The Image in Mind: Theism, Naturalism, and the Imagination

The Image in Mind: Theism, Naturalism, and the Imagination

by Charles Taliaferro, Jil Evans


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A philosophical inquiry into the strengths and weaknesses of theism and naturalism in accounting for the emergence of consciousness, the visual imagination and aesthetic values. The authors begin by offering an account of modern scientific practice which gives a central place to the visual imagination and aesthetic values. They then move to test the explanatory power of naturalism and theism in accounting for consciousness and the very visual imagination and aesthetic values that lie behind and define modern science. Taliaferro and Evans argue that evolutionary biology alone is insufficient to account for consciousness, the visual imagination and aesthetic values. Insofar as naturalism is compelled to go beyond evolutionary biology, it does not fare as well as theism in terms of explanatory power.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781847064820
Publisher: Bloomsbury Academic
Publication date: 11/11/2010
Series: Continuum Studies in Philosophy of Religion , #6
Pages: 224
Product dimensions: 6.20(w) x 9.30(h) x 0.80(d)

About the Author

Charles Taliaferro is Professor of Philosophy at St. Olaf College, USA, and is the author of Consciousness and the Mind of God, Evidence and Faith: Philosophy and religion since the seventeenth century, Contemporary Philosophy of Religion, Dialogues About God, Philosophy of Religion: A Beginners Guide and the co-author of Naturalism. He is the co-editor of A Companion to Philosophy of Religion, Cambridge Platonist Spirituality, and the Cambridge Companion to Christian Philosophical Theology. He was the philosophy of religion area editor of the Encyclopedia of Philosophy, second edition and is on the editorial board of Religious Studies, Sophia, Blackwell's Philosophy Compass, American Philosophical Quarterly, and Ars Disputandi. Taliaferro has lectured at Oxford, Cambridge, NYU, Columbia, Princeton, and St. Andrews University.

Jil Evans (MFA Stanford University) has exhibited her paintings and prints in Minnesota, Chicago, New York City, Michigan, Memphis, Washington D.C., California, Paris, and Rome. Her work is in many private and public collections including the Minneapolis Institute of Arts, Halle Ford Museum of Art, Stanford University, Valparaiso University Museum of Art, Steensland Art Museum, Harry and Margaret Anderson Collection of Art, Healthmarc, Inc., Minnetonka Corporation, Piper Jaffray and Hopwood, Central Lakes Colleges, Winthrop and Weinstein, and Coca Cola, Inc. She has received two grants from the Minnesota State Arts Board, in addition a Pew Grant to study and paint in Italy, and residencies at the American Academy in Rome and Atlantic Center for the Arts. Finally, the Jerome Foundation and Arts Midwest/ National Endowment for the Arts have extended support for her work. Since 1985 she has taught regularly in the Art Department at St. Olaf College.

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments vi

List of Images vii

Introduction 1

Chapter 1 The Turning Image 11

Chapter 2 The Aesthetics of Inquiry 37

Chapter 3 The Cosmic Question and Emergence: The Trick 65

Chapter 4 Seeing into Other Minds 107

Chapter 5 The Problem of Theism: Evil 149

Chapter 6 The Fitting Imagination 179

Bibliography 198

Index 209

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