Tag Archive: Philosophy

Aug 30 2016

The Just City by Jo Walton

I love so much how my experiences with Jo Walton’s books just get better and better. I spent the climactic scene of The Just City with one hand clutched to my breast, knowing something terrible was coming and feeling a kind of horror and relief when it finally did — horror because it truly was …

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Jun 03 2016

The Philosopher Kings by Jo Walton

Jo Walton, writing at the height of her powers, has solved the second-book problem, or at least this one instance of the problem. The Philosopher Kings is in fact the middle book of a trilogy, but it is so much its own thing that although it has the advantages of a sequel—less time setting up …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/06/03/the-philosopher-kings-by-jo-walton/

Apr 27 2016

The Just City by Jo Walton

What if people took Plato’s Republic seriously enough to attempt putting it into practice? What if two of those people were the Greek deities Apollo and Athena, who have the power to make Plato’s implausible starting conditions real? Those are the premises underlying The Just City by Jo Walton. The Olympians, as Walton describes them, …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/04/27/the-just-city-by-jo-walton/

Jan 12 2016

The Art of Travel by Alain de Botton

  I purchased The Art of Travel on the way out of town during a spring break beach trip. The options at the Baylor Bookstore (the prep school, not the university), were limited to the sorts of things high schoolers either should read (such as Night by Elie Wiesel) or must read (insert Shakespeare title …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2016/01/12/the-art-of-travel-by-alain-de-botton/

Dec 28 2014

The Republic by Plato

Plato covers a range of subjects in this rambling work, but the chief one is the problem of what constitutes the best society. Naturally, Plato thinks that in any ideal society, the philosophers will be in charge. His Republic resembles Thomas More’s Utopia in that it would be a place where the citizens were incomparably …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/12/28/the-republic-by-plato/

Oct 25 2014

Early Socratic Dialogues by Plato

It seems to me there is something flawed in the Socratic question and answer approach to discerning truth. A person may know what something is and even be an expert on it even if he does not know how to precisely define it. An ophthalmologist, for instance, knows what sight is and is competent to …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/25/early-socratic-dialogues-by-plato/

Oct 06 2014

Paladin Of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold

After reading The Curse Of Chalion to prep myself for this book, that had come highly recommended to me by various sources, I made the mistake of reading the Wiki page and discovering that the Chalion saga is based very much on the historical House of Trastamara, the royal family that wound up uniting Spain …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/06/paladin-of-souls-by-lois-mcmaster-bujold/

Oct 03 2014

The Curse Of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold

An almost perfect fantasy novel, with one major exception. Cazaril is a compelling hero but there are parts where his heroism seems less a function of himself than of the story. I loved that he had personality and flaws, but the author sometimes seems to forget those flaws and forego realism for the epic, when …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/10/03/the-curse-of-chalion-by-lois-mcmaster-bujold/

Jul 12 2014

Politics by Aristotle

Aristotle’s politics strike me as rather conservative. He believes some democracy is good, but not too much. The lower classes should be kept firmly in their place, and the upper classes should not have their property rights disturbed. He emphatically does not believe that all men are equal. He believes that education should be a …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/07/12/politics-by-aristotle/

May 10 2014

On the Good Life by Cicero

Cicero, they say, was a principled and virtuous man who used his oratorical gifts for the good of the state. In these essays, however, I see not so much virtue as the vanity, self-love, and indulgence of an aristocratic gentleman who is highly pleased with his own accomplishments and evidently believes that his achievements and …

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Permanent link to this article: http://www.thefrumiousconsortium.net/2014/05/10/on-the-good-life-by-cicero/

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