Download PDF by Ursula Renz: Self-knowledge : a history

By Ursula Renz

ISBN-10: 0190226412

ISBN-13: 9780190226411

ISBN-10: 0190226420

ISBN-13: 9780190226428

The purchase of self-knowledge is frequently defined as one of many major ambitions of philosophical inquiry. whilst, a few type of self-knowledge is frequently considered as an important situation of our being a human agent or human topic. hence self-knowledge is taken to represent either the start and the tip of people' look for knowledge, and as such it really is intricately sure up with the very notion of philosophy. no longer unusually for that reason, the Delphic injunction 'Know thyself' has involved philosophers of alternative occasions, backgrounds, and tempers.

yet how do we make feel of this critical? what's self-knowledge and the way is it accomplished? What are the structural beneficial properties that distinguish self-knowledge from different varieties of wisdom? What function do exterior, moment- and third-personal, resources of information play within the acquisition of self-knowledge? How do we account for the ethical effect ascribed to self-knowledge? Is it only a kind of anthropological wisdom that permits brokers to behave in response to their goals? Or, does self-knowledge eventually ennoble the self of the themes having it? ultimately, is self-knowledge, or its crowning glory, a aim which may be reached at all?

The ebook addresses those questions in fifteen chapters masking ways of many philosophers from Plato and Aristotle to Edmund Husserl or Elisabeth Anscombe. the fast reflections inserted among the chapters express that the quest for self-knowledge is a crucial subject matter in literature, poetry, portray and self-portraiture from Homer.

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Extra resources for Self-knowledge : a history

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7 Apology 29a–​b. 8 Apology 20d. 9 Apology 30a, e. 10 Apology 38a. 2. 12 Which is it—​does Socrates have or lack self-​knowledge? On the assumption that the self-​knowledge Socrates has ought to be different from the self-​knowledge he lacks, this chapter explains the differences in content between the two kinds of knowledge, and describes the two kinds of inquiry directed at each kind of self-​ knowledge. We may distinguish two questions corresponding to two ways of hearing the injunction to know oneself.

The second-​and third-​personal perspectives on the self. In many cases mere reflection on, or attendance to, one’s mental life is not sufficient in order to acquire Socratic self-​knowledge. We often depend on external sources of knowledge. This raises the question of what kind of external knowledge we may rely on. Can scientific insights help us with knowing ourselves better? What is the role of visual techniques? 30 What is the role of friends? What contribution is made by reflection on the life of others, and what is the role of historical understanding of the cultural values shaping our communities?

Values and goals? Why does Socrates not inquire into these in the pursuit of self-​ knowledge (or to get others to pursue it)? There are two parts to the answer. First, as Plato tells Socrates’ story, Socrates seems initially to have acquired that part of self-​knowledge which is knowledge of his knowledge and ignorance as an unintended (albeit natural) consequence of his wide-​ranging pursuit of knowledge about the way things are, not because he sought self-​knowledge in the first place. 37 Plato’s 35 Charmides 169b and 171b–​72a.

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Self-knowledge : a history by Ursula Renz

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