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The History of Philosophy - A. C. Grayling

The History of Philosophy

By: A. C. Grayling

Paperback | 28 July 2020 | Edition Number 1

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The first truly authoritative and accessible history of philosophy to cover both Western and Eastern traditions

The story of philosophy is an epic tale: an exploration of the ideas, views and teachings of some of the most creative minds known to humanity. But since the long-popular classic Bertrand Russell's History of Western Philosophy, first published in 1945, there has been no comprehensive and entertaining, single-volume history of this great intellectual journey.

With his characteristic clarity and elegance A. C. Grayling takes the reader from the world-views and moralities before the age of the Buddha, Confucius and Socrates, through Christianity's dominance of the European mind to the Renaissance and Enlightenment, and on to Mill, Nietzsche, Sartre, and philosophy today. And, since the story of philosophy is incomplete without mention of the great philosophical traditions of India, China and the Persian-Arabic world, he gives a comparative survey of them too.

Intelligible for students and eye-opening for philosophy readers, he covers epistemology, metaphysics, ethics, aesthetics, logic, the philosophy of mind, the philosophy of language, political philosophy and the history of debates in these areas of enquiry, through the ideas of the celebrated philosophers as well as less well-known influential thinkers. He also asks what we have learnt from this body of thought, and what progress is still to be made.

The first authoritative and accessible single-volume history of philosophy for decades, remarkable for its range and clarity, this is a landmark work.

About the Author

A. C. Grayling is Master of the New College of the Humanities, UK. He has written and edited numerous works of philosophy and is the author of biographies of Descartes and William Hazlitt.

He believes that philosophy should take an active, useful role in society.

He has been a regular contributor to The Times, Financial Times, Observer, Independent on Sunday, Economist, Literary Review, New Statesman and Prospect, and is a frequent and popular contributor to radio and television programmes, including Newsnight, Today, In Our Time, Start the Week and CNN news.

He is a Fellow of the World Economic Forum at Davos, and advises on many committees ranging from Drug Testing at Work to human rights groups.
Industry Reviews
A cerebrally enjoyable survey, written with great clarity and touches of wit . . . The nonwestern section throws up some fascinating revelations
* Sunday Times *

Grayling has written a masterful and often entertaining chronicle of the epic intellectual journey we humans have taken, in different periods, countries and cultures, to understand ourselves, our world, and how we ought to live. An extraordinary accomplishment that transcends the usual bounds of academic specialization
Peter Singer, Ira W. DeCamp Professor of Bioethics, Princeton University

Accurately offers itself as a successor to [Bertrand] Russell's classic survey . . . No other popular survey possesses this range . . . The History of Philosophy isn't just worth buying; it's worth scribbling in and dogearing. For a work of scholarship, there can be no higher praise.
Michael Dirda * Washington Post *