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Philosophers

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  1. 8.3 hrs • 8/9/2016 • Unabridged

    Discover a new understanding of Kierkegaard’s thought and his life, a story filled with romance, betrayal, humor, and riots. Søren Kierkegaard indeed lived an extraordinary life. His story is filled with romance and betrayal, family curses against God and acts of grace toward others, humor, drama, quiet observations, and riot-inducing polemics. The Danish philosopher, theologian, social critic, and writer is now widely recognized as one of the world’s most profound writers and thinkers. His influence on philosophy, literature, and on secular and religious life and thought is incalculable. He is known, amongst other things, as “the father of existentialism” and as the man who introduced the ideas of anxiety and the leap of faith to the modern imagination. Philosophers and theologians influenced by Kierkegaard include Karl Barth, Emil Brunner, Albert Camus, Jean-Paul Sartre, Thomas Merton, and numerous others. His attack on Christian nationalism helped inspire the pastor and martyr Dietrich Bonhoeffer to resist the Nazis. He has inspired novelists such as Mann and Kafka and poets like Eliot and Auden. Yet one is hard pressed to find a biography that explains simply what Kierkegaard’s life was like or gives a straightforward overview of his book…until now. Kierkegaard: A Single Life highlights the interesting and controversial aspects of Kierkegaard’s life, telling a story that few today know, and provides brief, straightforward overviews of his key works.

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    Kierkegaard

    8.3 hrs • 8/9/16 • Unabridged
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  2. 7.2 hrs • 7/12/2016 • Unabridged

    Part of the acclaimed Eminent Lives series, Machiavelli is a superb portrait of the brilliant and revolutionary political philosopher—history’s most famous theorist of “warfare, terror, murder, and bloodshed”—and the age he embodied. Ross King, the New York Times bestselling author of Brunelleschi’s Dome, argues that the author of The Prince was a far more complex and sympathetic character than is often portrayed.

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    Machiavelli

    7.2 hrs • 7/12/16 • Unabridged
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  3. 16.7 hrs • 1/31/2016 • Unabridged

    Old Path White Clouds presents the life and teachings of Gautama Buddha. Drawn directly from twenty-four Pali, Sanskrit, and Chinese sources, and retold by Thich Nhat Hanh in his inimitably beautiful style, this book traces the Buddha’s life slowly and gently over the course of eighty years, partly through the eyes of Svasti, the buffalo boy, and partly through the eyes of the Buddha himself. Old Path White Clouds is destined to become a classic of religious literature.

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    Old Path White Clouds by Thich Nhat Hanh

    Old Path White Clouds

    16.7 hrs • 1/31/16 • Unabridged
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  4. 1 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5 (1)
    5.3 hrs • 10/13/2015 • Unabridged

    In this entertaining and inspirational memoir, Hollywood legend Dick Van Dyke shares his secret to staying resilient in old age. Beloved Hollywood icon Dick Van Dyke will celebrate his ninetieth birthday in December 2015. He’s an established legend, having starred in Mary Poppins, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang, and The Dick Van Dyke Show. And yet he’s still keeping himself busy, entertaining America on television, in movies, on the stage, and on social media. Everyone wonders, “How does he do it?” For the first time, Van Dyke shares his secrets and tips on old age—just keep moving. With a fun and folksy way of addressing its audience, Keep Moving serves as an instruction book on how to embrace old age with a positive attitude. The chapters are filled with exclusive personal anecdotes that explore various themes on aging: how to adapt to the physical and social changes, deal with loss of friends and loved ones, stay current, fall in love again, and “keep moving” every day like there’s no tomorrow.

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    Keep Moving by Dick Van Dyke

    Keep Moving

    By Dick Van Dyke, with Todd Gold
    5.3 hrs • 10/13/15 • Unabridged
    1 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5 (1)
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  5. 9.9 hrs • 6/15/2015 • Unabridged

    Sir Thomas Browne (1605–1682) was an English writer, physician, and philosopher whose work has inspired everyone form Ralph Waldo Emerson to Jorge Luis Borges, Virginia Woolf to Stephen Jay Gould. In an intellectual adventure akin to Sarah Bakewell’s book on Montaigne, How to Live, Hugh Aldersey-Williams sets off not just to tell the story of Browne’s life but also to champion his skeptical nature and inquiring mind for our own age. Mixing botany, etymology, medicine, and literary history, Aldersey-Williams journeys in his hero’s footsteps to introduce us to witches, zealots, natural wonders, and fabulous creatures of Browne’s time and ours. He reveals how Browne’s preoccupations—how to disabuse the credulous of their foolish beliefs, what to make of order in natures, how to unite science and religion—are relevant today. In Search of Sir Thomas Browne is more than just a biography―it is a cabinet of wonders and an argument that Browne, standing at the very gates of modern science, remains an inquiring mind for our own time. As Stephen Greenblatt has written, Browne is “unnervingly one of our most adventurous contemporaries.”

