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William James
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On some of life's ideals: on a certain blindness in human beings : what makes a life significant

3.73  ·  Rating details ·  77 Ratings  ·  7 Reviews
This scarce antiquarian book is included in our special Legacy Reprint Series. In the interest of creating a more extensive selection of rare historical book reprints, we have chosen to reproduce this title even though it may possibly have occasional imperfections such as missing and blurred pages, missing text, poor pictures, markings, dark backgrounds and other reproduct ...more
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Published by New York : H. Holt and Company (first published 1907)
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Richard Newton
This is a book with some interesting parts, and occasionally a wonderful few sentences of prose. It could be of interest to anyone interest in the meaning of truth. Mostly it is a straightforward read, and much is enjoyable, but its origin as a series of lectures is apparent and it can be a little dull at times. There are some very interesting concepts explored, but I find it hard to consider this as one of the most important ideas of time to justify its place in Penguins "Great Ideas" series - ...more
Peter
Apr 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A collection of lectures by William James carefully selected for thematic unity by the good people at Penguin. With his characteristic wit, clarity and precision, James explains the method of pragmatism and then uses it to address questions of whether life is worth living, the belief in the existence of God and free-will, among others. A top shelf book.
Alan
Dec 27, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I've always wanted to read William James. Considered America's only true contributor to the Western philosophical cannon, James' pragmatist approach to life is a real breath of fresh air. This anthology of essays covers a lot ranging from James' thoughts on how to live a good life, to the tenants of pragmatism, and to the importance of memory. My only criticism is of how fragmented this anthology is - I feel as if it tries to cover too much in too little a space.
Ana Rînceanu
Get ready for some dense and academic writing with some sprinklings of other people's poetry and prose.

On a Certain Blindness in Human Beings
The Tigers in India
Is Life Worth Living
What Pragmatism Means
Some Metaphysical Problems Pragmatically Considered
Kevin Varney
Feb 06, 2016 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: essays
I like the covers of this series books, although I think they are expensive. I bought this because I was intrigued by the quote on the front, which were:

When you and I, for instance, realize how many innocent beasts have had to suffer in cattle-cars and slaughter-pens and lay down their lives that we might grow up, all fattened and clad, to sit together in comfort and carry on this discourse, it does indeed, put our relation to the universe in a more solemn light.

I have recently been concerned a
...more
umberto
Dec 27, 2009 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: essays
I found reading William James’s 5 essays in this book inspiring and challenging since he has written with ideas, reasons and arguments appropriate to his readers; however, the last two on “What Pragmatism Means” and “Some Metaphysical Problems Pragmatically Considered” seem to satisfy those having good background on his philosophy who would better understand them, especially, in the field of pragmatism.
Conor Fogarty
Oct 03, 2014 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Everyone, teachers and college kids, should read this book! Not just because you could probably get it free online, but, the second lecture in particular, carry such passionate weight and the ability to stir up a true sense of deep postulation of the human condition as well as the looking into the future of our lives makes this an excellent read!
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William James (January 11, 1842 – August 26, 1910) was an American philosopher and psychologist who was also trained as a physician. The first educator to offer a psychology course in the United States, James was one of the leading thinkers of the late nineteenth century and is believed by many to be one of the most influential philosophers the United States has ever produced, while others have la ...more
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