Philosophy: History and Readings / Edition 8

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This text brings together Stumpf and Fieser’s Socrates to Sartre and Beyond with an updated anthology of readings in one volume. It offers an accessible historical survey of philosophical ideas and a wealth of primary source readings at an excellent value. The text is a comprehensive, historically organized introduction to philosophy which communicates the richness of the discipline and provides the student with a working knowledge of the development of Western philosophy. With a lively and approachable style it covers the principal contributions of Western civilization’s most influential philosophers. The chronologically organized reader features a wide selection of readings of both Western philosophy and Eastern philosophy.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780073535760
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Higher Education
  • Publication date: 4/21/2011
  • Edition description: Older Edition
  • Edition number: 8
  • Pages: 960
  • Sales rank: 766,500
  • Product dimensions: 6.30 (w) x 9.00 (h) x 1.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Samuel Enoch Stumpf was Emeritus Professor of Philosophy and Emeritus Professor of Law at Vanderbilt University prior to his death in 1998, at the age of eighty. He earned a B.S. in Business and Finance from the University of California at Los Angeles, a B.D. in Theology from Andover Newton Theological School, and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from the University of Chicago. He joined the Vanderbilt faculty in 1948 and served as Chair of the Philosophy Department from 1952 to 1967. After a five-year term as President of Cornell College, Professor Stumpf returned to Vanderbilt, where he remained until his retirement in 1984. Professor Stumpf’s publications include Democratic Manifesto (1954), Morality and the Law (1966), and four McGraw-Hill textbooks: Socrates to Sartre: A History of Philosophy (1966; 6th ed., posthumous, 1999); Philosophical Readings: Selected Problems (1971; 4th ed., 1994); Philosophy: History and Problems (1971; 5th ed., 1994); and Elements of Philosophy: An Introduction (1979; 3rd ed., 1993).

James Fieser is a Professor of Philosophy at the University of Tennessee at Martin. He received his B.A. from Berea College, and his M.A. and Ph.D. in Philosophy from Purdue University. He is author, co-author or editor of ten textbooks, including Philosophy: A Historical Survey with Essential Readings (9/e 2014), Scriptures of the World's Religions (5/e 2014), Ethics: Discovering Right and Wrong (7/e 2012), Business Ethics and the Bottom Line (2012), A Historical Introduction to Philosophy (2003), and Moral Philosophy through the Ages (2001). He has edited and annotated the ten-volume Early Responses to Hume (2/e 2005) and the five-volume Scottish Common Sense Philosophy (2000). He is founder and general editor of the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy web site ( His personal website can be accessed at

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Table of Contents


1. Socrates Predecessors

2. The Sophists and Socrates

3. Plato

4. Aristotle

5. Classical Philosophy After Aristotle

6. Augustine

7. Philosophy in the Early Middle Ages

8. Aquinas and his Late Medieval Successors

9. Philosophy During the Renaissance

10. Rationalism on the Continent

11. Empiricism in Britain

*12. Enlightenment in Philosophy

13. Kant

14. German Idealism

15. Utilitarianism and Positivism

16. Kierkegaard, Marx, and Nietzsche

17. Pragmatism and Process Philosophy

18. Analytic Philosophy

19. Phenomenology and Existentialism

20. Recent Philosophy

Plato (427-347BCE), APOLOGY: "A Life Worth Living"

Chuang-tzu (c. 250 BCE), THE CHUANG-TZU: "Living in Accord with the Tao"

Leo Tolstoy (1828-1910), MY CONFESSION: "The Inevitability of the Question, 'What is the Aim of Life?'"

Jean-Paul Sartre (1905-1980), EXISTENTIALISM AND HUMANISM: "The Human Condition"

Plato(427-347), PHAEDO: "Do Minds Survive after Death?"

KATHA UPANISHAD (c. 500 BCE): "The Self-God"

QUESTIONS OF KING MILIINDA(c. 100 CE): "The Self in Flux"

Lucretius (c. 94-55 BCE), ON THE NATURE OF THINGS: "The Mind as Body"

Rene Descartes (1569-1650), MEDITATIONS and THE PASSIONS OF THE SOUL: "The Distinction between Mind and Body"

Anne Conway (1631-1678), THE PRINCIPLES OF THE MOST ANCIENT AND MODERN PHILOSOPHY: "Blurring the Distinction Between Mind and Body"

George Berkeley (1685-1753), THREE DIALOGUES BETWEEN HYLAS AND PHILONOUS: "Consciousness, not Matter, the True Reality"

David Hume (1711-1776), TREATISE OF HUMAN NATURE: "The Mind as a Bundle of Perceptions"

Gilbert Ryle (1900-1976), THE CONCEPT OF MIND: "Descartes' Myth"

*Thomas Nagel (b. 1937): “What is it Like to be a Bat?”

