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  1. 0 reviews 0 5 3 3 out of 5 stars 3/5
    13.4 hrs • 5/6/2013 • Unabridged

    Over a storied career, Daniel C. Dennett has engaged questions about science and the workings of the mind. His answers have combined rigorous argument with strong empirical grounding. And a lot of fun. Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking offers seventy-seven of Dennett’s most successful “imagination-extenders and focus-holders” meant to guide you through some of life’s most treacherous subject matter: evolution, meaning, mind, and free will. With patience and wit, Dennett deftly deploys his thinking tools to gain traction on these thorny issues while offering readers insight into how and why each tool was built. Alongside well-known favorites like Occam’s Razor and reductio ad absurdum lie thrilling descriptions of Dennett’s own creations: Trapped in the Robot Control Room, Beware of the Prime Mammal, and The Wandering Two-Bitser. Ranging across disciplines as diverse as psychology, biology, computer science, and physics, Dennett’s tools embrace in equal measure light-heartedness and accessibility as they welcome uninitiated and seasoned readers alike. As always, his goal remains to teach you how to “think reliably and even gracefully about really hard questions.” A sweeping work of intellectual seriousness that’s also studded with impish delights, Intuition Pumps offers intrepid thinkers, in all walks of life, delicious opportunities to explore their pet ideas with new powers.

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    Intuition Pumps and Other Tools for Thinking

    13.4 hrs • 5/6/13 • Unabridged
    0 reviews 0 5 3 3 out of 5 stars 3/5
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  2. 6.7 hrs • 5/28/2009 • Unabridged

    Shop Class as Soulcraft brings alive an experience that was once quite common but now seems to be receding from society — the experience of making and fixing things with our hands. Those of us who sit in an office often feel a lack of connection to the material world, a sense of loss, and find it difficult to say exactly what we do all day. For those who felt hustled off to college, then to the cubicle, against their own inclinations and natural bents, Shop Class as Soulcraft seeks to restore the honor of the manual trades as a life worth choosing. On both economic and psychological grounds, Crawford questions the educational imperative of turning everyone into a “knowledge worker,” based on a misguided separation of thinking from doing, the work of the hand from that of the mind. Crawford shows us how such a partition, which began a century ago with the assembly line, degrades work for those on both sides of the divide. But Crawford offers good news as well: The manual trades are very different from the assembly line and from dumbed-down white collar work as well. They require careful thinking and are punctuated by moments of genuine pleasure. Based on his own experience as an electrician and mechanic, Crawford makes a case for the intrinsic satisfactions and cognitive challenges of manual work. The work of builders and mechanics is secure; it cannot be outsourced, and it cannot be made obsolete. Such work ties us to the local communities in which we live and instills the pride that comes from doing work that is genuinely useful. A wholly original debut, Shop Class as Soulcraft offers a passionate call for self-reliance and a moving reflection on how we can live concretely in an ever more abstract world.

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    Shop Class as Soulcraft

    6.7 hrs • 5/28/09 • Unabridged
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  3. 2.1 hrs • 10/1/2005 • Unabridged

    Building on his enormously successful series of Philosophers in 90 Minutes, Paul Strathern now applies his witty and incisive prose to brief biographical studies of the world’s great writers. He brings their lives and ideas to life in entertaining and accessible fashion. After narrowly avoiding a firing squad when he was just twenty-eight years old, Dostoevsky never took things lightly. His great novels burst upon the European literary scene like a succession of thunderbolts. His understanding of the darker and more extreme recesses of the human mind cast a forceful light into these areas of experience. The raw psychology and passionate involvement of his books galvanized writers and thinkers as disparate as Nietzsche and Kafka. In Dostoevsky in 90 Minutes, Paul Strathern offers a concise, expert account of Dostoevsky’s life and ideas and explains their influence on literature and on man’s struggle to understand his place in the world. The book also includes selections from Dostoevsky’s writings and recommended reading for those who wish to delve deeper.

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    Dostoevsky in 90 Minutes by Paul Strathern
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    Also: CD, Digital Rental
  4. 4.2 hrs • 12/31/1970 • Unabridged

    Voltaire’s Philosophical Dictionary is a series of short essays, hortatory and propagandist, over an enormously wide range of subjects. It was deliberately planned as a revolutionary book and was duly denounced on all sides and described as ‘a deplorable monument of the extent to which intelligence and erudition can be abused.’ The subjects treated include Abraham, Angel and Anthropophages; Baptism, Beauty and Beasts; Fables, Fraud and Fanaticism; Metempsychosis, Miracles and Moses; all of them exposed to Voltaire’s lucid scrutiny, his elegant irony and his passionate love of reason and justice. Voltaires irony, keeness and passionate love of reason and justice are fully evident in this deliberately revolutionary series of essays.

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    The Philosophical Dictionary

    4.2 hrs • 12/31/69 • Unabridged
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