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What is Political Philosophy? And Other Studies 1st Edition

4.9 out of 5 stars 7 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0226777139
ISBN-10: 0226777138
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Editorial Reviews

Review

?Every study included is distinguished by Strauss's erudition and by a profound seriousness of purpose and tone. . . .?-Political Science Quarterly --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.

From the Back Cover

The matter collected in this volume has all been published before, but not all of it in the English original. 'What is Political Philosophy?' is a revised version of the Judah L. Magnes Lectures, which the author delivered at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, in December 1954 and January 1955.
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Product Details

  • Paperback: 316 pages
  • Publisher: University Of Chicago Press; 1 edition (October 15, 1988)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0226777138
  • ISBN-13: 978-0226777139
  • Product Dimensions: 5.5 x 0.8 x 8.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #352,130 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Format: Paperback
This book isn't a good place to start if you're new to Leo Strauss. In fact, unlike the reviewer above me, I would discourage Straussian neophytes from this collection. Although the book is rich and very representative of the wide range of philosophical concerns (perhaps except for Machiavelli) that dominated Strauss' thought, the essays almost always refer to previous debates/issues raised by other philosophers and/or Strauss' earlier writings. "On Tyranny" for instance presumes knowledge of the Starussian-Kojeve debate-dialogue over Xenophon's Hiero. The last essay on "Kurt Riezler" is really, at least in some sense, a bold assessment of Martin Heidegger's thinking and its effect on Germany during WWII and after.
All the essays date from the 1950s, a period that was very prolific for Leo Strauss. Moreover, this collection testifies to Strauss' on-going debate with prominent scholars of the moment, who have lost some significance in the passage of time. Every selection, except for the 16 book reviews from the 1950s, is a revised lecture; thus Strauss had a particular audience in mind when he offered his remarks (in the brief preface he indicates where and when he spoke/published each essay).
The cleanest and purest essay for the novice, in my estimation, is "On Classical Political Philosophy". Yet even here, Strauss assumes awareness in his audience of what, and who, defines "Classical Political Philosophy" and how "Modern Political Philosophy"(what and whom explained, but also assumed) have distorted the original teaching of classical political philosophers. All things considered I would encourage new readers interested in Leo Strauss to read "City and Man" first (my personal favorite).
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Format: Paperback
Philosophy could be the whole topic about everything, but politics has so much history that sorting anything out brings to mind times and places that we might love or hate, but very few upright scribblers need apply for the few positions that get big rewards or end up being despised. Hobbes and Locke wished for ideas that could be sorted out, but Leo Strauss finds some confusion about basic individual liberties, which can baffle big blockheads.
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Format: Paperback
Great book for Political Theory and Philosophy students. My third Leo Strauss's book, and he never stops to amaze me. As for the seller, great customer service and quick. Thank you.
A. from Houston Baptist University.
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Strauss was a master at examining the political philosophy of the past and thus he was able to point us towards many of the lessons we have forgotten from past philosophies today. This work contains his key contribution to modern political philosophy with his great essays "What is political philosophy", "Political philosophy and history", and also a nice collection on such thinkers as Xenophon, al-Farabi, Maimonides, Hobbes, and Locke.
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