New students to the history of philosophy face a serious risk when first encountering the classic texts of the canon. They often may equate a summary of an important philosopher as the final word on that thinker. Lost in the introductions and primers to the great philosophers are the complexities and range of competing interpretations that result from close readings of the primary texts. Unlike any other undergraduate introduction in this field, Key Debates in the History of Philosophy are designed to lead students back to the classic works so that they may better understand what's at stake in these competing viewpoints.
Each volume in the series contains 10 to 15 interpretive issues, or sections, with two chapters included in each section. The first chapter is a re-printed well known journal article or book chapter. The second chapter either takes to task or build upon the argument in the first article and is written by a different scholar especially for the volume. The result is a new kind of introduction–one that enables students to understand philosophy's history as a still-living debate, rather than a string of unearthed truths from the past. A volume introduction and an introduction to each section enable the student to enter the debates more fully informed. The section introductions will explain how the interpretive problem arises and why it matters and provide a short range of possible solutions. They also will offer information on important political and social contexts, explain any technical terms, and unpack references to larger arguments. An annotated Suggested Reading List at the end of each section will point the new student to additional scholarship on each debate. Each volume concludes with a glossary of terms germane to both the period and the history of philosophy in general.
By Kristin Gjesdal
November 24, 2015
Debates in Nineteenth-Century European & Philosophy offers an engaging and in-depth introduction to the philosophical questions raised by this rich and far reaching period in the history of philosophy. Throughout thirty chapters (organized around fifteen individual philosophers), the volume surveys...
By Jeffrey Hause
March 12, 2014
Debates in Medieval Philosophy: Essential Readings and Contemporary Responses aims to de-mystify medieval works by offering an illuminating, engaging introduction to the problems that medieval philosophers from Augustine through Ockham wrestled with. Each of the volume’s 11 units presents a ...
By Stewart Duncan, Antonia LoLordo
December 20, 2012
Debates in Modern Philosophy: Essential Readings and Contemporary Responses provides an in-depth, engaging introduction to important issues in modern philosophy. It presents 13 key interpretive debates to students, and ranges in coverage from Descartes' Meditations to Kant's Critique of Pure ...