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Now Reading Thread

Discussion in 'The Philosopher' started by derbeder, Dec 24, 2006.

  1. derbeder

    derbeder in a vicious circle

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    I thought it may be a good idea to have a thread where people post what they are reading at the time - kind of like a Now Playing Thread. There is a sticky thread that's been created for recommendations, but for this one we could just list what we are reading, and if people are interested, maybe have a little something to say about what it is about. Articles, as well as books could go on here. Of course, they should have some relevance to philosophy.

    Presently, I am rereading

    Michael Dummett - The Logical Basis of Metaphysics
    (This is the highly revised text of Michael Dummett's 1976 William James Lectures at Harvard. Dummett here provides a lengthy exposition of many of the ideas he has presented over the years concerning the theory of meaning. He dwells much on the components of a theory of meaning for a natural language, its relation to logic, and on the possibility of justifying basic logical laws. He takes certain fundamental metaphysical questions about realism - eg. about the question which vexed platonists and intuitionists in the philosophy of mathematics: do numbers exist as somehow constructed by (idealized) thinkers or do they objectively exist independent of such thinkers? - to be best approached via considerations having to do with the theory of meaning.)

    There are a bunch of other things I am currently reading, but for now I will just list this and see if other people like the idea of such a thread.
     
  2. Anvil

    Anvil Brain Bubbled

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    I finished, 'Aristotle - Nicomachean Ethics' yesterday.

    I started reading, 'Robert Jordan - Knife of Dreams' today.
     
  3. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

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    Started reading Buddhist Meditation and Depth Psychology
    yesterday. Finding it very interesting so far.

    Books I'm currently reading are Neal Stephenson's Quicksilver, (Historical fiction set in the 17th century, written by a sci-fi author) and 100 Essential Thinkers.

    Started Eckhart Tolle's 'The Power of Now' today, and put it down within a few pages. Too mind numbing and lacking in justification for me to digest. Not really a criticism of the book, he didn't exactly set out to rationally justify his methods of 'enlightenment', just to explain.
     
  4. bcmetalforces

    bcmetalforces metal radio provider

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    I'm noting down a couple of the above books..sounds interesting. Great thread idea btw.
    My Christmas Reading has been fluffy.."Da Vinci Code" mostly. Oh and " Three Arguments for the Elimination of Television" by Jerry Mander.
     
  5. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

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    yea, you really have to keep in mind that he's a spiritual teacher not some sort of academic philosopher. Personally I found his ideas pretty much self-explanatory, I'm curious what you hoped he could justify.
     
  6. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

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    recently, as my interest sways, I've been juggling, Ryle's 'Concept of Mind,' Irvine's 'On Desire,' and the sort of handbook encyclopedia 'The Oxford Companion to the Mind' which I would recommend anyone skim through the index of, as it provides a nice summary of a great many ideas.
     
  7. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

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    I just couldn't stomach what seemed a lack of knowledge or thought about the physical universe / brain on his part, and a propensity to come up with 'spiritual' sounding terms / beliefs to somewhat avoid this problem. After you asked I had a quick search for others thoughts on the book - I'm pretty strongly of the impression that had I read more than the first few pages :lol: I'd think similarly to this chap here: mindlace » Blog Archive » The Power of Now

    I have a fundamental value of critical thinking, and am unable to learn from teaching methods that do not address this. I borrowed the book from my mum, who has a far less critical mind and in her own words, "is interested in what works, not why". She seems a perfect candidate for authors like Tolle.
     
  8. speed

    speed Member

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    We have alot of reading threads, but they're all tied to philosophy, so I dont mind making the following post:

    I just finished Will Self's Book of Dave. The book is split between Dave, a London cabbie, and the future (AD--or After Dave), a dystopian place, where Dave's bible if you will, is adopted by a primitive human society. Thus, Dave's ideas about women, society, etc, become the religion of the future. Its very interesting in form and idea, and Self has some serious prose skills, but his future sections are terrifically difficult to read, and downright idiotic, and Dave himself is hard to believe: a balding paunchy poor jewish cabbie who marries a former irish model. Still, he writes with more talent and creativity than entire shelves of authors at most libraries or bookstores

    Julian Barnes The Lemon Table. Nice, nothing special. Its just a collection of short stories. I do highly, highly recommend Flaubert's Parrot to anyone.

    And I picked up a general fiction book at the library today by an Italian philosopher, titled Critique of Criminal Reason. Its about Kant solving a mystery. It sounded so interesting and ludicrous, I checked it out. I will report later how it is. Kant apparently begins writing this new criminal critique after solving the case.
     
