The Matrix and Philosophy

  • by William Irwin, Editor
  • Narrated by Oliver Wyman, Rick Adamson, Jennifer Jay Myers
  • 6 hrs and 37 mins
  • Abridged Audiobook

Publisher's Summary

The choice is yours, and you'll have to live with the consequences for at least the rest of your life. Will you take the blue pill - put this audiobook back and go on thinking of The Matrix as just a movie? Or will you take the red pill - listen to this book, and find out just how far down the rabbit-hole goes?Is the world around us truly as it appears or are we inert bodies in tanks, our brains electronically stimulated to create a make-believe world which is all we know? This old philosophical puzzle has become cutting-edge cool with the appearance of the Keanu Reeves cult sci-fi movie, The Matrix.The Matrix is the most philosophical film ever made, every step of its fast-paced plot pivoting on a philosophical conundrum. If the world as we know it is nothing more than our dream, does this make the dream real? If we had the choice to step out of our world into a more real but less pleasant one - to take the red pill - would it be a moral failure not to do so? Why do humans have a value above that of intelligent electronic mechanisms? Can the mind live without the body or the body without the mind?In The Matrix and Philosophy, professional philosophers analyze The Matrix from many angles: metaphysical, epistemological, ethical, and aesthetic. They uncover hidden depths in this intricate work of art, and often reach disturbing conclusions. Those who take the red pill never look at 'the real world' the same way again.The Matrix and Philosophy is also available in print from Open Court Books.

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What the Critics Say

"Whatever your philosophical cup of tea, The Matrix and Philosophy is your teahouse." (Lou Marinoff, author of Plato Not Prozac and Philosophical Practice)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

Be prepared for serious philosophical thinking

With the recent release of "Matrix - Reloaded" I was interested in learning more about the philosophical foundations of the original movie and the writers' deeper messages. This book really has a lot of thoughtful essays by philosophy professors that explore The Matrix from a number of perspectives. Some of the articles are witty and others are too full of technical jargon (like an essay's continual use of the phrase "the big Other" -- whatever that is supposed to mean!) If you enjoyed reading Plato, Kant and Aquinas, you'll love this collection of essays. But if splitting hairs over whether something is representative of existentialism or some other esoteric branch of philosophy reminds you of a required Freshman humanities class, then you won't be able to maintain your concentration to understand what the essayist is trying to say. The premise of the book is good, but the selection of authors could have been better. Overall it was worth the time listening, but it's not for philosophical novices.
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- Alan Rither

The Matrix and Philosophy

Some people may find this book "long winded", but I did not. This book may not be for the Matrix fan who liked the movie for the action and kung-fu alone. This book is more for the fan who after seeing The Matrix, asked themselves the same philosophical questions addressed by this book. Is The Matrix possible? Am I dreaming, waiting to be awoke? There are many questions that The Matrix evokes in us who saw the movie not only for it's action sequences and special effects, but also for it's philosophical implications.

I would highly reccommend this book for those with questions and looking for answers.
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- Daniel

Book Details

  • Release Date: 11-08-2002
  • Publisher: Random House Audio