What We Are Reading Today: On Purpose by Michael Ruse

Updated 30 November 2019

What We Are Reading Today: On Purpose by Michael Ruse

  • The book traces how Platonic, Aristotelian, and Kantian ideas of purpose continue to shape Western thought

It has been described as an accessible history of the idea of purpose in Western thought, from ancient Greece to the present

Can we live without the idea of purpose? Should we even try to? Kant thought we were stuck with it, and even Darwin, who profoundly shook the idea, was unable to kill it. 

Indeed, purpose seems to be making a comeback today, as both religious advocates of intelligent design and some prominent secular philosophers argue that any explanation of life without the idea of purpose is missing something essential. On Purpose explores the history of purpose in philosophical, religious, scientific, and historical thought, from ancient Greece to the present, says a review on the Princeton University Press website. 

Accessibly written and filled with literary and other examples, the book traces how Platonic, Aristotelian, and Kantian ideas of purpose continue to shape Western thought. 

Along the way, it also takes up tough questions about the purpose of life — and whether it’s possible to have meaning without purpose.


Rihanna, Saudi beau reportedly split after three years

Rihanna and her Saudi beau Hassan Jameel have reportedly gone their separate ways. (File/AFP)
Updated 18 January 2020

Rihanna, Saudi beau reportedly split after three years

DUBAI: Rihanna and her Saudi beau Hassan Jameel have reportedly gone their separate ways, according to US media reports.

US Weekly magazine and E! News reported on the split on Friday, but didn’t shed light on the reasons behind the purported split.

Rihanna gave no indication of an upcoming beak up in a sit down with Interview magazine in 2019, saying “I got into a new relationship, and it matters to me. It was like, ‘I need to make time for this… I'll shut things down for two days, three days at a time. On my calendar we now have the infamous 'P,' which means personal days. This is a new thing.

“Just like I nurture my businesses, I need to nurture this as well,” Rihanna said, alluding to her reported relationship with Hassan Jameel, a Saudi businessman, whom she was first linked to when a photo of them went viral in 2017.

The pair, who remained famously tight-lipped on their reported relationship, have yet to confirm the reports of a split.