Descartes' Meditations is one of the most important texts in the whole history of philosophy. Descartes is widely regarded as the father of modern philosophy and the issues raised in the Meditations have often been taken to define the very nature of philosophy. As such, it is a hugely important and exciting, yet challenging, piece of philosophical writing. In Descartes's Meditations: A Reader's Guide, Richard Francks offers a clear and thorough account of this key philosophical work. The book offers a detailed review of the key themes and a lucid commentary that will enable readers to rapidly navigate the text. Geared towards the specific requirements of students who need to reach a sound understanding of the text as a whole, the guide explores the complex and important ideas inherent in the text and provides a cogent survey of the reception and influence of Descartes' seminal work. This is the ideal companion to study of this most influential and challenging of texts.
Richard Francks is Senior Lecturer in Philosophy at the University of Leeds, UK. He has taught Descartes' Meditations to first-year undergraduates for many years. Publications included Modern Philosophy (Routledge, 2003) and G. W. Leibniz: Philosophical Texts (OUP, 1998).
1. Life and Context; 2. Overview of Themes; 3. Reading the Text; 4. Reception and Influence; 5. Further Reading.