Essays and Reviews: 1959-2002

Essays and Reviews: 1959-2002

By: Bernard Williams (author), Michael Wood (foreword_author)Paperback

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Bernard Williams was one of the most important philosophers of the past fifty years, but he was also a distinguished critic and essayist with an elegant style and a rare ability to communicate complex ideas to a wide public. This is the first collection of Williams's popular essays and reviews. Williams writes about a broad range of subjects, from philosophy to science, the humanities, economics, feminism, and pornography. Included are reviews of major books such as John Rawls's Theory of Justice, Richard Rorty's Consequences of Pragmatism, and Martha Nussbaum's Therapy of Desire. But many of these essays extend beyond philosophy, providing an intellectual tour through the past half century, from C. S. Lewis to Noam Chomsky. No matter the subject, readers see a first-class mind grappling with landmark books in "real time," before critical consensus had formed and ossified.

About Author

Bernard Williams held Chairs of Moral Philosophy at Cambridge, Berkeley, and Oxford. He died in 2003.


Foreword Michael Wood xi 1 Plato Today, by R.H.S. Crossman, Spectator (1959) 3 2 English Philosophy since 1900, by G. J. Warnock, Philosophy (1959) 5 3 Thought and Action, by Stuart Hampshire, Encounter (1960) 8 4 The Theological Appearance of the Church of England: An External View, Prism (1960) 17 5 The Four Loves, by C. S. Lewis, Spectator (1960) 24 6 Discourse on Method, by Rene Descartes, translated by Arthur Wollaston, Spectator (1960) 26 7 The Individual Reason: L'esprit laic, BBC Radio 3 talk, Listener (1961) 28 8 What Is Existentialism? BBC World Service talk broadcast in Vietnamese (1962) 35 9 Sketch for a Theory of the Emotions, by Jean-Paul Sartre, translated by Philip Mairet, Spectator (1962) 38 10 Sense and Sensibilia, by J. L. Austin, reconstructed by G. J. Warnock; Philosophical Papers, edited by J. O. Urmson and G. J. Warnock, Oxford Magazine (1962) 40 11 The Concept of a Person, by A. J. Ayer, New Statesman (1963) 45 12 Two Faces of Science, BBC Radio 3 talk in the series Personal View, Listener (1963) 48 13 The English Moralists, by Basil Willey, New York Review of Books (1965) 52 14 Universities: Protest, Reform and Revolution, Lecture in celebration of the foundation of Birkbeck College (1968) 55 15 Has 'God' a Meaning? Question (1968) 70 16 Russell and Moore: The Analytical Heritage, by A. J. Ayer (1971) 75 17 Immanuel Kant, by Lucien Goldmann, Cambridge Review (1972) 77 18 A Theory of Justice, by John Rawls, Spectator (1972) 82 19 Beyond Freedom and Dignity, by B. F. Skinner, Observer (1972) 87 20 What Computers Can't Do: A Critique of Artificial Reason, by Hubert L. Dreyfus, New York Review of Books (1973) 90 21 Wisdom: Twelve Essays, edited by Renford Bambrough, Times Literary Supplement (1974) 101 22 The Socialist Idea, edited by Stuart Hampshire and L. Kolakowski, Observer (1975) 104 23 Anarchy, State, and Utopia, by Robert Nozick, Political Philosophy (1975) 107 24 The Ethics of Fetal Research, by Paul Ramsey, Times LiterarySupplement (1975) 115 25 The Moral View of Politics, BBC Radio 3 talk in the series Current Trends in Philosophy, Listener (1976) 119 26 The Life of Bertrand Russell, by Ronald W. Clark; The Tamarisk Tree: My Quest for Liberty and Love, by Dora Russell; My Father Bertrand Russell, by Katharine Tait; Bertrand Russell, by A. J. Ayer, New York Review of Books (1976) 125 27 Reflections on Language, by Noam Chomsky; On Noam Chomsky: Critical Essays, edited by Gilbert Harman, New York Review of Books (1976) 133 28 The Selfish Gene, by Richard Dawkins, New Scientist (1976) 140 29 The Fire and the Sun: Why Plato Banished the Artists, by Iris Murdoch, New Statesman (1977) 142 30 The Logic of Abortion, BBC Radio 3 talk, Listener (1977) 146 31 On Thinking, by Gilbert Ryle, edited by Konstantin Kolenda, London Review of Books (1979) 152 32 Rubbish Theory, by Michael Thompson, London Review of Books (1980) 157 33 Lying: Moral Choice in Public and Private Life, by Sissela Bok, Political Quarterly (1980) 161 34 Logic and Society and Ulysses and the Sirens, by Jon Elster, London Review of Books (1980) 165 35 The Culture of Narcissism, by Christopher Lasch; Nihilism and Culture, by Johan Goudsblom, London Review of Books (1980) 