The late Leszek Kolakowski was one of the most influential philosophers of the twentieth century. A prominent anticommunist writer, Kolakowski was also a deeply humanistic thinker, and his meditations on society, religion, morality, and culture stand alongside his political writings as commentaries on intellectual—and everyday—life in the twentieth century.
Kolakowski’s extraordinary empathy, humor, and erudition are on full display in Is God Happy?, the first collection of his work to be published since his death in 2009. Accessible and wide ranging, these essays—many of them translated into English for the first time—testify to the remarkable scope of Kolakowski’s work. From a provocative and deeply felt critique of Marxist ideology to the witty and self-effacing “In Praise of Unpunctuality” to a rigorous analysis of Erasmus’ model of Christianity and the future of religion, these essays distill Kolakowski’s lifelong engagement with the eternal problems of philosophy and some of the most vital questions of our age.
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