Augustine's Confessions: Philosophy in Autobiography

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9780199577552: Augustine's Confessions: Philosophy in Autobiography
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Augustine's Confessions is a masterpiece of world literature. Written by Augustine in his forties, at the height of his philosophical and rhetorical skills, the Confessions is at once autobiographical, philosophical, theological, and psychological. The aim of the eight essays commissioned for the present volume is to provide an examination and discussion of some of the philosophical issues raised by Augustine. What constitutes the happy or blessed life and what is required to achieve it? The essays question the role that philosophical perplexity plays in the search for truth, and the mental discipline that is required for conducting the search; in addition to asking how Augustine depicts the acquisition of truth as a vision of God. Furthermore, they discuss the problems that arise in the attempt to understand minds, both our own and others, and ask about the interplay between what reason tells us is right and what we will to do. What are the impediments to an individual's moral progress, and how far are these impediments created by the temptations to indulge in such fictions as dramas and dreams? What is the nature of eternity, and how does eternity differ from time? How should scripture be interpreted, especially the account of creation of the material world in Genesis?

Readers with a basic knowledge of Augustine may perceive him to be simply a powerful definer and defender of religious orthodoxy, a figure who ranks behind only Jesus and Paul in the development of a distinctively Christian world-view. For such readers the intellectual honesty and psychological candour of the Confessions should come as a pleasant surprise.

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About the Author:


William E. Mann received his PhD in Philosophy from the University of Minnesota. Having previously taught at St. Olaf College and Illinois State University, he is now the Marsh Professor of Intellectual and Moral Philosophy Emeritus at the University of Vermont. He specializes in Medieval Philosophy and the Philosophy of Religion, and has published extensively in these fields.

Review:


"...overall they present a useful companion to a deeper reading of this most fascinating book... Recommended. Upper-level undergraduates and above; general readers." --Choice


"This is an unusually philosophical - thus very welcome - book about the Confessions...overall Mann has edited a spicy mixed bag, with a few lows and some exhilarating highs." --Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews Online


"...analytic philosophers might find this volume helpful...If this volume leads philosophers to a greater understanding of Augustine, and perhaps to further reading of Augustine himself and the wealth of scholarship dedicated to him, it will be a successful work indeed."
-- The Review of Metaphysics


"Many would insist that whatever speculation Augustine engaged in, it was solely as a theologian. Yet each of the authors in this superb volume approaches Augustine in the context of the philosophy of the late Roman world, especially Neoplatonic philosophy. Their success in showing how the themes of the Confessions resonate with the language of philosophers of the time - Plotinus chief among them - and wrestle with many of the same issues vindicates Mann's claim. Anyone interested in understanding the Confessions will have to confront these eight essays and ponder their philosophical analysis of Augustine's thought." -- Journal of the History of Philosophy


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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2014. Hardback. Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Augustine s Confessions is a masterpiece of world literature. Written by Augustine in his forties, at the height of his philosophical and rhetorical skills, the Confessions is at once autobiographical, philosophical, theological, and psychological. The aim of the eight essays commissioned for the present volume is to provide an examination and discussion of some of the philosophical issues raised by Augustine. What constitutes the happy or blessed life and what is required to achieve it? The essays question the role that philosophical perplexity plays in the search for truth, and the mental discipline that is required for conducting the search; in addition to asking how Augustine depicts the acquisition of truth as a vision of God. Furthermore, they discuss the problems that arise in the attempt to understand minds, both our own and others, and ask about the interplay between what reason tells us is right and what we will to do. What are the impediments to an individual s moral progress, and how far are these impediments created by the temptations to indulge in such fictions as dramas and dreams? What is the nature of eternity, and how does eternity differ from time? How should scripture be interpreted, especially the account of creation of the material world in Genesis? Readers with a basic knowledge of Augustine may perceive him to be simply a powerful definer and defender of religious orthodoxy, a figure who ranks behind only Jesus and Paul in the development of a distinctively Christian world-view. For such readers the intellectual honesty and psychological candour of the Confessions should come as a pleasant surprise. Seller Inventory # AOP9780199577552

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Book Description Oxford University Press, United Kingdom, 2014. Hardback. Condition: New. New. Language: English . Brand New Book. Augustine s Confessions is a masterpiece of world literature. Written by Augustine in his forties, at the height of his philosophical and rhetorical skills, the Confessions is at once autobiographical, philosophical, theological, and psychological. The aim of the eight essays commissioned for the present volume is to provide an examination and discussion of some of the philosophical issues raised by Augustine. What constitutes the happy or blessed life and what is required to achieve it? The essays question the role that philosophical perplexity plays in the search for truth, and the mental discipline that is required for conducting the search; in addition to asking how Augustine depicts the acquisition of truth as a vision of God. Furthermore, they discuss the problems that arise in the attempt to understand minds, both our own and others, and ask about the interplay between what reason tells us is right and what we will to do. What are the impediments to an individual s moral progress, and how far are these impediments created by the temptations to indulge in such fictions as dramas and dreams? What is the nature of eternity, and how does eternity differ from time? How should scripture be interpreted, especially the account of creation of the material world in Genesis? Readers with a basic knowledge of Augustine may perceive him to be simply a powerful definer and defender of religious orthodoxy, a figure who ranks behind only Jesus and Paul in the development of a distinctively Christian world-view. For such readers the intellectual honesty and psychological candour of the Confessions should come as a pleasant surprise. Seller Inventory # AOP9780199577552

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