Questions that Matter: An Invitation to Philosophy: An Invitation to Philosophy

Hardcover | March 10, 2008

byEd. Miller, Jon Jensen

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This classic text-reader introduces readers to the fundamental, timeless, and pressing questions of philosophy. The authors make the issues accessible for students with primary source readings incorporated into clearly written text material and an extensive pedagogical program that includes running summaries, high-interest boxes, biographies, epigrams, a philosophical dictionary. The new edition has been streamlined and revised to include a new chapter on Democracy, which expands the coverage of the ever-evolving realm of social and political philosophy.

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This classic text-reader introduces readers to the fundamental, timeless, and pressing questions of philosophy. The authors make the issues accessible for students with primary source readings incorporated into clearly written text material and an extensive pedagogical program that includes running summaries, high-interest boxes, biog...

Format:HardcoverDimensions:576 pages, 9.2 × 7.5 × 1.1 inPublished:March 10, 2008Publisher:McGraw-Hill EducationLanguage:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0073386561

ISBN - 13:9780073386560

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Extra Content

Table of Contents


1. What Is Philosophy?

The Word Itself

The Fields of Philosophy

A Rational, Critical Enterprise

A Working Definition

Philosophy, Religion, and Science

A Little Logic

What Is An Argument


Professor Miller's Four Principles

Of Beards and Bread

Chapter 1 in Review

Readings from:

Diogenes Laertius, Lives of Eminent Philosophers

Plato, Apology

Doyle, The Hound of the Baskervilles

Jaggar, "How Can Philosophy Be Feminist?"

Woodhouse, A Preface to Philosophy


2. The First Metaphysicians

The First Theory of Reality

Three Pre-Socratic Traditions

The Discovery of Form

Chapter 2 in Review

Readings from:

Aristotle, Metaphysics

Copleston, A History of Philosophy

Guthrie, A History of Greek Philosophy

Heidegger, An Introduction to Metaphysics

3. The Idea of Form

Plato and Socrates

The Two Worlds: Appearance and Reality

The Theory of Forms

Degrees of Reality and Knowledge

The Good, the Sun, and the Cave

Aristotle's Criticism of Plato

Aristotle's View of Form

After Plato and Aristotle

Chapter 3 in Review

Readings from:

Plato, Euthyphro, Timaeus, The Republic, Phaedo

Aristotle, Metaphysics, Poetics

Quine, "On What There Is"

4. Mind and Matter

Descartes: The Father of Modern Philosophy

"What Can I Know for Certain?"

The Intuition of Mind

The Deduction of God

The Deduction of Matter

Some Objections

The Mind-Body Problem

Mind: A Set of Dispositions or Functions

Chapter 4 in Review

Readings from:

Descartes, Discourse on Method, Meditations on First Philosophy

Searle, Minds, Brains and Science

Ryle, The Concept of Mind

Churchland, Matter and Consciousness

5. Idealism

What is Idealism?

Berkeley and Locke

Berkeley's View: Esse est percipi

Five Proofs for Subjective Idealism

Hylas and Philonous

Solipsism or God?

Some Objections

Chapter 5 in Review

Readings from:

Berkeley, Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous

6. Materialism

What is Materialism?

Man a Machine

The New Materialism

Are the Mind and Body Identical?

Beyond Freedom and Dignity: Skinner

Are All Things Dertermined?

Chapter 6 in Review

Readings from:

Lucretius, The Nature of Things

Hobbes, Leviathan

Laplace, A Philosophical Essay on Probabilities

La Mettrie, Man a Machine

Hanson, "The Dematerialization of Matter"

Taylor, Metaphysics

Churchland, Matter and Consciousness

Danto, Connections to the World

Skinner, Beyond Freedom and Dignity


7. Skepticism

Varieties of Skepticism

Pyrrho: The Classic Skeptic

Is Absolute Skepticism a Coherent Position?

Rorty and Friends: Historicism and Pluralism

Chapter 7 in Review

Readings from:

Diogenes Laertius (on Pyrrho), Lives of Eminent Philosophers

St. Augustine, Against the Academicians

Richard Roty, Philosophy and the Mirror of Nature

Grenz, "Star Trek and the Next Generation"

Plantinga, "The Twin Pillars of Christian Scholarship"

8. The Way of Reason

Two Main Theories about the Basis of Knowledge

Reason as the Basis of Knowledge

The Rationalism of Plato

The Rationalism of Descartes

A Contemporary Version: Chomsky

Chapter 8 in Review:

Readings from:

Plato, Phaeodo

Descartes, Discourse on Method, Rules for the Direction of the Mind

Chomsky, Aspects of the Theory of Syntax, "Language and the Mind"

9. The Way of Experience

What is Empiricism?

Classical Empiricism: Aristotle and St. Thomas

Modern Empiricism: Locke

Radical Empiricism: Hume

Chapter 9 in Review

Readings from:

Aristotle, Posterior Analytics

St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologia

Locke, An Essay Concerning Human Understanding

Hume, A Treatsie of Human Nature, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanging

10. The Problem of Certainty

Kant and Hume

Some Important Terminology

Is There Synthetic A Priori Knowledge?

