A History of Philosophy, Volume 7: Modern Philosophy: From by Frederick Copleston

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By Frederick Copleston

Conceived initially as a significant presentation of the improvement of philosophy for Catholic seminary scholars, Frederick Copleston's nine-volume A background Of Philosophy has journeyed a ways past the modest function of its writer to common acclaim because the top background of philosophy in English.
Copleston, an Oxford Jesuit of huge erudition who as soon as tangled with A. J. Ayer in a fabled debate concerning the life of God and the potential of metaphysics, knew that seminary scholars have been fed a woefully insufficient vitamin of theses and proofs, and that their familiarity with so much of history's nice thinkers used to be decreased to simplistic caricatures. Copleston got down to redress the incorrect by means of writing a whole heritage of Western philosophy, one crackling with incident and highbrow pleasure -- and person who provides complete position to every philosopher, offering his proposal in a fantastically rounded demeanour and exhibiting his hyperlinks to people who went ahead of and to those that got here after him.
The results of Copleston's prodigious labors is a historical past of philosophy that's not going ever to be exceeded. suggestion journal summed up the final contract between students and scholars alike whilst it reviewed Copleston's A heritage of Philosophy as "broad-minded and aim, accomplished and scholarly, unified and good proportioned... we can't suggest [it] too highly."

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Extra resources for A History of Philosophy, Volume 7: Modern Philosophy: From the Post-Kantian Idealists to Marx, Kierkegaard, and Nietzsche

Sample text

B u t if I take a walk along a London street, it does not depend simply on myself what I see or hear. And such presentations are said to be accompanied b y the feeling of necessity. That is to say, they appear to be imposed upon me. The whole system of these presentations is called by Fichte 'experience' even if he does not always use the term in this limited sense. And we can ask, what is the ground of experience? How are we to explain the obvious fact that a very large class of presentations seem to be imposed on the subject?

And in looking for the first principle of philosophy we cannot appeal to the theoretical superiority of a system which has not yet been constructed. What Fichte means is that the philosopher who is maturely conscious of his freedom as revealed in moral experience will be inclined to idealism, while the philosopher who lacks this mature moral consciousness will be inclined to dogmatism. The 'interest' in question is thus interest in and for the self, which Fichte regards as the highest interest.

A n d it is arguable, to put it mildly, that to attribute to the infinite a * Speculum Mentis, p. 151. INTRODUCTION ii process of becoming self-conscious is an evident expression of anthropomorphic thinking. Now, if there is a spiritual reality which is at any rate logically prior to Nature and which becomes self-conscious in and through man, how are we to conceive it? If we conceive it as an unlimited activity which is not itself conscious but grounds consciousness, we have more or less Fichte's theory of the so-called absolute ego.

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