Essays on Philosophers

Free essays on philosophers are academic papers that explore the works and ideas of renowned philosophers throughout history. These essays delve into the philosophical theories that have shaped the world we live in today and analyze the writings of philosophers such as Aristotle, Plato, Immanuel Kant, Friedrich Nietzsche, and Jean-Paul Sartre, among others. These essays offer insightful perspectives into the most intricate philosophical concepts and issues, including ethics, metaphysics, epistemology, and ontology. Students and scholars can find free essays on philosophical topics across varied domains, including ethical theory, political philosophy, aesthetics, and more. These essays can be an excellent resource for individuals who are interested in gaining a deeper understanding of philosophical theories and concepts.
Character Analysis of Achilles Using the Philosophy of Plato
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Many of the citizens, especially the younger men, always looked up to Achilles as a role model. They admired his courage and bravery on the battlefield and longed to be like him. Socrates seems to side with Achilles's admirers at first, however, things take a turn when he presents himself as the new model for righteousness and virtue. He addresses the nature and problems of justice, while pointing out the problems in Homeric poetry. Based on the claims he has…...
Socrates vs Hobbes
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It is better to mention that Socrates is a philosopher and jurist that lived, while Thomas Hobbes lived between (1588-1679). Both jurist lived on the different era and time line and both of them are exposed to different kinds of legal system and philosophy It is justifiable to say that both of the jurists have different opinion of theories on their own on the aspect of the Law, how and why the law come into being. However, an analysis of…...
Philosophies of Socrates, Plato and Aristotle
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Socrates was the earliest great free thinker and philosophical giant. Born in Athens, Greece he lived a rather uncanny existence; dressing shabbily, scorning mammon and pleasure- seeking, and passionately looking to explore the "Unexamined” sides to mankind's existence. He developed a unique approach where he would ask individuals he talked leading questions in order to cause them to closely delve into the truth behind their ideas and beliefs. This would be infamously known thereafter as the Socratic Method. He upheld…...
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A Comparison Between the Works of Assata Shakur and Socrates
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Assata Shakur and Socrates are both legends in their own aspectsiSocrates’ story comes from the past and Assata Shakur‘s life and incidences happened more recently. However, their stories are extremely similar to one another. They were both placed in predicament of being unfairly imprisoned Although for different reason. Shakur and Socrates also chose different ways to go about solving their problem Socrates chose to follow Athen‘s government decision of death instead of giving in to his supporters ideas to escape…...
The Differences Between Xenophon and Socrates in Philosophy
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The excerpt about the ideal household is written by Xenophon, an Athenian, who was born in 431 BC, and was a pupil of Socrates. The excerpt entails conversation between a man named Ischomachus and his wife, illustrating the principles of the science of the household. The conversation is between a man who is accomplished and knowledgeable in the art of household management. Ischomachus states the principles of educating a wife to be the helpmate of a husband, his approach to…...
Comparing Plato’s Cave with Omelas and Matrix
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Imagine what it would be like to see the world differently then all of your peers and colleagues, like you had some superpower or sixth sense that told you: this isn’t how it’s supposed to be. We all curse the geniuses that come up with brilliant life-changing inventions and ideas; where does this magnificent insight come from? Why couldn’t we think of it ourselves? Maybe these intellects are destined for greatness. Maybe they possess a unique quality that calls for…...
PhilosophyPlatoThe MatrixTruth
Certainty in The Matrix: Descartes and Plato’s Views
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The Matrix, a movie that has been popular and controversial for decades, delved into the field of epistemology by raising an important question to society regarding the certainty of knowledge and the reliability of the human senses. Plato with his Allegory of the Cave from The Republic and Rene Descartes with his Meditation I from Meditations on First Philosophy both provide epistemic platforms to compare and contrast the question of if what humans believe as reality is truly as it…...
PhilosophyPlatoRealityThe Matrix
The Issue of Reality in The Matrix, a Movie by the Wachowskis
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The Matrix, a popular movie that hit the big screen in 1999, poses an interesting question of whether humanity’s perceived reality is based on truth, or if it is all an illusion This question is not a new idea. Renowned philosophers throughout history such as Plato and Descartes asked the same question Is the world as we perceive it real? Is our reality just a dream? Are we living in some controlled, videogame-like environment where our freedom of choice is…...
