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Schopenhauer: On the Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason and Other Writings

Part of The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Schopenhauer

  • Date Published: September 2012
  • availability: Available
  • format: Hardback
  • isbn: 9780521872713


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About the Authors
  • This volume of translations unites three shorter works by Arthur Schopenhauer that expand on themes from his book The World as Will and Representation. In On the Fourfold Root he takes the principle of sufficient reason, which states that nothing is without a reason why it is, and shows how it covers different forms of explanation or ground that previous philosophers have tended to confuse. Schopenhauer regarded this study, which he first wrote as his doctoral dissertation, as an essential preliminary to The World as Will. On Will in Nature examines contemporary scientific findings in search of corroboration of his thesis that processes in nature are all a species of striving towards ends; and On Vision and Colours defends an anti-Newtonian account of colour perception influenced by Goethe's famous colour theory. This is the first English edition to provide extensive editorial notes on the different published versions of these works.

    • These essays reveal Schopenhauer's controversial views on science, explanation and the essence of nature
    • The first English translation to provide thorough scholarly notes on the differences between editions
    • The volume includes a substantial introduction to all three works
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    Reviews & endorsements

    'This new translation of three of Schopenhauer's essays is of a very high quality and is testament to the customary rigor of the Cambridge Translations. Undoubtedly, this new edition will become in time the standard work of reference for English-speaking scholars worldwide.' Philosophischer Literaturanzeiger

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    Product details

    • Date Published: September 2012
    • format: Hardback
    • isbn: 9780521872713
    • length: 558 pages
    • dimensions: 235 x 157 x 33 mm
    • weight: 0.93kg
    • contains: 8 b/w illus.
    • availability: Available
  • Table of Contents

    General editor's preface
    Editorial notes and references
    Notes on text and translation
    Part I. On the Fourfold Root of the Principle of Sufficient Reason:
    1. Introduction
    2. Survey of what is most important in previous teachings about the principle of sufficient reason
    3. Inadequacy of previous accounts and sketch of a new one
    4. On the first class of objects for the subject and the form of the principle of sufficient reason governing in it
    5. On the second class of objects for the subject and the form of the principle of sufficient reason governing in it
    6. On the third class of objects for the subject and the form of the principle of sufficient reason governing in it
    7. On the fourth class of objects for the subject and the form of the principle of sufficient reason governing in it
    8. General remarks and results
    Variants in different editions
    Collation of the two editions
    Part II. On Vision and Colours:
    9. On vision
    10. On colours
    Variants in different editions
    Part III. On Will in Nature:
    11. Introduction
    12. Physiology and pathology
    13. Comparative anatomy
    14. Plant physiology
    15. Physical astronomy
    16. Linguistics
    17. Animal magnetism and magic
    18. Sinology
    Reference to ethics
    Variants in different editions
    Glossary of names

  • Author

    Arthur Schopenhauer

    Editors and translators

    David E. Cartwright, University of Wisconsin, Whitewater
    David E. Cartwright is a Professor of Philosophy and Religious Studies and the chair of the Department of Philosophy and Religious Studies at the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater. He has numerous publications in nineteenth-century German philosophy and has edited and translated a number of Schopenhauer's books, most recently, with Edward E. Erdmann, The Two Fundamental Problems of Ethics (2010); and he is the author of Schopenhauer: A Biography (2010).

    Edward E. Erdmann, University of Wisconsin, Whitewater
    Edward E. Erdmann is an emeritus faculty member of the University of Wisconsin, Whitewater with a scholarly background in classical and early modern rhetorical theory. He writes regularly on subjects in agriculture, has edited German translations of textbooks and scientific reports on organic agriculture.

    Christopher Janaway, University of Southampton
    Christopher Janaway is Professor of Philosophy at the University of Southampton. He has published widely on nineteenth-century German philosophy, including Self and World in Schopenhauer's Philosophy (1989), The Cambridge Companion to Schopenhauer (1999), Schopenhauer: A Very Short Introduction (2002), and Beyond Selflessness: Reading Nietzsche's Genealogy (2007). He is General Editor of The Cambridge Edition of the Works of Schopenhauer, in which he has translated The Two Fundamental Problems of Ethics and co-translated The World as Will and Representation, Volume 1.

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