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Monday, October 8, 2012

Sanskrit-philosophical reviews on Amazon

I will list here (presumably with frequent updates) the reviews I have posted on Amazon. The purpose is to present a short summary of the main good and weak points of a book, so that one can figure out whether to read it or not. Furthermore, I will discuss both "Indological" books and books on philosophy (without geographic boundaries). Who knows, maybe there are other readers out there whose interests are not confined to the arbitrarily chosen geographic boundaries of "India" or "Germany" etc.

Review of The Logic of Commands, by Nicholas Rescher (if you have followed my posts on prescriptions you will know why I picked it up. Rescher's attempt is in many ways comparable to Maṇḍana's way of reducing prescriptions to assertions).

Review of Reflexion und Ritual in der Pūrvamīmāṃsā, by Lars Göhler (a great book, one that is worth reading even if your German is rosty, if only you are interested in Mīmāṃsā and/or the Veda and/or Indian philosophy).

Review of Penser l'Autorité des Écritures, by Vincent Eltschinger (a wonderful attempt of explaining philosophy through history without becoming a reductionist or a Marxist).

Review of The Vākyārthamātṛkā of Śālikanātha Miśra, by Rajendra Nath Sharma (the first English translation of a fundamental text –unfortunately not flawless).

Review of Kumārila on Truth, Omniscience and Killing, by Kei Kataoka (just a great book by a great Mīmāṃsaka, reliable and insightful).

I have still not received convincing arguments against this project (for the problem of wasting one's time and risking to be hated, see this post). Can you think of other pros and cons? More in general: How would your choice of books look like, if you could open Amazon (or similar engines) and find a short and reliable review of any book you need?

For my posts on commands, check the tags "prescription" and "Maṇḍana". For my more detailed comments on Eltschinger's book, see this post and the ones directly following it. For further considerations on reviews in Amazon (etc.), see this post.

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