The History of Philosophy

A. C. Grayling

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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.

$30

In stock

ISBN – 9780241304549
Publisher – Penguin Books, Limited
Format – Paperback
Publication Date – 27/08/2020
Dimensions – 197mm X 130mm
Categories – Philosophy

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A. C. Grayling
The Good State On the Principles of Democracy

The foundations upon which our democracies stand are inherently flawed, vulnerable to corrosion from within. What is the remedy?

A. C. Grayling makes the case for a clear, consistent, principled and written constitution, and sets out the reforms necessary – among them addressing the imbalance of power between government and Parliament, imposing fixed terms for MPs, introducing proportional representation and lowering the voting age to 16 (the age at which you can marry, gamble, join the army and must pay taxes if you work) – to ensure the intentions of such a constitution could not be subverted or ignored. As democracies around the world show signs of decay, the issue of what makes a good state, one that is democratic in the fullest sense of the word, could not be more important.

To take just one example: by the simplest of measures, neither Britain nor the United States can claim to be truly democratic. The most basic tenet of democracy is that no voice be louder than any other. Yet in our ‘first past the post’ electoral systems a voter supporting a losing candidate is unrepresented, his or her voice unequal to one supporting a winning candidate, who frequently does not gain a majority of the votes cast. This is just one of a number of problems, all of them showing that democratic reform is a necessity in our contemporary world.

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The Frontiers of Knowledge What We Know about Science, History and the Mind - and How We Know It


‘Grayling brings satisfying order to daunting subjects’ Steven Pinker
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In very recent times humanity has learnt a vast amount about the universe, the past, and itself. But through our remarkable successes in acquiring knowledge we have learned how much we have yet to learn: the science we have, for example, addresses just 5 per cent of the universe; pre-history is still being revealed, with thousands of historical sites yet to be explored; and the new neurosciences of mind and brain are just beginning.

What do we know, and how do we know it? What do we now know that we don’t know? And what have we learnt about the obstacles to knowing more? In a time of deepening battles over what knowledge and truth mean, these questions matter more than ever. Bestselling polymath and philosopher A. C. Grayling seeks to answer them in three crucial areas at the frontiers of knowledge: science, history and psychology. A remarkable history of science, life on earth, and the human mind itself, this is a compelling and fascinating tour de force, written with verve, clarity and remarkable breadth of knowledge.
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‘Remarkable, readable and authoritative. How he has mastered so much, so thoroughly, is nothing short of amazing’ Lawrence M. Krauss, author of A Universe from Nothing

‘This book hums with the excitement of the great human project of discovery’ Adam Zeman, author of Aphantasia

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