Wer Will Duran kennt weiß, dass seine Bücher eine ungeheuer große Informationsdichte haben und auch "Story of Philosophy" macht hier keine Ausnahme.
Ich komme nicht aus dem Feld der Philosophie, konnten den Ausführungen jedoch trotzdem hervorragend folgen und habe nun das Gefühl, einen mehr als ordentlichen Überblick der Welt der Philosophie erhalten zu haben.
Das Buch ist jeden Cent wert und sollte von jedem gelesen, der in irgendeiner Weise Interesse an Philosophie oder Wissenschaft hat.
I usually look down on philosophical "collections" because they tend to give an inadequate picture of any single philosopher and they also tend to lack cohesion. But this book is not just a collection - it is more like a narrative. The name "The STORY of Philosophy" indicates the focus, which is not just to present the work of various philosophers but to weave them together. Durant's choice of philosophers may seem to be unreasonable, but it serves his purpose. He presents a wide range of thought, from ancient Greek to modern. His analysis is always deep - his insights are fascinating. His understanding of the nuances of these thinkers is not in question. Each section presents Durant's analysis alongside material quoted directly from the philosopher being discussed. In this way both the original material and thoughtful analysis are given. In broader terms, Durant brings all this diverse thought together. He describes the progression of thought through careful comparison and contrast and gives each of these philosophers a position in reference to one another and to a unified picture. Each of these thinkers is put into a broader context than simply their own writings; parallels between these philosophers emerge alongside a portryal of their historical significance. All in all a real achievement and a worthwhile read for almost anyone (as an introduction to philosophy or as a valuable new perspective on material you're already familiar with). Recommended...
Will Durant makes philosophy and history a treat. The Story of Philosophy was my first book from this remarkably witty author. As a writer and reader I enjoy his keen insights and double-perceptive prose; as a future history teacher, I can't wait to use this book for my classes; and as a philsopher in the making, I plan to periodically refer to his thematic summaries. I am not even finished yet--still having fun reviewing the basics of each philosophers--yet I am already inlove with this book. Regardless of its paperback/referrence status, this book is my favorite yet. It's simplicity and convenience, plus Will Durant's novel-like voice and commentaries, makes the great philosophers not just ingenious but also entertaining.
Will Durant provides the reader with a very enjoyable and readible review and analysis of the greatest Western Philosophers. It's my favorite book on philosophy, that gathers in one volume the wisdom of most of our greater philosophers as well as giving us a keen sense of who they were and the times in which they lived. I recommend it to all readers who thirst for knowledge about the essence and ultimate truths about life.
Will Durant is the most interesting and reader-friendly writer of history in the 20th Century. In this book, he turns his talents to an explanation of major developments in philosophy, and succeeds remarkably. Anyone who has ever attempted to read Aristotle, and found him dry and meandering, will find new insights and respect for his thought thanks to Durant's affectionate analysis. Even those who do not fancy themselves philosophers will find new ability to access the basic principles of philosophy in Durant's clear and precise explanations. I especially gained new respect and admiration for Baruch Spinoza because of Durant, but every philosopher in this book takes on new life when the author uses his pleasant story-telling style to give these historical figures complete dimension for the new student. Durant's book will encourage every reader to delve deeper into the world of philosophical thought, and, in the end, make the world a more philosophical place to live (I'd say a good thing).
As mentioned by Durant in this preface for the latest edition, the only point where this work is incomplete is in discussing about the eastern philosophies, which require great commentaries from people like Durant.
This book provides a great overview of western philosophy through discussion of the lives and opinions of the various philosophers. It insightfully draws connections between the events of the times and the way they helped shape each philosophy. It traces the development of western philosophy, showing how the differing views built upon each other. This is a great way to learn the core ideas of the philosophies, as a possible branching out place for further study; it does, however, require a bit of basic historic and literary knowledge for full comprehension.
Will Durant has the ability to make a dry subject (though this isn't really dry) into a compelling story. For those who are often confused about the various winds of philosophical fancy that have gripped secular society over the centuries, this is a great introduction. From the Pre-Platonics to Neitzche, Mr. Durant presents a simple and effective survey of thought. He is hobbled by his aversion to Biblical truth, but this is a much better introduction to philosophy then Sophie's World (which is significantly unimpressive).-Kelly Whiting
Will Durant was one of the great historians -- and great popularizers of history -- this century has seen. This book was first written in the twenties yet it is still as readable, relevant, informative and engaging as ever. Those who liked the Story of Civilization series will love this book. Those who are interested in philosophy will find this an invaluable introduction to the great philosophers.
As an introduction to philosophy, this was an easily readable book that covered the philosophies and lives of many philosophers with enough detail to get me into the whole groove of who did what and when. I was left with a clear idea of the context of the described philosophies and I am now interested in directly reading their works.