Socrates Meets Descartes: The Father of Philosophy Analyzes the Father of Modern Philosophy's Discourse on Method

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Overview


This is the 5th volume in the series of popular volumes by Peter Kreeft, in which the "Father of Philosophy", Socrates, cross-examines various other important philosophers and thinkers (in previous books he examined Marx, Sarte, Machiavelli, and Socrates himself.)

Kreeft states that Socrates and Descartes are perhaps the two most important philosophers who have ever lived, because they are the two who made the most difference to all philosophy after them. These two fathers of philosophy stand at the beginning of the two basic philosophical options: the classical and the modern. Kreeft focuses on seven features that unite these two major philosophers and distinguish them from all others. So this dialog between Socrates and Descartes is a dialog between the fundamental stages in the history of philosophy, the history of consciousness, and the history of Western culture.

Like his other works in this popular series, this book is profound and witty reading that makes for an entertaining and insightful exploration of modern philosophy. It will appeal to both the common reader as well as to those more philosophically inclined.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781586171889
  • Publisher: Ignatius Press
  • Publication date: 11/8/2007
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 237
  • Product dimensions: 5.20 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.80 (d)

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Sort by: Showing all of 3 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted November 25, 2007

    A reviewer

    Philosopher Peter Kreeft, author of more than 40 books, examines Rene Descartes¿ DISCOURSE ON METHOD in SOCRATES MEETS DESCARTES. Isaac Asimov was a superb science popularizer, and Peter Kreeft is the Isaac Asimov of philosophy. This is the fifth in a series of introductions to philosophy wherein Socrates uses the dialectic to explore the ideas of great philosophers, and like its predecessors [e.g. SOCRATES MEETS MARX], this is a superb book. The book begins with a list of seven features that that Socrates and Descartes share and that distinguish them from other philosophers. After that, the story unfolds via a discussion of DISCOURSE ON METHOD between Socrates and Descartes that occurs in Purgatory. Descartes¿ book was an attempt to transfer the scientific method to philosophy, but Kreeft points out that the scientific method measures physical things by quantity, but spiritual things can¿t be measured. The dialogue between Socrates and Descartes is lively and compelling. Socrates notes that the ancient philosophers believed that truth ennobled the human soul, enabling the person to conform his desires to the reality by virtuous living, whereas Descartes¿ aim was using knowledge to advance technology, thereby enabling mankind to shape reality to meet its desires for a better life. Socrates asks Descartes ¿Is knowledge for truth, as Aristotle said, or for power, as Bacon said?¿ SOCRATES MEETS DESCARTES is an outstanding introduction to Descartes. This short book entertains, informs and inspires, making it worthy of a five-star rating.

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    Posted May 8, 2011

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    Posted May 8, 2011

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