Death

Death There is one thing we can be sure of we are all going to die But once we accept that fact the questions begin In this thought provoking book philosophy professor Shelly Kagan examines the myriad que

  • Title: Death
  • Author: Shelly Kagan
  • ISBN: 9780300180848
  • Page: 217
  • Format: Paperback
  • There is one thing we can be sure of we are all going to die But once we accept that fact, the questions begin In this thought provoking book, philosophy professor Shelly Kagan examines the myriad questions that arise when we confront the meaning of mortality Do we have reason to believe in the existence of immortal souls Or should we accept an account according to whThere is one thing we can be sure of we are all going to die But once we accept that fact, the questions begin In this thought provoking book, philosophy professor Shelly Kagan examines the myriad questions that arise when we confront the meaning of mortality Do we have reason to believe in the existence of immortal souls Or should we accept an account according to which people are just material objects, nothing Can we make sense of the idea of surviving the death of one s body If I won t exist after I die, can death truly be bad for me Would immortality be desirable Is fear of death appropriate Is suicide ever justified How should I live in the face of death Written in an informal and conversational style, this stimulating and provocative book challenges many widely held views about death, as it invites the reader to take a fresh look at one of the central features of the human condition the fact that we will die.

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      Published :2019-05-05T08:35:53+00:00

    About "Shelly Kagan"

    1. Shelly Kagan

      Shelly Kagan is Clark Professor of Philosophy at Yale After receiving his B.A from Wesleyan University in 1976, and his Ph.D from Princeton University in 1982, he taught at the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Illinois at Chicago before coming to Yale in 1995 He is the author of the textbook Normative Ethics, which systematically reviews alternative positions concerning the basic rules of morality and their possible foundations, and The Limits of Morality, which challenges two of the most widely shared beliefs about the requirements of morality He is currently at work on The Geometry of Desert.

    488 thoughts on “Death”

    1. I'm obsessed with the subject so I don't really have a choice but to give it five stars even though I sincerely expected more from Shelly Kagan on the subject; and the subject itself requires more effort. It would be indeed childish to ask for a more direct approach even though as Cioran says "Only superficial minds approach an idea with delicacy", but at least it would have been more useful to read this without having to go through a lot of things I already knew so that didn't help me at all. I [...]


    2. Philosophy is not my discipline of choice. Reading this book reminded me of one afternoon I spent studying with a friend: she was a law student, and I was in third year of chemical engineering. I was learning how to calculate the length of time it would take to freeze a sausage, using the laws of heat transfer and thermodynamics. By considering the sausage as an infinite cylinder, axial conduction becomes negligible. The class was Food Engineering, that was six years ago, and clearly it stuck. S [...]


    3. Death is a taboo topic for many but inevitable to deal with when the time to leave this world comes. This is a very profound book that question all your beliefs about the nature of life and death. I suggest that instead of reading books from self-appointed spiritual guides, people should read this book and learn to question each one of their beliefs, and whether these beliefs are rational.


    4. Shelly Kagan is a great philosophy professor. He investigates some philosophical issues concerning death, raises some questions and attempts to answer them. Some of his views are controversial. He denies the existence of souls. He says suicide can rationally and morally be justifiable in some particular situations. He argues that life isn't always worth living. He raises this question that given the inevitability of death, how one should live. How thinking about death can affect the we way live? [...]


    5. A must-to-read book. It consists of four major parts:1- Some discussions on the existence of soul, both positive and negative. 2- The identity theory: What does make us what we are? Soul, body or something else? 3- Value theory, with some discussions on death and immortality: Should we really prefer immortality over death? 4- How should we treat death; should we be afraid, angry or grateful? He also discusses the rationality and morality of suicide.


    6. This was my first serious philosophy book and I was quite pleased. Shelly forced me to think in ways I hadn't before, and was rigorous without being overly pedantic. With Death, he strikes a good balance. This also made me question my belief that immortality is always good. Any book that can make me question deep beliefs is a good book.


    7. In Death, Yale professor of philosopher Shelly Kagan addresses some of the key questions surrounding death:1. What is death?2. What is it, exactly, that dies? That is: what is the nature of personhood? What is a person? 3. Could we survive death? If so, how might we survive death? Do we have souls?4. Is death bad for us? If death is bad, what is it that makes death bad?5. Should we fear death?6. Is it ever rational and moral to commit suicide?Kagan lays out the arguments with care, and he is fra [...]


