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Introducing Philosophy Through Pop Culture: From Socrates to South Park, Hume to House Paperback – August 30, 2010

ISBN-13: 978-1444334531 ISBN-10: 1444334530 Edition: 1st

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: Wiley-Blackwell; 1 edition (August 30, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1444334530
  • ISBN-13: 978-1444334531
  • Product Dimensions: 9.8 x 6.8 x 0.8 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.5 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #750,665 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"This totally engaging book shows how philosophy helps you to live happily, reflect logically and act responsibly. It is an essential tool for contemporary students and teachers of philosophy. Enjoy!"
David Carrier, Case Western Reserve University/Cleveland Institute of Art

From the Back Cover

What can South Park tell us about Socrates and the nature of evil? How does The Office help us to understand Sartre and existentialist ethics? Can Battlestar Galactica shed light on the existence of God?

Introducing Philosophy Through Pop Culture uses popular culture to illustrate important philosophical concepts and the work of the major philosophers. With examples from film, television, and music including South Park, House,M.D., The Matrix, X-Men, Batman, Harry Potter, Metallica and Lost, even the most abstract and complex philosophical ideas become easier to grasp.

This unique textbook, featuring essays from the Blackwell Philosophy and Pop Culture series, is perfect for any introduction to philosophy course. From metaphysics to epistemology; from ethics to the meaning of life, Introducing Philosophy through Pop Culture makes philosophy as engaging as popular culture itself.


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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Thomas G. Farrar on May 14, 2012
Format: Paperback
This book is self-described as a textbook intended for Philosophy classes in upper schools and universities as a companion to original texts by major philosophers.

The book does an excellent job of summarizing major ideas using popular television shows, books, movies, and music. Additionally, however, I found the study of how philosophy permeates these forms of entertainment and our basic culture to be doubly fascinating.

The book is a compilation of articles, each written by a different author, focusing on a general idea developed in pop culture. One of the best articles I found was about ethics (the concepts of right and wrong). The writer examined the ideas of Utilitarianism by John Stuart Mill (the basic idea that what is good for the most people is always best) and Deontology (the idea that morals are more important for an individual) by Immanuel Kant with an article about superheroes entitled "Why Doesn't Batman Kill the Joker?"

Other highlights include a piece on existence and identity in the movie "The Matrix," an article examining ideas by Nietzche and Marx in Metallica songs, development of a society in "Lost, and an item on destiny and free will in the world of "Harry Potter."

The book does have an emphasis on shows such as "Battlestar Galactica," "The Office," "South Park" and "House." Though I am not as familiar with these programs as with the movies discussed, all of the articles are accessible to the reader with just a slight exposure. The tome also includes articles using "X-Men," "The Colbert Report," "The Terminator," "Twilight," "Heroes," "Watchmen, "Family Guy," and "24."

I found the book a good refresher of many of the basic concepts I learned in a few courses in my past studies. Though not stressed by the authors, a reader with a critical eye may also be able to spot how these philosophical ideas have endured and filter into our daily life activities, including leisure and pop culture.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By tj on February 13, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
The book's title says it all. The author really does do a great job explaining concepts in an easy to understand way.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Katie Kelly on July 11, 2012
Format: Paperback
This is an accessible and enjoyable text book - a great introduction to the world of philosophy. Every library should have a copy. The chapter on The Terminator was fabulous.
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