A Little History of Philosophy by Nigel Warburton

Okay so I’ve read a fair amount of philosophy but I’ve never felt like I completely understood it.  And I’d forget it pretty quickly so that’s probably proof I didn’t really grasp the concepts.

This book presents the philosophers and the highlights of their ideas so clearly and in such a well thought-out manner that I’m tickled to death to read it.  It’s probably a bit under my level of understanding on some of them,  but a review never hurt.


A Little History of Philosophy
by Nigel Warburton
2011 /  288 pages
read by Kris Dyer  7h 35m
rating –  9

Chronological order is the obvious structure for a book like this – and that’s the way almost all authors of philosophy books do their little overviews.   I was familiar with most of the philosophers and their ideas but there were a few whose ideas remained obscure – and probably still do.

The book goes on from Spinoza through Wittgenstein and  Sartre all the way to the ideas of artificial intelligence as well as the really contemporary Peter Singer.  There’s not a whole lot of material on any of them but there aren’t any  difficult original passages to read as there were in the book by Stewart Goetz  and Charles Taliaferro,  A Brief History of the Soul which I read back in September of 2015. I suppose if one or another of the philosophers presented catches your eye you can search out other material.

Warburton writes well,  the ideas are chosen and presented carefully,  and he uses a lot of examples.

I thoroughly enjoyed this one –  if you’re interested in western philosophy from Socrates to today but don’t have much of a background in it I really recommend this.