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Philip K. Dick and Philosophy: Do Androids Have Kindred Spirits? (Popular Culture and Philosophy #63)

3.9  ·  Rating details ·  87 Ratings  ·  12 Reviews

Science fiction writer Philip K. Dick (19281982) is the giant imagination behind so much recent popular cultureboth movies directly based on his writings, such as Blade Runner (based on the novel Do Androids Dream of Electric Sheep?), Total Recall, Minority Report, and The Adjustment Bureau plus cult favorites such as A Scanner Darkly, Imposter, Next, Screamers, and Payche

Paperback, 288 pages
Published October 18th 2011 by Open Court (first published October 17th 2011)
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Manuel Antão
Nov 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2017
If you're into stuff like this, you can read the full review.

Fictionalizing Philosopher: “Philip K. Dick and Philosophy - Do Androids Have Kindred Spirits” by Dylan E. Wittkower

‘In Blade Runner, also, it is an authentic relationship to Being that is taken to be what essentially ensouls both humans and replicants. Such is the import of Roy Batty’s famous final soliloquy:
“I’ve seen things you people wouldn’t believe. Attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I watched C-Beams glitter in the
Jun 12, 2012 rated it it was amazing
First off it is necessary to state that i am already a huge PKD fan so i don't know how this book would read if i wasn't already familiar with most of the novels and stories discussed. If you have not read a lot of Dick's writing (and plan on it) you may not want to start this until you've read at least his best works, it does have some things that could be considered spoilers. Whenever i came across the details of a book i had not read, i would just skip a couple paragraphs until it stopped giv ...more
Adam Nicolai
Jan 24, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I'll preface this review by saying I'm not a philosopher in the strictest sense: I never studied it in school beyond incidental exposure and a single 101 class, and I'm certainly not a professor. But I don't think you need to be to enjoy Philip K. Dick and Philosophy. There are a lot of cool ideas that dovetail off of those presented in Dick's work and the movies based off of them (after reading Ethan Mills' chapter "Hollywood Doesn't Know Dick" I am careful to draw that distinction!), so if you ...more
Donna Parker
May 17, 2014 rated it really liked it
You might think you’re familiar with Philip K. Dick and his works, but if you’ve only seen the movies, you may not know Dick.

Philip K. Dick and Philosophy: Do Androids Have Kindred Spirits? (Open Court), edited by D.E. Wittkower is a cool collection of essays by over 30 academics (or some might call them dreamers). Includes delicacies from Wittkower as the moral and metaphysical minutia of PKD’s works are explored. 1dick6

Others in the Popular Culture and Philosophy series include but are not lim
Gregg Wingo
Jul 19, 2012 rated it really liked it
A very good introduction into the works of Philip K. Dick. The book does not require familiarity with his written work but can be read by those who have run into his work due to Hollywood's love of Dick's ideas which have been featured in blockbuster versions such as Bladerunner, Total Recall, Minority Report, The Adjustment Bureau, and Next.

As stated by Fredric Jameson, Dick is perhaps the greatest science fiction writer of all time and, unfortunately, due to the ghettoized nature of the genre
Scott Holstad
Oct 25, 2017 rated it really liked it
First of all, I have to make a public admission and state that I love Philip K. Dick and have every book he ever published, at least every book publicly available, meaning over 40 or thereabouts. Some aren't the best, while others are completely brilliant and mind blowing. Others are wildly above average, but virtually all make you think about a lot of things, like reality and what is it exactly, and what is our reality, and is it indeed reality. I love David Weber's military sci fi novels and t ...more
Bob Ryan
May 21, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a very interesting book. First its one of a series of 64 (so far) of books relating various popular culture figures to philosophy. Some of the other subjects are singers, i.e., Johnny Cash The Beatles, Pink Floyd, some are from movies and television, i,e., The Matrix, Dexter, Seinfeld, SpongeBob and even video games, i.e., Halo and Warcraft. The book is comprised of thirty three short essays from various authors selecting pieces of PKD's writings and the movies based on his ideas. The wr ...more
Dorothy Hermary
A great resource if you're writing a paper on any of Philip K. Dick's works.

This compilation of essays and scholarly works provides insight and alternate perceptions for many of Dick's concerns regarding reality and humanity. Some of them are more stilted and difficult to read and I do admit to having trouble with "Time in Unfixed are You" which was written backwards; the purpose of which was to create focus and attention.

There's even a section that includes two of Dick's stories: "Beyond Lies
Gordon Burroughs
May 14, 2012 rated it really liked it
I'm glad that I have already read most of the books and short stories discussed in the essays, as, even with the brief synopsis the author's of each individual essay gives, you'll miss some of the points that they raise. I was disappointed that the film version of "Minority Report" featured a bit more heavily than the original short story, which I felt had a much more satisfying conclusion. All in all, the essays did well in conveying the respective issues or morality, reality, and humanity that ...more
Feb 18, 2013 rated it really liked it
This gives a good range of philosophical perspectives from a number of contributors and provoked me to watch The Adjustment Bureau for the first time, re-read PKD's stories and even look up some philosophers! PKD clearly an informed and worthy subject for such treatment. Don't know how a real philosopher would rate it: I found it challenging but very accessible and enjoyable. Would suggest that the stories are read first to avoid spoilers and ground the references.
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D.E. Wittkower received a Ph.D in Philosophy from Vanderbilt University in 2006. His training concentrated on German philosophy and the history of value theory (ethics, aesthetics, social/political philosophy), and his research has concentrated primarily on issues of ethics, technology, and political philosophy. Prior to accepting the position of Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Old Dominion U ...more
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“Our intellectual odysseys take us out of and beyond this world but where they take us we cannot live for long—the air is too rarefied and we have nothing solid upon which to stand. What those odysseys into the strange and new can do is to make our ordinary, workaday world strange and new to us again, removing from it the crust of familiarity created by custom and habit.” 0 likes
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