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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I think I am still a fan
This new Penguin edition includes the Meditations and selections from Principles of Philosophy and avoids repetition by omitting the simpler Discourse on Method. The Meditations is a keystone of 'modern' (as opposed to Medieval) philosophy and takes as its starting point the reconstruction of knowledge on a basis of absolute certainty. Hence Descartes begins by...
Published on 24 July 2011 by Stephen Cowley

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3.0 out of 5 stars It's okay, kinda disappointed
My book arrived around the estimated delivery time. However it was a lot more bent and damaged than I expected it would be which is a shame because it is such a great book.
Published 8 months ago by Cleo Oland


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7 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars I think I am still a fan, 24 July 2011
This review is from: Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
This new Penguin edition includes the Meditations and selections from Principles of Philosophy and avoids repetition by omitting the simpler Discourse on Method. The Meditations is a keystone of 'modern' (as opposed to Medieval) philosophy and takes as its starting point the reconstruction of knowledge on a basis of absolute certainty. Hence Descartes begins by enumerating his inherited beliefs and subjecting them to the famous 'Cartesian doubt' ('Cartesian' from 'des Cartes'). This reduces him to the famous 'I think, I am' as indubitable. From there, he builds up a system of knowledge on the basis of arguments, starting with the existence of God and modeled on mathematical argumentation.

Used as a teaching text, Descartes can reduce students to a frustrated scepticism, as can Hume's Treatise of Human Nature. One wise professor who used Descartes as a class text taught it alongside Francis Bacon's writings which summarise the wealth and detail of knowledge, classified into history, poetry and philosophy to counteract abstract scepticism. Descartes was also contrasted in the 19th century with Blaise Pascal's Pensées, which says that 'the heart has its reasons that reason does not know' and thus rounded out the rationalistic idea of experience. Amongst modern critics, John Macmurray's The Self as Agent argues that it is incoherent to separate knowledge and practice.
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3.0 out of 5 stars It's okay, kinda disappointed, 3 Nov 2013
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This review is from: Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
My book arrived around the estimated delivery time. However it was a lot more bent and damaged than I expected it would be which is a shame because it is such a great book.
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7 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A good start for budding philosophers, 14 Jun 2004
This review is from: Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
Having just finished AS Philosophy, I can say that studying Descartes' meditations was both interesting and enjoyable. Descartes Rationalist philosophy may seem to not stand up to modern ideas, but his thorough look at the way we view the world is very engaging, and challenges ideas.
A great read for those with time to study!
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10 of 15 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Descartes use of language is well preserved, 17 Mar 2002
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This review is from: Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
The way rene descartes writes is beautiful to read
and his philosophy is much more easily understood because of this.His writings aren't just of philosophical importance they are great pieces of litreture in themselves and this translation preserves his fluidity of words.This is a great read and the transference of ideas is totally complete.
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2 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars --- Descartes --, 29 Aug 2012
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This review is from: Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) (Paperback)
It is widely accepted that Descartes' conclusions were false. Perhaps "I am therefore I think" would be nearer the truth than "I think therefore I am". However, having taken the trouble to actually read his work I found it very stimulating. He comes across as quite modest, and deferential to his superiors at the Sorbonne. He is not afraid to pursue his enquiries and discard intermediate answers which present themselves. I did not feel obliged to either accept or reject the content of his enquiry but enjoy it as an example of an obviously intelligent man striving to understand a big subject.
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Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics)
Meditations and Other Metaphysical Writings (Penguin Classics) by Rene Descartes (Paperback - 26 Nov 1998)
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