Truth In Philosophy P

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Overview


The goal of philosophers is truth, but for a century or more they have been bothered by Nietzsche's question, "What is the good of truth?" Barry Allen shows what truth has come to mean in the philosophical tradition, what is wrong with many of the ways of conceiving truth, and why philosophers refuse to confront squarely the question of the value of truth--why it is always taken to be an unquestioned concept. What is distinctive about Allen's book is his historical approach. Surveying Western thought from the pre-Socratics to the present day, Allen identifies and criticizes two core assumptions: that truth implies a realist metaphysics, and that truth is a good thing.
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Editorial Reviews

The Philosopher

Two related yet distinct questions are the central ostensible concerns of this book: what is the objection to a correspondence theory of truth?; why—if we should—should we consider truth to be the ultimate value? These questions are considered in the light of the work of six philosophers: Nietzsche; William James; Heidegger; Derrida; Wittgenstein; and Foucault...[A] thoroughly interesting and valuable book.
— Hugh V. McLachlan

The Philosopher - Hugh V. McLachlan
Two related yet distinct questions are the central ostensible concerns of this book: what is the objection to a correspondence theory of truth?; why--if we should--should we consider truth to be the ultimate value? These questions are considered in the light of the work of six philosophers: Nietzsche; William James; Heidegger; Derrida; Wittgenstein; and Foucault...[A] thoroughly interesting and valuable book.
Hilary Putnam
A good, provocative, and important book. It explains the views of a set of important continental philosophers in a way that will be accessible to students...At the same time, this is not an attempt to sugarcoat continental philosophy for analytic consumption. The views Allen defends--clearly and effectively--are views that I myself am committed to combatting and that I am certain most analytic philosophers will want to combat. But that is all the more reason for reading this book.
David Hoy
Truth in Philosophy does an excellent job explaining that there is in recent continental philosophy (Nietzsche, Heidegger, Derrida, and Foucault) a viable theory of truth. Allen's book has the additional virtue of providing this explanation against a remarkably clear account of the historical background of the ancient Greek and early modern theories of truth criticized by the late-modern and post-modern continental thinkers.
The Philosopher
Two related yet distinct questions are the central ostensible concerns of this book: what is the objection to a correspondence theory of truth?; why--if we should--should we consider truth to be the ultimate value? These questions are considered in the light of the work of six philosophers: Nietzsche; William James; Heidegger; Derrida; Wittgenstein; and Foucault...[A] thoroughly interesting and valuable book.
— Hugh V. McLachlan
Library Journal
Allen (philosophy, Univ. of California, Berkeley) sharply attacks the view of truth held by most analytic philosophers. Truth is not correspondence with reality, he argues; statements pass for true based on practical considerations. To support this radical position, he offers a historical study of several philosophers, including a discussion of Greek and Christian ``onto-logic'' and a description of Nietzsche's challenge to the value of truth. Michel Foucault's studies support Allen's defiance of orthodoxy by showing in concrete terms the interests that claims to truth serve. Allen's clear account of thinkers whom most analytic philosophers neglect is the book's most valuable feature. His attempt to escape self-refutation seems unsuccessful, but the book deserves careful study. For philosophy collections.-- David Gordon, Bowling Green State Univ., Ohio
Booknews
Surveying western thought from the pre-Socratics to the postmodernists, identifies and challenges two persistent strands of thought: truth requires a realist metaphysics; and truth is good. The pivot of Allen's (philosophy, McMaster U.) treatment is Nietzsche's questioning of the value of truth in philosophy. Written in nonspecialist language. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780674910911
  • Publisher: Harvard University Press
  • Publication date: 3/15/1995
  • Edition description: New Edition
  • Pages: 244
  • Sales rank: 972,618
  • Product dimensions: 6.00 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 0.55 (d)

Meet the Author

Barry Allen is Associate Professor of Philosophy at McMaster University.
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Table of Contents

Abbreviations

Prologue

Part 1: Historical Introduction

1. Classical Philosophy of Truth

2. Modern Truth

Part 2: Nietzsche's Question

3. Nietzsche, or A Scandal of the Truth

4. William James, or Pragmatism

Part 3: From Nature to History, From Being to Politics

5. Heidegger, or The Truth of Being

6. Derrida, or Difference Unlimited

7. Wittgenstein, or The Aufhebung of Logic

8. Foucault, or Truth in Politics

Epilogue

Notes

Acknowledgments

Index

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