The Book of Dead Philosophers

Front Cover
Melbourne Univ. Publishing, 2008 - Death - 298 pages
8 Reviews
Diogenes died by holding his breath. Plato allegedly died of a lice infestation. Diderot choked to death on an apricot. Nietzsche made a long, soft-brained and dribbling descent into oblivion after kissing a horse in Turin. From the self-mocking haikus of Zen masters on their deathbeds to the last words (gasps) of modern-day sages, The Book of Dead Philosophers chronicles the deaths of almost 200 philosophers-tales of weirdness, madness, suicide, murder, pathos and bad luck. In this elegant and amusing book, Simon Critchley argues that the question of what constitutes a 'good death' has been the central preoccupation of philosophy since ancient times. As he brilliantly demonstrates, looking at what the great thinkers have said about death inspires a life-affirming enquiry into the meaning and possibility of human happiness. In learning how to die, we learn how to live.
 

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LibraryThing Review

User Review  - Bricker - LibraryThing

From a sentence to a few pages this book visits with nearly 200 philosophers and gives a snippet of their lives, opinions and deaths. A very interesting read. Read full review

LibraryThing Review

User Review  - gregorybrown - LibraryThing

This was hugely disappointing, and probably because it's not that good. The premise of the book is actually pretty interesting: illustrate the various philosophies to death by recounting the personal ... Read full review

Contents

Thales 5
5
Timycha 11 Heracleitus 11 Aeschlyus 12
12
Prodicus
20
Theophrastus 28
28
Pyrrho 37 Zeno of Citium 39
39
Lucretius
46
Kongzi Confucius 51 Laozi Lao Tzu 53 Mozi
53
Han Feizi 59
59
Hobbes 139 Descartes 141
141
La Rochefoucauld 146 Pascal 147 Geulincx 149
149
Anne Conway 150 Locke 151 Damaris Cudworth 154
154
Malebranche 159 Leibniz 159 Vico
161
Montesquieu 167
167
Rousseau 177
177
Kant 185 Burke
188
Schiller 192 Fichte 193 Hegel 194
194

Seneca 66 Petronius 69 Epictetus 70
70
Marcus Aurelius 73 Plotinus 74 Hypatia
76
St Paul 81 Origen 83 St Antony 84
84
St Gregory of Nyssa 87 St Augustine 88 Boethius
91
The Venerable Bede 97
97
Solomon Ibn Gabirol 103
103
Albert the Great 111 St Thomas Aquinas 111
111
William of Ockham
117
Machiavelli 123
123
Petrus Ramus 129
129
Bacon 134 Campanella
135
Heine 202 Feuerbach 202 Stirner
203
Kierkegaard 210
210
Freud 217 Bergson 219 Dewey
219
Santayana 224 Croce 225 Gentile 226
226
Wittgenstein 232 Heidegger 234
234
Gadamer 243
243
Beauvoir 252 Arendt
253
Camus 262 Ricoeur 263 Barthes
263
Deleuze 270 Foucault 271 Baudrillard
273
LAST WORDS
279
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About the author (2008)

Simon Critchley is an influential British philosopher now teaching in the United States. He is currently Professor of Philosophy at the New School for Social Research, New York, and at the University of Essex.

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