who is greatest philosopher of 20th century?
#91
(04-17-2011, 04:04 PM)EcceQuamBonum Wrote:
(04-15-2011, 07:19 PM)Resurrexi Wrote: Ayn Rand.

Really?  To my mind at least, most of what she has to say (about ethics, in particular) is exceedingly derivative--a sort of inept and humorless gloss on Nietzsche.  If you're looking for a rejection of collectivism and statism, there are other, better 20thC philosophers who offer the same critiques more cogently and coherently.  Not to mention the fact that her novels are god-awful; if that's the objectivist aesthetic, leave me out of it.  

Agreed.  Totally unoriginal, overrated, and a terrible novelist to boot.

Shawn
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#92
Zigliara, Eduardo Hugon, Gredt has an outstanding reputation as one of the strictest thomist manuals published in the 20th century.

I have a problem with all these modern philosophers.  I stick with the scholastics, as they are the ones that have kept continuity with historical philosophy - true philosophy, wisdom - the same wisdom that has been in the conversation since the ancient greeks, cleansed by our Catholic Fathers and Doctors, and brought into the 20th Century by the few but erudite men of learning, "neo-scholastics."
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#93
Foucault. His work on insanity, mental institutions, and prisons is pretty fascinating stuff. Not that I agree with his lifestyle or what must have been his personal opinions while he was alive.

I also like another Frenchman and his studies into propaganda, Jacques Ellul.

Another worthy mention is Kenneth Burke, especially his Grammar of Motives and his work with what he termed the "Dramatic Pentad".

Now Burke was an atheist and his definition of Man is fascinating and it is dangerous reading for the untrained or unformed mind. But, just because I think these philosophers are worth reading does not mean I subscribe to all their thinking. I often refute them. But, if the nature of philosophy is properly defined as the ability to discuss, and refute ideas in order to create a personal ontology for the reader, these men are worthy of the title best philosophers of the 20th Century.

On the lighter side I would have to give honorable mention to Robert Pirsig and his novels; Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenence and Lila. Both solid books that may be good for beginners who wish to expand their reading into the arena of ideas.

And lest I forget my beloved Chesterton and Belloc. They were certainly a certain kind of philosopher. As is E. Michael Jones. Mike Jones is the philosopher, or social commentator I would take to a street fight, as he is tough and hard hitting. But he connects the dots very well and you know where he is coming from and where he stands.

Getting back to Foucault, consider his work on architectual design and how buildings and space are designed to channel behavior. The rhetoric of a doctor's office aside from the necessity of certain things necessary to perform doctoring, of hospitals to make death well-hidden and not thought about. But, my favorite is his commentary of prisons in the Panoptican. So that few guards can watch over the entire population.

Are we not living in a modern day Panopticon by simply logging onto the internet? Where every keystroke you make can be monitored and every site you visit can be recorded? Books are much more private. But, along comes the Amazon ebook device, sorry the name escapes for the moment, and you can see that a lot of data mining can be done based on your downloads. So they know what you want and how you think.

Consider also iTunes and the rich data mining done there. For what they get, their downloads could be free and they would still make money. Then all the idiots who download Ga-Ga and Katy Perry and Aguilera simply breed more of the same canned crap.

It's a sordid scene. Gone are the days of truly talented people rising to the top like cream. It's merely mechanistic and creates in Man the image of a machine and takes away his initial design, which of course is in the image of God.

Even so-called "rewards" cards at merchants and grocery stores is an area of the Panopticon that I doubt Foucault ever envisioned. So, the end result is that we are in a type of prison without bars. The most intelligently designed, and the horror is just beginning.

My advice, pray, stay close to the Sacraments and the only Truth which is the Holy Trinity and our Holy Catholic Faith. Tune out all popular media unless you view it from the perspective of critic in search of what is good and what is evil.
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#94
(04-15-2011, 07:19 PM)Resurrexi Wrote: Ayn Rand.

I don't really think Ayn Rand qualifies as a philosopher. She was an overrated novelist who was convinced that she was the only heir to Aristotle. Here is how Murray Rothbard described her in a letter to a friend, "the great fascination of her philosophical position stems from the void that Utilitarianism, Positivism, and Pragmatism have left in the intellectual world." Further: "All three of these positions hide their face from the important problems of philosophy – ethics, ontology, esthetics, etc., and for us the important gap is ethics." In such a climate, one who encounters Rand, "finds that there are great truths that we have literally never heard in the classroom." Further study, however, leads to the conclusion that "the good stuff in Ayn’s system is not Ayn’s original contribution at all – that there is an underlying, but as I’ve written you, growing philosophic position beginning with Aristotle where it is set forth – the ideas of a rational ethics based on the nature of man and found by reason…. Once one begins to read this material, he finds that Ayn is not the sole source and owner of the rational tradition, nor even the sole heir to Aristotle." Even worse, "Ayn takes the Aristotelian rationalist tradition, and goes off on her own variant which I am convinced is a horrible perversion of a sound system." [Rothbard to Richard C. Cornuelle, August 11, 1954, Rothbard Papers.]
I don't think I will ever become an anarcho-capitalist like Rothbard, but in this case I would have to say he was right on the money, and I couldn't agree more. In fact to be fair I think Rothbard deserves consideration as being one of the greatest philosophers of the 20th century. Like I said I don't really agree with his conclusions but even his friend Thomas Fleming over at chronicles admitted that despite the flaws in his conclusions, he was without a doubt the most impressive mind he ever encountered.
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#95
I too vote for Dietrich von Hildebrand. Too bad Paul VI didn't listen to him. Too bad some of his books are out of print. I really liked
"Trojan Horse in the City of God" and "The Devastated Vineyard", both great analyses of the errors afflicting the Church after Vatican II.
Referring to the bishops in 1973 he wrote of  "the lethargy of the guardians".
He said it is " especially infuriating when certain bishops, who themselves show this lethargy toward heretics, assume a rigorously authoritarian attitude toward those believers who are fighting for orthodoxy, and who are thus doing what the bishops ought to be doing themselves!"
von Hildebrand was heroic in his resistance to the Nazis as a young man and later on he was a great  philosophy prof. at Fordham University. Several Jewish intellectuals cited his influence over their conversions.
He had the vision to critique the new liturgy and its associated dangers in 1966.

