THE WILL IN WESTERN THOUGHT by Vernon J. Bourke

THE WILL IN WESTERN THOUGHT

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A key concept in philosophy is here fully explored by a fine student of will theories. The reader is given the benefit of Dr. Bourke's life study of the many philosophers -- ancient and modern -- who have delved into the meaning of the will. It is evident that a pre-knowledge of the basic philosophies of the thinkers under discussion is needed to learn all that one can from this study. Even so, mere reading of the exposition of theories cannot help but prove worthwhile. They involve the will, meaning intellectual preferences, or rational appetites, or freedom as the essential distinction of will and volition, or viewed as dynamic power, or again as the seat of love or love itself. When the author analyzes the concept of volition as a group phenomenon -- the cornerstone of democratic practice, the will of the people concept -- the book creates an immediacy of interest. Dr. Bourke concludes with his own definition of the meaning of will -- a synthesis of all others -- which he hopes will enable philosophers and other serious students of human activities to discuss volition with mutual understanding. Certainly Dr. Bourke has performed a service for those interested by summing up the views of the past and the present and putting them all in one place.

Pub Date: Feb. 26th, 1964
Publisher: Sheed & Ward