Item description for Philosophy of Religion: A Guide and Anthology by Brian Davies...
Is it possible to be both a philosopher and a religious believer? Is philosophy a friend or foe to religious belief? Does talk of God make sense? Does God exist? What is God? Essential for anyone pondering these and similar questions, Philosophy of Religion: A Guide and Anthology provides a comprehensive, authoritative, and accessible overview of the subject. Carefully edited by Brian Davies, it contains a wide-ranging selection of 65 of the best classical and contemporary writings on the philosophy of religion, together with substantial commentary, introductory material, discussion questions, and detailed guides to further reading. The editorial material sets the selections in context and guides students through the readings. Part I of the book examines the relation between philosophy and religion; Parts II-IV consider the existence and nature of God; Part V addresses the "problem of evil" that has puzzled thinkers for centuries; and Parts VI and VII are devoted to the relationship between morality and religion and to the question of life after death. An extensive treatment of the major issues that Western philosophers have faced in thinking about religion, Philosophy of Religion is an exceptional text. No other book on the market offers this combination of introductory guide along with such a substantial anthology of readings.
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Studio: Oxford University Press, USA
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 9.65" Width: 6.75" Height: 1.59" Weight: 2.85 lbs.
Release Date Sep 14, 2000
Publisher Oxford University Press
ISBN 019875194X ISBN13 9780198751946
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More About Brian Davies
Brian Davies is Distinguished Professor of Philosophy at Fordham University. He is a Catholic Priest and Dominican Friar, and is General Editor of the series "Outstanding Christian Thinkers" and the Oxford series "Medieval Minds."
Brian Davies has an academic affiliation as follows - Fordham University Cardiff University UK Wales Cardiff University UK.
Brian Davies has published or released items in the following series...
Reviews - What do customers think about Philosophy of Religion: A Guide and Anthology?
Ideal textbook Oct 15, 2007
Philosophy of Religion: A Guide to the Subject
This volume is extremely comprehensive, treating of most of the debated topics involved in a study of philosophy of religion. It is particularly valuable because it combines primary sources (dating back to Plato, with Thomas Aquinas a relative newcomer) with contemporary treatment of the still questioned premises. Brian Davies' introductions to each section are comprehensive, readable, and, though he clearly is a Thomist, present challenges to much traditional thought, Thomas' included.
One major element in the book's favour is that there is a wide scope of perspective. It is not 'selling' one point of view, Christian or otherwise, though the Christian philosophers are well represented. Students who thoroughly pursue this guide will be capable of forming their own arguments and conclusions - based not on 'feeling' or mere doctrine (or lack of same), but on the full range of sources which set forth or refute a particular viewpoint. The treatment of, for example, attributes of God is wide ranging, challenging, and adequate, with Davies' explanation of historical contexts, for the reader to have a solid understanding of concepts which can be highly puzzling.
I would recommend Brian Davies' other anthology, "Philosophy of Religion: A Guide to the Subject" (see link) as a companion volume for those who wish to pursue topics further. That book contains single essays, by prominent contemporary philosophers, each on one topic treated in detail in the Guide and Anthology. (It is less suited as a textbook, because those wishing to explore contemporary treatments will require the background information and diversity of views, throughout history, in the Guide and Anthology.)
Students are likely to find that whatever aspect of the subject they need to pursue is contained in this volume. It is a rich compendium, and one which I would recommend as the first book on the topic to add to one's shelf.
A well-rounded and well-executed effort Dec 13, 2001
There are a host of philosophy of religion books out there, so the question becomes what's the best way to get a well-rounded survey of the field. Davies solution is to pick plenty of articles with, what I perceive to be, a somewhat contemporary slant, and then carefully organize them according to topical groupings with overview-type introductions. Each topical grouping leads naturally into the next grouping, so debates early on are carried forward into new areas. I liked this book as soon as I came into contact with the desk copy, and having now read it, my first impressions were correct: a nice summary and guide for anyone who has already had an Introduction to Philosophy class. A class in Ancient and Medieval Philosophy would be very helpful too, though hardly necessary, for much medieval philosophy still influences issues in contemporary philosophy of religion.