Wednesday, January 17, 2024

The great philosophers: from Socrates to Turing - Edited by Ray Monk and Frederic Raphael

When I was a restless and immature high school student, I used to ignore my philosophy professor’s lectures while talking about silly topics with my classmates or doing the hell knows what. Most of the time, at least. Yet, something managed to sink in and the spark of curiosity ignited by that great teacher has never died. Ever since that confused phase of my life, I’ve tried to fill the gap by reading textbooks such as Russel’s “History of philosophy” and Gaarder’s “Sophie’s world” or some works by the most prominent western and eastern thinkers.

This is a collection of essays by various authors that were originally published as separate monographs. Each chapter is about a different thinker and deals with a specific aspect of their work.
My take below.
The greatest: Plato. The most disruptive: Descartes. The most beautiful: Spinoza. The most revolutionary: Marx. The most clarifying: Wittgenstein and Popper. The most surprising: Turing. I read them all but one could also pick just the ones they are interested in. It’s not an extremely easy read but your effort will definitely be rewarded. 

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