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The big questions: A short introduction to philosophy Paperback – 1982

ISBN-13: 978-0155054103 ISBN-10: 0155054104

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--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 266 pages
  • Publisher: Harcourt Brace Jovanovich (1982)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0155054104
  • ISBN-13: 978-0155054103
  • Product Dimensions: 9.1 x 6.1 x 0.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (10 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #13,163,885 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Robert C. Solomon, who received his Ph.D. from the University of Michigan, is Quincy Lee Centennial Professor of Philosophy and Business and Distinguished Teaching Professor at the University of Texas at Austin. He has published more than thirty books and over one hundred and fifty articles focusing on ethics, business ethics, the emotions, and the history of philosophy (most notably, Post-Kantian Continental philosophy). He is the author or (co-)editor of numerous textbooks and anthologies used in college classrooms throughout the world. Among these titles are SINCE SOCRATES, ON ETHICS AND LIVING WELL, TWENTY QUESTIONS: AN INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY, BIG QUESTIONS: A SHORT INTRODUCTION TO PHILOSOPHY, and ABOVE THE BOTTOM LINE, all published by Wadsworth. Before assuming his current post, he taught at Princeton, University of California Los Angeles, and the University of Pittsburgh. He is a yearly visitor at the University of Auckland, New Zealand. He regularly consults and provides programs in business ethics for corporations and organizations around the world. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

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Customer Reviews

4.2 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

19 of 19 people found the following review helpful By Christopher Trogan on June 6, 2000
Format: Paperback
This is an excellent introduction to philosophy...the only problem with it is that it does not include enough primary source material. But it is packed with other good stuff...including Solomon's wonderful explanations and clear writing on some very difficult topics.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Rhodamine Elektra on November 29, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This is my favorite book this semester. Solomon is humorous and effective in explaining the basics of philosophy. I'm not the type who can read and easily memorize the material, but I did with this book! Solomon has such an entertaining, yet incredibly informative manner of writing that it's difficult not to comprehend everything written. The book is replete with real-world, non-corny examples.
It speaks to you, and has questions for you as an individual to reflect on at the beginning of each chapter, and even within it. It is also helpfully (not condescendingly) redundant, which is probably why it's so easy to remember the material. The subjects are appropriate for an introduction to philosophy.
As for the included CD-ROM, I was VERY impressed. It has texts by the invaluable ancient philosophers, as well as modern philosophers. The CD-ROM has so much material that even trying to read all of it for class in an academic YEAR would be near impossible. It has both introductory-course appropriate works, as well as some excellent for upper-division undergraduate courses or perhaps even for graduate students.
This is a great book for anyone taking an introductory philosophy course, even if it is not assigned. In addition to all of this, it is written in conversational vocabulary, providing the college student or non-student reader with a breath of fresh air away from elevated, pretentious vocabulary.
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5 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Devon Petley on May 1, 2007
Format: Paperback
Solomon's "Big Questions" is an excellent beginning for anyone looking for a serious but approachable introduction to a wide variety of philsophical issues and methods. I teach an Introduction to Philosophy class at the high school level and use a large amount of the material in this book. I have found students can access Solomon's writing quite well; he is both terse and clear.

"Big Questions" breaks down issues of free will, mind-body relationship, the existence of God, the meaning of life, and includes a very useful overview of philosophical methods including formal logic. It is a well organized survey of western philosophy, with the inclusion of non-western philosophy as well.

I would highly recommend.
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By M. Eric Rathgeber on December 26, 2011
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
what can you say about a book that dedicates a few pages to almost every great philosopher in history? Every question it asks and proposes to answer (with more questions) is so perfect. This book almost converted me into becoming a philosopher.. but then I didn't see any job posting for that on MONSTER.COM. so I played it safe and stuck with being an entertainer. Spoiler alert: Book asks more questions than it answers:
do not read while high.
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By Angie on January 3, 2008
Format: Paperback
This is the only philosophy book, that I've read, that gave me a real understanding of the subject. I used this book, in a philosophy class, to explain what my textbook was supposed to.
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