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Customer reviews

3.2 out of 5 stars

on 14 October 2010
This being (apparently) the only book available about Anaximander that is both available and recommended, I was really looking forward to reading it.

Certainly, the book is both thorough and interesting, but not very "user friendly". To get full value for this book, the reader needs to be able to read both classic greek and latin. This means that most layman readers will not benefit fully from reading it.

Sure, most greek and latin quotes are given an explaination, but no direct translations.

In general, I found it a tough read, but still very interesting. If the reader has a certain knowledge of modern cosmology and also some knowledge of the theories of evolution (i.e. Darwinism), he/she may find these more than 2500 years old thoughts very fascinating.
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on 5 June 2001
Kahn's Anaximander is a valuable book, an excellent source for the researcher and the reader of Greek philosophy. The book focuses on the importance of the Anaximandrean thought in the evolution of Greek cosmology. Kahn offers a close examination on the primary sources including Aristotle, Theophrastus, Simplicius, Hippolytus and others. The Anaximandrean "cosmos" and the "apeiron" (indefinite or infinite)are in the center of the discussion. There is a clear and critical presentation of the reflections of the Presocratic thought on later Greek philosophers and a good introduction on the nature of doxograpy. After an analysis and commentary on the different allusions of the Anaximandrean fragments, Kahn proceeds to a further and more general observation of the basic philosophical elements of early Greek thought. These observations are of a central importance for someone who wants to understand the real nature of Presocratic thought and, in addition, to learn how this thought should be analyzed, evaluated and presented. It is a great handbook for the student of classical studies who wants to go deep inside the origins of Greek cosmology and understand how this cosmology was perceived from the Greeks themselves and not as the later philosophical and epistemological thought interprets. Kahn does not make any use of anachronistic terms but always try to use the scientific thought of the philosophical period that investigates, remaining loyal to ancient philosopher and with respect to the reader.
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