First published in 1964, this is not just a chronicle or encyclopaedia, but deals thoroughly in turn with meaning, view about reason, and views about values, particularly moral values. The author's knowledge of French literature if extensive and thorough, and a feature of the book is his analysis of the philosophical implications of literarry wroks by Sartre, Paul Valery, Camus and others.
Part 1: The Search for Significance 1. Absurdity. The Gulf Between Man and his World. Camus. 2. Transcendence. The Pursuit of Meaning as a Necessary but 'useless passion'. Sartre 3. Participation. A Vindication of Being-in-Itself as Meaningful. Louis Lavelle. Part 2: The Role of Reason and the Concept 4. As Meditation Between Subject and Object. Alquié 5. As an Assimilating Force Within the World. André Lalande 6. As an Assimilating Force for the Production of New Meanings. Gaston Bachelard and E. Morot-Sir 7. The Concept as Expression. The Extraction of Provisional Meanings from the Permanently Indeterminate. Merleau Ponty 8. The Rejection of 'Expressionism'. The 'logos' as the rule of thought. Brice Parain Part 3: Norms and Values 9. Closed and Open Evolutionary Morality. Bergson's The Two Sources 10. Involutionary Morality. André Lalande 11. The Creation of Values. Raymond Polin 12. The Contingency of Value. Vladimir Jankélévitch 13. Detail and Atmosphere. René Le Senne 14. The Instant 15. Choice 16. The Authentic and the Everyday. Camus 17. Universality and Particularity 18. Saint-Exupéry