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Descartes: Meditations on First Philosophy [Paperback]

Rene Descartes , John Cottingham , Bernard Williams
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
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Book Description

18 April 1996 0521558182 978-0521558181 Revised
The Meditations, one of the key texts of Western philosophy, is the most widely studied of all Descartes' writings. This authoritative translation by John Cottingham, taken from the much acclaimed three-volume Cambridge edition of the Philosophical Writings of Descartes, is based upon the best available texts and presents Descartes' central metaphysical writings in clear, readable modern English. As well as the complete text of the Meditations, the reader will find a thematic abridgement of the Objections and Replies (which were originally published with the Meditations) containing Descartes' replies to his critics. These extracts, specially selected for the present volume, indicate the main philosophical difficulties which occurred to Descartes' contemporaries and show how Descartes developed and clarified his arguments in response. This edition contains a new comprehensive introduction to Descartes' philosophy by John Cottingham and the classic introductory essay on the Meditations by Bernard Williams.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 120 pages
  • Publisher: Cambridge University Press; Revised edition (18 April 1996)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0521558182
  • ISBN-13: 978-0521558181
  • Product Dimensions: 22.6 x 15 x 1 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 7,209 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

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"By far the best available English translation of the fundamental philosophical text." www.wordtrade.com/philosophy1 --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

Book Description

This authoritative translation of the Meditations, by John Cottingham, is based upon the best available texts and presents Descartes' central metaphysical writings in clear, readable modern English. There is a new comprehensive introduction by John Cottingham and the classic introductory essay on the Meditations by Bernard Williams.

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I have a very good reason for offering this book to you, and I am confident that you will have an equally good reason for giving it your protection once you understand the principle behind my undertaking; so much so, that my best way of commending it to you will be to tell you briefly of the goal which I shall be aiming at in the book. Read the first page
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18 of 20 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
Format:Paperback
Descartes is widely recognised as the founding father of modern philosophy. The Meditations introduce a scientific method into philosophical thought, and are the foundation to Descartes' work in science.
It is a very hard piece of work to understand, and to reaps its benefits fully, it is essential to also read the Objections and Replies (to Descartes) and also the secondary texts (especially B. Williams, Curley, Wilson and Cottingham).
On the superficial level The Meditations are very far fetched and can be dismissed as an invalid proof of the existence of God. This may be so, but the real impact Descartes makes is in changing the methodology that Philosophy begins to take. For these reasons The Meditations is an extrememly important text. And though I would not label any book as being essential for a student or lover of Philosophy to have read, I would label the Meditations as a classic.
It is worth reading just to find out what all the hype (surrounding the cogito 'i think, (therefore) i am') is all about.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars My man Des Cartez 7 Oct 2012
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
Good read, but for a layman like me a heavy one. I struggled to read in big chunks, pacing and breaks are key! Not one for the holiday perhaps but nevertheless an essential piece of work for anyone with an interest, general or otherwise, in philosophy.
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5.0 out of 5 stars Good purchase 17 Oct 2013
By vanessa
Format:Paperback|Verified Purchase
The book was exactly as expected and my student boyfriend has found it invaluable for his degree studies. Recommended for any philosophy student
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