9780415610247

The Myths We Live By

by ;
  • ISBN13:

    9780415610247

  • ISBN10:

    0415610249

  • Edition: 1st
  • Format: Nonspecific Binding
  • Copyright: 5/17/2011
  • Publisher: Routledge
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Summary

With a new Introduction by the author'An elegant and sane little book. ' The New StatesmanMyths, as Mary Midgley argues in this powerful book, are everywhere. In political thought they sit at the heart of theories of human nature and the social contract; in economics in the pursuit of self interest; and in science the idea of human beings as machines, which originates in the seventeenth century, is a today a potent force. Far from being the opposite of science, however, Midgley argues that myth is a central part of it. Myths are neither lies nor mere stories but a network of powerful symbols for interpreting the world. Tackling a dazzling array of subjects such as philosophy, evolutionary psychology, animals, consciousness and the environment in her customary razor-sharp pros, The Myths We Live By reminds us of the powerful role of symbolism and the need to take our imaginative life seriously.Mary Midgley is a moral philosopher and the author of many books including Wickedness , Evolution as a Religion , Beast and Man and Science and Poetry . All are published in Routledge Classics.

Author Biography

Mary Midgley is a moral philosopher and the author of many books including wickedness, Evolution as a Religion, Beast and Man and Science and Poetry. All are published in Routledge classics.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgementsp. ix
Foreword to the Routledge Classics Editionp. xii
How myths workp. 1
Our place in the worldp. 10
Progress, science and modernityp. 18
Thought has many formsp. 30
The aims of reductionp. 42
Dualistic dilemmasp. 53
Motives, materialism and megalomaniap. 63
What action isp. 68
Tidying the inner scene: why memes?p. 81
The sleep of reason produces monstersp. 88
Getting rid of the egop. 97
Cultural evolution?p. 106
Selecting the selectorsp. 117
Is reason sex-linked?p. 126
The journey from freedom to desolationp. 134
Biotechnology and the yuk factorp. 145
The new alchemyp. 154
The supernatural engineerp. 162
Heaven and earth, an awkward historyp. 173
Science looks both waysp. 181
Are you an animal?p. 191
Problems about parsimonyp. 201
Denying animal consciousnessp. 207
Beasts versus the biosphere?p. 218
Some practical dilemmasp. 225
Problems of living with othernessp. 233
Changing ideas of wildnessp. 242
Notesp. 252
Indexp. 263
Table of Contents provided by Ingram. All Rights Reserved.

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