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"'... gripping... the best current untechnical introduction to the lives and philosophies of the two men. Stewart does it in very agreeable prose, and what he says rests on a sound bottom of historical and philosophical scholarship, so lightly worn that one is not conscious of the skill that has gone into making the epoch and its seminal ideas accessible. The result is a thoroughly good book, hard to put down for anyone interested in the great story of the Western intellectual tradition.' A C Grayling, Literary Review 'Stewart lays the ground for a new genre: rigorous, readable intellectual history for the reader who would never buy a work of pure philosophy, but wants to know why people think the way they do.' The Economist 'Stewart has written an elegant and erudite book about these two antithetical yet related figures... superbly elegant and intelligent prose' Edward Skidelsky, The Saturday Telegraph 'A sprightly and enlightening biography... this is an exhilaratingly epic canvas. The philosophy of creation and substance might sound like hard going, but Stewart's writing has huge panache... philosophy exuberantly rooted in history, grabbing you by the lapels and making sure that you know why you are being dragged round the backstreets of The Hague and up the front of the Leineschloss in Hanover. You will not regret the visits.' - Diarmaid MacCulloch, The Guardian 'For the most part, all philosophers have to worry about today is boring their audience. This is certainly not a problem for Matthew Stewart's book... a compelling adventure.' Nicholas Fearne, The Independent"
Matthew Stewart received his doctorate in philosophy from Oxford University.
I have never reviewed a book before but I have regretted buying this book so much that I feel compelled to share my view. Read morePublished 7 months ago by mia
Ask the majority of people about Spinoza and they will guess it is a type of cocktail, ask a European about Leibniz and they will ask which soccer team he plays for or if you ask... Read morePublished on 26 April 2013 by RR