Why Our Decisions Don’t Matter – Simon Van Booy (ed.)

Why Our Decisions Don’t Matter is a compilation of excerpts, quotes, passages, and paintings from philosophers, writers, and artists that all address the same theme of fate, predestination, and why the decisions we make don’t matter. Included are works from Homer, Sophocles, Voltaire, Dickinson, Twain, Rilke, Sartre, and many others. Simon Van Booy gives a brief introduction of the author/artist and the piece which is often as intriguing as the piece itself. Each presentation is small and easy to understand and provides a jumping off point for further research and contemplation. Some of my favorites are Colin McGinn’s Shakespeare’s Philosophy; Henry Miller’s Tropic of Cancer; and Janet Frame’s The Carpathians. Both Henry Miller’s and Janet Frame’s introductions were so interesting I found I must learn more about their lives and their writings. I loved the inclusion of paintings in this book, but they were very difficult to see clearly which is important to understanding them. Dialogue and screen shots from film would have been a great addition as well. The book is small enough to carry with you and structured so you can read a small portion while waiting or even before bed. I recommend this book to anyone wanting to know a little more about philosophy and the existential question we all grapple with or those who want a quick introduction to philosophy so they can identify those they may want to research further. Still others may find this book provides all the information they need on why our decisions don’t matter.

Other books in this collection edited by Simon Van Booy are: Why We Fight and Why We Need Love.

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