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A Terribly Serious Adventure by Nikhil Krishnan
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A Terribly Serious Adventure

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A Terribly Serious Adventure by Nikhil Krishnan
Hardcover $28.99
Jul 04, 2023 | ISBN 9780525510604

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“Spirited [and] frequently wry . . . an account of thought at Oxford from 1900 to 1960 that weaves biography with philosophy and somehow attains . . . a pellucid clarity. This is one of those books that leaves readers feeling a lot cleverer than they actually are.”The Sunday Telegraph

“In tracing the careers of a whole host of prominent twentieth-century philosophers . . . Krishnan aims not only to offer a basic overview of the philosophical developments of the period, but also to explain what these philosophers were doing in espousing their views and what effects those acts of espousal had. . . . A valuable contribution [that] offer[s] a much richer understanding of Oxford philosophy.”Oxford Political Review

“Enjoyable . . . [Krishnan] recognizes that Oxford philosophy is sometimes reproached for its frivolity, but maintains that the ‘jokiness’ was in fact a mask for ‘something deeper.’”Literary Review

“This is Oxford philosophy in the round—the philosophical arguments (clearly explained), the personal lives, the colorful quotes, the elbow patches and buttered crumpets. . . . Brilliantly written.”—James Franklin, author of Corrupting the Youth: A History of Philosophy in Australia

“We are given first-row seats to the brilliance, obstinacy, jousting, and intellectual enthusiasms that marked that legendary academic circle.”—David I. Kertzer, New York Times bestselling author of The Pope at War

“There is a rumor that philosophy in the twentieth century detached itself from the flesh-and-blood realities of the world. In this meticulous study, Krishnan argues that something quite different occurred: A deranged world—shot through with violence, ideology, and injustice—turned its back on the love of wisdom. And a small band of philosophers stood in enduring protest.”—John Kaag, author of American Philosophy: A Love Story

“This riveting and beautifully written book, expertly set in the context of the two wars and the surrounding political turmoil, offers a compelling insight into the various ways in which philosophy developed in Oxford in the first half of the twentieth century.”—A. W. Moore, author of The Evolution of Modern Metaphysics

“A compelling storyteller, Krishnan brings human sympathy and acuity to his very readable book. Past debates spring vividly to life, with all their drama and comedy; we understand how philosophers walked and talked, suffered, and interacted.”—Peter J. Conradi, author of Iris Murdoch: A Life

“This is a beautiful gift of a book, most especially at the moment, when truth is not at a premium.”—Rebecca Newberger Goldstein, author of Plato at the Googleplex

“We have read Ryle, Williams, Wittgenstein, Anscombe, and Ayer, but we’ve never seen them as a tribe, widely differing but part of the same association of human beings on the same adventure: people who knew each other.”—Matthew Parris, author of Fracture

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