Voices of Wisdom: A Multicultural Philosophy Reader / Edition 6

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Kessler's Voices of Wisdom invites you to discover the global art of philosophy through the writings of the world's most influential thinkers. Enthusiastically received for its multicultural approach, Voices of Wisdom presents significant readings from around the world that evoke the spirit and nature of philosophy. The Second Edition contains both classic and contemporary readings on major philosophical problems. The global scope of this collection encompasses a wide variety of traditions, including Western, Hindu, Buddhist, Chinese, African, Native American, Latin American, Islamic, Jewish, and feminist. This edition features many new selections, including expanded material on epistemology and ethics. As you read, Voices of Wisdom will ask you to think for yourself - to do philosophy. Kessler's introductions to each selection provide the background needed to read insightfully. Questions posed before the readings raise key issues you'll want to consider as you form your own interpretations. And for your reference, a helpful glossary defines the technical terms found throughout the anthology.
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Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"I have used Voices of Wisdom to teach introductory courses in philosophy since 1997. I am thrilled with Kessler's handling of the material. He presents the basic philosophical concepts in a way that is easy to understand, and quick to engage. The articles that are presented do an excellent job of representing a cross-selection of philosophical work from around the world and throughout the ages."

"Gary Kessler's Voices of Wisdom: A Multicultural Philosophy Reader is an excellent introductory textbook for instructors who want important selections from the Western and Eastern canons as well as readings from important figures writing on contemporary philosophical issues. The text strikes an important balance by including figures vital to the history of philosophy as well as voices too often neglected in philosophy classes."

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780495007104
  • Publisher: Cengage Learning
  • Publication date: 2/21/2006
  • Series: Available Titles CengageNOW Series
  • Edition description: 6TH
  • Edition number: 6
  • Pages: 560
  • Product dimensions: 7.30 (w) x 9.20 (h) x 0.80 (d)

Meet the Author

Gary E. Kessler received his Ph.D. from Columbia University where he studied philosophy and comparative religions. After teaching at Bard College, he accepted a position at California State University, Bakersfield where he taught for over thirty years. His most recent research centers on religion and violence. He is the author of numerous articles and books, including VOICES OF WISDOM, which, when first published in 1992, was the first multicultural textbook and reader intended for use in an introductory philosophy class.

