The Prevalence of Humbug and Other Essays

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9780801493218: The Prevalence of Humbug and Other Essays
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"Amusing and enlightening, these essays for the general reader deal with such topics as being reasonable, what it is to be humane, and P. T. Barnum's delightful book on humbugs. Reading them, one is reminded of William James's similar essays, not to adulterate philosophy into chit-chat but to elevate common sense."--Key Reporter

"Black's discussion is original, thorough, and interesting, and shows that political philosophy need not always be empty verbiage."--Times Higher Education Supplement

"Written in an accessible style, Black's collection of eight essays will be of interest to both professional philosophers and the general reader. . . . Among the questions it asks are: Why should I be rational? What does it mean to behave humanely? What is it to be reasonable? Above all, the book is informed by a sense of humor, a quality as refreshing as it is rare; as Black observes, quoting Hu Hsai, 'life is too serious to be taken altogether seriously.'"--Studies in the Humanities

"Very few books by professional philosophers deserve as wide an audience as this one does."--Alasdair MacIntyre, Vanderbilt University

About the Author:

Max Black (1909-1988) was Susan Linn Sage Professor of Philosophy and Human Letters at Cornell University and President of the International Institute of Philosophy. His many books include Language and Philosophy: Studies in Method; Models and Metaphors: Studies in Language and Philosophy; and The Prevalence of Humbug and Other Essays.

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