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Publisher's Summary

Conventional wisdom suggests there is a sharp distinction between emotion and reason. Emotions are seen as inferior, disruptive, primitive, and even bestial forces. These 24 remarkable lectures suggest otherwise-that emotions have intelligence and provide personal strategies that are vitally important to our everyday lives of perceiving, evaluating, appraising, understanding, and acting in the world.
Take a tour of Professor Solomon's more than three-decade-long intellectual struggle to reach an understanding of emotions, which he argues are, "the key to the meaning of life." A distinguished philosopher himself, Professor Solomon's lectures unfold as a rich dialogue with other philosophers, including Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Adam Smith, Nietzsche, William James, Freud, Heidegger, and Sartre.
In your exploration, you'll address such questions as: how do we distinguish emotions from feelings, such as heartache? What is the meaning of our emotions, and how do they serve to enrich and guide our lives? Are there a determinable number of basic emotions that serve as building blocks for the range of emotions we experience? Is an emotion such as jealousy a genetic trait shared by all humans - or is it something learned? As you listen to these lectures, prepare to think: Think about your own emotions; think about what you observe in others; think about the enormous body of research and conjecture on this fascinating topic as Professor Solomon takes you on a challenging and stimulating journey. The more we puzzle over the nature of emotions, the deeper the mystery becomes. It is a mystery that is by no means solved, but one that repays in careful, philosophical analysis.
©2006 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2006 The Great Courses
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By oded noy on 06-17-16

Meditation on emotions - Slow to start but worth the experience

This course is broken into three main section. The first seems to be long and somewhat tedious- however it is a good setup for the other two sections. Overall a good meditation on the topic of emotions.

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5 of 5 people found this review helpful

By Christopher Serrone on 05-07-15

The impeccable Robert Solomon

I've been a fan of Robert C. Solomon's work for a long time, he was first introduced to me in Richard Linkletter's film Waking Life, where the director actually crashed one of the professor's classes and filmed it and then later interviewed him in the same movie. I also had the privilege of reading his textbook introducing philosophy for my philosophy 101 while I was an undergrad. This collection of lectures on human emotions and the philosophical views with neuroscience were very enlightening and Robert has a way of delivering his lectures in an entertaining way as a storyteller.

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6 of 7 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

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By ShaneG on 02-27-17


Absolutely brilliant set of lectures, very interesting questions posed and a lot of arguments given to explain and defend his stance

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1 of 1 people found this review helpful

By Tom on 10-31-17

deeply philosophical, and very interesting.

longer than I expected, but a great perspective on emotions. a philosophical approach to discussing. possibly a great companion to 'self comes to mind's by Antonio dimassio

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