169 36 Religion and Public Doctrine in England, by Maurice Cowling, London Review of Books (1981) 173 37 Nietzsche on Tragedy, by M. S. Silk and J. P. Stern; Nietzsche: A Critical Life, by Ronald Hayman; Nietzsche, vol. 1, The Will to Power as Art, by Martin Heidegger, translated by David Farrell Krell, London Review of Books (1981) 179 38 After Virtue: A Study in Moral Theory, by Alasdair MacIntyre, Sunday Times (1981) 184 39 Philosophical Explanations, by Robert Nozick, New York Review of Books (1982) 187 40 The Miracle of Theism: Arguments for and against the Existence of God, by J. L. Mackie, Times Literary Supplement (1983) 197 41 Offensive Literature: Decensorship in Britain, 1960-1982, by John Sutherland, London Review of Books (1983) 200 42 Consequences of Pragmatism (Essays 1972-1980), by Richard Rorty, New York Review of Books (1983) 204 43 The Collected Papers of Bertrand Russell, vol. I, Cambridge Essays 1888-99, edited by Kenneth Blackwell and others, Observer (1984) 216 44 Reasons and Persons, by Derek Parfit, London Review of Books (1984) 218 45 Wickedness: A Philosophical Essay, by Mary Midgley, Observer (1984) 224 46 Secrets: On the Ethics of Concealment and Revelation, by Sissela Bok; The Secrets File: The Case for Freedom of Information in Britain Today, edited by Des Wilson, foreword by David Steel, London Review of Books (1984) 226 47 Choice and Consequence, by Thomas C. Schelling, Economics and Philosophy (1985) 231 48 Privacy: Studies in Social and Cultural History, by Barrington Moore, Jr., New York Review of Books (1985) 236 49 Ordinary Vices, by Judith Shklar; Immorality, by Ronald Milo, London Review of Books (1985) 241 50 The Right to Know: The Inside Story of the Belgrano Affair, by Clive Ponting; The Price of Freedom, by Judith Cook, Times Literary Supplement (1985) 246 51 Taking Sides: The Education of a Militant Mind, by Michael Harrington, New York Times Book Review (1986) 252 52 A Matter of Principle, by Ronald Dworkin (1986) 256 53 The View from Nowhere, by Thomas Nagel, London Review of Books (1986) 261 54 What Hope for the Humanities? Times Educational Supplement (1987) (edited version of the Raymond Priestley Lecture [1986]) 267 55 The Society of Mind, by Marvin Minsky, New York Review of Books (1987) 274 56 Whose Justice? Which Rationality? by Alasdair MacIntyre, London Review of Books (1989) 283 57 Intellectuals, by Paul Johnson, New York Review of Books (1989) 288 58 Contingency, Irony and Solidarity, by Richard Rorty, London Review of Books (1989) 295 59 Sources of the Self: The Making of the Modern Identity, by Charles Taylor, New York Review of Books (1990) 301 60 The Need to Be Sceptical, Times Literary Supplement (1990) 311 61 The Saturated Self: Dilemmas of Identity in Contemporary Life, by Kenneth J. Gergen, New York Times Book Review (1991) 318 62 Realism with a Human Face, by Hilary Putnam, London Review of Books (1991) 320 63 Political Liberalism, by John Rawls, London Review of Books (1993) 326 64 Inequality Reexamined, by Amartya Sen, London Review of Books (1993) 332 65 The Therapy of Desire: Theory and Practice in Hellenistic Ethics, by Martha Nussbaum, London Review of Books (1994) 339 66 Only Words, by Catharine MacKinnon, London Review of Books (1994) 345 67 The Limits of Interpretation, by Umberto Eco; Interpretation and Overinterpretation, by Umberto Eco, with Richard Rorty, Jonathan Culler, and Christine Brooke-Rose, edited by Stefan Collini; Six Walks in the Fictional Woods, by Umberto Eco; Apocalypse Postponed, by Umberto Eco, translated and edited by Robert Lumley; Misreadings, by Umberto Eco, translated by William Weaver; How to Travel with a Salmon & Other Essays, by Umberto Eco, translated by William Weaver, New York Review of Books (1995) 352 68 On Hating and Despising Philosophy, London Review of Books (1996) 363 69 The Last Word, by Thomas Nagel, New York Review of Books (1998) 371 70 Wagner and the Transcendence of Politics, New York Review of Books (2000) 388 71 Why Philosophy Needs History, London Review of Books (2002) 405 Acknowledgments 413 Acknowledgments to Copyright Holders 414 Index 415

Product Details

  • ISBN13: 9780691168609
  • Format: Paperback
  • Number Of Pages: 456
  • ID: 9780691168609
  • weight: 624
  • ISBN10: 0691168601
  • translations: English
  • language of text: English

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