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Philosophy: The Pursuit of Wisdom 5th Edition

Louis P. Pojman

  • Published
  • Previous Editions 2004, 2001, 1998
  • 406 Pages


Capturing the inimitable enthusiasm of Louis Pojman's much acclaimed teaching, PHILOSOPHY: THE PURSUIT OF WISDOM introduces students to all of the core topics in philosophy. Beginning with an inquiry into the nature and purpose of philosophy, this text moves through many traditional discussions-such as the existence of God, the problems of knowledge, the freewill/determinism debate, and the foundations of ethics-and concludes with an exploration into existentialism and the meaning of life.

Louis P. Pojman, Late of the United States Military Academy, West Point

Louis P. Pojman (1935-2005) was Professor of Philosophy, Emeritus, at the United States Military Academy and a Life Member of Clare Hall, Cambridge University. He received an M.A. and Ph.D. from Union Theological Seminary/Columbia University. He was a Fulbright Fellow at the University of Copenhagen and a Rockefeller Fellow at Hamburg University. He received his D.Phil. in Philosophy from Oxford University in 1997.His first position was at the University of Notre Dame, after which he taught at the University of Texas at Dallas. Later, at the University of Mississippi, he served for three years as Chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religion. In 1995, he became Professor of Philosophy at the United States Military Academy at West Point. He most recently was Visiting Professor at Brigham Young University in Utah and Visiting Fellow at Clare Hall, Oxford University. Pojman won several research and teaching awards, including the Burlington Northern Award for Outstanding Teaching and Scholarship (1988) and the Outstanding Scholar/Teacher in the Humanities at the University of Mississippi (1994). He wrote in the areas of philosophy of religion, epistemology, ethics, and political philosophy and authored or edited more than 30 books and 100 articles. Louis Pojman passed away in 2005.
A Personal Word to the Student.
1. What Is Philosophy?
2. A Little Bit of Logic.
Deductive and Inductive Reasoning. Abductive Reasoning. Some Applications. Fallacies of Reasoning. Box: Necessary and Sufficient Conditions.
3. The Beginning of Philosophy: The Ancient Greeks.
The Milesians. Pythagoras. The Eleatics. Heracleitus. The Pluralists: Empedocles and the Atomists. Anaxagoras of Klazomenae.
4. The Rise of the Sophists and Socrates.
The Rise of the Sophists. Socrates:The Father of Ethics�Knowledge Is Virtue. Box: Plato.
5. The Value of Religion: An Introduction.
6. The Cosmological Argument for the Existence of God: A First Cause.
Traditional Arguments for the Existence of God. The Cosmological Argument. The Argument from Contingency.
7. The Teleological Argument for the Existence of God.
Paley''s Argument. Hume''s Critique. The Darwinian Objection.
8. The Ontological Argument for the Existence of God.
9. The Argument from Religious Experience.
Encounters with God. An Analysis of Religious Experience. A Critique of the Strong-Justification Thesis.
10. The Problem of Evil.
The Mystery of Evil. The Argument from Evil. The Free-Will Defense. The Theodicy Defense. Evolution and Evil.
11. Faith and Reason.
Pragmatic Justification of Religious Belief. Fideism: Faith Without/Against Reason. Reformed Epistemology: Alvin Plantinga.
12. What Can We Know? An Introduction.
Knowledge and Its Types. What Is Truth? Knowledge and Belief. Types of Knowledge.
13. Skepticism.
The Challenge of Skepticism.
14. Perception: Can We Have Knowledge of the External World?
15. The Mind-Body Problem.
Dualistic Interactionism. A Critique of Dualistic Interactionism. Dualism Revived. Box: The Mind-Body Problem.
16. Materialist Monism.
17. Functionalism and Biological Naturalism.
Box: Intentionality.
18. Who Am I? The Problem of Personal Identity.
What Is It to Be a Person? What Is Identity? What Is Personal Identity?
19. Is There Life After Death? Personal Identity and Immortality.
Box: Reincarnation.
20. Determinism.
Universal Causality. Teleological Determinism.
21. Libertarianism.
The Argument from Deliberation. The Argument from Moral Responsibility.
22. Compatibilism: How to Have Your Cake and Eat It Too.
A Reconciling Project. A Critique of Compatibilism: A "Quagmire of Evasion"? The Argument Against Compatibilism from Moral Responsibility. The Compatibilist Response.
23. What Is Ethics?
Why Do We Need Morality? The Purposes of Morality.
24. Ethical Relativism Versus Ethical Objectivism.
An Analysis of Ethical Relativism. Subjective Ethical Relativism (Subjectivism). Conventional Ethical Relativism (Conventionalism). The Case for Ethical Objectivism.
25. Egoism, Self-Love, and Altruism.
Arguments for Ethical Egoism. Arguments Against Ethical Egoism. Evolution and Altruism.
26. Utilitarianism and the Structure of Ethics.
What Is Utilitarianism? The Strengths and Weaknesses of Utilitarianism. Utilitarian Reponses to the Standard Objections.
27. Kantian Deontological Ethics.
Immanuel Kant''s Rationalist Deontological System. The Goodwill. Duty and the Moral Law. Kant''s Second Formulation of the Categorical Imperative. The Principle of Autonomy.
28. Virtue Ethics.
29. Religion and Ethics.
Does Morality Depend on Religion? Is Religion Irrelevant or Even Inimical to Morality? Does Religion Enhance the Moral Life?
30. Existentialism and the Meaning of Life.
31. The Meaning of Life and the Fear of Death.
Appendix: How to Read and Write a Philosophy Paper.

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  • ISBN-10: 0495007129
  • ISBN-13: 9780495007128
  • Bookstore Wholesale Price $98.50
  • RETAIL $130.95

Cengage provides a range of supplements that are updated in coordination with the main title selection. For more information about these supplements, contact your Learning Consultant.


eBank Insturctor's Manual

ISBN: 9780495091608
This Instructor's Manual includes both teaching suggestions and an array of test questions for each section of Pojman's PHILOSOPHY: THE PURSUIT OF WISDOM, Fifth Edition. Contact your local Wadsworth Cengage rep to receive an electronic file of this handy resource.