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German Philosophers: Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche Paperback – May 31, 2001

ISBN-13: 978-0192854247 ISBN-10: 0192854240

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 464 pages
  • Publisher: Oxford University Press (May 31, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0192854240
  • ISBN-13: 978-0192854247
  • Product Dimensions: 7.4 x 1 x 4.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #638,135 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

`Review from previous edition Roger Scruton on Kant: 'Roger Scruton faced perhaps the most intractable task of all in giving an elementary account of Kant's philosophy ... but he does it extremely elegantly and neatly.'' Listener

About the Author

Roger Scruton is Professor of Philosophy at Birkbeck College, London. His books include Spinoza, also in the Past Masters series, Sexual Desire, and Modern Philosophy, along with several works of fiction. Peter Singer is De Camp Professor of Bioethics in the University Center for Human Values at Princeton University. He is well known for his text Animal Liberation. His other books include Democracy and Disobedience, Practical Ethics, and the Past Master on Marx. His recent book, Rethinking Life and Death, won the National Book Council of Australia's Bajo Award for the best non-fiction book of 1994. Christopher Janaway is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at Birkbeck College, London, and author of Self and World in Schopenhauer's Philosophy (1989). Michael Tanner is a Fellow of Corpus Christi College and a University Lecturer in Philosophy at Cambridge. His publications include Critical History of Opera and Wagner.

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Customer Reviews

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This book makes immediately explaicable two of the hardest authors in all history- Kant and Hegel.
James Versluys
I would definitely recommend the latter since if you appreciate any one of these thinkers, you'll likely find the other three fascinating as well.
all4dopamine
So these volumes are a good deal because i think the 'Very Short Introduction' series are 10 bucks each.
Ian Halloran

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

37 of 41 people found the following review helpful By James Versluys on July 13, 2000
Format: Paperback
These are highly admirable overviews by some of the best of the current set of the philsophers examining past greats.
This must have been a difficult book to put together. The editors would have to have found not one, but four great authors from which to put together introductions for the hardest authors in all philosophy.
He succeeded. This book makes immediately explaicable two of the hardest authors in all history- Kant and Hegel. I was amazed at the level of commentary in this short a work. It is almost impossible to pull this easy an introduction off. My hat is off to both Scruton and Singer.
The other commentaries and introcductions were as good as they come. Because of the ease of Schoepenhaur and Nietzsche, the authors had more room to give reasonably complete explanations and ruminations on their lives. Janner and Tannaway both make superb additions to these traditions, both commentaries worthy of being works in themselves.
This is four times a good book. My respect to all the authors, and my full throated call for people to read these books.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 3, 1999
Format: Paperback
This is a truly wonderful book. The reader can grasp what is being said in a relatively short time and spend the rest of his life thinking about it. I recommend it to newcomers in philosophy to get a good introduction to the some great philosophical thinking as well as to more seasoned practitioners so that they may learn how to explain things.
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9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Doktor Faustus on April 5, 2013
Format: Paperback
The first thing you should know about this book, "German Philosophers: Kant, Hegel, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche" by Roger Scruton, Peter Singer, Christopher Janaway, and Michael Tanner, is that each section on a specific philosopher is the same as the corresponding "___: A Very Short Introduction". For example, Roger Scruton, who wrote the section in this book about Kant, also wrote "Kant: A Very Short Introduction", and that book and the chapter of this book are one and the same. Likewise for Singer and Hegel, Janaway and Schopenhauer, and Nietzsche and Tanner.

The first section is about Immanuel Kant. This is the best of the collection; Scruton does a great job of describing Kant's system for understanding reality and also explains clearly his moral philosophy. He gives adequate background information for understanding Kant's thought (for example, how Kant's thought is in some ways a compromise to and also an opposition to Hume and Leibniz's philosophy). Kant's ideas are often called the most difficult in all of philosophy, but Scruton enables the reader to get some understanding of them.

The second section is about Georg Hegel. Singer's overview of Hegel is very confusing and somewhat disjointed despite an overarching sense of order in Hegel's philosophy. Singer also seems to spend considerable time questioning Hegel in the same breath as he is describing his ideas. This is distracting; it would be much better to include a concluding section that challenges Hegel's ideas rather than injecting skepticism into every step.

The third section is about Arthur Schopenhauer. Schopenhauer's ideas are some of the most hard-hitting of the collection and Janaway conveys this perfectly.
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16 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Richard L. King on April 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
All of the philosophers covered in this volume are difficult to read. They are difficult to read for several reasons, including: 1) some of the translations of the primary texts are mediocre at best; 2)translations never truly capture the intent of the original texts; and 3) even in the original German the ideas are challenging and difficult. Because of these difficulties, this book, which provides incisive accounts of the German philosophers, is particularly useful to the English-speaking reader. Highly recommended.
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9 of 12 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 14, 2001
Format: Paperback
I was already familiar with these philosophers after taking a course in philosophy, but the way in which these authors eluciate the ideas of these thinkers makes this a five-star book. In order of their greatness I'd have to place Nietzsche first, Scophenhauer second, Kant third, and while Hegel was profound, his worship of history was a little too much for me to swallow, so I place him last.
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