Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy

Hobbes’ Philosophy of Science

[New Entry by Marcus P. Adams on March 8, 2019.] Thomas Hobbes is rightly regarded as a monumental figure in the history of philosophy, especially for his masterpiece Leviathan (1651 in English; 1668 in Latin). The scholarly literature on Leviathan is voluminous and has been especially focused upon issues in political philosophy, such as representation and authorization, sovereignty and absolutism, contracts and covenants, and the relationship of civil authority to religion, among others. Since its printing the portrayal in Leviathan XIII [More]

Disability with Dignity: Justice, Human Rights and Equal Status

2019.03.10 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Linda Barclay, Disability with Dignity: Justice, Human Rights and Equal Status, Routledge, 2019, 142pp., $140.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781138498068. Reviewed by John Vorhaus, University College London This is a splendid book: written in bracing, plain English, it presents a conception of what a just society for people with disabilities might look like. Linda Barclay's aims are to establish 'the core entitlements of people with disabilities which are so flagrantly denied in the real world' and 'to make the best case possible for realising justice for people with disabilities' (4). She also makes out a case for the equal status of disabled people, and one of many distinguishing features of this volume is the attempt to justify and align both the entitlements and equal status that she maintains are possessed by all people, irrespective of any disability and its severity. The book combines impressive scholarship with a... Read [More]

Friedrich Nietzsche and European Nihilism

2019.03.09 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Paul van Tongeren, Friedrich Nietzsche and European Nihilism, Cambridge Scholars, 2018, 198pp., $119.95 (hbk), ISBN 9781527508804. Reviewed by Matthew Meyer, University of Scranton This is a solid piece of scholarship written by a seasoned expert in the field that will be essential reading for anyone grappling with Nietzsche's understanding of nihilism. The quality of the discussion rivals that found in Bernard Reginster's The Affirmation of Life: Nietzsche on Overcoming Nihilism (Harvard University Press, 2006). The book, which emerged from a series of university lectures, is also designed to introduce the problem of nihilism in Nietzsche's writings and European history more generally. In laying out this terrain, it succeeds admirably. However, one might quibble with some of the specifics of Van Tongeren's account, and so although this book is an important contribution to the scholarly conversation around Nietzsche's nihilism, there are also reasons to... Read [More]

Writing formal philosophy

This is a guest contribution by Richard Pettigrew, Professor of Philosophy at the University of Bristol for our series How Philosophers Write: Stephen Hawking speculated that every formula he included in A Brief History of Time would cut its readership in half. In the end, he included only one, [More]

Phenomenology in France: A Philosophical and Theological Introduction

2019.03.08 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Steven DeLay, Phenomenology in France: A Philosophical and Theological Introduction, Routledge, 2019, 254pp., $39.95 (pbk), ISBN 9781138244979. Reviewed by François Raffoul, Louisiana State University In this book, Steven DeLay seeks to engage recent developments in French phenomenology. He presents the book as "an introduction to French phenomenology in the post-1945 period," with chapters devoted to Emmanuel Levinas, Michel Henry, Jean-Luc Marion, Jean-Yves Lacoste, Jean-Louis Chretien, and Claude Romano (the reasons for these choices will be clarified below). However, DeLay betrays his actual interest and purpose in the introduction's first line where he laments: that God ("the one of the Bible") "has fallen into disfavor nearly everywhere" (1), that "God's existence is contested rather than presupposed," and that finally, "as a result, it is no longer practiced to philosophize from the fact of Revelation." He also laments Heidegger's choice of a "methodological atheism" to practice... Read [More]

After Injury: A Historical Anatomy of Forgiveness, Resentment and Apology

2019.03.07 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Ashraf H. A. Rushdy, After Injury: A Historical Anatomy of Forgiveness, Resentment and Apology, Oxford University Press, 2018, 288pp., $34.95 (hbk), ISBN 9780190851972. Reviewed by Christopher Bennett, University of Sheffield The topics covered in this book -- forgiveness, resentment and apology -- have been undergoing something of a revival in philosophical interest over the past twenty or thirty years. However, as can often happen, the growth in intensity of philosophical scrutiny has corresponded to a growth in the abstractness of the examples that are meant to underpin the theorising. Examples that call to mind the rich field of experience to which philosophers' schemata are meant to be adequate are rare. It would introduce a more complex set of examples, and hence a more adequate set of data for philosophers to exercise their minds over, if those working on these topics drew on a wider range of experience, and hence did... Read [More]