The Biographical Dictionary of Twentieth-Century Philosophers provides detailed accounts of the careers, works, thought and critical reception of the most important philosophers of the twentieth century.
International in scope, with over 1000 entries, the Dictionary is alphabetically arranged, and features the lives and work of major figures alongside lesser-known but influential thinkers.
The articles are identically structured, making it easy to compare and contrast information, with a critical exposition of intellectual development and impact for each entry. The main body of each entry is preceded by a biographical section providing details of nationality, higher education, main appointments, philosophical style and areas of scholarly interest. A bibliographical section covers the philosopher's major writings and also secondary and critical literature.
As the title indicates, this dictionary contains information on "1000 philosophers who have lived all or part of their lives in the 20th century." Entries vary in length from a few lines to two or three pages; they all contain bibliographies of each philosopher's main publications as well as secondary literature. All articles are signed, and there are notes on each contributor. Of particular interest here are the indexes; one lists the entrants by nationality, a second links them to main categories (i.e., subject areas) of philosophy, a third indexes the special interests of each philosopher, while a fouth indexes individuals who have had influences on each philosopher's thought. There is also a guide to major schools and movements in 20th-century thought. The entries are well written, concise, and understandable to anyone from college level upwards, even those only briefly acquainted with philosophy. Like most such dictionaries, this one provides a jumping-off point for a more detailed investigation of an individual's work and thought, and, for this, the bibliographies are particularly helpful. Considerable effort has gone into the preparation of this volume, and though the price is fairly steep, the content is excellent, and the physical production (binding, paper, etc.) is very good. As a one-volume reference to 20th-century philosophers, this work is ideal. Recommended for all academic and public libraries with philosophy collections.Terry C. Skeats, Bishop's Univ. Lib., Lennoxville, Quebec
A hefty dictionary of over 1,000 entries featuring brief biographies of the lives and work of influential philosophers during the 20th century. The editors have also included thinkers who perhaps would not be strictly considered "philosopher," but have nonetheless made important intellectual contributions (Hannah Arendt, Noam Chomsky, Umberto Eco, C.G. Jung, Julia Kristeva, Max Weber). Besides the comprehensive and consistent scope of the dictionary, the volume also features a bibliography for each entry, a glossary containing short accounts of the origins, development and features of the major schools, movements and traditions in philosophy, and cross referenced indices. Annotation c. Book News, Inc., Portland, OR (booknews.com)
Stuart Brown is Professor of Philosophy at the Open University. He is the editor of eight books, including Philosophy of Psychology, (Macmillan, 1974), Reason and Religion, (Cornell University Press, 1977) and Objectivity and Cultural Divergence, (Cambridge University Press, 1984). He is also co-editor of four others, including Linguistic Analysis and Phenomenology (Macmillan, 1972) and Conceptions of Inquiry (Methuen, 1980). Diané Collinson is a staff tutor and senior lecturer in Philosophy at the Open University. Her publications include Fifty Major Philosophers (Routledge, 1987), Thirty-Five Oriental Philosophers with Robert Wilkinson (Routledge, 1994) and Ending Lives (Blackwell, 1988). Robert Wilkinson is Lecturer and Staff Tutor in Philosophy at the Open University in Scotland. His last book was Thirty-Five Oriental Philosophers (Routledge, 1994), co-written with Diané Collinson.