The Limits of Reason

Chapter 10 in Review

Readings from:

Kant, Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics, Critique of Pure Reason


11. God and the World

Natural Theology

The Cosmological Argument

The Teleological Argument

The Problem of Causality

Chapter 11 in Review

Readings from:

St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae, Summa Contra Gentiles

Jastrow, God and the Astronomers

Paley, Natural Theology; Tennant, Philosophical Theology

Black Elk Speaks

Hume, Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion

Kant, Critique of Pure Reason

12. God and Reason

The Ontological Argument

Is Existence a Predicate?

The Moral Argument

Is There a Moral Law?

Is Religious Experience Evidence for God?

Chapter 12 in Review

Readings from:

St. Anselm, Proslogium

Descartes, Meditations on First Philosophy

Kant, Critique of Pure Reason

Malcolm, Knowledge and Certainty

Lewis, Mere Christianity

Rashdall, The Theory of Good and Evil

Russell and Copleston, "The Existence of God"

Weil, Waiting for God

Broad, Religion, Philosophy, and Psychical research

James, The Varieties of Religious Experience

Freud, The Future of an Illusion

13. God and Evil

What Is the Problem?

Some Solutions

Evil as a Privation of Goodness

The Free-will Defense

Evil as Therapy

Evil Is Irrational

Chapter 13 in Review

Readings from:

Mill, Three Essays on Religion

Hume, Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion

St. Augustine, The Enchiridion on Faith, Hope and Love, On Free Choice of the Will

Plantinga, God, Freedom, and Evil

Mackie, "Evil and Omnipotence"

Irenaeus, Against Heresies

Hick, Evil and the God of Love

Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus and Other Essays, The Plague


14. Challenges to Morality

The Challenge of Relativism

The Challenge of Determinism

The Challenge of Psychological Egoism

The Challenge of Existentialism

Chapter 14 in Review

Readings from:

Skinner, beyond Freedom and Dignity

Benedict, "Anthropology and the Abnormal"

James, "The Dilemma of Determinism"

Hume, An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding

D'Holbach, The System of Nature

Stace, Religion and the Modern Mind

Frankena, Ethics

Hume, An Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals

Hobbes, On Human Nature

Sartre, "Existentialism"

de Beauvoir, The Second Sex

Jaggar, "Feminist Ethics"

Marcel, The Philosophy of Existentialism

15. Utilitarianism

The Question of Consequences

What Is Utilitarianism?

Bentham's Version: Quantity over Quality

Mill's Version: Quality over Quantity

Some Objections

Chaper 15 in Review

Bentham, The Rationale of Reward, An Introduction to the Principles of Morals and Legislation

Mill, Utilitarianism

Williams, A Critique of Utilitarianism

Moore, Principia Ethica

Regan, "The Radical Egalitarian Case for Animal Rights"

16. The Role of Duty

Morality as Unconditional

The Good Will

Kant's Categorical Imperative

The Test of Moral Actions

Some Objections

Chapter 16 in Review

Readings from:

Beck, Preface to translation of Kant, Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals

Kant, Foundations of the Metaphysics of Morals

Martin Luther King, Jr., "The Ethical Demands of Integration"

Regan, The Case for Animal Rights

Taylor, Respect for Nature

17. Virtue

Character and Action

Aristotle on Happiness and Virtue

The Virtues


Is There a Natural Law?

Chapter 17 in Review

Readings from:

Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics

Hill, Ideals of Human Excellence and Preserving the Natural Environment

St. Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologiae

18. Liberty

The Liberal Perspective: Locke

Liberalism and Capitalism

A Radical Response: Marx

Some Objections

Chapter 18 in Review

Readings from:

The Bill of Rights

Locke, Essay Concerning Human Understanding, Second Treatise of Government

The International Declaration of the Rights of Man

Declaration of Independence

Smith, An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations

Marx, Early Writings

19. Democracy

Government by the People

Rousseau's Social Contract

Some Objections

Plato's Philosopher Kings

Chapter 19 in Review

Readings from:

Declaration of Independence

Rousseau, The Social Contract

Hobbes, Leviathan

Hume, Of the Original Contract

de Tocqueville

Democracy in America

Plato, Republic

Aristotle, Politics

20. Justice

The Problem

Rawls: Justice as Fairness

Nozick: Justice as Entitlement

MacIntyre: Justice as Virtue

Okin: Justice, Gender, and the Family

Chapter 20 in Review

Readings from:

MacIntyre, After Virtue

Rawls, A Theory of Justice

Marty, "Rawls and the Harried Mother"

Nozick, Anarchy, State, and Utopia

Sheffler, "Natural Rights, Equality, and the Minimal State"

Feinberg, Social Philosophy

Okin, Justice, Gender, and the Family


A (Short) Philosophical Dictionary

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