John Searle (b. 1932), MINDS, BRAINS, AND SCIENCE: "The Mind-Body Problem"

Anselm (1033-1109), PROSLOGIUM: "The Ontological Argument"

Thomas Aquinas (1224-1274), SUMMA THEOLOGICA: "Five Ways of Proving God's Existence"

Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), THOUGHTS: "Waging on Belief in God"

David Hume (1711-1776), AN ENQUIRY CONCERNING HUMAN UNDERSTANDING: "The Irrationality of Believing in Miracles"

David Hume (1711-1776), DIALOGUES CONCERNING NATURAL RELIGION: "Against the Design and Cosmological Arguments"

*William Paley (1743-1805): NATURAL THEOLOGY: “The Design Argument from Analogy Defended,”

J.L. Mackie (1917-1981), EVIL AND OMNIPOTENCE: "The Logical Problem of Evil"

*James Fieser (b. 1958): “The Probability Argument for the Existence of God and Alien Pyramid Builders”

Plato (427-347), THE REPUBLIC: "The Ascent to True Knowledge: The Divided Line and Cave"

Sextus Empiricus (c. 200 CE), OUTLINES OF PYRRHONISM: "The Goals and Methods of Skepticism"

Rene Descartes (1569-1650), MEDITATIONS: "Certainty and the Limits of Doubt"

John Locke (1632-1704), ESSAY CONCERNING HUMAN UNDERSTANDING: "The Origin of All Our Ideas in Experience"

David Hume (1711-1776), ENQUIRY CONCERNING HUMAN UNDERSTANDING, Sections 4 and 5: "Empiricism and the Limits of Knowledge"

Immanuel Kant (1724-1804), CRITIQUE OF PURE REASON: "How Knowledge is Possible"

William James (1842-1910), PRAGMATISM: A NEW NAME FOR SOME OLD WAYS OF THINKING: "Pragmatism's Conception of Truth"

Bertrand Russell (1872-1970), PROBLEMS OF PHILOSOPHY: "Appearance and Reality"

Arthur Eddington (1882-1944), THE NATURE OF THE PHYSICAL WORLD: "Common Sense Knowledge and Scientific Knowledge"

Richard Rorty (b. 1931), PHILOSOPHY AND THE MIRROR OF NATURE: "Critique of Traditional Epistemology"

Epictetus (c. 50-c. 120), HANDBOOK: "Resigning Oneself to Fate"

David Hume (1711-1776), ENQUIRY CONCERNING HUMAN UNDERSTANDING: "The Argument for Determinism"

Thomas Reid (1710-1796), ESSAYS ON THE ACTIVE POWERS OF MAN: "The Argument for Free Will from Common Sense Beliefs"

William James (1842-1919), THE DILEMMA OF DETERMINISM: "How Can We Explain Judgements of Regret"

John Searle (b. 1932), MINDS, BRAINS, AND SCIENCE: "The Freedom of the Will"

Mencius (390-305 BCE) and Hsun-tzu (298-238 BCE), THE MENCIUS and THE HSUN-TZU: "Is Human Nature Inherently Good or Evil?"

Plato (427-347 BCE), EUTHYPHRO: "Does God Create Morality?"

Aristotle (384-322 BCE), NICHOMACHEAN ETHICS: "Morality and Virtue"

*Augustine (354-430): “Love of God as our Primary Good,” Of the Morals of the Catholic Church

Epicurus (341-271 BCE), LETTER TO MENOECEUS: "Pleasure and Life's Aim"

Immanual Kant (1724-1804), FUNDAMENTAL PRINCIPLES OF THE METAPHYSICS OF MORALS: "The Categorical Imperative"

John Stuart Mill (1806-1873), UTILITARIANISM: "Utilitarianism: Basing Morality on Consequences"

Friederich Nietzsche (1844-1900), BEYOND GOOD AND EVIL, THE TWILIGHT OF THE IDOLS, and THE WILL TO POWER: "Turning Values Upside Down"

Carol Gilligan (b. 1936), IN A DIFFERENT VOICE: "Is there a Characteristically Feminine Voice Defining Morality?"

*James Rachels (1941-2003), ELEMENTS OF MORAL PHILOSOPHY: “The Challenge of Cultural Relativism”

Plato (427-347 BCE), CRITO: "Obedience to the State"

Aristotle (384-322 BCE), POLITICS: "The Natural Basis of Society"

Thomas Aquinas (1224-1274), THE TREATISE ON LAW: "Natural Law"

Thomas Hobbes (1588-1678), DE CIVE: "The Social Contract"

Mary Wollstonecraft (1759-1797), A VINDICATION OF THE RIGHTS OF WOMAN: "The Rights of Women"

Karl Marx (1818-1883), MANIFESTO OF THE COMMUNIST PARTY: "The Clash of Class Interests"

John Stuart Mill (1806-1873), ON LIBERTY: "The Individual and the Limits of Government"

John Rawls (b. 1921), "Justice as Fairness"
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