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    In Search of Sir Thomas Browne

    9.9 hrs • 6/15/15 • Unabridged
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  6. 1 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5 (1)
    6.6 hrs • 6/9/2015 • Unabridged

    The Philosophy of Andy Warhol, first published in 1975, is less a memoir than a collection of riffs and reflections. The private Andy Warhol talks about love, sex, food, beauty, fame, work, money, success; about New York and America; and about himself—his childhood in McKeesport, Pennsylvania, good times and bad times in New York, the explosion of his career in the sixties, and his life among celebrities.

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    The Philosophy of Andy Warhol by Andy Warhol

    The Philosophy of Andy Warhol

    6.6 hrs • 6/9/15 • Unabridged
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  7. 5.9 hrs • 5/29/2015 • Unabridged

    Rousseau’s discourse sets out to explore the origin of inequality among people, a journey that sees him trace the evolution of humans from the savage man to the foundations of civil society. With verve and passion, the philosopher argues that the birth of private property was the “beginning of evil.” Throughout the book we are lead to consider the development of language, reason, self-preservation, benevolence, pity, and law—all through the lens of perhaps the most original thinker of the eighteenth century.

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    Discourse on the Origin and the Foundations of Inequality among Men

    Read by Neville Jason
    5.9 hrs • 5/29/15 • Unabridged
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  8. 4.9 hrs • 4/24/2015 • Unabridged

    The Life and Teaching of Karl Marx was written to commemorate the centenary of Karl Marx’s birth by Max Beer, an Austrian historian of the socialist and Marxist movements. It is a clear, detailed, and highly accessible work, a definitive biography, full of interesting personal details and a clear and comprehensive account of Marx’s economic and historical doctrines. The first half comprises a biography, full of fascinating quotations and insightful observations, while the second analyses many aspects of Marx’s historical and economic teachings, with useful exemples. Furthermore, Beer gives a comprehensive description of Hegel’s dialectical method, vital to an understanding of Marxism, and explores Marx’s attitudes to the “Dictatorship of the Proletariat’ and Bolshevism in action.

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    The Life and Teaching of Karl Marx

    Translated by T. C. Partington and H. J. Stenning
    Read by Greg Wagland
    4.9 hrs • 4/24/15 • Unabridged
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  9. 12.8 hrs • 4/1/2015 • Unabridged

    Confucius is perhaps the most important philosopher in history. Today his teachings shape the daily lives of more than 1.6 billion people. Throughout East Asia, Confucius’ influence can be seen in everything from business practices and family relationships to educational standards and government policies. Even as Western ideas from Christianity to Communism have bombarded the region, Confucius’ doctrine has endured as the foundation of East Asian culture. It is impossible to understand East Asia, journalist Michael Schuman demonstrates, without first engaging with Confucius and his vast legacy. Confucius created a worldview that is in many respects distinct from, and in conflict with, Western culture. As Schuman shows, the way that East Asian companies are managed, how family members interact with each other, and how governments see their role in society all differ from the norm in the West due to Confucius’ lasting impact. Confucius has been credited with giving East Asia an advantage in today’s world, by instilling its people with a devotion to learning, and propelling the region’s economic progress. Still, the sage has also been highly controversial. For the past hundred years, East Asians have questioned if the region can become truly modern while Confucius remains so entrenched in society. He has been criticized for causing the inequality of women, promoting authoritarian regimes, and suppressing human rights. Despite these debates, East Asians today are turning to Confucius to help them solve the ills of modern life more than they have in a century. As a wealthy and increasingly powerful Asia rises on the world stage, Confucius too will command a more prominent place in global culture. Touching on philosophy, history, and current affairs, Confucius tells the vivid, dramatic story of the enigmatic philosopher whose ideas remain at the heart of East Asian civilization.