PhilosophyPlatoRealityThe Matrix
The Complexity of Panopticism by Michel Foucault
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Michel Foucault's Panopticism is easily recognized as being one of the most complex works to English literature. It encompasses many multifaceted ideas and intertwines them by the end of the passage to one, throwing readers for a loop and often leaving them only more confused after reading it than before. By being able to critique some of the most difficult parts and trying to make meaning out of them, readers gain a new perspective of the works and may be…...
Michel FoucaultPhilosophyPrison
A Review of Michel Foucault’s Theory of Panopticism
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Michel Foucault's "Panopticism” was a challenging read however it was a significant theoretical piece that explained the relationship between surveillance and power. However, he expands his argument about how nothing is public or private through examples of the seventeenth century plague and also described the structure of a panopticon. Both examples then relate back to the theme of knowledge is power. He analyzes the structure and the plague to emphasize knowledge is the power that controls the ignorant. Foucault describes…...
Michel FoucaultPoliticsPrivacy
Michel Foucault and Postmodern Panopticons Around Us
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In Michel Foucault's “Panopticism”, he discusses Jeremy Bentham's idea of the panopticon which is a prison that allows for the prisoners to be well lit and watched at all times; however, the prisoners never know when they are being watched because the watchers are behind blackened glass. Foucault rightly points out that this breaks the seeing/being seen distinction because the prisoner cannot see if he/she is being watched, but the watcher both can see inside and out. So, this instills…...
EthicsMichel FoucaultPolitics
Punishment Passed From the Body to the Soul of Michel Foucault
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Michel Foucault gives an in-depth historical analysis of punitive punishment in order to diagnose the current state of the application of punishment. In Discipline & Punish Foucault suggests that punishment has moved from a focus on the body to that of the soul. Further, capital punishment has moved from an act of valor, to one in which the punishing party seeks to become opaque. That is, those who execute wish to alleviate themselves of the pressures and responsibility of the…...
Michel FoucaultPsychologyPunishment
Kant and Mill’s contributions to 18th-19th century philosophy
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Immanuel Kant, who was a German, was born in 1724 and died in 1804. He is considered to be a modern figure of philosophy as his viewpoint talked about the fundamental concepts of the human mind along with other important philosophical conceptions that are still recognized to this day, like epistemology and ethics, this is referred to as Kantianism‘i On the other hand, Utilitarianism was a concept primarily associated with Jeremy Benthamz, who was an English philosopher, a jurist and…...
John Stuart Mill
Mill of Rights: Government Interference
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Political economist John Stuart Mill explains two unique, yet similar types of government interference on the economy and society, and describes some justifications of government interference in his influential work, Principles ofPoIiricaI Economy. A backer of utilitarianism, Mill concludes his Principles piece with a paired depiction of government interferences on the economy. First, be critically describes “the authoritative interference of government” as actions that enforce and regulate society, of which “may extend to controlling the free agency of individuals” (Medema…...
John Stuart Mill
Economic Theory of Value
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Early economic writers—such as David Ricardo, John Stuart Mill, William Stanley Jevons, and Alfred Marshallitheorized value differently in their own approaches, yet influenced each others work, In his renowned work, On the Principles ofPoiiticaI Economy & Taxation, Ricardo’s theory of value claims that the exchange value of a good is derived from the amount of labor required in its production, including raw materials and equipment, in addition to labor (Medema and Samuels 269) Ricardo cautions that this should also be…...
John Stuart Mill
Epicurus vs Mill on Peter’s Statement
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In the following paper I will compare and contrast how Epicurus and John Stuart Mill would evaluate Peter’s claim. Peter says that pleasure and only pleasure is what makes life worth living, therefore, he is going to eat, drink, and have sex all day, everyday. Although Mill and Epicurus might agree that pleasure and only pleasure is what makes life worth living, I don’t think they would completely agree with his new lifestyle Epicurus is a hedonist, which means that…...
