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The Great Ideas of Philosophy, 2nd Edition cover art

The Great Ideas of Philosophy, 2nd Edition

By: Daniel N. Robinson, The Great Courses
Narrated by: Daniel N. Robinson
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Summary

Grasp the important ideas that have served as the backbone of philosophy across the ages with this extraordinary 60-lecture series. This is your opportunity to explore the enormous range of philosophical perspectives and ponder the most important and enduring of human questions - without spending your life poring over dense philosophical texts.

Professor Robinson guides you through more than 2,000 years of philosophical thinking and gives you a coherent, comprehensive, and beautifully articulated introduction to the great conversation of philosophy. Every lecture contains substance that can change your view of the world and its history.

You'll journey from the early philosophical ideas of Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle; chart the origins of Christian philosophy and investigate the Islamic scholars who preserved and extended Greek thought during the Middle Ages; and venture through Enlightenment contributions to philosophy, from Francis Bacon to Locke, Hume, Kant, Mill, and Adam Smith.

Then shift your attention to the modern era, where you see groundbreaking ideas like psychoanalysis, pragmatism, and nihilism, as well as the collision between the inherently social understanding of meaning created by Wittgenstein, the vastly different estimation of human thought developed by the code-breaking genius Alan Turing, and the subtle response to him made by the American philosopher John Searle.

While the lectures cover an enormous range of key thinkers and ideas, they always focus on the most important ideas. The result is a course that gives you everything you need to finally grasp humanity's exciting philosophical history - without years of intense academic study and piles of dense reading.

PLEASE NOTE: When you purchase this title, the accompanying reference material will be available in your Library section along with the audio.

©2004 The Teaching Company, LLC (P)2004 The Great Courses

What listeners say about The Great Ideas of Philosophy, 2nd Edition

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Great learning and energy

Totally absorbing and interesting. I didnt expect the stories of philosophers of the ages to be so captivating. I totally enjoyed it.

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Prof Robinson is a legend!

Absolutely brilliant. Have listened three times and will listen again into the future.

Would love for Prof Robinson to do a deep dive course on each and every philosopher in this course.

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  • LC
  • 28-07-18

Hard to follow, but useful

I found it really hard to follow and also to tell whose opinion was being presented. Also, almost everything stated is flawed but with no mention of this, so hard to understand what point is being made.
However, I did get used to this style by the time I had listened to about half the lectures, and found them interesting.

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1 person found this helpful

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Highly recommend

A broad view of philosophy through the ages including the vital historical context. Written by a lecturer with tremendous knowledge & passion.

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Thoughts provoked.

Narrated well. Would like to have a summary of each lecture for quick reference. Recommended reading/ listening and a worthy foundation stone for any life; a wise investment of time.

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Outstanding course, brilliant professor

Excellent introduction into the great ideas of philosophy in Western Civilization! Professor Daniel Robinson is a brilliant, inspiring teacher! I have listened to this course with joy for several times. Very highly recommended.

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    3 out of 5 stars

Missing a lot

a strange mix.
Many big philosophers are not discussed
Of those discussed there is little of their beliefs but rather the circumstances around them
There is no political views of Plato or Aristotle.

not much can be learnt about each philosophy but rather the setting of certain philosophers and the wider debate.

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    3 out of 5 stars

Greek and the western ideas, good but not global

More accurately described as the great ideas of philosophy stemming from the greek ideas, an accounting of why not is included but not a global consideration

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    4 out of 5 stars

Really solid starting point into philosophy.

I came to buy this course, wishing to gain an overview into philosophy as a whole (for a too in-detailed study would probably go into the hundreds of hours), and this satisfied that desire. offering nice snippets of the history of philosophy, the important figures involved, and ideas generating from them, its provided a wonderful start point for which philosophies and figures I can choose to further study. if you're after something similar to myself, this will cover everything you need. I have no doubt this will warrant multiple listens.

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1 person found this helpful

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Interesting and insightful

Daniel N Robinson is one of those all too rare individuals who renders challenging subjects both interesting and intelligible. This walk through the Great Ideas of Philosophy will inform and almost certainly leave you wanting to read further on the subject.

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