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Mirror, Mirror: The Uses and Abuses of Self-Love Hardcover – 7 Feb 2014

2.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Hardcover: 248 pages
  • Publisher: Princeton University Press (7 Feb. 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0691161429
  • ISBN-13: 978-0691161426
  • Product Dimensions: 2.5 x 14.6 x 22.2 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 2.0 out of 5 stars 2 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 813,938 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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Product description

Review

""Mirror, Mirror" is a short, relaxed book, for the educated lay reader. . . . Reading him, we feel as if we were sitting in a comfortable chair, after dinner, listening to our friend Blackburn tell us not so much about politics or social history as about what lies behind them: morals--that is, what we owe to others, as opposed to what we want for ourselves. . . . [H]is prose is clear. It is also unostentatious."--Joan Acocella, "New Yorker"

"I found Blackburn s treatment of issues surrounding self-love and self-consciousness to be engaging, readable, and thought-provoking, and the book is therefore recommended."--Philip T. Yanos, "PsycCRITIQUES""

"Blackburn s wide-ranging, engaging, and deeply thoughtful volume is admirable for many reasons, but above all else, one hopes, it is a tool to help liberate the human imagination."--Troy Jollimore, "Philosophers Magazine""

"Blackburn writes on vanity, pride and amour proper with deep insight."--Marina Gerner, Times Literary Supplement

"[A] lucid and graceful philosophical probing of self-consciousness. . . . Simon Blackburn's Mirror, Mirror is a very fine and brilliant book, full of the sort of measured analysis and keen insight you might expect from that excellent University of Cambridge philosopher. . . . Blackburn is not just a sure and supremely knowledgeable narrator in whom we can have utmost confidence, but one with a quirky ear, alert to the curious side note and irrefutable detail that can make his sometimes dusty discipline gleam with a new sheen and edge."--Shahidha Bari, Times Higher Education

"[O]ne of the best popularisers of his discipline."--The Economist

"[T]he energy of his prose is generally exhilarating, and often funny. . . . [A]n agile, learned tour of the emotions and attitudes that human beings have towards their own and other selves. Drawing on an eclectic array of texts from literature, psychology and philosophy, Blackburn examines the ways in which a healthy self-respect, and pride in one's real achievements, can tip into vanity, envy and hubris. In doing so he puts the heat not only on the richest 1 per cent, but on us all, and all our follies."--Hannah Dawson, Prospect

"Blackburn never waxes memoiristic; he uses the first person sparingly. Still, the book implies a quest, Socrates-like, for self-knowledge--by no means to be confused with what Narcissus was after."--Scott McLemee, Inside Higher Ed

"Guiding us gracefully through the philosophers and writers of subjectivity . . . Blackburn's book is quietly insistent on the potency of rigorous thinking about subjectivity in the face of a deluded, hubristic and dangerous narcissism. . . . Blackburn makes his points with seriousness and severity, but also with a quietly lyrical sensitivity to the necessity of self-respect as a foundation for the respect of others. . . . An admirable calling for philosophers, psychologists and students of myth alike."--Helen Tyson, Literary Review

"Simon Blackburn explores the complex phenomena surrounding selves and self-regard, offering deep insights into notions like pride, ambition, vanity, authenticity, and much else."--newbooksinphilosophy.com

"Showing the ways pride and shame work together is Blackburn at his best. . . . This is a book by a philosopher who knows the history of ideas as well as anyone working today, written in Blackburn's witty, accessible, self-deprecating style. I recommend it with enthusiasm. With my own tendency toward misanthropy, I closed the book envying him his evident respect for and even love of other human beings."--Clancy Martin, Chronicle of Higher Education

"Blackburn's grasp on the subject is impeccable and his lucid narrative is loaded with nuggets of wisdom. . . . The book provides enough resources for self-correction, a search for true self, based on a hard process of analysis, discovery and purification."--Cover Drive Blog

"Quoting Miss Piggy and Wittgenstein with equal ease, Blackburn maps the terrain of self-love in its many manifestations from self-esteem to vanity, narcissism, and beyond."--Choice

"Writing in his usual witty style, Blackburn weaves together insights from Greek mythology, popular culture, literature, and the history of philosophy to develop a remarkably seamless discussion."--Lorraine Besser-Jones, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

"Blackburn's tone is light-hearted and often entertaining, and I don't doubt the book's appeal to a generalist audience wishing to take pleasure in a well-crafted distillation of philosophical ideas of the good life."--Julie Walsh, Centre for Medical Humanities

"Blackburn's wide ranging, engaging, and deeply thoughtful volume is admirable for many reasons, but above all else, one hopes, it is a tool to help liberate the human imagination."--Troy Jollimore, Philosophers' Magazine

"I found Blackburn's treatment of issues surrounding self-love and self-consciousness to be engaging, readable, and thought-provoking, and the book is therefore recommended."--Philip T. Yanos, PsycCRITIQUES

"Blackburn's wide-ranging, engaging, and deeply thoughtful volume is admirable for many reasons, but above all else, one hopes, it is a tool to help liberate the human imagination."--Troy Jollimore, Philosophers' Magazine

-Mirror, Mirror is a short, relaxed book, for the educated lay reader. . . . Reading him, we feel as if we were sitting in a comfortable chair, after dinner, listening to our friend Blackburn tell us not so much about politics or social history as about what lies behind them: morals--that is, what we owe to others, as opposed to what we want for ourselves. . . . [H]is prose is clear. It is also unostentatious.---Joan Acocella, New Yorker

-Blackburn writes on vanity, pride and amour proper with deep insight.---Marina Gerner, Times Literary Supplement