John Stuart Mill
The Addition of John Stuart Mill on Bentham’s Views on Utilitarianism
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Utilitarianism is “the View that the right action is that, among the open choices, results in the greatest good (usually defined as pleasure/happiness) for the greatest number of persons,” (class glossary). One such theorist is John Stuart Mill. Heavily influenced by Bentham, the father of utilitarianism, John Stuart Mill adopted the view of utilitarianism and strengthened it by altering the way in which happiness is defined. In this essay, I will explain how Mill adds on to Bentham’s version of…...
John Stuart Mill
A Critical Assessment of John Stuart Mill’s Principle of Liberty
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Critically assess Mill’s principle of liberty John Stuart Mill was an English political economist and civil servant born in the nineteenth century. His ideas of liberalism, developed and deviated from his famous father, James Mill‘s, far surpassed any that had been popular at the time, Mill was an advocate of complete freedom from societal restraints and universal franchise, a concept alien in Victorian era England where only one in seven men had the right to vote. He was a member…...
Critical TheoryJohn Stuart MillPhilosophers
Phelps’ Belief-Certainty Link Critique
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I challenge William Lyon Phelps's statemenabouten the relationship between certainty and belief, because while Phelps claims having a belief in something can be sufficient motivation to do something, the fact that you simply believe in something, does not make it certain. Belief is a powerful motivator. We hear many stories about blind people climbing mountains, or paralyzed people completing triathlons. These events start with the belief that one can accomplish, “... those things that other people are certain are impossible.”…...
Bertrand Russell
A Discussion on Rene Descartes’ Theory on the Mind-Body Problem
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The Mind-Body Problem The topic of the mind-body problem starts with a well-known philosopher, Rene Descartes. Descartes proposes a theory with which many psychologists agree with also is the view known as common sense. Descartes answers no to the question, "Are we simply very complex parts of the physical world?” (Perry 239). Descartes explains that the mind is not part of the physical world at all. A continued explanation would be that physical things take up space, while our minds do not take…...
Bertrand Russell
The Proof of God’s Existence in Summa Theologica, a Book by Thomas Aquinas
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In his work Summa Theologica, the 13th-century religious philosopher Saint Thomas Aquinas proposes his proof of the existence of God. He called this theory the Cosmological Argument. (Reichenbach 4.1) This argument consists of five distinct ways in which Aquinas proves the existence of the highest being who has the characteristics most would hold of a God. One of the most controversial of these ways is the Uncaused Cause Argument, which is his statement of God's existence as the “first cause”…...
Bertrand Russell
The Life and Philosophies of Bertrand Russell
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Bertrand Arthur William Russell was born in Trelleck, Wales on May 18, 1872. He was a descendant of a prominent Whig family. His grandfather was Lord John Russell, who had twice served as Prime Minister under Queen Victoria. Bertrand was orphaned at the age of three and raised by his grandparents. He was educated in private schools and later at Trinity College, Cambridge. He earned degrees in mathematics and philosophy. Eventually, he taught at Cambridge. Russell was a philosopher, logician,…...
Bertrand Russell
Bertrand Russell’s Thoughts on the Value of Philosophy
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At the beginning of class, the instructor asked what our thoughts were on philosophy; I said that philosophy is the discovery of life's meaning, and why things are there for a reason. Our very first reading was on the great philosopher; Bertrand Russell who addresses that "the value of philosophy” is equivalent to everyone “finding a way of escape” (p.xvi) Russell roughly gives his example by talking about the "Practical” men, he applies the "practical" men and comparing it to…...
Bertrand Russell
Logic Concept by Dewey and Russell
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Logic. What is logic? The generally accepted definition, or the “popular conception,” states that logic is simply a set of rules for good, proper, or correct reasoning (the precise wording changes depending on who you're talking to, but you get the idea). On the surface, this is a grand description, it's enough to make us nod and feel that the issue is adequately tidied up. Upon analysis, however, we realize that this conception fails to hold up to much if…...