  9. derbeder

    derbeder in a vicious circle

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    a couple articles in a collection titled
    Semantics versus Pragmatics, edited by Zoltan Szabo

    presently,
    Jeff C King and Jason Stanley - "Semantics, Pragmatics and the Role of Semantic Content"
     
  10. judas69

    judas69 god is in the radio

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    Most of you guys seem like very, boring people. :X
     
  11. Seditious

    Seditious GodSlayer

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    most exciting people seem to have very boring minds.

    I'm not envious.
     
  12. Nile577

    Nile577 Member

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    I am reading:

    Against the Day by Thomas Pynchon - just started this.

    Reformation - Europe's House Divided by Diarmaid MacCulloch
    A surprisingly lively and fascinating account of the Reformation (an era I previously knew almost nothing about)

    Evolution as a Religion by Mary Midgely
    Despite the title, this isn't a Creationist denunciation of Darwin but rather an interesting analysis of how science functions similarly to faith when we encounter some of its future predictions. I decided to read this on a whim, after seeing it in the library, as a response to a recent reading of Richard Dawkin's The God Delusion.

    The Oxford Dictionary of Practical German Usage

    The Beano Annual 2007.
    Alas, the humor of the Bash Street Kids is not what it was :(

    I mean to read the papers posted by Cythraul and Justin S.
     
  13. charles_dexter_ward

    charles_dexter_ward New Metal Member

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    I'm interested in this one, don't forget to give your thoughts when you're done. ;)

    Can anyone tell me a good place to start with Foucault, by the way?
     
  14. ExistEssence

    ExistEssence New Metal Member

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    I'm reading Perdido Street Station by China Mieville.
     
  15. Justin S.

    Justin S. Member

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    I find Discipline and Punish to be a great introduction to Foucault's lexicon and way of thinking. Madness and Civilization is also a good place to start.
     
  16. OldScratch

    OldScratch Member

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    I'm also one of those who often reads several books at the same time, thus:

    1) "Introduction To Metaphysics" - Heiddeger

    2) "The Fire" (The Bombing of Germany 1940-1945) Jorg Friedrich

    Just finished - "Nuremberg" (The Last Battle) David Irving
    This is a chilling illumination of what passes for international "Justice" in the west(Even as 'ol Saddam is prepared for the noose). Whatever history's understandably harsh judgement of The Third Reich, the show-trials at Nuremberg represent what even then was considered by many to be a historical low-point of western juris-prudence.
    Indeed, Pres. Bush might do well to familiarize himself with this read, as not a few were strung-up at Nuremberg for "war-crimes" rather less clearly defined than his own bloody adventures in Iraq, etc. (It is historically significant to note that the most serious of crimes leveled against the surving "Nazis" often had little if anything specifically to do with any Holocaust - Jewish or otherwise. Aggressive and "illegal" wars, and conspiracy to make such war were the determing factors in the death sentence of many.
     
  17. Freanan

    Freanan Member

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    I just finished:

    -Craig Russel: Blood Eagle, a book about a serial killer emulating an old norse ritual called Blood Eagle. I did not agree with its hudgement of germanic mythology and religion and it had one error in it, but i recommend it to anyone who liked that kind of stuff.

    -Seneca: On the Shortness of Life

    I am reading:
    Antonius Anthus: Reading on the art of eating. "Gastrosophy"

    I will be reading next:
    Oswald Spengler: Fall of the West, or what it is called ind english
    Gottlob Frege: Begriffsschrift
     
  18. Blowtus

    Blowtus Member

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  19. derbeder

    derbeder in a vicious circle

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    You may want to check out

    George Boolos, "Reading the Begriffsschrift", Mind 94 (1985), pp. 331-334.

    A nice and very readable description of Frege's proof of the main mathematical result in the Begriffsschrift concerning the ancestral. It is at first rather tedious to read Frege's two-dimensional script and follow through the proofs, and it makes it a lot easier at first to read the book along with this article.
     
  20. speed

    speed Member

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    This Critique of Criminal Reason novel by the Italian philosopher Michael Gregorio, turned out pretty good. Excellent plot and mystery, some nice poetic prose, and a very interesting characterization of Immanuel Kant. The dialogue was quite wooden and just off, as was a great deal of the narration, and despite the topic, the author heavily relies on cause and effect to every single piece of dialogue and scene in the novel--unless Kant is lecturing the narrator on why he should not be so rational and use cause and effect. So, apart from a missed opportunity there, it was very entertaining, and a fascinating potrait of Kant. An Umberto Eco-lite novel.
     

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