New interpretations of Berkeley's thought (review)

Journal of the History of Philosophy 47 (3):pp. 471-472 (2009)
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Berkeley apologizes in the Principles for his apparent verbosity. After all, "to what purpose is it to dilate on that which may be demonstrated . . . in a line or two . . . ?" . His justification for his prolixity is that "all men do not equally apprehend things of this nature; and I am willing to be understood by every one" .A willingness to be understood by everyone is surely an intellectual virtue and suggests good will on the part of an author. In this excellent collection of twelve essays, some arising from a 2003 conference commemorating the 250 th anniversary of Berkeley's death, Berkeley's good will is richly rewarded. The essays cover many topics—representation, skepticism, self-consciousness, mathematics, human agency and liberty, as well as fire and light in Berkeley's Siris. In all cases, they offer fresh readings of Berkeley's philosophy.Several of the essays focus with fine precision on commonly discussed topics. Among these is Charles McCracken's contribution, "Berkeley's Realism." McCracken claims not that Berkeley is not a realist, but that, given a certain



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Berkeley on self-consciousness.Talia Mae Bettcher - 2008 - In Stephen Hartley Daniel (ed.), New Interpretations of Berkeley's Thought. Humanity Books.
Berkeley's realism.Charles J. McCracken - 2008 - In Stephen Hartley Daniel (ed.), New Interpretations of Berkeley's Thought. Humanity Books.


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Nancy Kendrick
Wheaton College, Massachusetts

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