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The Examined Life

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Nozick meditates on sex as the realm of one's strongest emotions, the ``we'' of a romantic couple, accepting death, the holiness in simple everyday acts, the need of each person to feel important, to feel she or he makes a difference. In 27 informal, pointed chapters the Harvard social thinker ( Anarchy, State, and Utopia; Philosophical Explanations ) fixes his attention on areas often glossed over in formal philosophy. What is creativity if there's nothing new under the sun? Is Zen-like enlightenment too good to be true? His answers to these and other questions are worth heeding in an accessible, novel discourse. A systematizer, Nozick constructs a matrix of reality's manifold dimensions (value, wisdom, destiny, etc.); he formulates ``principles of proportionality'' to help us give each thing its due weight. (Nov.)
Library Journal
Nozick here offers an illuminating discussion of such topics as death, sexuality, and friendship--concerns that everyone has but that have not often been discussed by analytic philosophers, among whom Nozick holds eminent rank. His consideration of broader questions--e.g., what is the nature of value?--leads him to extend the theory of value he developed in Philosophical Explanations ( LJ 11/1/81), and he unifies a wide range of phenomena that previous philosophers have been unable to connect as tightly. He also addresses theological concerns, throwing unexpected light on such topics as the nature of God and the problem of evil. Chapter 25, ``The Zig-Zag of Politics,'' will without doubt rivet political philosophers, for here Nozick recants in part the libertarianism he supported in Anarchy, State, and Utopia ( LJ 1/15/75). This strikingly original book will arouse much discussion. Highly recommended.-- David Gordon, Bowling Green State Univ., Ohio
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780671725013
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster
  • Publication date: 12/28/1990
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 809,629
  • Product dimensions: 6.10 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

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