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    Confucius

    12.8 hrs • 4/1/15 • Unabridged
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  10. 0 reviews 0 5 4.5 4 out of 5 stars 4.5/5
    15.9 hrs • 11/5/2014 • Unabridged

    “All ages of the world have not produced a greater statesman and philosopher combined.”—John Adams He squared off against Caesar and was friends with young Brutus. He advised the legendary Pompey on his somewhat botched transition from military hero to politician. He lambasted Mark Antony and was master of the smear campaign, as feared for his wit as he was for exposing his opponents’ sexual peccadilloes. Brilliant, voluble, cranky, a genius of political manipulation but also a true patriot and idealist, Cicero was Rome’s most feared politician, one of the greatest lawyers and statesmen of all times. Machiavelli, Queen Elizabeth, John Adams, and Winston Churchill all studied his example. No man has loomed larger in the political history of mankind. In this dynamic and engaging biography, Anthony Everitt plunges us into the fascinating, scandal-ridden world of ancient Rome in its most glorious heyday. Accessible to us through his legendary speeches but also through an unrivaled collection of unguarded letters to his close friend Atticus, Cicero comes to life in these pages as a witty and cunning political operator. Cicero leapt onto the public stage at twenty-six, came of age during Spartacus’ famous revolt of the gladiators and presided over Roman law and politics for almost half a century. He foiled the legendary Catiline conspiracy, advised Pompey, the victorious general who brought the Middle East under Roman rule, and fought to mobilize the Senate against Caesar. He witnessed the conquest of Gaul, the civil war that followed and Caesar’s dictatorship and assassination. Cicero was a legendary defender of freedom and a model, later, to French and American revolutionaries who saw themselves as following in his footsteps in their resistance to tyranny. Anthony Everitt’s biography paints a caustic picture of Roman politics—where senators were endlessly filibustering legislation, walking out, rigging the calendar, and exposing one another’s sexual escapades, real or imagined, to discredit their opponents. This was a time before slander and libel laws, and the stories—about dubious pardons, campaign finance scandals, widespread corruption, buying and rigging votes, wife-swapping, and so on—make the Lewinsky affair and the US Congress seem chaste. Cicero was a wily political operator. As a lawyer, he knew no equal. Boastful, often incapable of making up his mind, emotional enough to wander through the woods weeping when his beloved daughter died in childbirth, he emerges in these pages as intensely human; yet he was also the most eloquent and astute witness to the last days of Republican Rome.

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    Cicero

    15.9 hrs • 11/5/14 • Unabridged
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  11. 9.8 hrs • 11/18/2013 • Unabridged

    Jesse Norman presents a fascinating biography of Edmund Burke, an innovative eighteenth-century political thinker whose ideas prove essential to our understanding of modern politics. Edmund Burke is both the greatest and the most underrated political thinker of the past three hundred years. A brilliant eighteenth-century Irish philosopher and statesman, Burke was a fierce champion of human rights and the Anglo-American constitutional tradition as well as a lifelong campaigner against arbitrary power. Revered by great Americans including Presidents Theodore Roosevelt and Woodrow Wilson, Burke has been almost forgotten in recent years. But as politician and political philosopher Jesse Norman argues in this penetrating biography, we cannot understand modern politics without him. As Norman reveals, Burke was often ahead of his time, anticipating the abolition of slavery and arguing for free markets, equality for Catholics in Ireland, and responsible government in India, among many other things. He was not always popular in his own lifetime, but his ideas about power, community, and civic virtue have endured long past his death. Indeed, Burke engaged with many of the same issues politicians face today, including the rise of ideological extremism, the loss of social cohesion, the dangers of the corporate state, and the effects of revolution on societies. He offers us now a compelling critique of liberal individualism, and a vision of society based not on a self-interested agreement among individuals, but rather on an enduring covenant between generations. Burke won admirers in the American colonies for recognizing their fierce spirit of liberty and for speaking out against British oppression, but his greatest triumph was seeing through the utopian aura of the French Revolution. In repudiating that revolution, Burke laid the basis for much of the robust conservative ideology that remains with us to this day: one that is adaptable and forward-thinking, but also mindful of the debt we owe to past generations and our duty to preserve and uphold the institutions we have inherited. He is the first conservative. A rich, accessible, and provocative biography, Edmund Burke describes Burke’s life and achievements alongside his momentous legacy, showing how Burke’s analytical mind and deep capacity for empathy made him such a vital thinker—both for his own age, and for ours.

