THE CAVE AND THE LIGHT PLATO VERSUS ARISTOTLE AND THE STRUGGLE FOR THE SOUL OF WESTERN CIVILIZATION

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The Cave And The Light

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 9780553907834
Genre : History
File Size : 50.45 MB
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Arthur Herman has now written the definitive sequel to his New York Times bestseller, How the Scots Invented the Modern World, and extends the themes of the book—which sold half a million copies worldwide—back to the ancient Greeks and forward to the age of the Internet. The Cave and the Light is a magisterial account of how the two greatest thinkers of the ancient world, Plato and Aristotle, laid the foundations of Western culture—and how their rivalry shaped the essential features of our culture down to the present day. Plato came from a wealthy, connected Athenian family and lived a comfortable upper-class lifestyle until he met an odd little man named Socrates, who showed him a new world of ideas and ideals. Socrates taught Plato that a man must use reason to attain wisdom, and that the life of a lover of wisdom, a philosopher, was the pinnacle of achievement. Plato dedicated himself to living that ideal and went on to create a school, his famed Academy, to teach others the path to enlightenment through contemplation. However, the same Academy that spread Plato’s teachings also fostered his greatest rival. Born to a family of Greek physicians, Aristotle had learned early on the value of observation and hands-on experience. Rather than rely on pure contemplation, he insisted that the truest path to knowledge is through empirical discovery and exploration of the world around us. Aristotle, Plato’s most brilliant pupil, thus settled on a philosophy very different from his instructor’s and launched a rivalry with profound effects on Western culture. The two men disagreed on the fundamental purpose of the philosophy. For Plato, the image of the cave summed up man’s destined path, emerging from the darkness of material existence to the light of a higher and more spiritual truth. Aristotle thought otherwise. Instead of rising above mundane reality, he insisted, the philosopher’s job is to explain how the real world works, and how we can find our place in it. Aristotle set up a school in Athens to rival Plato’s Academy: the Lyceum. The competition that ensued between the two schools, and between Plato and Aristotle, set the world on an intellectual adventure that lasted through the Middle Ages and Renaissance and that still continues today. From Martin Luther (who named Aristotle the third great enemy of true religion, after the devil and the Pope) to Karl Marx (whose utopian views rival Plato’s), heroes and villains of history have been inspired and incensed by these two master philosophers—but never outside their influence. Accessible, riveting, and eloquently written, The Cave and the Light provides a stunning new perspective on the Western world, certain to open eyes and stir debate. Praise for The Cave and the Light “A sweeping intellectual history viewed through two ancient Greek lenses . . . breezy and enthusiastic but resting on a sturdy rock of research.”—Kirkus Reviews “Examining mathematics, politics, theology, and architecture, the book demonstrates the continuing relevance of the ancient world.”—Publishers Weekly “A fabulous way to understand over two millennia of history, all in one book.”—Library Journal “Entertaining and often illuminating.”—The Wall Street Journal From the Hardcover edition.
Category: History

The Cave And The Light

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 0553385666
Genre : History
File Size : 42.2 MB
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A history of the influential rivalry between Plato and Aristotle traces the Western world's ongoing battle of ideas to their competing philosophies, demonstrating how their contrasting views on everything from religion and government to science and technology became the twin fountainheads of Western culture.
Category: History

The Cave And The Light

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 0553807307
Genre : History
File Size : 58.75 MB
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An enthralling history of the rivalry and rival ideas of two men that made Western civilisation what it is today: Plato and Aristotle. Arthur Herman reveals how rather than a linear evolution of thought, the history of Western civilisation has been a constant battle of ideas beginning with the rivalry between just two philosophers. Plato and Aristotle's competing philosophies became the twin fountainheads of Western culture, and their rivalry gave Western civilisation its unique dynamism down to the present. From the Western way of religion and Christianity to science and technology to forms of government and to the belief in the dignity of the individual, the clash between Plato and Aristotle made them the most influential thinkers that ever lived.
Category: History

