Encyclopedia Of Philosophy

Donald M. Borchert, "Encyclopedia Of Philosophy (10 Volume Set)"
English | 2005 | ISBN: 0028657802 | PDF | 6200 pages | 52,5 mb

The first edition of Encyclopedia of Philosophy, published in eight large volumes in 1967, was the standard philosophy reference for more than a generation. Though it has aged gracefully, the passing years nevertheless called for updated bibliographies, revisions, and new articles, culminating in the 1996 one-volume Supplement. Now, in the face of significant competition since the late 1990s, comes the second edition, which integrates most of the 1967 and 1996 material with hundreds of new articles, addenda to earlier articles, and updated bibliographies. Section editors were given the task of reviewing the earlier entries and deciding which could be retained, with perhaps only bibliographical updates, and which required addenda or completely new material.
The new edition and 1996 Supplement alike have been the occasion for many articles on philosophers, new subfields of philosophy, and other topics not appearing at all in the first edition. The high proportion of earlier articles and addenda retained is testament to the quality of those entries and to the philosophical enterprise that builds upon the monuments of its past. To prevent confusion, each 1967, 1996, and 2005 entry and bibliographical update is dated. This practice is repeated in the list of contributors and their articles, revealing a number of contributors to both the 1967 and 2005 editions.
The more than 2,100 entries include, according to the publisher, some 1,000 biographical entries and "more than 450 new articles." Biographical entries range from less than a page (Francesco Bonatelli, Cheng Hao) to more than 20 pages (Aristotle, John Locke, Bertrand Russell). The 10 separately authored overviews under Chinese philosophy (Buddhism, Confucianism, etc.) together run 90 pages. Gene Blocker's merely 8-page Japanese philosophy justifies in part its relative briefness with this opening: "The first, and perhaps the most interesting, question regarding Japanese philosophy is whether there is such a thing." Other solid overviews include Human Genome Project, Medical ethics, Neuroscience, and Philosophy of chemistry. The combined articles on the history and varieties of logic are a small book, concluding with a 27-page glossary of logical terms. Lengthy articles such as Computability theory, Infinity in mathematics and logic, and Information theory, laden with logical and mathematical symbols, will perhaps be beyond the grasp of the average undergraduate philosophy major; such articles are by far the exception, and most will be comprehensible to the informed general reader. Volume 10 opens with 13 articles that missed the deadlines for being included in volumes 1 through 9. These are followed by a thematic outline of contents; extensive bibliographies, in many languages, of philosophy dictionaries and encyclopedias, journals, and bibliographies published since 1965; and a 545-page index.

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