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Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers (Issues of Our Time)

This book can be downloaded and read in iBooks on your Mac or iOS device.


“A brilliant and humane philosophy for our confused age.”—Samantha Power, author of A Problem from Hell
Drawing on a broad range of disciplines, including history, literature, and philosophy—as well as the author's own experience of life on three continents—?Cosmopolitanism? is a moral manifesto for a planet we share with more than six billion strangers.

From Publishers Weekly

Nov 21, 2005 – In a world more interconnected than ever, the responsibilities and obligations we share remain matters of volatile debate. Weighing in on a discourse that includes both visions of "clashing civilizations" and often equally misguided cultural relativism, Ghana-born Princeton philosopher Appiah (In My Father's House) reclaims a tradition of creative exchange and imaginative engagement across lines of difference. This cosmopolitan ethic, which he traces from the Greek Cynics and through to the U.N.'s Universal Declaration of Human Rights, must inevitably balance universals with respect for particulars. This balance comes through "conversation," a term Appiah uses literally and metaphorically to signal the depth of encounters across national, religious and other forms of identity. At the same time, Appiah stresses conversation needn't involve consensus, since living together mostly entails just getting used to one another. Amid the good and bad of globalization, the author parses some basic cultural-philosophical beliefs drawing frequent examples from his own far-flung multicultural family as well as from impersonal relationships of exchange and power to focus due attention on widespread and unexamined assumptions about identity, difference and morality. A stimulating read, leavened by cheerful, fluid prose, the book will challenge fashionable theories of irreconcilable divides with a practical and pragmatic worldview that revels in difference and the adventure of a shared humanity. This is an excellent start to Norton's new Issues of Our Time series.

Customer Reviews

Globalization, Transnationalism, and Mestizaje Oh My!

This book illuminates realistic and thought provoking processes taking place in the increasingly global community. While writers such as Audinet dream of a wonderful world of cultural mestizaje, they reach little more than hopes of utopia. I feel that this text truly touches on the practicality of taking part in transnational economies, cultural exchange, and human compassion. Any reader interested in learning how to view the world, or at least experiencing a new lens of thought, should download/ pick-up this book now. Do it! Learn! Make yourself a better person. Find out why you should save a child from a shallow pond and still attend an opera (yes that really is in the text ;D).

A disappointment

There is little to recommend this book. The title and subject intrigued me, but Appiah’s book is a rambling hodgepodge of anecdotal musings with no clear thesis advanced, evidenced or proven.

Cosmopolitanism: Ethics in a World of Strangers (Issues of Our Time)
View in iTunes
  • $11.99
  • Available on iPhone, iPad, iPod touch, and Mac.
  • Category: Philosophy
  • Published: Mar 01, 2010
  • Publisher: W. W. Norton & Company
  • Seller: W. W. Norton
  • Print Length: 224 Pages
  • Language: English
  • Requirements: To view this book, you must have an iOS device with iBooks 1.3.1 or later and iOS 4.3.3 or later, or a Mac with iBooks 1.0 or later and OS X 10.9 or later.

Customer Ratings