Customer Reviews


17 Reviews
5 star:
 (12)
4 star:
 (4)
3 star:    (0)
2 star:
 (1)
1 star:    (0)
 
 
 
 
 
Average Customer Review
Share your thoughts with other customers
Create your own review
 
 

The most helpful favourable review
The most helpful critical review


69 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does exactly what it says on the tin.
This book was written with the philosophical novice in mind, and it succeeds emphatically at introducing the basic philosophical problems to the beginner. The topics covered are: The Existence of God, morality and ethics, politics, epistemology (the theory of knowledge - i.e. "what can we know?"), the philosophy of science, the philosophy of the mind, and aesthetics (art...
Published on 9 Aug 2006 by filthmonkey

versus
37 of 48 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surely a better introduction to this subject is possible
I don't want to pan this outright, not because I'm a kind reviewer but because I can see that it might be helpful to some readers and my own reasons for finding it largely unhelpful are fairly subjective. This is a review for readers like me, my current and younger selves.

In early middle age I'm gradually getting to grips with philosophy through a mixture of...
Published on 5 Sep 2009 by digit


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

69 of 70 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Does exactly what it says on the tin., 9 Aug 2006
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
This book was written with the philosophical novice in mind, and it succeeds emphatically at introducing the basic philosophical problems to the beginner. The topics covered are: The Existence of God, morality and ethics, politics, epistemology (the theory of knowledge - i.e. "what can we know?"), the philosophy of science, the philosophy of the mind, and aesthetics (art and beauty).

The book is written in a VERY accessible style, so even if you have never encountered philosophy or have previously been put off by dense and hard-to-understand texts, with this book you won't have that problem.

For each of the topics covered Nigel Warburton discusses how it has been proposed, and what the counter-arguments are, and encourages you to think for yourself along the way. At the end of each section there are suggested reading lists if you want to pursue the matter with your own further reading.

The one reservation I have is that obviously, being a philosopher, the author has some preferences for particular arguments as opposed to others. There is a slight hint in places that this is so, and so STRICTLY speaking not all is neutral. But I don't think this undermines the book as a beginner's text AT ALL. I would highly recommend it.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


87 of 91 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Every philosopher at every level should own this book, 3 Feb 2006
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
I did a philosophy degree and I remember getting a bit dismayed by some of the books I had to read. Then I stumbled across this. In his introduction he writes that philosophy is often seen as harder than it actually is and this is because many philosophers aren't good writers.

This is 100% true and restored my faith in philosophy. Warburton is an extremely clear writer and covers the essential points is a lucid manner. If it's within the scope of this book then any essay you have to write, or topic you are interested in should begin with this book. Of course you will need others but this is a great starting point.

See also his 'philosophy: a-z' You might also find Bryan Magee's books useful and Bertrand Russell is a bit of a genius too.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


9 of 9 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Superb!, 7 Dec 2007
By 
A. I. Mackenzie "alimack" (Glasgow, Scotland.) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (REAL NAME)   
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
Like 'Philosophy - the classics', this is an excellent book, reference and general reader. It gives a useful reading list at the end of each chapter.

The Basics takes a topic based approach, including Philosophy of : Science, Mind, Religion, the external world etc. and starts off by expounding the theory (say behaviourism) and then the arguments against it.

Warburton writes really clearly and this book is a useful resource for student and anyone interested in Philosophy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Excellent Preface to Philosophy, 30 Mar 2009
By 
Graham Mccarthy "gmccarthy15" (Cheshire) - See all my reviews
(VINE VOICE)    (TOP 1000 REVIEWER)    (REAL NAME)   
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
Philosophy: The Basics is not without its faults, but as a clear, concise and accessible introduction to philosophy it is quite outstanding. True, it's not difficult to extrapolate some of the author's own opinions, but I can forgive this because it's not much of a distraction and we're not studying any of the topics in great depth.

The book is divided into six discrete sections (God, Right and Wrong, the External World, Science, Mind, and Art); each topic is given a page or two of introduction followed by the arguments for and against each. It is the author's clarity of thought and economy with language that enables him to distil each topic down into its essential essences and what makes this book so clear and enjoyable to read. It is this clarity that is the book's strength and in my opinion it weakness. Why a weakness? Well, I found myself taken up by the pace of the book and reached the end feeling like the person that had just downed a glass of claret in one gulp, I found myself straining to recall the complexity of the flavour.

