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From rationalism to irrationality : the decline of the Western mind from the Renaissance to the present

Author: C Gregg Singer
Publisher: Phillipsburg, N.J. : Presbyterian and Reformed Pub. Co., 1979.
Edition/Format:   Print book : EnglishView all editions and formats
Summary:
That the Western mind is sick unto death and that Western culture and the civilization to which it gave birth are in serious danger of collapse are facts that have become so evident that few observers are prepared to dispute this conclusion and argue for their vitality. Many historians and students of Western culture have taken note of this decline and have attempted to offer various explanations of this phenomenon.  Read more...
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Genre/Form: History
Document Type: Book
All Authors / Contributors: C Gregg Singer
ISBN: 0875524281 9780875524283
OCLC Number: 5882437
Notes: Includes indexes.
Description: xi, 479 pages : diagram ; 23 cm
Contents: Introduction --
Rationalism and irrationalism in Classical and Medieval thought --
The Renaissance : promise of hope or harbinger of doom? --
The Renaissance and Reformation : irrationalism versus Theistic Rationalism --
The Enlightenment in Western thought during the eighteenth century --
Kant and German Idealism --
The successor of Hegel : the impact of Hegelianism on Western thought --
Darwinism, Social Darwinism, and their impact on Western thought --
The impact of evolutionary theory on Western thought after Darwin --
Transitional thinkers : part one --
Transitional thinkers : part two --
Earlier twentieth-century thought --
Existentialism and theology --
Science, the scientific outlook, and Irrationalism --
Conclusion : the recovery of Christian theism.
Responsibility: C. Gregg Singer.

Abstract:

That the Western mind is sick unto death and that Western culture and the civilization to which it gave birth are in serious danger of collapse are facts that have become so evident that few observers are prepared to dispute this conclusion and argue for their vitality. Many historians and students of Western culture have taken note of this decline and have attempted to offer various explanations of this phenomenon. - p. vii. Irrationalism and anti-intellectualism are not the peculiar properties and attributes of modern thought. Neither did they suddenly emerge in the Western mind during the Renaissance, even though at first glance this might seem to be the case, for it is certainly true that the philosophers of that era were much bolder in the formulation of their conviction in the autonomy of human reason than were the scholars of the Middle Ages. At the same time it must be admitted that the irrationalism which lurked beneath the mighty endeavors of Thomas Aquinas and his fellow scholastic thinkers was not supported with either the same purpose or boldness which became characteristic of the thinking of so many Renaissance humanists. However much we may disagree with Scholasticism and its endeavors to find a synthesis with Greek thought, particularly with that of Aristotle, it cannot be denied that with very few exceptions, if any, these medieval scholars all held to the unique authority of Scriptures and to many basic Christian doctrines. - p. 1.

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