    8. This is about death, split broadly into (1) metaphysics: physicalism/dualism, existence of the soul, personal identity; and (2) value theory: why death is bad, the value of life, is suicide immoral, and so on.I listened to the lectures first, which are very interesting, tightly argued and delivered in an engaging way. The book follows that format very closely. The second half, particularly towards the end, is not as good as the first. Not as good as the lectures, and possibly a bit repetitive in [...]


    9. Justice도 그렇고 이 강의도 그렇고 정말 내가 괜히 고등학교 졸업할 때 한국에서 대학다닌다고 엉뚱한 호기를 부린게 아닌가?싶을때가 있습니다. 뭐, 그렇다고 해서 제가 걸어온 길을 크게 후회하는 건 아니지만마치 교수님 말씀처럼 집에서 TV보고 파티를 놓친 듯한^^;; deprivation이랄까ㅋㅋㅋㅋ하지만 그만큼 제가 걸어온 길도 죽음과 삶의 영역에서 많은 윤리적 질문을 던지게 된 [...]


    10. Honestly, I found this book quite tiresome. Perhaps because it is adapted from lecture format, the exposition is very repetitive and simple ideas are outlined in unnecessary detail. While the subject matter is interesting, the needless amounts of explanation make getting to the point of each section extremely tedious. Additionally, and again perhaps because it is adapted from an undergraduate course, I found much of the material somewhat uninspiring; Kagan makes few of the insightful conceptual [...]


    11. I haven't read the book but I watched and re watched the course. I found Shelly Kagan's approach in teaching philosophy fascinating. It’s not just repeating the other philosopher’s ideas. He presents a statement or belief and scrutinizes it by raising objections. Sometimes I was not inclined to accept his opinion about the issue and preferred the consequences of the other alternatives. I also really enjoyed naming and categorizing Plato’s arguments in Phaedo.


    12. A very accessible book introducing the philosophical subject of death.I really liked one characteristic of this book: the author is upfront about his biases. He points them out. He tells the reader what the alternatives are to his own conclusions. And yes, while he endorses his own conclusions, he at least mentions the philosophical conclusions of his philosophical rivals --- especially towards the beginning, when he thought he had enough space in his book (the end of the book is far more rushed [...]


    13. Death (The Open Yale Course Series) by Shelly Kagan"Death" is the very interesting book based on a course on death that Professor Kagan has taught at Yale University. This accessible book covers philosophical questions about the nature of death. The first half of the book covers questions about the existence of souls and the nature of death while the second half deals with value questions. This is a very engaging and thought-provocative book that has well a lecture feel. This instructive 392-pag [...]


    14. the so called acclaimed Ivy League best 3 lecturers and I would say definitely not Kagan. Never have I seen a scholar is so focused on one factor (to denounce the non existence of the soul) to override (or support) his claim of understanding the entire notion of death. A scholar only uses Socrates and Plato (and Descartes) to support his claim of knowing everything about death (by disclaiming Socrates and Plato). about trying Kierkegaard and Camus? or even Nietzsche? not evenKagan book is long a [...]


    15. T'was an okay read. Kagan is a very clear writer and he's good at considering many angles of a single issue. However, the opulent use of science fiction thought experiments became kind of boring after awhile. It doesn't seem like a good use of time to me to bask in science fiction when trying to expound upon a non fictional topic, that is, death. As well, many times he would start talking about a topic and then drop it saying that he didn't have time to address it, etc. Well, why Shelly would yo [...]


    16. Meh. There are better books about the philosophy of death out there. Kagan's book is a decent general introduction to the topic but it won't blow you away.


    17. I really enjoyed and agreed with a great many of Kagan's ideas towards a lot of the topics in his book: from immortality, the rationality of suicide and whether or not we have a soul. The most helpful lesson I took from the book was in determining how we can prove the existence of anything that we do in life. Kagan suggested an approach that is taken in philosophy called an "inference to the best explanation" -- Shelly uses the example of how do we explain the existence of germs, he explains tha [...]


    18. Just as Kagan said in this book, everyone should leave the mundane world someday. Why are we here? Isn't it a mystery that all of us are here to wait for our ordained death? On the Earth, we conform with the supreme rule that also is the law suit of the universe. Everyone and everything should follow the ordained way to lead a life that is conforming the supreme rule or things would have gone stray by being devastated. Death means not devastation but the supreme meaning of sublimation towards th [...]


