Sunday, January 03, 2016

Phil's Lists, Part 15: Philosophers

Throughout my adult life, I have been an amateur philosopher, meaning I read heavy philosophy lightly, trying to capture glimmers of insight and sparks of inspiration as springboards for sharpening my own intellect and as means for cultivating my writing. This list includes some of my favorite philosophy.

  • Mortimer Adler, the philosopher of the Golden Age of television.
  • Hannah Arendt, who has a knack for connecting philosophy to everything in human experience.
  • Aristotle, especially his Rhetoric and Ethics.
  • Albert Camus, one of the most understandable existentialists.
  • Rene Descartes, whose discourse was a game changer.
  • Martin Heiddeger, whose Dasein advances existential theory.
  • Thomas Hobbes, whose clear, practical interpretation of human nature and government still resonate in these troubled times.
  • Eric Hoffer, the most accessible, down-to-earth philosopher I know.
  • William James, whose pragmatics and psychology put America in the book of great philosophers.
  • Immanuel Kant, the creator of the categorical imperative.
  • Soren Keirkegaard, most notably Fear and Trembling.
  • John Locke, whom many libertarians credit for their political viewpoint.
  • Friedrich Nietzsche, whose brilliance extends far beyond √úbermensch.
  • Plato, whose cave analogy in The Republic is a ground breaker.
  • Jean-Jacques Rousseau, whose Social Contract and Emile are must-reads.
  • Bertrand Russell, if for nothing else, for his history of Western philosophy.
  • Jean-Paul Sartre, in particular Existentialism and Human Emotion.