Shakespeare the Philosophical Poet

Author: Zabeeh, Farhang
Year:1999
Pages:244
ISBN:0-7734-8185-0
978-0-7734-8185-5
Price:179.95
There are many significant philosophical issues in Shakespeare's creation, unrecognized by literary critics, especially those who are unfamiliar with both old and new philosophical ideas and trends, such as the linguistic turn in contemporary philosophy. This book also uncovers certain underlying trends: naturalistic and humanistic, anti-scholastic, anti-war, anti-racist, and a Stoical stance.

Table of Contents

Table of contents:

1.Preliminaries: A list of philosophical topics; What makes Shakespeare a philosophical poet; knowledge of philosophical issues, references to Plato's Timaeus and The Republic, to Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics, to the Stoics, the Epicureans and the Sceptics; A Naturalistic-Humanistic and anti-Scholastic Renaissance world – view; Critical remarks on institutional autocracy of Church and State; The Critics - David Hume, Voltaire, Dr. Johnson, Tolstoy; Bernard Shaw, Andre Gide and T. S. Eliot; Refutation of their criticism; A new perspective – a semantic approach to the text and application of Gottlob Frege, Rudolf Carnap and Ludwig Wittgensteins's conceptual categories to the text.

2.Shakespeare's Semantic Dimension: The Magic of Names – Romeo and Juliet, Richard III, Julius Caesar, Henry VI, Twelfth Night; Of Sign and Sense – Hamlet, Falstaff, Richard III, "Honour," "Conscience" and "words without matter"; On Thinking, Talking and Imagining – Experience, Thought and Imagination, The problem of the others' minds, Hotspur, Othello, Macbeth, Hamlet, Sonnets; On Metaphor – Aristotle, Modern view (Bloom, Ricoeur, Heidegger on "Nothingness" in The Folio); World/Stage; Death/Sleep/Dreams; The Ladder Metaphor; Erotic Metaphors

3.Testability and Truth: The Prince of Denmark (Hamlet); Jesters as Philosophers – Falstaff as Aristophane's ‘Socrates';Hamlet's Scepticism and Quest for Truth; the Background – Bacon, Copernicus, Kepler, Bruno; the Test, The Mouse-Trap; the Knight of Faith (Abraham) – Abraham as viewed by Kierkegaard and Kant; Subjectivity, Anxiety, Self-Knowledge – the Mirror metaphor, Hamlet, Richard II, Cassius, Richard III

4.The Myth of Time: Plato, Aristotle, Sonnets, Augustine; Natural time-Eternity; A Modern Perspective; The Subject time

5.On Human Autonomy and Bondage: Fatalism, Determination, Freedom and Chance defined, New Behaviorists, Existentialists, Self-Knowledge (Edmund, Gloucester, Kent, Cassius, Hamlet, Coriolanus)

6.The Pragmatic Dimension: Shakespeare's moral bent as expressed by players: (Hamlet, Troilus, Macbeth, the King, Ulysses); Genealogy of Values – Passion-Reason, Reason as Physician to Love; (Falstaff, Hamlet, Troilus, Hume, Nietzsche, the Bible); Political Values – The Divine Right of Kings; "A Rude Age", "The Gun Powder Plot", Equivocation; Macbeth, Hamlet; The Law and Order; Anarchy and the Mob Rule; Against Tyranny; Stoical stance for peace and harmony

Endnotes, Books Cited, Index