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German Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction (Very Short Introductions) von [Bowie, Andrew]
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German philosophy remains the core of modern philosophy. Without Kant, Frege, Wittgenstein, and Husserl there would be no Anglo-American 'analytical' style of philosophy. Moreover, without Kant, Hegel, Marx, Nietzsche, and Heidegger, the 'Continental Philosophy' of Derrida, Foucault, Deleuze, Badiou, and Zizek, which has had major effects on humanities subjects in recent years, is incomprehensible. Knowledge of German philosophy is, then, an indispensable
prerequisite of theoretically informed study in the humanities as a whole.

German Philosophy: A Very Short Introduction discusses the idea that German philosophy forms one of the most revealing responses to the problems of 'modernity'. The rise of the modern natural sciences and the related decline of religion raises a series of questions, which recur throughout German philosophy, concerning the relationships between knowledge and faith, reason and emotion, and scientific, ethical, and artistic ways of seeing the world.

There are also many significant philosophers who are generally neglected in most existing English-language treatments of German philosophy, which tend to concentrate on the canonical figures. This Very Short Introduction will include reference to these thinkers and suggests how they can be used to question more familiar German philosophical thought.

ABOUT THE SERIES: The Very Short Introductions series from Oxford University Press contains hundreds of titles in almost every subject area. These pocket-sized books are the perfect way to get ahead in a new subject quickly. Our expert authors combine facts, analysis, perspective, new ideas, and enthusiasm to make interesting and challenging topics highly readable.

Über den Autor und weitere Mitwirkende

Andrew Bowie is Professor of Philosophy and German at Royal Holloway, University of London.


  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • Dateigröße: 619 KB
  • Seitenzahl der Print-Ausgabe: 153 Seiten
  • Verlag: OUP Oxford; Auflage: 1 (27. Mai 2010)
  • Verkauf durch: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Sprache: Englisch
  • ISBN-10: 0199569258
  • ISBN-13: 978-0199569250
  • ASIN: B005FVPE5U
  • Text-to-Speech (Vorlesemodus): Aktiviert
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Die hilfreichsten Kundenrezensionen auf (beta) 4.3 von 5 Sternen 8 Rezensionen
4 von 5 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen A great effort! But just bear in mind that German ... 6. Dezember 2015
Von Pinto - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
A great effort! But just bear in mind that German philosophy is like Mt. Everest. The author is giving you a descriptive view of the mountain aboard a helicopter hovering over the mountaintop. To experience Mt. Everest, you must take up the rigorous task of mountain climbing. There are no short cuts. To begin with, find a place to learn German. When possible, travel to Germany to experience both the culture and language; two semesters abroad would help. If you can't do this, consider studying German philosophy as a hobby or just an overview of a challenging topic. Don't make the mistake of considering yourself qualified to comment or teach the subject. Even your Ph.D decorated American, college professor of German philosophy is most probably recycling commentaries. Here is one example from a lecture on Heidegger's Being & Time. The discussion is on Dasein and World as equiprimordial. The German adjective translated as equiprimordial is "gleichursprunglich". The substantive is "Gleichursprunglichkeit" or translated as equiprimordiality. Most American students at Harvard probably don't know what the English word equiprimordial means. However, a 6th grader in Germany knows that "Gleichursprunglich" means having the same origin or springing out together at the same time from the same source. Think about seeds in the field. A word Heidegger used to explain that Dasein and World are inseparable, and the world in question is not the type you find on the map. No Dasein, no world; no world, no Dasein. For someone, who all his/her life has been reading commentaries and problem-solving analytical fantasies taught in American colleges; someone not grounded in the history, language, philosophy, and culture of Germany, equiprimordiality is unintelligible jargon. And by extension, if equiprimordiality is unintelligible jargon, then German philosophy, in fact, the entire continental philosophy is a compendium of unintelligible jargon.

I would recommend this book as a good overview, perhaps as a nice preparatory reading for a German philosophy course.

