1st Edition

The Idea of the Soul In Western Philosophy and Science

By William Ellis Copyright 1940
    314 Pages
    by Routledge

    First Published in 1940, this book which is written not so much for the philosopher as for the ordinary educated man, is an account of the idea of the soul. It attempts to answer two questions-a) what is the idea of the soul; and b) why has it become ‘unwelcome’? The first question is answered by tracing the actual historical development of the idea- from early myths of the soul up to Renaissance philosophy. The second question is dealt with by considering the idea of the soul as it is affected by modern scientific ideas, particularly biological ideas.

    The book discusses themes like the physical psyche; the natural philosophers; Socrates; the Platonic immaterial real; rebirth of philosophy and birth of Christianity; Neo- Pythagorean method of biology; Behaviourism and nature and the organism. This will be an interesting historical reference work for students of philosophy.

    Foreword 1. The Physical Psyche: The Cult of the Soul 2. Physis: The Nature Philosophers 3. The Pythagorean and Ionian Conceptions of the Psyche 4. The Spiritual Psyche: Socrates 5. The Spiritual Physis: The Platonic Immaterial Real 6. The Teleological Physis: The Aristotelian Entelechy 7. The Physical Logos: The Decline of Philosophy 8. The Spiritual Logos: The Rebirth of Philosophy and the Birth of Christianity 9. The Christian Doctrine of Physis and Psyche: St. Augustine 10. The First Renaissance of Platonism: The Carolingian Renaissance 11. The Second Renaissance of Platonism: The Italian Renaissance 12. The Para-Physical Psyche: The Neo-Pythagorean Philosophy of Descartes 13. The Cartesian Traditions 14. The Neo- Pythagorean Method of Biology 15. The Physical Schema of the Animal Psyche: The Conditioned Reflects 16. The Physical Schema of the Human Psyche: Behaviourism 17. The Drieschian Entelechy 18. The Physical Schema of Entelechy: Axial Gradients 19. The Future of the Neo- Pythagorean Method 20. Physis, Psyche and Mechanism 21. The Limitations of the Neo-Pythagorean Schema: Philosophical Behaviourism 22. Nature and the Organism 23. Nature and Psyche Index


    William Ellis (at the time of the first publication of this book) was Lecturer in Experimental Zoology, Liverpool University.