Introducing Philosophy

Questions of Knowledge and Reality (Revised Second Edition)
Edited by Peter Atterton
©2017, 482 pages

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Introducing Philosophy

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    Introducing Philosophy: Questions of Knowledge and Reality, comprised of both classical and modern readings, offers an excellent introduction to many of the central issues in philosophy: whether God exists the problem of evil, the problem of knowing the external world, mind-body dualism, the doctrine of physicalism, personal identity, the debate on free will, determinism, and compatibilism, and modern theories of human nature (Schopenhauer, Darwin, Nietzsche, Freud, and Sartre). Aimed at the freshman-sophomore level, the collection presupposes no familiarity with the concepts it addresses, and offers a well-balanced and accessible approach to the field.

    An ideal teaching text, Introducing Philosophy: Questions of Knowledge and Reality is a stand-alone text organized into seven thematic parts to be covered during a single, semester-long course. It also provides various background readings and commentaries often requested by instructors, but all too often omitted in competing texts. These include a historical introduction, an introduction to logic, and a glossary. The collection also incorporates a discussion of scientific topics that have recently gained the attention of philosophers, such as the argument for the fine tuning of the universe, sociobiology, and ethics ("the selfish gene"). The revised edition includes a new chapter: Harry Frankfurt's influential essay, "Freedom of the Will and the Concept of a Person."

    Peter Atterton is professor of philosophy at San Diego State University. He has taught philosophy for twenty years, and has published articles and translations in the area of Continental philosophy. He is coeditor of several books, including The Continental Ethics Reader (Routledge 2003), Animal Philosophy (Continuum 2004), Levinas and Buber Dialogue and Difference (Duquesne 2004), Radicalizing Levinas (SUNY 2010), and Face to Face with Animals: Levinas and the Animal Question (2019). His research focuses on various aspects of the philosophical, phenomenological, and biological nature of human experience.
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