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Meditations on First Philosophy: In Which the Existence of God and the Distinction of the Soul from the Body Are Demonstrated Paperback – October 1, 1993

ISBN-13: 978-0872201927 ISBN-10: 0872201929 Edition: 3rd

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Meditations on First Philosophy: In Which the Existence of God and the Distinction of the Soul from the Body Are Demonstrated + Five Dialogues + Hume: An Enquiry Concerning Human Understanding
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 59 pages
  • Publisher: Hackett Publishing Company; 3rd edition (October 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0872201929
  • ISBN-13: 978-0872201927
  • Product Dimensions: 0.2 x 5.2 x 8.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (23 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,074 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

The new version of Cress's translation of Descartes's Meditations has attained an unusually high degree of readability . . . and at the same time, of fidelity to the original. --Roger Ariew, University of South Florida, and Marjorie Grene (1910-2009), Virginia Polytechnic Institute

Language Notes

Text: English (translation)
Original Language: Latin

Customer Reviews

For these reasons, this book is worth reading.
Pumpkin King
It's also a work that I'd recommend to anyone who wants to be introduced to philosophy by reading the work of a great philosopher.
ctdreyer
A great book to help you ask questions about life.
DS

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

34 of 34 people found the following review helpful By ctdreyer on April 30, 2004
Format: Paperback
Descartes's Meditations on First Philosophy is one of the few works of philosophy that absolutely every educated person needs to read at least once. This is required reading for anyone interested in philosophy or its history, and honestly I don't see how this work can be ignored by anyone interested in the history of ideas. It's also a work that I'd recommend to anyone who wants to be introduced to philosophy by reading the work of a great philosopher. And don't worry: it shouldn't take you more than an afternoon to read through it. But you can, of course, spend the remainder of your life thinking about the ideas contained in this work.
The Meditations has had an incalculable influence on the history of subsequent philosophical thinking. Indeed, according to nearly every history of philosophy you're likely to come across, this work is where modern philosophy begins. It's not that any of Descartes's arguments are startlingly original--many of them have historical precedents--but that Descartes's work was compelling enough to initiate two research programs in philosophy, namely British empiricism and continental rationalism, and to place certain issues (e.g. the mind-body problem, the plausibility of and responses to skepticism, the ontological argument for the existence of God, etc.) on the philosophical agenda for a long time to come. Moreover, Descartes was capable of posing questions of great intrinsic interest in prose accessible to everyone. So the Meditations is a work of value to both newcomers to philosophy and to those with a great deal of philosophical background.
The First Meditation is Descartes's implementation of his method of doubt.
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Format: Paperback
Descartes' meditations really is the place to start for thinking through the philosophical obsessions of the modern era -- the value of skepticism, the nature and extent of knowledge, the relation between mind and body, the role of theology in a rational account of the universe, subjectivity vs. objectivity, the primacy of the subject, freedom, etc.

This is a book that can be read for these themes even by those who are encountering it for the first time without guidance. At the same time this is a book that rewards reading and rereading, not only in the sense that you should read it more than once but that you should come back to it again and again after you have read the other classical works of philosophy that both preceeded it and that it paved the way for. After a serious study of Kant, for example, you may find that you can come back to Descartes and see that much of the work of Kant's critical project was already prepared for in this little treatise. That is not to say that Kant is not original, but that part of Kant's genius is in thinking through and making explicit the scope of the philosophical landscape that was first mapped out in the Meditations.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Reader From Aurora on August 18, 2005
Format: Paperback
Rene Descartes' Meditations on First Philosophy is arguably the starting point for much of modern western philosophy. This short work comprises approximately 60 pages. Potential buyers should note that it does not include the "Objections and Replies" portion that is available in some other editions.

Although there are many important and helpful philosophical works, Meditations is probably one of the few must read for students of philosophy. Cress' translation does a commendable job of allowing readers to interact with this significant historic text. In Meditations Descartes touches on many key philosophical questions, the role of scepticism, the existence of God and mind-body dualism. This short 17th Century text is by no means an exhaustive examination of these issues - its value is largely the historical context it provides. Its arguements have, however, held up remarkably well over time.

Overall a true classic - I highly recommend it. This short book is a handy reference and good value. Some readers, however, may wish to consider purchasing Meditations as part of a broader collection.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Jerald A. Burton MD on September 20, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
One of the classic writings on life and philosophy. Not just for reading but to be used as a template for life.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Being my first introduction to Rene Descartes I found value in this translation.
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By Engineer on March 27, 2014
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
An enjoyable and interesting read.

This book is written (as many of Descartes works are), in a relaxing manner allowing full comprehension without complete attention.

Highly recommended.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is a foundational work on first philosophy. Descartes begins his meditations from what he can know for sure; that he exists, that he is a thinking thing and that there is a God.
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By holly bressner on July 1, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
it was just as described on site and came in great shape.
great price, it was the cheapest that I found
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