How to Choose a Good Philosophy Guidebook

‘Guidebook’, here  refers to any history of philosophy or topical/dictionary/encyclopedia of philosophy – basically any volume where all the big ideas and thinkers are treated. Here’s how to know if it’s a good one: flip to a section which treats a particular philosophy you completely disagree with – for example, logical positivism, or behaviorism. The author should expound and explain the idea so well that you come away agreeing with it. After reading it, you should have to remind yourself why exactly you disagree with it.

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