Bertrand Russell
A Comparison of Friedrich Nietzsche and Sigmund Freud
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Friedrich Nietzsche in his “Thus Spoke Zarathustra” and "Beyond Good and Evi praise the uniqueness of the superman over the crowd of people, the latter ‘blinded’ by the self-imposed frame of morality, religion, the notions of good’ and ‘evil, the ‘right’ and the ‘wrong’. Nietzsche appeals to eject the deceitful chains of ethical restrictions to give ongoing to a new kind of person ~ radical egocentric, who dances throughout his life (praises life in its most extreme manifestations), a Creator…...
Friedrich Nietzsche
The Idea of Eternal Return in the Philosophy of Friedrich Nietzsche
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This life, as you live it now and as you have lived it, you will have to live once more and countless times more. And there will be nothing new about it, but every pain and every pleasure, and every thought and sigh, and everything unspeakably small and great in your life must come back to you, and all in the same series and sequence.” This is the description Friedrich Nietzsche uses to portray the idea of etemalrecurence famously presented…...
Friedrich Nietzsche
The Moral Concepts in Friedrich Nietzsche’s On the Genealogy of Morals
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The origins of an individual's moral concepts exist as a confusing subject, often receiving no explanation. Friedrich Nietzsche, a German philosopher passionate about writing religious and moral critiques, composed On the Genealogy of Morals to scrutinize and elucidate these perplexing moral concepts. Although the original text consists of three separate essays, only an excerpt of the first essay "Good and Evil, Good and Bad is printed in Classics of Western Thought Vol. il. This essay specifically observes the social class…...
Friedrich Nietzsche
Technology’s Not to Blame for Stupidity by Goldberg
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In David Theo Goldberg’s article “If Technology is Making Us Stupid, It’s Not Technology’s Fault,” he efficiently lets the audience know about how the effects that technology could have on the future generation’s education in a social environment. He presents prospected effects that can happen if the younger society gets too trapped within this system by conducting defined organization and adding unique comparisons. Through his article, Goldberg imparts rational arguments to persuade the audience to support his view. By using…...
Jacques Derrida
Movie Evolution
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The first joint volume, Anti-Oedipus (1972), was a bestseller in France, a true success of the scandal, and placed Deleuze in the spotlight as a public intellectual. Then they wrote Kafka: Toward a Minor Literature (1975), followed by a book that, at least in the eyes of some, competes in Difference and Repetition for the title of Deleuze, “A Thousand Plateaus” (1980). The 1980s were a decade of independent works for Deleuze: “Francis Bacon: Logic of Sensation” (1981); “Cinema I:…...
Jacques Derrida
Nietzsche’s ‘Truth’ on Truth
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Epistemological philosophers began musing over the theory of knowledge several millennia ago and continue to do so presently. The works of Friedrich Nietzsche, Jacques Derrida, and Steven Ward each present separate, yet comparable approaches regarding the origin and definition of knowledge, as well as its correlation to truth, suggesting that knowledge is relative. The relativity of knowledge would imply that truth, too, is relative and therefore dependent upon simulated concepts that vary, not only across man but as Nietzsche implies,…...
Jacques Derrida
Happiness And Lifestyle In The Article Nicomachean Ethics By Aristotle
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In the article Nicomachean Ethics, Aristotle talks a lot about how one should live their life. He speaks about happiness, what it is and how it should and should not look in everyday life. He speaks a lot about how we should treat each other along with how we should treat ourselves in order to live a very happy and healthy life overall. He also talked about reasoning and the differences between practical and theoretical reasoning which is important because…...
AristotleHuman NatureNicomachean Ethics
For What Reason Should People Do Good Things?
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Plato’s Symposium details a conversation of many Greek intelligentsia which is comprised of multiple distinctive conjectures on the nature of love. Of all the speculations, it seems to me that Socrates’ was closest to transcending its theoretical nature. The concept of the desire to produce the eternal good is expressed as a central tenet in Plato’s account of Socrates’ expounded conviction.Before Socrates makes his ultimate case on the nature of love, he wants to make sure that he delineates the…...