http://www.catholic-pages.com/mass/hildebrand.asp

http://www.hildebrandlegacy.org/main.cfm?r1=1.00&ID=1&level=1

C.

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#96
(05-29-2011, 12:53 AM)Cetil Wrote: I too vote for Dietrich von Hildebrand. Too bad Paul VI didn't listen to him. Too bad some of his books are out of print. I really liked
"Trojan Horse in the City of God" and "The Devastated Vineyard", both great analyses of the errors afflicting the Church after Vatican II.
Referring to the bishops in 1973 he wrote of  "the lethargy of the guardians".
He said it is " especially infuriating when certain bishops, who themselves show this lethargy toward heretics, assume a rigorously authoritarian attitude toward those believers who are fighting for orthodoxy, and who are thus doing what the bishops ought to be doing themselves!"
von Hildebrand was heroic in his resistance to the Nazis as a young man and later on he was a great  philosophy prof. at Fordham University. Several Jewish intellectuals cited his influence over their conversions.
He had the vision to critique the new liturgy and its associated dangers in 1966.

http://www.catholic-pages.com/mass/hildebrand.asp

http://www.hildebrandlegacy.org/main.cfm?r1=1.00&ID=1&level=1

C.

:thumb:
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#97
What about Gilson?
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#98
(01-19-2011, 05:04 PM)icecream Wrote: inquiring mind want to know

im guessing popper?

I've never heard that as an answer.  He wrote some interesting things but nothing earth shaking. 
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#99
(05-28-2011, 11:38 PM)MeanGene Wrote:
(04-15-2011, 07:19 PM)Resurrexi Wrote: Ayn Rand.

I don't really think Ayn Rand qualifies as a philosopher. She was an overrated novelist who was convinced that she was the only heir to Aristotle. Here is how Murray Rothbard described her in a letter to a friend, "the great fascination of her philosophical position stems from the void that Utilitarianism, Positivism, and Pragmatism have left in the intellectual world." Further: "All three of these positions hide their face from the important problems of philosophy – ethics, ontology, esthetics, etc., and for us the important gap is ethics." In such a climate, one who encounters Rand, "finds that there are great truths that we have literally never heard in the classroom." Further study, however, leads to the conclusion that "the good stuff in Ayn’s system is not Ayn’s original contribution at all – that there is an underlying, but as I’ve written you, growing philosophic position beginning with Aristotle where it is set forth – the ideas of a rational ethics based on the nature of man and found by reason…. Once one begins to read this material, he finds that Ayn is not the sole source and owner of the rational tradition, nor even the sole heir to Aristotle." Even worse, "Ayn takes the Aristotelian rationalist tradition, and goes off on her own variant which I am convinced is a horrible perversion of a sound system." [Rothbard to Richard C. Cornuelle, August 11, 1954, Rothbard Papers.]
I don't think I will ever become an anarcho-capitalist like Rothbard, but in this case I would have to say he was right on the money, and I couldn't agree more. In fact to be fair I think Rothbard deserves consideration as being one of the greatest philosophers of the 20th century. Like I said I don't really agree with his conclusions but even his friend Thomas Fleming over at chronicles admitted that despite the flaws in his conclusions, he was without a doubt the most impressive mind he ever encountered.

I remember reading a good critical article on Rand.  It opened with something like: "The Russian Revolution gave the West Vladamir Nabokov, Iaiah Berlin, and Ayn Rand.  The first was an author, the second a philosopher, the third was neither but thought she was both."  I think that sums things up quite well.


Anyway.  I agree with those who say Wittgenstein belong near the tops.  I think Alasdair MacIntyre is been horribly underrated.  His framing of the current ethical landscape is utterly brilliant and seems quite sound.  I really think he's at least the greatest living philosopher.  I think Godel has to be up there as well as Hilary Putnam.  Shabbir Akhtar is in my opinion the greatest living philosopher of religion.  Though I'm sure most here would disagree with that.  Heidegger is at leat one of the most influential philosophers of the 20th century.  I guess Russell belongs up there too. 
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(01-19-2011, 06:38 PM)SouthpawLink Wrote: I'd go with Fr. Garrigou-Lagrange; he was a Thomist.  Some of his works are available in English; of note, there's his Reality: A Synthesis of Thomistic Thought.
I agree. His [url=http://"http://www.ewtn.com/library/theology/reality.htm"]Reality: A Synthesis of Thomistic Thought[/url] is online for free and it is very solid. Just click the link in my previous sentence to read it.
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