From the Inside Flap
"Between the earliest and the latest of the works included here, we have two hundred and fifty years of vigorous and adventurous philosophizing," Monroe Beardsley writes in his introduction to this collection. "If the modern period can be only vaguely or arbitrarily bounded, it can at least be studied, and we can ask whether any dominant themes, overall patterns of movement, or notable achievements can be found within it. This question is one that is best asked by the reader after he has read, or read around in, these works." Selections have been made from the writings of twelve European philosophers. These include:Descartes Discourse on MethodPascal ThoughtsSpinoza
"The Nature of Evil"Leibniz
"The Relation Between Soul and Body"Rousseau The Social ContractKant Critique of Pure ReasonFichte The Vocation of ManHegel Introduction to the Philosophy of HistorySchopenhauer The World as Will and IdeaComte A General View of PositivismMach The Analysis of Sensations and the Relation of the Physical to the PsychicalNietzsche Beyond Good and Evil
From the Back Cover
"Today, then, as I have suitably freed my mind from all cares, and have secured for myself an assured leisure in peaceful solitude, I shall at last apply myself earnestly and freely to the general overthrow of all my former opinions."