Item description for Spinoza in 90 Minutes (Philosophers in 90 Minutes) by Paul Strathern...
Overview "Each of these little books is witty and dramatic and creates a sense of time, place, and character. . . . I cannot think of a better way to introduce oneself and one's friends to Western civilization".--Katherine A. Powers, "Boston Globe".
Publishers Description In Spinoza in 90 Minutes, Paul Strathern offers a concise, expert account of Spinoza's life and ideas, and explains their influence on man's struggle to understand his existence in the world. The book also includes selections from Spinoza's writings; a brief list of suggested reading for those who wish to push further; and chronologies that place Spinoza within his own age and in the broader scheme of philosophy.
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Studio: Ivan R. Dee, Publisher
Est. Packaging Dimensions: Length: 8.33" Width: 5.21" Height: 0.53" Weight: 0.44 lbs.
Release Date Nov 1, 1998
Publisher Ivan R. Dee, Publisher
Series Philosphers in 90 Minutes
ISBN 1566632145 ISBN13 9781566632140
Availability 0 units.
More About Paul Strathern
Paul Strathern is author of the popular and critically acclaimed Philosophers in 90 Minutes series. Highlights from the series include Nietzsche in 90 Minutes, Aristotle in 90 Minutes, and Plato in 90 Minutes. Mr. Strathern has lectured in philosophy and mathematics and now lives and writes in London. A former Somerset Maugham prize winner, he is also the author of books on history and travel as well as five novels. His articles have appeared in a great many newspapers, including the Observer (London) and the Irish Times. His own degree in philosophy came from Trinity College, Dublin.
Paul Strathern currently resides in London. Paul Strathern was born in 1940.
Reviews - What do customers think about Spinoza in 90 Minutes (Philosophers in 90 Minutes)?
Quick Review of History's greatest Mar 19, 2007
I picked up "Aquinas in 90 Minutes" in our Maui condo laundry room. It was so interesting that I now have St. Thomas Aquinas " Shorter Summa". I then had to have the same " 90 Minute" book for other "favorite philosophers".
The philosopher who lived in accord with what he wrote Mar 18, 2005
This is a very good short account of the life and work of the philosopher who according to Will Durant was the exception among the great philosophers in that ' he lived in accord with what he wrote'. Strathern tells the story of Spinoza's lonely struggle to be true to his vision of God and Nature. Strathern writes of the famous excommunication from the Portugese Jewish community, the humble life of the lens-grinder, the loyal friend ready to take on mobs to protest against the assassination of the politician DeWitt, the supreme rationalist seeing all ' with the eyes of Eternity.' Spinoza who maintained his meditation was the meditation of a free man and so' a meditation on life and not on death' had a pure vision of God as Nature as All-in- All. His appeal to Goethe and English Romanticism came in part from this. His God is All, and yet sublime and impersonal if not like Joyce's paring his fingernails, then certainly not like the Old Testament Hebrew God intervening to prevent Abraham from taking the life of his only beloved son. In other words the God of Spinoza is a God very much of the philosophers, and not one which Pascal a figure of comparable intellectual intensity and aesthetic greatness would have abided. Strathern shows a clear admiration for his subject, and a respect for the subject- matter of his thought. He takes a few jabs, here and there at the great man but not in such a way as to diminish the feeling that we are dealing here one of Mankind's great thinkers.
By "Spinoza in 90 Minutes" I understand: Jun 27, 2003
I. Spinoza is a strange and interesting philosopher. His life sticks out in the history of philosophy. He not only philosophized, but he lived his philosophy. Q.E.D.
II. After an assassination attempt, Spinoza managed to get excommunicated from the Amsterdam synagogue in 1656. Q.E.D.
III. Spinoza turned down prestigious university posts and instead made his living grinding glass lenses. At the same time he composed a classic metaphysical system that he also applied to a political system. Q.E.D.
IV. Spinoza was one of the first philosophers to claim that the aim of the state is individual freedom. Q.E.D.
V. Though Spinoza's metaphysics belong to a different time, it is an example of how a theory of existence can be applied to a manner of living and being. Q.E.D.
VI. This book provides a good but very short introduction to the life and philosophy of one of the most interesting philosophers in the history books. Q.E.D.
VII. Spinoza managed to live a very humble life and still attain fame and recognition in his own time. He corresponded with Huygens, Newton, Leibniz, and other eminent people of the 17th century. Q.E.D.
VIII. Spinoza's works were so controversial they were either not published during his lifetime or published anonymously shortly after his death. Q.E.D.
IX. Spinoza's metaphysical system was based on pantheism, which posited that everything and everyone is God, so that if you hurt another you hurt yourself. There are corollaries to the modern Gaia hypothesis in this. Q.E.D.
X. This book will leave you wanting to know more about Spinoza and why he wrote in a strange numbered aphoristic manner. It can be read in a single reading and will acquaint you with Spinoza and why he is considered important. Q.E.D.
XI. Read this book, then move onto more thorough studies if it catches your interest. Q.E.D.