    19. This book is a written version of a course offered by Shelly Kagan at Yale (which is accessible online for free!)The book covered most of the issues I had in mind when I started reading it; Kagan employs a clear, witty, and jargon-free narrative for describing complicated issues with respect to death including: the nature of death, the possibility of life after death, immortality, the value of life, and lastly suicide. Overall, I found this to be a informative read and liked his systematic discu [...]


    20. It's wonderful as a introductory book. I've never read a phylosophy bookl that is so easy and interesting to read. However I think, some parts, especially the value theory parts, are not deep enough for college students. Views about life and death, and value of life, seems to be just too correct. And, as a reader brought up in the eastern culture, I think the author just talked too little on the eastern views on all the topics.


    21. Shelly Kagan's Death is written pretty conversationally. It's a work I liked but Kagan feels he needs to do a lot of legwork to establish some of the different metaphysical and ethical positions that are at stake. It's understandable: this work is basically written for people who've never studied philosophy before or who might not have much interested in philosophy, per se, but have at least some interest in the topic of death. Anyway, Kagan considers whether there's life after death, whether im [...]


    22. I was first inspired to read this book after meeting the author, Shelly Kagan, at Yale last year where he introduced me to his course and book on death. I thought he was a very interesting, patient man, and hoped his book would be equally interesting. Turns out, it was.This book was incredibly liberating. Removing virtually any fear I previously had about death, Kagan allows me to rejoice in my mortality. While I don't agree with all his arguments (I think some need to be more fully developed), [...]


    23. الكتاب عبارة عن محاضرات القاها Shelly kagan بنفس العنوان منسقة ومكتوبة. بدأ الكتاب ب التساؤلات التي اثارها حول ما اذا كانت هناك حياه اخرى بعد الموت ثم يطرد في التشعب بدءا من تلك النقطة. يتناول بعد ذلك طبيعة الإنسان من وجهتي نظر مختلفتين dualism و ال physicalism - اشار قليلا للمثالية ولكنه لم [...]


    24. This was an audiobook/lecture series that started out with Kagen stating that some people hate him. While I did not hate him I found Kagen's intensity while teaching the lectures a bit stressful. In fact because he yelled so often I found myself shutting the book off to do something more relaxing. The information was interesting and well argued. This content did demonstrate how much of moral reasoning is left up to the values and sensibilities of the philosopher or thinker doing the debate. Agai [...]


    25. Easy to read and accessible, allows for various levels of ability to take something out of it. Some bits got long winded but the explanations and analogies made it easy to remember and understand the arguments. Other than that, the content is adequate and comprehensive. It gets you thinking even if you do not agree with him. The informal style (from being transcribed) makes it more down-to-earth and warm for comfortable reading. It is my first introductory text so I might be biased but I dare sa [...]


    26. Very interesting and dense discussion of death, once you leave the muddy swamp of dualism and Platonian assumptions, that noone really holds.Even though "death" sounds like a peculiar small subject compared to all of philosophy, Kagan touches a lot of fields and you could make the point for calling this book "the meaning of life".An interest in philosophy is enough, no need for previous knowledgeKagan's teaching style is very visual. He explains just about anything with examples and thought-prov [...]


    27. Gave up at p156. Shelly Kagan likes to refer to himself, Shelly Kagan, as well as use his name, Shelly Kagan, in illustrative examples just way too much. Shelly Kagan is very long-winded, and likes to take many pages to say what someone other than Shelly Kagan could say more clearly, and less patronizingly, in a paragraph. Too bad, because the topic is a very interesting one. I just lack the patience that Shelly Kagan requires of people that read Shelly Kagan.


    28. I've never had so much fun thinking about my own death! Highly recommended for philosophers and non-philosophers alike. In my opinion, professor Kagan does an excellent job of making counterintuitive philosophical thought experiments both fun and approachable - much in the same way Dawkins makes evolution and biology accessible and fascinating for non-scientists.


    29. though, he didn't force me to follow his arguements and conclusions. I found it as the best book I've ever read. it made me change a huge chunck of beliefs as well as making me ready to face the facts about death. thank you shelly kagan for making this book.


    30. I have listened to several of these lectures that are available from Yale. The subject gives him the basis for a demonstration of philosophizing as he goes about it seemingly on the spot, dealing with all the questions that you might yourself have forgotten to think about death.


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