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Eclectic Homeschool Online Book Lists - Philosophy

This section of our website is devoted to book lists that you can take to your library. The lists are sorted by Category, Subcategory and then Topic.

Booklists Main Page > Social Studies

Philosophy List

  • Intellectuals
    by Paul M. Johnson
    ISBN: 0060916575
    Amazon.com
    Conservative historian Paul Johnson wears his ideology proudly on his sleeve in this often ruthless dissection of the thinkers and artists who (in his view) have shaped modern Western culture, having replaced some 200 years ago "the old clerisy as the guides and mentors of mankind." Taking on the likes of Karl Marx, Bertrand Russell, Lillian Hellman, and Noam Chomsky in turn, Johnson examines one idol after another and finds them all to have feet of clay. In his account, for instance, Ernest Hemingway emerges as an artistic hero who labored endlessly to forge a literary style unmistakably his own, but also as a deeply flawed man whose concern for the perfect phrase did not carry over to a concern for the women who loved him. Gossipy and sharply opinionated, Johnson's essay in cultural history spares no one.

    Does it really matter that Henrik Ibsen was vain and arrogant, that Jean-Paul Sartre was incontinent? In Johnson's view, it does: these all-too-human foibles disqualify them, and other thinkers, from presuming to criticize the shortcomings of society. "Beware intellectuals," he concludes (though, given the subjects of his book, it seems he means intellectuals only of the left). "Not only should they be kept well away from the levers of power, they should also be objects of particular suspicion when they seek to offer collective advice." Whether one agrees or not, Johnson's profiles are frequently amusing and illuminating, as when he suggests that the only proletarian Karl Marx ever knew in person was the poor maid who worked for him for decades and was never paid, except in room and board, for her labors. --Gregory McNamee
  • Philosophy for Kids : 40 Fun Questions That Help You Wonder About Everything!
    by David A. White
    ISBN: 1882664701
    Inspire animated discussions of questions that concern kids - and all of us - with this innovative, interactive book. Open your students' minds to the wonders of philosophy. Allow them to grapple with the questions philosophers have discussed since the ancient Greeks. Questions include: "Who are your friends?" "Can computers think?" "Can something logical not make sense?" "Can you think about nothing?" Young minds will find the range of 40 questions to be both entertaining and informative. If you have ever wondered about questions like these, you are well on the way to becoming a philosopher!

    Philosophy for Kids offers young people (ages 10 and up) the opportunity to become acquainted with the wonders of philosophy. Packed with exciting activities arranged around the topics of Values, Knowledge, Reality, and Critical Thinking, this book can be used individually or by the whole class. Each activity allows kids to increase their understanding of philosophical concepts and issues and enjoy themselves at the same time.

    In addition to learning about a challenging subject, students philosophizing in a classroom setting as well as the casual reader of Philosophy for Kids will sharpen the ability to think critically about these and similar questions. Experiencing the enjoyment of philosophical thought enhances a young person’s appreciation for the importance of reasoning throughout the traditional curriculum of subjects.

    The book includes activities, teaching tips, a glossary of terms, and suggestions for further reading.
  • Student's Guide to Philosophy, A
    Ralph M. McInerny
    ISBN: 1882926390
    A Student's Guide to Philosophy examines these questions: Who is a philosopher? Can philosophical thought be avoided? What have philosophers written over the ages? And why should we care? In this critical essay, these and other questions are posed and answered by one of America's leading philosophers, Ralph McInerny of the University of Notre Dame. Schools of thought are examined with humor and verve, and the principal works of philosophers and scholars are recommended.
  • What We Can't Not Know: A Guide
    by J. Budziszewski
    ISBN: 1890626546
    J. Budziszewski’s newest book is about the lost world of common truths—about what we all really know about right and wrong.

    We are passing through an eerie phase of history. The things that everyone really knows are treated as unheard of, and the principles of decency are attacked as indecent. Exposing the emptiness of contemporary moral fashions, Budziszewski explores the rules of human conduct that we can’t not know.

    Budziszewski’s purpose is to "bolster the confidence of plain people in the rational foundations of their common moral sense." There are certain moral truths—"as real as arithmetic"—that are part of the equipment of a rational mind. He describes the basic principles of morality known to all men, explains why those principles are under attack, and demonstrates that we do in fact know what we think we know.

    Addressing "the persuaded, the half-persuaded, and the wish-I-were-persuaded," Budziszewski shows Protestants, Catholics, and Jews the unanimity of their traditions on the common truths. And what about the unpersuaded, those who deny the reality of a moral law? They are on the other side of a dispute over the basic norms for human life. Civility, Budziszewski insists, does not require denying the unprecedented gulf between the two sides. What’s needed are both charity and clarity, which Budziszewski provides in abundance.

    "A few times in a generation, if we are fortunate, moral intelligence finds a voice as lucid, engaging, and relentless as that of J. Budziszewski," says Richard John Neuhaus, publisher of First Things.
  • What's Wrong With the World
    by G. K. Chesterton
    ISBN: 0898704898
    Chesterton gives his remarkably perceptive analysis on social and moral issues more relevant today than even in his own time. In his light and humorous style, yet deadly serious and philosophical, he comments on feminism and true womanhood, errors in edication, the importance of the child and other issues, using incisive arguments against the trendsetters' assaults against the family.

    Chesterton possessed the genius to foresee the dangers if modernist proposals were implemented. He knew that lax moral standards would lead to the dehumanization of man, and in this book he staunchly defends the family, its constituent elements and character over against those ideas and institutions that would subvert it and thereby deliver man into the hands of the servile state. In addressing what is wrong, he also shows clearly what is right, sane and sensible and how to change things in that direction.
  • Wise Guy: The Life and Philosophy of Socrates
    by M. D. Usher, William Bramhall (Illustrator)
    ISBN: 0374312494
    Greek philosophy for kids
    “I know that I know nothing.”

    With this classic statement, uttered over two thousand years ago, Socrates set the standard for the future of Western philosophy. By day, he soaked up the sun in the Athenian marketplace, where he’d converse for hours on end about the meaning of wisdom, right and wrong, courage, justice, and love. By night, he feasted and danced with friends. He was charming, but not handsome, happy, but not rich. Unfortunately, his method of thinking did not sit well with everyone. In the end, his fellow Athenians punished him with death.

    The story of Socrates’ life unfolds through cheerful illustrations and a two-tiered text, one layer quite simple, the other full of juicy additional details about the philosopher’s life and times. The ending assembles a “School of Athens,” showcasing thinkers, from Erasmus to Martin Luther King, Jr., who have been inspired by Socrates’ philosophy.
  • Young Person's Guide to Philosophy
    by Jeremy Weate
    ISBN: 0789430746
    Introduces over twenty-five of the world's greatest philosophers and presents a simple version of the tenets of philosophy.
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