There are probably one or two incorrect sentences in the book, but they do not in anyway undermine the ingenious effort of the author. To claim otherwise, in my view, would amount to a logical fallacy. What fallacy are we talking about here? The fallacy of composition? Let's see ... . Here we go class:
"One (or two sentences) sentence in this book is incorrect. Therefore, the entire book is badly written and useless"
= fallacy of composition.
2 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
4.0 von 5 Sternen A good effort; but the scope of this book far exceeds its length 10. Dezember 2012
Von Gregory J. Casteel - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
Some subjects are, by their very nature, not well suited to "very short introductions". In particular, if a subject is simultaneously very broad and very deep -- such as German philosophy -- it can be very difficult to summarize adequately in the space of only 125 pages. Trying to cover all of German philosophy in a book that is small enough fit in your jacket pocket is a lot like trying to explain Einstein's theory of relativity in a haiku. I'm not saying that it can't be done; but I can almost guarantee that the constraints of the medium are going to be more of a hindrance than a help to the writer and, therefore, to the reader as well. When forced to distil the essence of an expansive subject into a short book, an author must often choose between oversimplification and abstruseness -- either reducing the complexities of the subject to mere caricature (which, fortunately, the author of this volume manages to avoid) or else packing information into the text so densely that it becomes virtually unintelligible to the novice reader (which, unfortunately, he doesn't). When I pick up a book subtitled "A Very Short Introduction", I expect it to be written on an introductory level -- something that would be suitable for undergraduates with no prior exposure to the subject. But this supposedly "introductory" text seemed more well-suited for upper-level philosophy students who already have a pretty strong background in the subject. I minored in philosophy back when I was an undergrad, and have continued to read lots of philosophy in the intervening decades; but I found myself having to re-read a number of passages from this book multiple times in order to fully digest what the author was trying to say. He's not a bad writer at all. He's just trying to cover too much ground in too short a book, and is therefore unable to take the time needed to fully unpack some of the complex ideas he presents. This is not a bad book -- in fact, it's quite informative. It's just too ambitious in scope for its own good. I would recommend it only to those who are well-accustomed to reading philosophy, and who have the time and patience to re-read difficult passages until their meaning sinks in. But if you're a novice looking for a introductory text on German philosophy for beginners, you might want to look elsewhere.
2 von 3 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen It Gets the Job Done 12. Mai 2012
Von David Milliern - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
My only two complaints about this work are in the writing style, which is a bit mechanically rough, and the information included, which is more a matter of taste; everyone is going to have a little bit of a different idea about what should be included in such a work.

The above aside, I thought this work does everything that a work of this type should do. Having read it, a novice would be able to carry out a superficial, though competent, discussion on German philosophy. Also, if one were to never read another book, the individual would have a satisfactory idea of the subject. Finally, this book serves as a well balance introduction that is capable of informing the reader whether he or she would like to read further into the subject or one of its authors. Bowie covers everything from Kant to the Marburg School to Habermas. Having had an undergraduate level knowledge of the material presented, I still took away a few helpful tidbits.

The only case I would not recommend this book is for someone certain that they would like to read more thoroughly into this subject, in which case there are a number of other books that will give more depth. One concern I have, not being a complete novice myself, is as to whether there is a deep enough explication of terminology given, so beware. In any event, this is a nice and quick read for anyone with some idea of the subject.
5.0 von 5 Sternen Great, rigorous and brief introductions 9. Juni 2015
Von Sergio Munoz - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch Verifizierter Kauf
The series is fantastic because the books are usually rigorously written but short as the name indicates. Very useful. The same applies to the other three I bought: Schopenhauer, Nietzsche and Modernism
1 von 2 Kunden fanden die folgende Rezension hilfreich
5.0 von 5 Sternen vERY SHORT, VERY SOUND, VERY SAVVY 11. Dezember 2011
Von Cesar Eduardo D. Elizi - Veröffentlicht auf
Format: Taschenbuch
I felt compelled to write about this book for a number of reasons.
Firstly, it makes a very pleasant reading, but most importantly,
it makes you want to read more about the subject, which, let's face
it, is essential.
That's not to say that if you have in fact a good background reading
on the topic you're not in for a good surprise. I, for one, loved
to see several pieces finally fall into place, for which I'll feel
eternally indebted to Doctor Bowie. Many thanks and please keep on
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