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Truth in Philosophy

Truth in Philosophy

Barry Allen

ISBN 9780674910911

Publication date: 03/15/1995

The goal of philosophers is truth, but for a century or more they have been bothered by Nietzsche’s question, “What is the good of truth?” Barry Allen shows what truth has come to mean in the philosophical tradition, what is wrong with many of the ways of conceiving truth, and why philosophers refuse to confront squarely the question of the value of truth—why it is always taken to be an unquestioned concept. What is distinctive about Allen’s book is his historical approach. Surveying Western thought from the pre-Socratics to the present day, Allen identifies and criticizes two core assumptions: that truth implies a realist metaphysics, and that truth is a good thing.


  • Two related yet distinct questions are the central ostensible concerns of this book: what is the objection to a correspondence theory of truth?; why—if we should—should we consider truth to be the ultimate value? These questions are considered in the light of the work of six philosophers: Nietzsche; William James; Heidegger; Derrida; Wittgenstein; and Foucault… [A] thoroughly interesting and valuable book.

    —Hugh V. McLachlan, The Philosopher


  • Barry Allen is Professor of Philosophy at McMaster University.

Book Details

  • 344 pages
  • 6-1/8 x 9-1/4 inches
  • Harvard University Press

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