1st Edition

Medieval Philosophy A Contemporary Introduction

By Andrew W Arlig Copyright 2024
    314 Pages
    by Routledge

    314 Pages
    by Routledge

    This book presents a new, contemporary introduction to medieval philosophy as it was practiced in all its variety in Western Europe and the Near East. It assumes only a minimal familiarity with philosophy, the sort that an undergraduate introduction to philosophy might provide, and it is arranged topically around questions and themes that will appeal to a contemporary audience.

    In addition to some of the perennial questions posed by philosophers, such as "Can we know anything, and if so, what?", "What is the fundamental nature of reality?", and "What does human flourishing consist in?", this volume looks at what medieval thinkers had to say, for instance, about our obligations towards animals and the environment, freedom of speech, and how best to organize ourselves politically. The book examines certain aspects of the thought of several well-known medieval figures, but it also introduces students to many important, yet underappreciated figures and traditions. It includes guidance for how to read medieval texts, provokes reflection through a series of study questions at the end of each chapter, and gives pointers for where interested readers can continue their exploration of medieval philosophy and medieval thought more generally.

    Key Features

    • Covers the contributions of women to medieval philosophy, providing students with a fuller understanding of who did philosophy during the Middle Ages
    • Includes a focus on certain topics that are usually ignored, such as animal rights, love, and political philosophy, providing students with a fuller range of interests that medieval philosophers had
    • Gives space to non-Aristotelian forms of medieval thought
    • Includes useful features for student readers like study questions and suggestions for further reading in each chapter

      1. Introduction

      2. Science, Certainty, and Skepticism

      3. The Building Blocks of Reality

      4. What Are We?

      5. Happiness and the Meaning of Life

      6. Love Thy Neighbor

      7. The Philosopher in Society

      8. From Here, Where?

      Appendix: Timeline of People and Events


      Andrew W. Arlig is Associate Professor of Philosophy and Program Coordinator of Studies in Religion at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. He is the editor of On What There Was: Parts and Wholes (projected 2023) and coeditor (with Christina Van Dyke) of Medieval Philosophy (2019), which is part of the Critical Concepts in Philosophy series published by Routledge.

      "An excellent achievement. The volume serves as a contemporary introduction both in terms of its tone, which is fresh and wonderfully free of jargon, and in terms of its material, which takes a wholly new and inspiring approach to what the medieval canon should look like."
      Robert Pasnau, University of Colorado, Boulder