Philosophy

​​​​​​Alfarabi's Theory of Communication

Fuad Said Haddad

Alfarabi (870-950 AD/259-339 AH), was known as the "second teacher" (Aristotle being the first). He is recognized as having "laid down the foundations, presented the definitive framework and determined the course of Islamic philosophy as it came to be known in the West through Avicenna and Averroes." Alfarabi is mostly known for his works on logic, metaphysics and politics; he did not write on communication, but alluded to this topic in his various writings on language and logic.

Through his analysis of and the implications he draws from Alfarabi's writings, the author has formalized a theory of language communication and instruction. This is a new dimension in Alfarabi's philosophy which is brought to life for the first time in this work.

English, 1989, 192 pages, bibliography, paper, $10.

Bertrand Russell: Fikruhu wa Mawqi'uhu fi al-Falsafa al-Mu'asira​

[Bertrand Russell: Thought and Status in Contemporary Philosophy]
Ibrahim Najjar

The aim of this book is to introduce the Arabic reader to the philosophy of Bertrand Russell. It focuses on his theories of logic and his political theories. After a brief presentation of Russell's life history, the author compares Russell's view of philosophy to that of other modern philosophers such as Descartes, Locke, Hume and others. He seeks to highlight the novelty that Russell brought to logic in comparison with Hegel and Aristotle. He examines in depth his theories of knowledge and of desire. The author also studies Russell's political views, which aspire to universality in ethical and political contents. He compares Russell to the most prominent philosophers in the twentieth century and sheds doubt on his personal rationality theory. He finally attempts to answer the question of why Arabs need to learn about Western philosophy.

Arabic, 1997, 200 pages, soft cover, $5.

The Coherence Theory of Truth

Haigh Khatchadourian

The coherence theory of truth is historically associated with the Absolute Idealists of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries. The theory enjoyed considerable fame for some time in Europe and America.

In this essay the theory is presented chiefly in the form in which it is developed and evaluated by B. Blanshard in the "Nature of Thought." After laying the groundwork for his evaluation, the author argues forcefully and convincingly that coherence theory is not acceptable either as an account of nature or as a test of truth.

English, 1961, 241 pages, paper, $5.​​

The Mysteries of Almsgiving (Kitāb Asrār al-Zakāh)

Book V of the First Quarter of al-Ghazzāli's Ihyā' Ulūm al-Dīn

Translated and edited by Nabih A. Faris

The thinker whose works ushered in the twelfth century and set the pattern of Islam's religious and philosophical development was Al-Ghazzāli. His magnum opus is the Ihyā' Ulūm al-Dīn (the Revival of the Sciences of Religion) of which a thirteenth century scholar said: "Should all Moslem writings be destroyed, the Ihyā', if spared, would make up for all the loss." Book V of the First Quarter, translated here, deals with the inner and outer rules, the duties and virtues of giving and receiving alms.

English, 1966, 96 pages, bibliography, index, paper, $7.

The Refinement of Character (Tahdhīb al-Akhlāq)

Translated by Constantine Zurayk

A translation into English of the critical edition of Miskawayh's work, as described above.

English, 1968, 242 pages, cloth, $8.

Tahdhīb al-Akhlāq, by Abu 'Ali Ahmad bin Muhammad Miskawayh - [The Refinement of Character]

Edited, with notes and commentary, by Constantine Zurayk

Miskawayh's work is in many ways the most important treatise on philosophical ethics in medieval Islam. It is part of a branch of Muslim ethical literature related to the Greek philosophico-ethical tradition, and the work expounds what was known as "practical philosophy." By publishing this, the first critical edition, the author did Islamic scholars a great service.

Arabic, 1967, 265 pages, cloth, $8.