Kant: A Biography

Cambridge University Press
Free sample

This is the first full-length biography in more than fifty years of Immanuel Kant, one of the giants amongst the pantheon of Western philosophers as well as the one with the most powerful and broad influence on contemporary philosophy. It is well known that Kant spent his entire life in an isolated part of Prussia living the life of a typical university professor. This has given rise to the view that Kant was a pure thinker with no life of his own, or at least none worth considering seriously. In this biography, Manfred Kuehn debunks that myth once and for all. Taking account of the most recent scholarship Professor Kuehn allows the reader (whether interested in philosophy, history, politics, German culture, or religion) to follow the same journey that Kant himself took in emerging as a central figure in modern philosophy.
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Additional Information

Publisher
Cambridge University Press
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Published on
Mar 19, 2001
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Pages
580
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ISBN
9781316025437
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Language
English
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Genres
History / Social History
Philosophy / General
Philosophy / History & Surveys / Modern
Political Science / History & Theory
Social Science / Regional Studies
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This content is DRM protected.
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The aim of this series is to inform both professional philosophers and a larger readership (of social and natural scientists, methodologists, mathematicians, students, teachers, publishers, etc.) about what is going on, who's who, and who does what in contemporary philosophy and logic. PROFILES is designed to present the research activity and the results of already outstanding personalities and schools and of newly emerging ones in the various fields of philosophy and logic. There are many Festschrift volumes dedicated to various philosophers. There is the celebrated Library of Living Philosophers edited by P. A. Schilpp whose format influenced the present enterprise. Still they can only cover very little of the contemporary philosophical scene. Faced with a tremendous expansion of philosophical information and with an almost frightening division of labor and increasing specialization we need systematic and regular ways of keeping track of what happens in the profession. PROFILES is intended to perform such a function. Each volume is devoted to one or several philosophers whose views and results are presented and discussed. The profiled philosopher(s) will summarize and review his (their) own work in the main fields of significant contribution. This work will be discussed and evaluated by invited contributors. Relevant historical and/or biographical data, an up-to-date bibliography with short abstracts of the most important works and, whenever possible, references to significant reviews and discussions will also be included.
Most philosophical writing is impersonal and argumentative, but many important philosophers have nevertheless written accounts of their own lives.

Filling a gap in the market for a text focusing on autobiography as philosophy, this collection discusses several such autobiographies in the light of their authors' broader work, and considers whether there are any philosophical tasks for which life accounts are particularly appropriate.

Instead of the common impersonal and argumentative forms of ordinary philosophical discussion, these autobiographical texts are deeply personal and largely narrative or explanatory. The contributors to this book examine the philosophical significance of philosophers’ autobiographies and whether or not there are broadly philosophical tasks for which this sort of writing is particularly suited. Autobiography as Philosophy contains a general discussion about the relation between philosophical and autobiographical writing, and essays on the specific writings of Augustine, Abelard, Montaigne, Descartes, Vico, Hume, Rousseau, Newman, Mill, Nietzsche, Collingwood and Russell by specialists on the works of these individuals.

Original and distinctive in its efforts to think about the writings of historically recognized philosophers as communicative acts governed by their own distinctive interests and purposes, the book reveals that it is as much about the texts and the authors as it is about their doctrines and arguments. As a result the book steps back from many of the issues of substantive philosophical discussion to reflect on certain forms of writing as means to philosophical ends, to consider what those ends have included.

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