Kolakowski/Czerniawski: Presence of Myth

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University of Chicago Press, 2001 - Philosophy - 138 pages
"[An] important essay by a philosopher who more convincingly than any other I can think of demonstrates the continuing significance of his vocation in the life of our culture."—Karsten Harries, The New York Times Book Review

With The Presence of Myth, Kolakowski demonstrates that no matter how hard man strives for purely rational thought, there has always been-and always will be-a reservoir of mythical images that lend "being" and "consciousness" a specifically human meaning.

"Kolakowski undertakes a philosophy of culture which extends to all realms of human intercourse—intellectual, artistic, scientific, and emotional. . . . [His] book has real significance for today, and may well become a classic in the philosophy of culture."—Anglican Theological Review
 

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Contents

Preliminary Distinctions
1
Myth within the Epistemological Inquiry
9
Myth in the Realm of Values
19
Myth in Logic
34
The Mythical Sense of Love
44
Myth Existence Freedom
51
Myth and the Contingency of Nature
61
The Phenomenon of the Worlds Indifference
69
Myth in the Culture of Analgesics
83
The Permanence and Fragility of Myth
110
Conclusion
130
Index of Names
137
Copyright

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About the author (2001)

Leszek Kolakowski (1927-2009) was professor of philosophy at the University of Warsaw until the Polish political crisis of March 1968 when he was formally expelled. He then moved to universities in North America and the United Kingdom. From 1981 to 1994 he was a professor in the Committee on Social Thought and the department of philosophy at the University of Chicago. He is best known for his critical analyses of Marxist thought, especially his three-volume history, Main Currents of Marxism (1976). In his later work, he increasingly focused on philosophical and religious questions. He was the author of numerous books.

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