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Spinoza
     

Spinoza

by Michael Della Rocca
 

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ISBN-10: 0415283299

ISBN-13: 9780415283298

Pub. Date: 10/23/2008

Publisher: Taylor & Francis

Spinoza (1632-77) was one of the towering philosophers of the seventeenth century, described by Bertrand Russell as "the noblest and most lovable of all the great philosophers". His work investigated some of the deepest questions of philosophy and whilst renowned for his metaphysics, he also made significant contributions to understanding the human mind, the emotions,

Overview

Spinoza (1632-77) was one of the towering philosophers of the seventeenth century, described by Bertrand Russell as "the noblest and most lovable of all the great philosophers". His work investigated some of the deepest questions of philosophy and whilst renowned for his metaphysics, he also made significant contributions to understanding the human mind, the emotions, moral philosophy, and political philosophy.

In this outstanding introduction to Spinoza's philosophy, Michael Della Rocca takes Spinoza's fundamental conviction that everything exists for a reason - a principle that came to be known as the 'principle of sufficient reason' - as the key to unlocking his thought.

Beginning with an overview of Spinoza's life in the context of his Jewish background, Della Rocca carefully unpacks and explains Spinoza's philosophy: his metaphysics of substance and argument at the center of his whole system that God is the sole independent substance and that finite things are merely ways in which this one substance exists; Spinoza's account of the human mind and its relation to the body; his theory that human beings tend towards self-preservation and the role of the emotions; the central arguments in his most famous work, the Ethics, above all the problem of free will; and his writings on the state, religion and scripture. Della Rocca concludes with a chapter on Spinoza's legacy and how modern philosophers, such as Hume, Hegel, and Nietzsche, responded to Spinoza's challenge.

Ideal for those coming to Spinoza for the first time as well as those already acquainted with his thought, Spinoza is essential reading for anyone studying philosophy and also those in related subjects such asreligion and history.

About the Author:
Michael Della Rocca is Professor and Chair of Philosophy at Yale University. He is the author of Representation and the Mind-Body Problem in Spinoza, and of numerous articles in early modern philosophy and contemporary metaphysics

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780415283298
Publisher:
Taylor & Francis
Publication date:
10/23/2008
Series:
Routledge Philosophers Series
Pages:
360
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.00(d)

Table of Contents


Preface     ix
Acknowledgments     x
Editions Used and Abbreviations     xi
Chronology     xiii
Spinoza's Understanding and Understanding Spinoza     1
Spinoza's Understanding
Understanding Spinoza
Summary
Further Reading
The Metaphysics of Substance     33
Descartes on Substance
Spinoza Contra Descartes on Substance
The Argument for Substance Monism
Modes
Necessitarianism
The Purpose of It All
Summary
Further Reading
The Human Mind     89
Parallelism and Representation
Essence and Representation
Parallelism and Mind-Body Identity
The Idea of the Human Body
The Pancreas Problem, the Pan Problem, and Panpsychism
Nothing but Representation
Representation, Will, and Belief
Skepticism
Summary
Further Reading
Psychology: Striving and Self-preservation     137
Conatus
Desire, Joy, and Sadness
Love, Hate, and All That
Summary
Further Reading
The Ethics of the Ethics     175
The Good Notion of the Good
The Right Notion of the Right
Knowledge and Morality
Freedom and Morality
Helping Others
Lies and Degrees of Freedom
Summary
Further Reading
The State, Religion, and Scripture     206
Rights and Power
Religion and the State
Scripture
Prophecy and the Truth of the Bible
Summary
Further Reading
From PSR to Eternity     254
Summary
Further Reading
The Atermath ofSpinoza     275
Leibniz
Bayle and Hume
The Pantheism Controversy
Hegel
Nietzsche
Prospects of Spinozistic Rationalism
Summary
Further Reading
Glossary     314
Notes     318
Bibliography     327
Index     333

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