CosmicusBooks publishes books in philosophy. Our speciality is books that are not sufficiently scientific in approach for the academic presses, yet not sufficiently marketable for other presses.
Between academic and popular works of philosophy there is an important niche: a niche for works in what can be called “world philosophy”. Immanuel Kant famously draws a distinction between two concepts of philosophy in his Critique of Pure Reason: After having described the scholarly requirements for doing philosophy under philosophy’s “school concept”, he goes on to say, “But there is also a world concept (conceptus cosmicus) of philosophy.” (CPR B867)
This “world concept of philosophy” is apart from and to some extent in conflict with the “school concept”. The philosopher’s ambition of explaining how everything hangs together is unachievable with a strictly scholarly approach. Philosophy seeks away from the firm ground of science: The ultimate philosopher, in contrast to the ultimate scientist, is not an artist of human reason, but a lawgiver of human reason (that is also from Kant).
The philosopher, therefore, in order to be a philosopher proper, must speak and act in ways that are unacceptable in scholarly environments. The philosopher seeks beyond science.
As academic philosophy so far in the 21st century has developed towards specialisation in scholarly topics, the conceptus cosmicus of philosophy may be said to be in decline.
The intention of CosmicusBooks is to serve and publish authors who independently, yet well informed in the philosophical tradition, attempt to continue the tradition of “world philosophy”.
Our authors try to say important things about philosophical issues.