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Philosophy: The Basics [Paperback]

Nigel Warburton
4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)

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Paperback, 14 Sep 1995 --  
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Philosophy: The Basics Philosophy: The Basics 4.9 out of 5 stars (16)
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Book Description

14 Sep 1995
Philosophy: The Basics is an introduction to philosophy for anyone coming to the subject for the first time, particularly those studying it at school, college or university. It takes a topic based approach, each chapter considering an area of philosophy and outlines a number of key philosophical issues associated with the area. The chapters end with realistic suggestions for further reading. The reader is encouraged to think philosophically. The book introduces important philosophical questions and the various responses that have been made to them. Though major philosophical figures are mentioned, the emphasis throughout is on the arguments for and against every idea discussed. In this way readers can follow the course and development of a philosophical position and critically assess that position for themselves. The book begins by asking the questions What is Philosophy?' and Why Study Philosophy?'. At the end of this delightfully written and appealingly short book, by way of the seven chapters that intervene (God, Right and Wrong, Equality and Freedom, The External World, Science, Mind and Art), the reader will have come to his or her own answers. The second edition contains a brand new chapter on political philosophy. In addition, the main text and suggestions for further reading have been updated.

Product details

  • Paperback: 192 pages
  • Publisher: Routledge; 2nd Revised edition edition (14 Sep 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0415124964
  • ISBN-13: 978-0415124966
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 12.8 x 1.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (16 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 577,968 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
  • See Complete Table of Contents

More About the Author

Nigel Warburton (1962 - ). Nigel Warburton is a freelance philosopher and podcaster and bestselling author of several popular introductory Philosophy books including A Little History of Philosophy, Philosophy: The Basics, Thinking from A to Z, Philosophy: The Classics, Free Speech: A Very Short Introduction, Philosophy: Basic Readings, Freedom: An Introduction with Readings, and The Art Question. He has also co-edited two books based on his popular Philosophy podcast which he makes with David Edmonds 'Philosophy Bites'. On Twitter he his @philosophybites, and he runs the weblogs Virtual Philosopher and Art and Allusion. His other podcasts include Social Science Bites, Free Speech Bites, Everyday Philosophy, and Philosophy: The Classics - all available on iTunes.

Product Description


'Philosophy: The Basics deservedly remains the most recommended introductionto philosophy on the market. Warburton is patient, accurate and, above all, clear. There is no better short introduction to philosophy.' - Stephen Law --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

About the Author

Nigel Warburton is Senior Lecturer at The Open University. He is author of several books for Routledge including Philosophy: The Classics, Philosophy: Basic Readings, Thinking from A–Z, and The Basics of Essay Writing.

--This text refers to an alternate Paperback edition.

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
By Mr
I am a 1st year theology student who always considered philosophy too high brow to even comtemplate reading.
Warburton's books helped me overcome my concerns. He demythologises philosophy and gives beginners like me an opportunity to get to grips with concepts of philosophy.
Warburton helped me to a greater understanding in many areas. The first was the ontological argument. I read Anselm's Proslogion alongside Warburton's explanation and things became clear.
Do not expect to be given answers, the one thing about philosophy is that you have to think for yourself. The seeds that Warburton gives facilitate independant thought. The philosophical questions that last sentence generates is a point in fact.
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70 of 73 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Great for anyone! 22 Nov 2001
By A Customer
I have just embarked on a two year philosophy A-Level course and i am using Warburton's book as a stepping stone to discoving many aspects of philosophy. The clarity and use of language makes this book easy for anyone to understand, not just academics. It allows easy access to the world of philosophy unlike so many other books on this topic. Well done Nigel!
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38 of 40 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars EXCELLENT BOOK FOR REVISION 10 Sep 2002
By Sarah
I have just completed an ethics and philosophy A Level for which I used this book. The book itself is clear and concise, making it excellent revision material. It covers all of the standard need to know topics and does so in an intelligent, factual manner! Definitly use this for A Level standards although I would not reccomend using it as a basis for research as it simply isn't detailed enough.
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123 of 131 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Excellent summary, ideal for beginner 23 Sep 2001
Context: I always wanted to do a philosophy degree, but other subjects always seemed more practical. So at the age of 32, after a BA, MB, BChir, and MRCS, I started reading with the help of Warburton's book and a couple of philosophy PhD students at Cambridge.
The book: Short, crisp, lays out philosophical positions well. A wonderful starting and jumping-off point and organiser when you don't have the structure of an academic course to follow. I would recommend it to people with similar requirements to me. However, remember that philosophy needs to be discussed, not merely read. My first mistake was to treat philosophy as a body of knowledge to be acquired, much as science and medicine was.
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20 of 21 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Simply Excellent! 19 Sep 2000
By A Customer
Like many others I always considered philosophy a topic for the high intellects of the world. After reading this book I have come to realise that philosophy is a topic which most of us deal with every day without ever knowing it, and more than that ... it is something that EVERYONE can do! Nigel has written a clear and easy to understand blow by blow account of the very basics of the subject while managing to aviod the patronising tone that one often associates with many other books of this kind. A must for anyone coming to philosophy for the first time
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27 of 32 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars All you need to know. 25 Sep 2000
By A Customer
I have just completed a philosophy degree, I've read alot of philosophy books, and I can confirm that what Nigel Warburton doesn't know about philosophy isn't worth knowing.
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52 of 62 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Warburton knows his stuff! 10 July 2001
By A Customer
I went to school with Nigel, and remember sitting with him in a physics 'O' level class . The physics master began to refer to Newton's second law, when Warburton began to question certain underlying assumptions which Newton had made -much to the master's dismay and the class's mirth! Nigel hasn't looked back, and his book will continue to be of great value to me as I continue in my own theological studies. Thank you, Nigel.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
By A Customer
A great read and a brillient introduction to philosophy. Nigel Warburton explains each subject clearly and the book makes you think about the world arund you and what you thought you knew. It's also very addictive, I've already bought two more of Nigel Warburton's books.
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Most Recent Customer Reviews
5.0 out of 5 stars Clear and informative
A good book as an introduction to philosophy. Clearly written and you get the feeling you're in safe hands with the author providing information in an accessible and objective... Read more
Published 3 months ago by Warthog
4.0 out of 5 stars excellent introduction to philosophy
This is an excellent introduction to what can seem to be a daunting subject. It is clear and simply written with lots of examples to illustrate the theories. Highly recommended
Published 5 months ago by J. M. Simmons
5.0 out of 5 stars Unexpectedly Good
I bought this book after a philosophical discussion with family and friends. The subject had never interested me much. Read more
Published 5 months ago by Murray
5.0 out of 5 stars Brilliant book
I loved this book, so well organised with the various arguments and debates within various philosophical schools clearly displayed, and an excellent application of the arguments to... Read more
Published 8 months ago by mark7694
5.0 out of 5 stars Fantastic!
The book came quickly and I am extremely impressed with how clear and easy it is to read and navigate through the book. Read more
Published 9 months ago by Charles Beale
5.0 out of 5 stars the basics - definitely covered
I would really recommend this book for anyone starting out in philosophy or just wanting to find out more about it. Read more
Published 11 months ago by Birchtree
5.0 out of 5 stars Good book
Was interesting and easy to understand.

I'd recommend to anyone who wants a basic understanding of philosophy
Published on 18 April 2010 by George
5.0 out of 5 stars Philosophy basics
Does what it says, and prompt delivery from seller. Bought for daughter who is considering doing philosophy at college.
Published on 17 July 2009 by Dr. Stepen P. Hill
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