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Table of Contents

Preface xi
Part I Introduction 1
Chapter 1 What Is Philosophy? 2
1.1 A Definition of Philosophy 2
1.2 What Is Rationality? 7
1.3 Does Philosophy Bake Bread? 12
Bertrand Russell: On the Value of Philosophy 14
Chapter 2 How Should We Read Philosophy? 19
2.1 Getting Started 19
2.2 The Critical Precis 21
2.3 A Test Case 23
Lawrence A. Blum: Antiracism, Multiculturalism, and Interracial Community: Three Educational Values for a Multicultural Society 25
Part II Ethics 33
Chapter 3 How Should One Live? 34
3.1 Introduction 34
3.2 The Buddha and the Middle Way 36
The Buddha: The Four Noble Truths 37
Walpola Rahula: The Fourth Noble Truth 39
3.3 Confucius and the Life of Virtue 43
D. C. Lau: Confucius and Moral Character 45
3.4 Socrates on Living the Examined Life 51
Plato: The Apology 53
3.5 Aristotle on Happiness and the Life of Moderation 67
Aristotle: Nicomachean Ethics 69
3.6 The Song of God 77
Bhagavad-Gita 80
3.7. Does Life Have Meaning? 86
Daniel Kolak and Raymond Martin: Meaning 87
Chapter 4 How Can I Know What Is Right? 93
4.1 Introduction 93
4.2 Kant and the Categorical Imperative 94
Immanuel Kant: Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals 96
4.3 Utilitarianism 101
Jeremy Bentham: Of the Principle of Utility 103
4.4 Revaluation of Values 107
Friedrich Nietzsche: Beyond Good and Evil 109
Friedrich Nietzsche: On the Genealogy of Morality 114
4.5 Toward a Feminist Ethic 119
Rita Manning: Just Caring 121
4.6 Some African and Western Conceptions of Morals 137
Kwasi Wiredu: Custom and Morality 139
Chapter 5 What Makes a Society Just? 152
5.1 Introduction 152
5.2 God and Justice 153
Majid Khadduri: The Islamic Conception of Justice 156
5.3 Capitalism and Exploitation 163
Karl Marx and Friedrich Engels: Manifesto of the Communist Party 165
5.4 The Original Position 174
John Rawls: A Theory of Justice 175
5.5 Our Obligation to the State 187
Plato: Crito 188
5.6 Civil Disobedience 195
Martin Luther King, Jr.: Letter from Birmingham Jail 197
5.7 Sovereignty and Justice: An Indigenist's Viewpoint 207
Ward Churchill: Perversions of Justice 208
Chapter 6 Is Justice for All Possible? 219
6.1 Introduction 219
6.2 Universal Human Rights 220
Rene Trujillo: Human Rights in the "Age of Discovery" 221
United Nations Universal Declaration of Human Rights 223
6.3 Are Human Rights Universal? 227
Xiaorong Li: "Asian Values" and the Universality of Human Rights 228
6.4 Racism and Feminism 234
bell hooks: Ain't I a Woman 235
6.5 The Affirmative Action Debate 244
Warren Kessler: Is Affirmative Action a Second Wrong? 245
Shelby Steele: The Price of Preference 250
6.6 The Animal Rights Debate 256
Tom Regan: The Case for Animal Rights 257
Mary Anne Warren: Difficulties with the Strong Animal Rights Position 264
6.7 Environmental Ethics 271
J. Baird Callicott and Thomas W. Overholt: Traditional American Indian Attitudes Toward Nature 272
6.8 Development, Environment, and the Third World 289
Ramachandra Guha: Radical American Environmentalism and Wilderness Preservation 290
6.9 International Business Ethics 298
David M. Adams and Edward W. Maine: International Competition and Corporate Social Responsibility 300
Part III Epistemology 307
Chapter 7 Is Knowledge Possible? 308
7.1 Introduction 308
7.2 Sufi Mysticism 310
Al-Ghazali: Deliverance from Error 312
7.3 Is Certainty Possible? 319
Rene Descartes: Meditations I and II 322
7.4 Empiricism and Limited Skepticism 328
David Hume: An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding 331
7.5 Should We Believe Beyond the Evidence? 337
William K. Clifford: The Ethics of Belief 339
William James: The Will to Believe 341
7.6 Classical Indian Epistemology 346
D. M. Datta: Knowledge and the Methods of Knowledge 348
7.7 Afrocentric Feminist Epistemology 352
Patricia Hill Collins: Toward an Afrocentric Feminist Epistemology 354
Chapter 8 Does Science Tell Us the Whole Truth and Nothing But the Truth? 363
8.1 Introduction 363
8.2 Science and Common Sense 364
Ernest Nagel: The Structure of Science 365
8.3 Scientific Revolutions 374
Thomas S. Kuhn: The Structure of Scientific Revolutions 376
8.4 Feminism and Science 387
Elizabeth Anderson: Knowledge, Human Interests, and Objectivity in Feminist Epistemology 389
8.5 Japanese Views of Western Science 401
Thomas P. Kasulis: Sushi, Science, and Spirituality 403
8.6 Science and Traditional Thought 416
Kwame Anthony Appiah: Old Gods, New Worlds 418
Part IV Metaphysics 427
Chapter 9 What Is Really Real? 428
9.1 Introduction 428
9.2 The Dao 430
Laozi: Dao De Jing 433
9.3 Platonic Dualism 440
Plato: The Republic 443
9.4 Nondualism 450
Shankara: The Crest-Jewel of Discrimination 451
9.5 Subjective Idealism 459
George Berkeley: The Principles of Human Knowledge 461
9.6 Materialism 466
Paul M. Churchland: Eliminative Materialism 467
9.7 Pre-Columbian Cosmologies 475
Jorge Valadez: Pre-Columbian Philosophical Perspectives 477
9.8 So What Is Real? 483
Jorge Luis Borges: The Circular Ruins 484
Chapter 10 Are We Free or Determined? 488
10.1 Introduction 488
10.2 We Are Determined 489
Robert Blatchford: Not Guilty 490
10.3 We Are Free 495
Jean-Paul Sartre: Existentialism 496
10.4 Karma and Freedom 504
Sarvepalli Radhakrishnan: Karma and Freedom 506
10.5 We Are Both Free and Determined 509
Raymond M. Smullyan: Is God a Taoist? 511
Chapter 11 What Am I? Who Am I? 519
11.1 Introduction 519
11.2 You Are Your Mind 522
Rene Descartes: Meditation VI 524
Rene Descartes and Princess Elisabeth: Correspondence with Princess Elisabeth, Concerning the Union of Mind and Body 530
11.3 You Are an Embodied Self 534
Eve Browning Cole: Body, Mind, and Gender 535
11.4 There Is No Self 544
False Doctrines About the Soul and the Simile of the Chariot 547
11.5 What Is Consciousness? 549
Colin McGinn: Can We Ever Understand Consciousness? 551
11.6 How Much Can I Change and Still Be Me? 560
Jeffry Olen: Personal Identity and Life After Death 561
11.7 Social Identity 571
Gloria Anzaldua: How to Tame a Wild Tongue 572
Chapter 12 Is There a God? 579
12.1 Introduction 579
12.2 Cosmological Arguments 580
Maimonides: Guide for the Perplexed 583
St. Thomas Aquinas: Summa Theologica 589
12.3 The Origin of the Universe According to Modern Science 596
Victor Weisskopf: The Origin of the Universe 592
12.4 Creationism Vs. Evolution 601
Richard Dawkins: The Blind Watchmaker 603
12.5 An Ontological Argument for God's Existence 613
St. Anselm and Gaunilo: A Debate 615
12.6 The Gender of God 617
Mary Daly: Beyond God the Father 619
Appendix I Glossary 627
Appendix II Pronunciation Guide 636
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