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Adam Smith and the Virtues of Enlightenment (Modern European Philosophy) [Paperback]

By Charles L. Griswold, Jr. (Author), Griswold, Jr. (Author) & Robert B. Pippin (Editor)
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Item description for Adam Smith and the Virtues of Enlightenment (Modern European Philosophy) by Charles L. Griswold, Jr., Griswold, Jr. & Robert B. Pippin...

Although Adam Smith is often thought of today as an economist, he was in fact (as his great contemporaries Hume, Burke, Kant, and Hegel recognized) an original and insightful thinker whose work covers an immense territory including moral philosophy, political economy, rhetorical theory, aesthetics, and jurisprudence. Charles Griswold has written the first comprehensive philosophical study of Smith's moral and political thought. Griswold sets Smith's work in the context of the continuing debate about the nature and survival of the Enlightenment, and relates it to current discussions in moral and political philosophy. Smith's appropriation as well as criticism of ancient philosophy, and his carefully balanced defense of a liberal and humane moral and political outlook, are also explored. This is a major reassessment of a key figure in modernity that will be of particular interest to philosophers and political and legal theorists, as well as historians of ideas, rhetoric, and political economy.

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Item Specifications...

Studio: Cambridge University Press
Pages   426
Est. Packaging Dimensions:   Length: 9.05" Width: 6.06" Height: 0.9"
Weight:   1.29 lbs.
Binding  Softcover
Release Date   Dec 13, 2011
Publisher   Cambridge University Press
ISBN  0521628911  
ISBN13  9780521628914  

Availability  77 units.
Availability accurate as of May 23, 2017 11:08.
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More About Charles L. Griswold, Jr., Griswold, Jr. & Robert B. Pippin

Register your artisan biography and upload your photo! Charles L. Griswold is Borden Parker Bowne Professor of Philosophy at Boston University. Among his books are Forgiveness: A Philosophical Exploration (Cambridge University Press 2007), Adam Smith and the Virtues of Enlightenment (Cambridge University Press 1999), Self-knowledge in Plato's Phaedrus (1986) and an edited volume, Platonic Writings, Platonic Readings (1988). He also serves on the editorial advisory boards of Ancient Philosophy, Theoria and the International Journal of the Classical Tradition.

Charles L. Griswold was born in 1951 and has an academic affiliation as follows - Boston University.

Charles L. Griswold has published or released items in the following series...
  1. Modern European Philosophy (Paperback)

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Product Categories

1Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > Ethics & Morality
2Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > General
3Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > History & Surveys
4Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > History, 17th & 18th Century
5Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > Modern
6Books > Subjects > Nonfiction > Philosophy > Political

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Reviews - What do customers think about Adam Smith and the Virtues of Enlightenment (Modern European Philosophy)?

The Best Analysis of 'Moral Sentiments'  Feb 4, 2008
Jerry Muller (The Mind and the Market) said this is the best commentary on Adam Smith's 'Moral Sentiments' and he is right! Griswold provides a thoughtful and understandable analysis of Smith's 'theory' of moral sentiments.

His explanation of the 'actor' and the 'spectator', the 'impartial spectator', the conscience,and just what 'morality' means to Smith are so clear. Griswold raises possible objections to Smith's system and answers them satisfactorily, showing a keen 'sympathy' with the topic he is so ably handling.

This book is a must, not only for Smith scholars, but for anyone interested in what morality is all about and how it all developed (and is still developing).

Buy this great work and have a mental and moral feast!
Unreadable  Oct 2, 2002
Griswold has succeeded in writing a perfectly unreadable book. Let
us begin with the title, which is meaningless. The book is neither
about virtue nor the Enlightenment, except in the trivial sense
that Smith was an Enlightenment writer. Anyone picking up this book
to learn about the Enlightenment as a movement will be disappointed.
So Griswold appends a useless chapter on the Enlightenment to the
beginning of the book that promises a wide-ranging treatment of
the Enlightenment that rest of the book cannot deliver. (Perhaps
his editor, fearing that a book on Adam Smith's moral theory would
not reach a large audience, encouraged Griswold to broaden the appeal.
Too bad it didn't work). Griswold's book is, more accurately, a
treatment of Smith's neglected treatise A Theory of Moral Sentiments.
As such it is not a careful commentary on the content and structure
of the book, but instead a meandering tourist guide to the major
landmarks accompanied by a dull paraphrase of Smith's argument. Too make things worse, Griswold updates Smith's arguments
in the language of contemporary philosophy so that he can seem relevant
and prescient. This is strange coming from a quasi-Straussian, but
there you go. If that weren't bad enough, Griswold has a fussy,
collegial, and unhurried style, like a voluble visitor standing
in the doorway. As for the thrust or drift of Griswold's argument,
unfortunately I couldn't detect it. There are chapters on Smith
on love, skepticism, stoicism, religion, justice, passiona, etc.,
but the accumulation of detail doesn't add up to anything. The book
is also advertised as the first full-length treatment of Smith's
political and moral thought. That is wrong, but Griswold seems to
mistake that for an invitation to touch on every facet of Smith's
thought without regard for relevance. Griswold would have been better
served if he had been guided by the structure of Smith's own book
than by his own wandering attention. For Griswold, the 400-so
me pages of his book are one long opportunity to clear his throat. Get to the point!
A Solid Effort!  Sep 18, 2001
Put on your scuba gear - we're diving down deep. Even though Charles L. Griswold, Jr. writes in a dense, academic style, it is worth swimming through his prose to learn about the remarkable work of 18th-century Enlightenment philosopher Adam Smith. Regarded as one of the fathers of modern economic thought, Smith has been misunderstood for the last century because his ethical philosophy has been overlooked. Instead, economists have drawn attention only to his thumbs-up for free enterprise and free trade. Smith believed neither was worthwhile without ethics, a point some modern economists might profitably revisit. We [...] highly recommend this richly detailed, insightful book to anyone interested in economic, political, or social philosophy.
Smith's morality given the weight it deserves  Jun 16, 2001
Griswold's book is pitched squarely between the academic of, and the interested newcomer to, the Enlightenment. It gives a refreshingly new outlook over enlightenment ideas as a whole, to illustrate the back drop to Adam Smith's moral notions. In examining the key themes in 'The Theory Of Moral Sentiments' with reference to Smith's whole body of work, Griswold is rare in attributing, to the work, the importance and weight it deserves. Books that focus on Adam Smith's moral philosphy are rare and this book is by no means a weak example of them. If you are at all interested in Adam Smith, and particularly those interested in 'The Wealth of Nations' you need to look at his moral roots, and Griswold's book is an excellent secondary text to look at.

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