AristotleNicomachean EthicsPhilosophersPlato
Samuel Langhorne Clemons (Mark Twain) And The Adventures Of Huckleberry
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Samuel Langhorne Clemons began working at a young age to support his family after his father’s passing. In 1851, he started out working for his brother as a printer. He became a riverboat piolet, Horace Bixby. He began working for the newspaper shortly after and this is when he received his pen name, Mark Twain. In 1870, he married Olivia Langdon, the daughter of a wealthy coal dealer from Buffalo, New York. Soon after, he wrote his most famous book…...
AristotleHuman NatureNicomachean Ethics
Aristotle on Good Human Life
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In the Nicomachean Ethics, philosopher Aristotle lays out his argument for what makes a good and happy human life. Aristotle believes the final end for a human is “eudaimonia”, a state of flourishing and living well. Aristotle says we will understand eudaimonia if we first understand the function of a human. He writes that a thing will be ‘good’ insofar as it performs its function well. For example, a knife will be ‘good’ if it is able to perform its…...
AristotleHuman NatureNicomachean EthicsPhilosophers
The Father of Capitalism: Adam Smith
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Father of modern economics and capitalism, Adam Smith was an influential 18th century philosopher who paved the road towards capitalism in his book An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, published in 1776. Prior to An Inquiry into the Nature and Causes of the Wealth of Nations, it was believed that a country’s wealth was determined by how much gold and silver was placed in the king’s treasury. This system is referred to as mercantilism.…...
Adam SmithPhilosophers
Machiavelli Is a Unique Italian Philosopher of the Renaissance
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Niccolo Machiavelli was an Italian political philosopher in the 1450’s during the Renaissance and had a key influence on many people in his political beliefs. Machiavelli was unique in the way he believed the best way of government was a dictatorship who had all the power in a society. Machiavelli supported a Republican government in his latest book called the Discourses but in the book, Prince wanted it to be self-governed and the person in charge such as a prince…...
Albert Camus Talks About Existentialism and the Absurd
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In examining the works of authors, we are able to see a wide variety of key factors that play an important role in their lives. These authors include different elements in their novels and stories to present a deeper meaning within their work. In his various books, short stories, and plays, the French novelist and writer Albert Camus relate to his philosophical beliefs: particularly existentialism and the absurdity, as well as his pairing idea of rebellion. Camus’ most notable works…...
Albert CamusEthicsExistentialism
Camus’ the Guest: Is There Such Thing as a Lesser Evil
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In The Guest by Albert Camus, the necessity of choice is a large theme throughout the story. The main conflict of the story follows Daru struggles to make the “right”, peaceful decision in a time of hostility between France and Algeria. The theme of choice is so large in fact, that it may be one of the reasons why Camus is remembered as a prominent existentialist writer. However, compared to other existentialist works of the time, Camus more often brings…...
Albert CamusExistentialismFree Will
Niccolo Machiavelli Father of Political Science
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Niccolo Machiavelli is a significant figure in modern history, who influenced the world of political thought, and some people even consider him the “Father of Political Science”. His work changed the previous perspective of politics, for he created a more modern and controversial perspective. Machiavelli innovative form of thought soon became a continual point of reference for political thinkers and authors, despite whether they agreed with his beliefs or not. Machiavelli’s significance to the modern political science world was brought…...
MachiavelliPoliticsThe Prince
Review of the Prince by Nicolo Machiavelli
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The Prince, a 16th century political dissertation was written by Nicolo Machiavelli, an Italian diplomat, in hope that with the publication of this work, he would land a position in the Florentine government. Machiavelli is trying to advise Lorenzo de Medici on how to properly build up his principality and ultimately unite Italy under his rule. (SparkNotes Editors, context) Machiavelli differs from other theorists of his time; most of their works stressed the correct course of action that a ruler…...
MachiavelliPoliticsThe Prince
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For What Reason Should People Do Good Things?
...Plato’s Symposium details a conversation of many Greek intelligentsia which is comprised of multiple distinctive conjectures on the nature of love. Of all the speculations, it seems to me that Socrates’ was closest to transcending its theoretical...
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