What Is Good? : The Search for the Best way to Live

Author(s): Anthony C. Grayling

Philosophy | Byron Writers Festival 2019

A.C. Grayling answers the most important question - How do we live a good life?One of the most fundamental questions in our life is to find out what we value - what principles we want to live by and which codes we will use to guide our behaviour. Most of us want to live a 'good life'. But what, in today's secular society, does 'good' actually mean? To classical Greeks, the acquisition of knowledge, the enjoyment of the senses, creativity and beauty were all aspects of life to strive for. Then came the volcanic declarations of St Paul and his fundamentalist ideas on sin and human nature. In What is Good?, A.C. Grayling examines these and other proposals on how to live a good life, from the 'heroic' ideals of the Greek poets to Kant's theories on freedom and the UN Declaration of human rights.


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Reissued in the fantastic new series look What is Good was number one in the Observer bestselling titles for philosophy and has sold 24,000 copies in paperback 'Grayling nicely straddles the artificial divide between man of letters and philosopher, and here he takes the general reader on a civilised and lucid journey from the ethics of the pagan world through the Christian centuries, past the enlightenment and its utilitarian descendants, through the anxiety-ridden 20th century, and into the present' Simon Blackburn, Sunday Times 'Grayling effectively demystifies a subject that is all too often discussed as though its secrets are accessible only to long-bearded gurus. He writes like a dream and with impressive but not overbearing erudition' Julian Baggini, TES

"A plain man's guide to ethics, from Homer's warriors to Nietzsche's superhero via Plato and Renaissance Man, clearly and elegantly written." SUNDAY TELEGRAPH "This book reminds us that often the greatest disagreements are between priorities rather than principles." INDEPENDENT "Intelligent introduction... rewards your endeavours." -- Martin Tierney THE HERALD "The book is beautifully written and highly engaging and it contains no footnotes." TIMES LITERARY SUPPLEMENT "This popular yet nonetheless highly accomplished philosopher examines the different ways in which to live a good life, as proposed from classical antiquity to the present day." IRISH EXAMINER

Anthony Grayling teaches philosophy at Birkbeck College, London and is a Fellow of St Anne's, Oxford. He reviews regularly in the Financial Times. He has a regular column in Prospect and the Guardian.

General Fields

  • : 9780753817551
  • : Orion Publishing Group, Limited
  • : Phoenix Books
  • : February 2004
  • : 198mm X 132mm X 22mm
  • : United Kingdom
  • : books

Special Fields

  • : Paperback
  • : 1
  • : en
  • : 170.9
  • : 288
  • : Anthony C. Grayling