, what matters, and The Matrix 98
8 Never the Twain shall meet : reflections on the very first Matrix 115
9 The Matrix as metaphysics 132
10 The twisted Matrix : dream, simulation, or hybrid? 177
11 The Matrix - our future? 198
12 Artificial ethics 208
13 Neo's freedom whoa! 218
14 Plato's cave and The Matrix 239
15 Wake up! : worlds of illusion in Gnosticism, Buddhism, and The Matrix project 258
App Selections from classic texts 289
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