-[A] lucid and graceful philosophical probing of self-consciousness. . . . Simon Blackburn's Mirror, Mirror is a very fine and brilliant book, full of the sort of measured analysis and keen insight you might expect from that excellent University of Cambridge philosopher. . . . Blackburn is not just a sure and supremely knowledgeable narrator in whom we can have utmost confidence, but one with a quirky ear, alert to the curious side note and irrefutable detail that can make his sometimes dusty discipline gleam with a new sheen and edge.---Shahidha Bari, Times Higher Education

-[O]ne of the best popularisers of his discipline.---The Economist

-[T]he energy of his prose is generally exhilarating, and often funny. . . . [A]n agile, learned tour of the emotions and attitudes that human beings have towards their own and other selves. Drawing on an eclectic array of texts from literature, psychology and philosophy, Blackburn examines the ways in which a healthy self-respect, and pride in one's real achievements, can tip into vanity, envy and hubris. In doing so he puts the heat not only on the richest 1 per cent, but on us all, and all our follies.---Hannah Dawson, Prospect

-Blackburn never waxes memoiristic; he uses the first person sparingly. Still, the book implies a quest, Socrates-like, for self-knowledge--by no means to be confused with what Narcissus was after.---Scott McLemee, Inside Higher Ed

-Guiding us gracefully through the philosophers and writers of subjectivity . . . Blackburn's book is quietly insistent on the potency of rigorous thinking about subjectivity in the face of a deluded, hubristic and dangerous narcissism. . . . Blackburn makes his points with seriousness and severity, but also with a quietly lyrical sensitivity to the necessity of self-respect as a foundation for the respect of others. . . . An admirable calling for philosophers, psychologists and students of myth alike.---Helen Tyson, Literary Review

-Simon Blackburn explores the complex phenomena surrounding selves and self-regard, offering deep insights into notions like pride, ambition, vanity, authenticity, and much else.---newbooksinphilosophy.com

-Showing the ways pride and shame work together is Blackburn at his best. . . . This is a book by a philosopher who knows the history of ideas as well as anyone working today, written in Blackburn's witty, accessible, self-deprecating style. I recommend it with enthusiasm. With my own tendency toward misanthropy, I closed the book envying him his evident respect for and even love of other human beings.---Clancy Martin, Chronicle of Higher Education

-Blackburn's grasp on the subject is impeccable and his lucid narrative is loaded with nuggets of wisdom. . . . The book provides enough resources for self-correction, a search for true self, based on a hard process of analysis, discovery and purification.---Cover Drive Blog

-Quoting Miss Piggy and Wittgenstein with equal ease, Blackburn maps the terrain of self-love in its many manifestations from self-esteem to vanity, narcissism, and beyond.---Choice

-Writing in his usual witty style, Blackburn weaves together insights from Greek mythology, popular culture, literature, and the history of philosophy to develop a remarkably seamless discussion.---Lorraine Besser-Jones, Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews

-Blackburn's tone is light-hearted and often entertaining, and I don't doubt the book's appeal to a generalist audience wishing to take pleasure in a well-crafted distillation of philosophical ideas of the good life.---Julie Walsh, Centre for Medical Humanities

-Blackburn's wide ranging, engaging, and deeply thoughtful volume is admirable for many reasons, but above all else, one hopes, it is a tool to help liberate the human imagination.---Troy Jollimore, Philosophers' Magazine

-I found Blackburn's treatment of issues surrounding self-love and self-consciousness to be engaging, readable, and thought-provoking, and the book is therefore recommended.---Philip T. Yanos, PsycCRITIQUES

-Blackburn's wide-ranging, engaging, and deeply thoughtful volume is admirable for many reasons, but above all else, one hopes, it is a tool to help liberate the human imagination.---Troy Jollimore, Philosophers' Magazine

"Mirror, Mirror is a short, relaxed book, for the educated lay reader. . . . Reading him, we feel as if we were sitting in a comfortable chair, after dinner, listening to our friend Blackburn tell us not so much about politics or social history as about what lies behind them: morals--that is, what we owe to others, as opposed to what we want for ourselves. . . . [H]is prose is clear. It is also unostentatious."--Joan Acocella, New Yorker

From the Back Cover

"With his hallmark clarity, lucidity, and accessibility, Blackburn gives us a remarkable set of insights into a highly significant yet too-little explored area of ethical concern. This is important and original philosophy, beautifully done."--A. C. Grayling, author of The Good Book: A Humanist Bible

"A wise, witty, and rewarding read."--Patricia S. Churchland, author of Touching a Nerve: The Self as Brain

"A lively philosophical commentary on a topic of immediate cultural concern, Mirror, Mirror presents a biting critique of narcissism and other vices of the overinflated self. Simon Blackburn brings the issues to life with his customary irreverence and energy: he's alert to their moral and cultural significance, has a keen eye for the ridiculous, and wears his learning lightly."--Rae Langton, Massachusetts Institute of Technology

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TOP 1000 REVIEWERon 14 April 2014
Format: Hardcover
33 Comments| 8 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on 7 May 2014
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Amazon.com: 3.9 out of 5 stars 3 reviews
5.0 out of 5 starsthis perceptive account of various forms of self love is illuminating
on 13 September 2016 - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Hardcover|Verified Purchase
6 people found this helpful.
2.0 out of 5 starsToo much talk, too little content
on 12 June 2014 - Published on Amazon.com
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6 people found this helpful.
5.0 out of 5 starsSuperb philosophy
on 11 April 2014 - Published on Amazon.com
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