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PHILOSOPHER'S QUARREL, THE (pb)2009
Author: ROBERT ZARETSKY
ISBN: 9780300164282
Year: 2009
Publisher: YALE UNIVERSITY PRESS
Category: HISTORY
Edition: 1
Format: Paperback
Language: English
Pages: 247
 ABOUT THE TITLE
The rise and spectacular fall of the friendship between the two great philosophers of the eighteenth century, barely six months after they first met, reverberated on both sides of the Channel. As the relationship between Jean-Jacques Rousseau and David Hume unraveled, a volley of rancorous letters was fired off, then quickly published and devoured by aristocrats, intellectuals, and common readers alike. Everyone took sides in this momentous dispute between the greatest of Enlightenment thinkers.

In this lively and revealing book, Robert Zaretsky and John T. Scott explore the unfolding rift between Rousseau and Hume. The authors are particularly fascinated by the connection between the thinkers’ lives and thought, especially the way that the failure of each to understand the other—and himself—illuminates the limits of human understanding. In addition, they situate the philosophers’ quarrel in the social, political, and intellectual milieu that informed their actions, as well as the actions of the other participants in the dispute, such as James Boswell, Adam Smith, and Voltaire. By examining the conflict through the prism of each philosopher’s contribution to Western thought, Zaretsky and Scott reveal the implications for the two men as individuals and philosophers as well as for the contemporary world.

Robert Zaretsky is professor of French, Honors College, University of Houston. John T. Scott is professor of political science, University of California, Davis. Zaretsky and Scott are also coauthors of Frail Happiness: An Essay on Rousseau.
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 TABLE OF CONTENTS
ACKNOWLEDGMENTS ix
ONE An Enlightenment Quarrel 1
TWO The Wild Philosopher 8
THREE The Great Scot 37
FOUR The Lord of Ferney 56
FIVE Le Bon David 72
SIX A Stone’s Throw from Paris 90
SEVEN First Impressions 104
EIGHT A Public Spectacle 114
NINE Poses and Impostures 128
TEN Hume, Judge of le Bon David 149ELEVEN An Enlightenment Tragedy 170
TWELVE So Great a Noise 183
THIRTEEN How Philosophers Die 198
NOTES 211
INDEX 239
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