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Berkeley's writings have impacted modern philosophy through his belief that the existence and reality of everything depends on their being perceived. Generating the idea of "Immaterialism," his provocative theory has engaged minds and altered how we approach thought experiments.
Whether viewed as extreme skepticism or enlightened common sense, the writings of Berkeley are a major influence on modern philosophy. Bishop Berkeley (1685-1753) was one of the great British empirical philosophers. He believed that the existence of material objects depends on their being perceived and The Principles of Human Knowledge sets out this denial of non-mental material reality. At first his views were unfavorably received by the London intelligentsia, and the entertaining Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous are a clarification of the Realist argument and a response to accusations of atheism and skepticism. In the nineteenth century John Stuart Mill wrote that he considered Berkeley's work to be of "greatest philosophic genius," and it is true to say that its Immaterialism has influenced many recent philosophers.
George Berkeley (16851753) was an Irish philosopher best known for the advancement of a theory he called "immaterialism." He wrote A Treatise Concerning the Principles of Human Knowledge in 1710.
Roger Woolhouse was educated at Dents School, Saltburn, and University College London. He has taught at University College Cardiff, the University of Pennsylvania and Princeton University, and is presently professor of philosophy at the University of York and visiting professor at Rutgers University. He is the author of Lockes Philosophy of Science and Knowledge, Locke, The Empiricists, and Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz. He has also edited Goerge Berkeleys Principles of Human Knowledge and Three Dialogues Between Hylas and Philonous for Penguin Classics.