Philosophy & this Actual World: An Introduction to Practical Philosophical Inquiry

Front Cover
Rowman & Littlefield, 2003 - Philosophy - 223 pages
Academic philosophy has become so technical and inbred that it often fails to connect with the questions and concerns of educated nonspecialists. Martin Benjamin aims to bridge this gap. Presupposing little or no formal background, Philosophy & This Actual World addresses general questions of knowledge, reality, mind, will, and ethics, as well as more specific questions about moral pluralism, assisted suicide, the nature of death, and life's meaning. At the same time, it incorporates the advances of academic philosophers like Wittgenstein, Rorty, Putnam, and Rawls, making it equally as valuable to the scholar as to the philosophically uninitiated
 

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Contents

Agent and Spectator
5
No Way Out
7
The Cartesian Subject
16
The Pragmatic Subject
20
Agent and Spectator
21
The Irrepressible Skeptic
25
Language Meaning and Truth
28
Meaning
36
PhysicianAssisted Suicide
142
Determining Death
149
Background
150
The Main Question
153
The Subject of Life and Death
158
Law and Public Policy
164
Meaningful Lives
170
God Meaning and Mortality
171

Truth
44
Summary and Conclusion
49
Knowledge and Reality
53
Knowledge
54
Reality
70
Pragmatic Questions
71
Mind and Will
77
Mind
78
Will
89
Conclusion
98
Ethics
100
Origins
102
Moral Reasoning and Reflection
112
Democratic Pluralism
124
Moral Pluralism
125
Democratic Temperament
131
Compromise
134
Meaning without God
174
Pragmatism and Religion
180
The Priority of Democracy
183
Conclusion
185
Bibliographical Essay
188
Agent and Spectator
189
Language Meaning and Truth
192
Knowledge and Reality
194
Mind and Will
195
Ethics
196
Democratic Pluralism
198
Determining Death
199
Meaningful Lives
200
Bibliography
203
Index
215
About the Author
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Martin Benjamin is professor of philosophy at Michigan State University. Philosophy and This Actual World is his fourth book.

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