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Q&A | February 27, 2014

Rene Denfeld: IMG Powell’s Q&A: Rene Denfeld



Describe your latest book. The Enchanted is a story narrated by a man on death row. The novel was inspired by my work as a death penalty... Continue »
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    The Enchanted

    Rene Denfeld 9780062285508

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The Nature of Rationality

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Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Repeatedly and successfully, the celebrated Harvard philosopher Robert Nozick has reached out to a broad audience beyond the confines of his discipline, addressing ethical and social problems that matter to every thoughtful person. Here Nozick continues his search for the connections between philosophy and "ordinary" experience. In the lively and accessible style that his readers have come to expect, he offers a bold theory of rationality, the one characteristic deemed to fix humanity's "specialness." What are principles for? asks Nozick. We could act simply on whim, or maximize our self-interest and recommend that others do the same. As Nozick explores rationality of decision and rationality of belief, he shows how principles actually function in our day-to-day thinking and in our efforts to live peacefully and productively with each other.

Throughout, the book combines daring speculations with detailed investigations to portray the nature and status of rationality and the essential role that imagination plays in this singular human aptitude.

Synopsis:

Repeatedly and successfully, the celebrated Harvard philosopher Robert Nozick has reached out to a broad audience beyond the confines of his discipline, addressing ethical and social problems that matter to every thoughtful person. Here Nozick continues his search for the connections between philosophy and "ordinary" experience. In the lively and accessible style that his readers have come to expect, he offers a bold theory of rationality, the one characteristic deemed to fix humanity's "specialness." What are principles for? asks Nozick. We could act simply on whim, or maximize our self-interest and recommend that others do the same. As Nozick explores rationality of decision and rationality of belief, he shows how principles actually function in our day-to-day thinking and in our efforts to live peacefully and productively with each other.

Throughout, the book combines daring speculations with detailed investigations to portray the nature and status of rationality and the essential role that imagination plays in this singular human aptitude.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments
Introduction
IHow to Do Things with Principles3
Intellectual Functions3
Interpersonal Functions9
Personal Functions12
Overcoming Temptation14
Sunk Costs21
Symbolic Utility26
Teleological Devices35
IIDecision-Value41
Newcomb's Problem41
Prisoner's Dilemma50
Finer Distinctions: Consequences and Goals59
IIIRational Belief64
Cognitive Goals67
Responsiveness to Reasons71
Rules of Rationality75
Belief93
Bias100
IVEvolutionary Reasons107
Reasons and Facts107
Fitness and Function114
Rationality's Function119
VInstrumental Rationality and Its Limits133
Is Instrumental Rationality Enough?133
Rational Preferences139
Testability, Interpretation, and Conditionalization151
Philosophical Heuristics163
Rationality's Imagination172
Notes183
Subject Index219
Index of Names224

Product Details

ISBN:
9780691020969
Author:
Nozick, Robert
Publisher:
Princeton University Press
Location:
Princeton
Subject:
General
Subject:
Philosophy
Subject:
Ethics & Moral Philosophy
Subject:
Epistemology
Subject:
Humanism
Subject:
Rationalism
Subject:
Movements - Humanism
Subject:
History of Science and Medicine, Philosophy of Science
Subject:
Reasoning
Subject:
Reason
Subject:
Philosophy : General
Copyright:
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
November 1994
Binding:
TRADE PAPER
Grade Level:
College/higher education:
Language:
English
Pages:
242
Dimensions:
9 x 6 in 13 oz

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The Nature of Rationality New Trade Paper
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Product details 242 pages Princeton University Press - English 9780691020969 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , Repeatedly and successfully, the celebrated Harvard philosopher Robert Nozick has reached out to a broad audience beyond the confines of his discipline, addressing ethical and social problems that matter to every thoughtful person. Here Nozick continues his search for the connections between philosophy and "ordinary" experience. In the lively and accessible style that his readers have come to expect, he offers a bold theory of rationality, the one characteristic deemed to fix humanity's "specialness." What are principles for? asks Nozick. We could act simply on whim, or maximize our self-interest and recommend that others do the same. As Nozick explores rationality of decision and rationality of belief, he shows how principles actually function in our day-to-day thinking and in our efforts to live peacefully and productively with each other.

Throughout, the book combines daring speculations with detailed investigations to portray the nature and status of rationality and the essential role that imagination plays in this singular human aptitude.

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