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    Edmund Burke

    9.8 hrs • 11/18/13 • Unabridged
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  12. 4.1 hrs • 4/16/2013 • Unabridged

    As a young man, Albert Schweitzer seemed destined for greatness. His immense talent and fortitude propelled him to a place as one of Europe’s most renowned philosophers, theologians, and musicians in the early twentieth century. Yet Schweitzer shocked his contemporaries by forsaking worldly success and embarking on an epic journey into the wilds of French Equatorial Africa, vowing to serve as a lifelong physician to “the least of these” in a mysterious land rife with famine, sickness, and superstition. Enduring hardship, conflict, and personal struggles, he and his beloved wife, Hélène, became French prisoners of war during WWI, and Hélène later battled persistent illnesses. Ken Gire’s page-turning, novelesque narrative sheds new light on Schweitzer’s faith-in-action ethic and his commitment to honor God by celebrating the sacredness of all life. The legacy of this 1952 Nobel Prize honoree endures in the thriving African hospital community that began in a humble chicken coop, in the millions who have drawn inspiration from his example, and in the challenge that emanates from his life story into our day.

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    Answering the Call

    Read by Jim Sanders
    4.1 hrs • 4/16/13 • Unabridged
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  13. 30.0 hrs • 8/20/2012 • Unabridged

    Dr. Johnson may have been correct in saying that “Rousseau was a very bad man,” but none can argue that his ideas are among the most influential in all of world history. It was Rousseau, the father of the romantic movement, who was responsible for introducing at least two modern day thoughts that pervade academia: (1) free expression of the creative spirit is more important than strict adhesion to formal rules and traditional procedures, and (2) man is innately good but is corrupted by society and civilization. The Confessions is Rousseau’s landmark autobiography. Both brilliant and flawed, it is nonetheless beautifully written and remains one of the most moving human documents in all of literature. In this work, Rousseau “frankly and sincerely” settles accounts with himself in an effort to project his “true” image to the world. In so doing he reveals the details of a man who paid little regard to accepted morality and social conventions.

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    The Confessions by Jean-Jacques Rousseau

    The Confessions

    30.0 hrs • 8/20/12 • Unabridged
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  14. 0 reviews 0 5 5 5 out of 5 stars 5/5
    19.0 hrs • 4/25/2012 • Unabridged

    In his probing and revelatory biography of one of the great prose stylists of the twentieth century, acclaimed biographer Michael Shelden breaks new ground in the evocation of George Orwell’s personal life and in our understanding of his art. Based on original interviews, previously undiscovered letters and documents, and astute literary detective work, Orwell is the major biography of one of the great yet elusive literary figures of our time. Shelden reveals the author of 1984 and Animal Farm as a lively, engaging literary personality. Few writers can rival Orwell’s experience of history: being shot through the throat in the Spanish Civil War, holding the position of colonial police superintendent in Burma, and living through the Blitz. Shelden restores a sense of drama and passion to this writer’s life and shows him to be a captivating, even heroic character struggling against great public and private turmoil.

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    Orwell by Michael Shelden

    Orwell

    19.0 hrs • 4/25/12 • Unabridged
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  15. 16.4 hrs • 11/1/2011 • Unabridged

    Israel Meir Lau, one of the youngest survivors of Buchenwald, was just eight years old when the camp was liberated in 1945. Descended from a 1,000-year unbroken chain of rabbis, he grew up to become Chief Rabbi of Israel--and like many of the great rabbis, Lau is a master storyteller. Out of the Depths is his harrowing, miraculous, and inspiring account of life in one of the Nazis' deadliest concentration camps, and how he managed to survive against all possible odds.Lau, who lost most of his family in the Holocaust, also chronicles his life after the war, including his emigration to Mandate Palestine during a period that coincides with the development of the State of Israel. The story continues up through today, with that once-lost boy of eight now a brilliant, charismatic, and world-revered figure who has visited with Popes John Paul and Benedict; the Dalai Lama, Nelson Mandela, and countless global leaders including Ronald Reagan, Bill and Hillary Clinton, and Tony Blair.

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    Out of the Depths

    16.4 hrs • 11/1/11 • Unabridged
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  16. 4.7 hrs • 10/13/2011 • Unabridged

    Acclaimed historian and bestselling author Paul Johnson’s books have been translated into dozens of languages. In Socrates: A Man for Our Times, Johnson draws from little-known resources to construct a fascinating account of one of history’s greatest thinkers. Socrates transcended class limitations in Athens during the fifth century BC to develop ideas that still shape the way we think about the human body and soul, including the workings of the human mind.

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    Socrates

    4.7 hrs • 10/13/11 • Unabridged
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