`Philosophy: An Introduction' is easy to understand and well written and is an excellent preface to further reading on philosophy.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An accessible and intellectually stimulating introduction to philosophy., 11 Jan 2013
By 
Jazzrook (Purbrook , Hampshire) - See all my reviews
(TOP 500 REVIEWER)   
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
This revised and updated 5th edition(2012) remains an accessible and comprehensive guide to philosophy.
After an inspiring introduction, there are chapters on 'God', 'Right and wrong', 'Politics', 'Appearance and reality', 'Science', 'Mind' & 'Art' plus a new short chapter on 'Animals'.
At the end of each chapter there is a useful further reading section.
Nigel Warburton's intellectually stimulating book is a superb introduction which should appeal to the general reader as well as students of philosophy.
My only criticism is the lack of discussion on the controversial subject of continental philosophy(Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault et al). Perhaps a chapter explaining the analytic-continental divide in philosophy could be added for the 6th edition?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars An easy approach!, 24 April 2012
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
This gives a good depth into 'the basics' of philosophy. It is divided into seven chapters including God, right and wrong, politics, the external world, science, mind,and art. Each chapter has at least twenty subheadings within its subject. For example, the first chapter on God deals with the intelligent design argument,Fine tuningthe ontological argument, Knowledge, proof and the existence of God, the problem of evil and so on. Warburton also includes some appropriate philosophy sites to visit as well as recommendations for further reading at the end of each chapter. No problem recommending it and for a specialist book of over 164 pages, it's reasonably priced.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Peace of mind, 9 Sep 2009
By 
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
I was considering taking philosophy as part of a joint honours with fine art at university; I have been advised that this is perhaps not such a wise decision so I opted for teaching myself philosophy. I consider myself a deeply philosophical person and also wanted to look at philosophy for some peace of mind, which is exactly what I got. This book enables you to make fantastic and resolving debates within your own mind and also provides brilliant topics of discussion. The section on 'God' was particularly outstanding. If you are like me and are looking for some resolution that enables you to collectively gather your wonderings into solid opinons, as well as provide information to make your opinions stronger then this book is something you should definately at least consider buying. I hope this was helpful.
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


37 of 48 people found the following review helpful
2.0 out of 5 stars Surely a better introduction to this subject is possible, 5 Sep 2009
By 
digit "digit" (London, England) - See all my reviews
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
I don't want to pan this outright, not because I'm a kind reviewer but because I can see that it might be helpful to some readers and my own reasons for finding it largely unhelpful are fairly subjective. This is a review for readers like me, my current and younger selves.

In early middle age I'm gradually getting to grips with philosophy through a mixture of primary and secondary sources. That means some of the stuff I'm reading is fairly hard and I'm finding it so, but generally managing to struggle through by means of whatever help I can get, including, I hoped, from Mr. Warburton.

I guess I imagined that the basics he was offering would be a general overview of western philosophy, a sense of who the main players were, the positions they held, how they related to each other and what some of their more difficult terminology meant. Be advised: this book doesn't provide that at all. Instead it divides philosophy into areas of inquiry such as philosophy of science, philosophy of mind, philosophy of art etc. and lays out debates within these fields as clearly and simply as possible, and I mean very simply indeed, occasionally tending to labour its points.

The two stars tell the story. I don't like the book. I think it's boring, indefensibly so. I think I would have found it boring when I was a teenager - apparently the book's target audience. This would be fair enough if philosophy actually were boring, but, so far my researches tell me it's not - that is to say, all my researches except via introductory works like these, which seem curiously determined to present the discipline as nothing more than a litany of dull and obvious pedantry and scotch, as quickly as possible, any and all notions in young minds that philosophy is going to be something mindblowing. This was done to me when I was a kid and I can't endorse it. I think philosophy is mindblowing. It's difficult, yes, and, yes, often pretty dry getting there, but the places one arrives at are, by turns, revelatory and confounding and rock one's sense of reality and what it is to inhabit it. Is it too much to ask that at least some of that might be conveyed, at least hinted at, from the outset?

And other than that, I can't let this go: this idea in the introduction that a lot of philosophy is only difficult to understand because it's badly written. Warburton really needs to cite some examples if he wants to make a claim like this. In my view, he shouldn't make it at all. It's wrong and liable to promote philistinism. In fact, it looks perilously like philistinism itself, of the worst kind: the assertion that one's inability to understand is the fault of the author not the intellectual incapacity of the reader/viewer. I'm sorry, but, aside from everything else, what's the point of introducing people to a subject only to tell them that there's no point reading its tougher texts? It's unnecessarily discouraging. Why not, instead, explain some of that Latin and Greek derived jargon you're so disapproving of so that your readers can make a start?
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars The Basics, 28 Jan 2014
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
Brought for my daughters A level work. She is completely happy with the content and its relevance to her course work. Worth buying
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


5.0 out of 5 stars An essential purchase, 5 Sep 2013
Verified Purchase(What is this?)
This review is from: Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) (Paperback)
An essential purchase for anyone interested in persuing philosophy. Interesting informative and breaks it down into understandable bits. The book nwas in excellent condition and arrived quite promptly I shall be buying from thyis seller again!
Help other customers find the most helpful reviews 
Was this review helpful to you? Yes No


‹ Previous | 1 2 | Next ›
Most Helpful First | Newest First

This product

Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback))
Philosophy: The Basics (Basics (Routledge Paperback)) by Nigel Warburton (Paperback - 13 May 2004)
Used & New from: 2.95
Add to wishlist See buying options
Only search this product's reviews