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Philosopher of the month: George Berkeley [timeline]

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This February, the OUP Philosophy team honours George Berkeley (1685-1753) as their Philosopher of the Month. An Irish-born philosopher, Berkeley is best known for his contention that the physical world is nothing but a compilation of ideas. This is represented by his famous aphorism esse est percipi (“to be is to be perceived”). Born in Kilkenny, Berkeley studied at Trinity College in Dublin, graduating with his Master of Arts degree in 1707. In Berkeley’s early work, his focus was mostly on the natural world and mathematics; however, his move towards philosophy is marked with his first philosophical publication, An Essay towards a New Theory of Vision (1709). His philosophical work was somewhat controversial and his importance initially quite overlooked. Berkeley’s influence was scarcely recognized at Trinity College until W. A. Butler wrote about him in the Dublin University Magazine in 1836. Although most scholarly work has focused on Berkeley’s idealism and immaterialism in. . .

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News source: OUPblog » Philosophy

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