Gandhi Churchill

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 9780553905045
Genre : Biography & Autobiography
File Size : 22.33 MB
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In this fascinating and meticulously researched book, bestselling historian Arthur Herman sheds new light on two of the most universally recognizable icons of the twentieth century, and reveals how their forty-year rivalry sealed the fate of India and the British Empire. They were born worlds apart: Winston Churchill to Britain’s most glamorous aristocratic family, Mohandas Gandhi to a pious middle-class household in a provincial town in India. Yet Arthur Herman reveals how their lives and careers became intertwined as the twentieth century unfolded. Both men would go on to lead their nations through harrowing trials and two world wars—and become locked in a fierce contest of wills that would decide the fate of countries, continents, and ultimately an empire. Gandhi & Churchill reveals how both men were more alike than different, and yet became bitter enemies over the future of India, a land of 250 million people with 147 languages and dialects and 15 distinct religions—the jewel in the crown of Britain’s overseas empire for 200 years. Over the course of a long career, Churchill would do whatever was necessary to ensure that India remain British—including a fateful redrawing of the entire map of the Middle East and even risking his alliance with the United States during World War Two. Mohandas Gandhi, by contrast, would dedicate his life to India’s liberation, defy death and imprisonment, and create an entirely new kind of political movement: satyagraha, or civil disobedience. His campaigns of nonviolence in defiance of Churchill and the British, including his famous Salt March, would become the blueprint not only for the independence of India but for the civil rights movement in the U.S. and struggles for freedom across the world. Now master storyteller Arthur Herman cuts through the legends and myths about these two powerful, charismatic figures and reveals their flaws as well as their strengths. The result is a sweeping epic of empire and insurrection, war and political intrigue, with a fascinating supporting cast, including General Kitchener, Rabindranath Tagore, Franklin Roosevelt, Lord Mountbatten, and Mohammed Ali Jinnah, the founder of Pakistan. It is also a brilliant narrative parable of two men whose great successes were always haunted by personal failure, and whose final moments of triumph were overshadowed by the loss of what they held most dear. From the Hardcover edition.
Category: Biography & Autobiography

How The Scots Invented The Modern World

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 0307420957
Genre : History
File Size : 37.68 MB
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An exciting account of the origins of the modern world Who formed the first literate society? Who invented our modern ideas of democracy and free market capitalism? The Scots. As historian and author Arthur Herman reveals, in the eighteenth and nineteenth centuries Scotland made crucial contributions to science, philosophy, literature, education, medicine, commerce, and politics—contributions that have formed and nurtured the modern West ever since. Herman has charted a fascinating journey across the centuries of Scottish history. Here is the untold story of how John Knox and the Church of Scotland laid the foundation for our modern idea of democracy; how the Scottish Enlightenment helped to inspire both the American Revolution and the U.S. Constitution; and how thousands of Scottish immigrants left their homes to create the American frontier, the Australian outback, and the British Empire in India and Hong Kong. How the Scots Invented the Modern World reveals how Scottish genius for creating the basic ideas and institutions of modern life stamped the lives of a series of remarkable historical figures, from James Watt and Adam Smith to Andrew Carnegie and Arthur Conan Doyle, and how Scottish heroes continue to inspire our contemporary culture, from William “Braveheart” Wallace to James Bond. And no one who takes this incredible historical trek will ever view the Scots—or the modern West—in the same way again.
Category: History

Aristotle S Children

Author : Richard E. Rubenstein
ISBN : 054735097X
Genre : History
File Size : 69.18 MB
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Europe was in the long slumber of the Middle Ages, the Roman Empire was in tatters, and the Greek language was all but forgotten, until a group of twelfth-century scholars rediscovered and translated the works of Aristotle. His ideas spread like wildfire across Europe, offering the scientific view that the natural world, including the soul of man, was a proper subject of study. The rediscovery of these ancient ideas sparked riots and heresy trials, caused major upheavals in the Catholic Church, and also set the stage for today's rift between reason and religion. In Aristotle's Children, Richard Rubenstein transports us back in history, rendering the controversies of the Middle Ages lively and accessible-and allowing us to understand the philosophical ideas that are fundamental to modern thought.
Category: History

Plato The Man And His Work

Author : A E Taylor
ISBN : 9781136234774
Genre : Philosophy
File Size : 50.61 MB
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This book provides an introduction to Plato’s work that gives a clear statement of what Plato has to say about the problems of thought and life. In particular, it tells the reader just what Plato says, and makes no attempt to force a system on the Platonic text or to trim Plato’s works to suit contemporary philosophical tastes. The author also gives an account that has historical fidelity - we cannot really understand the Republic or the Gorgias if we forget that the Athens of the conversations is meant to be the Athens of Nicias or Cleon, not the very different Athens of Plato’s own manhood. To understand Plato’s thought we must see it in the right historical perspective.
Category: Philosophy

The Allegory Of The Cave

Author : Plato
ISBN : 9781365673221
Genre :
File Size : 82.25 MB
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The Allegory of the Cave is a dialogue between Plato's brother Glaucon and his mentor Socrates, narrated by the latter, in which Plato elucidates his Theory of Forms. Plato's Allegory is considered one of Western philosophy's most important metaphors.
Category:

Savage Anxieties

Author : Robert A. Williams
ISBN : 9780230338760
Genre : History
File Size : 72.14 MB
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Presents an intellectual history of the West's bias against tribalism that explains how acts of war and dispossession have been justified in the name of civilization and have typically victimized tribal groups.
Category: History

Joseph Mccarthy

Author : Arthur Herman
ISBN : 9780684836256
Genre : History
File Size : 38.40 MB
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A re-interpretation of one of the most hated figures in American history shows that many of McCarthy's general suspicions about security risks and communist infiltration did have a basis in truth.
Category: History