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A SHORT HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY

ARCHIBALD B. D. ALEXANDER - 1922 - Table of contents

Diccionario filosófico
Voltaire.
Complete edition

Diccionario de Filosofía
Brief definition of the most important concepts of philosophy.

 

A Dictionary of English Philosophical Terms Francis Garden

Biografías y semblanzas Biographical references and lives of philosophers

Brief introduction to the thought of Ortega y Gasset

History of Philosophy Summaries

Historia de la Filosofía
Explanation of the thought of the great philosophers; summaries, exercises...

Historia de la Filosofía
Digital edition of the History of Philosophy by Jaime Balmes

Historia de la Filosofía
Digital edition of the History of Philosophy by Zeferino González

Vidas, opiniones y sentencias de los filósofos más ilustres
Complete digital edition of the work of Diogenes Laertius

Compendio de las vidas de los filósofos antiguos
Fénelon

A brief history of Greek Philosophy
B. C. Burt

 

A SHORT HISTORY OF PHILOSOPHY

 

INTRODUCTION

Part I. GREEK PHILOSOPHY


Its origin and character

PHYSICAL PERIOD
MONASTIC THEORIES
PLURALISTIC THEORIES

MORAL PERIOD
THE SOPHISTS
SOCRATES. Cynics and Cyrenaics

SYSTEMATIC PERIOD
PLATO
ARISTOTLE

Part II. PHILOSOPHY IN THE GRECO-ROMAN WORLD

ETHICAL THEORIES
Stoicism. Epicureanism
Scepticism

RELIGIOUS TENDENCIES
Roman Moralists: Seneca, Epictetus, M. Aurelius
Alexandrian Mystics: Philo, Plotinus, Proclus

Part III. PHILOSOPHY OF MIDDLE AGES

THE PATRISTIC PERIOD Augustine and Church Fathers

SCHOLASTIC PERIOD Nominalism and Realism

PLATONIC INFLUENCE
Anselm, Abelard, Peter Lombard

ARISTOTELIAN INFLUENCE
1. Alexander of Hales, Albertus Magnus, Thomas Aquinas
2. Duns Scotus, Francis of Assisi, William of Occam
 

Part IV. REVIVAL OF PHILOSOPHY

TRANSITION PERIOD
1. Revival of Learning
2. Reformation
3. Rise of Sciences
Bruno, Böhme, Montaigne

REALISTIC TENDENCY
Bacon
Gassendi
Hobbes

IDEALISTIC TENDENCY
Descartes

PANTHEISTIC TENDENCY
Geulinx, Occasionalism
Malebranche, Pantheism
Spinoza, Acosmism

Part V. PHILOSOPHY OF THE ENLIGHTENMENT

[Introduction]

SECT. I. ENLIGHTENMENT IN BRITAIN
Empiricism-Locke
Development of empiricism-Berkeley
Sceptical Conclusion-Hume

THEOLOGICAL AND ETHICAL QUESTIONS
Natural Philosophy
Theological Controversy
Ethical Theories
Scottish Philosophy

SECT. 2. ENLIGHTENMENT IN FRANCE
Earlier Rationalism
Bossuet, Fontenelle, Bayle, Montesquieu, Condillac, Helvetius
Materialistic Tendencies
Voltaire, Diderot, D'Alembert,  La Mettrie, Holbach, Rousseau

SECT. 3. ENLIGHTENMENT IN GERMANY
INDIVIDUAL IDEALISM—LEIBNITZ

FOLLOWERS OF LEIBNITZ
Thomasius, Tschirnhausen, Wolff

POPULAR PHILOSOPHY
Mendelssohn, Nicolai
Lessing

Part VI. GERMAN IDEALISM


SECT. I. CRITICAL PHILOSOPHY—KANT
INTRODUCTION

KANT'S THEORETIC PHILOSOPHY

KANT'S MORAL PHILOSOPHY

PHILOSOPHY OF ART AND RELIGION

SECT. 2. DEVELOPMENT OF IDEALISM

PHILOSOPHY OF FEELING
Hamann, Herder, Jacobi
Schiller and Humboldt

SUBJECTIVE IDEALISM—FICHTE
1. Science of Knowledge
2. Its Theoretic Principles
3. Its Practical Sphere

OBJECTIVE IDEALISM—SCHELLING
1. Philosophy of Nature
2. Philosophy of Identity
3. Mythology and Revelation

ROMANTIC SCHOOL
1. Novalis and Schlegel
2. Baader and Krause
3. Schleiermacher

 

SECT. 3. ABSOLUTE IDEALISM—HEGELIANISM
CONCEPTION AND METHOD
STAGES OF DEVELOPMENT
REACTION AGAINST HEGELIANISM
1. Herbart
2. Beneke
3. Schopenhauer

Part VII. MOVEMENTS SINCE HEGEL TO THE PRESENT


GERMAN THOUGHT—AFTER HEGEL
1. Influence of Hegelianism
2. Materialistic Tendency—Haeckel
3. Idealistic Tendency
Fechner, Lotze, Hartmann, Wundt
4. Modern Psychology
5. Neo-Kantianism
Dühring, Schuppe, Ritschl
6. Eucken and Activist Tendency

FRENCH THOUGHT—FROM THE REVOLUTION
1. Cousin and Eclecticism
2. Comte and Positivism
3. Religious Philosophy
4. Philosophy of Development—Taine, Renan, Fouillée

BRITISH PHILOSOPHY IN THE VICTORIAN ERA
1. Utilitarianism—Bentham and Mill
2. Evolution—Darwin and Spencer. Maurice, Newman, Martineau
3. Influence of German Idealism. Caird, Green, Bradley, etc.

THE TREND OF THOUGHT IN THE TWENTIETH CENTURY
Anti-Conceptualism—Bergson
Pragmatism—Wm. James
Neo-Realism. Revival of Idealism in Italy. The Philosophy of the Gifford Lectures

 

CONCLUSION

 

BOOKS OF REFERENCE

 

Part III. PHILOSOPHY OF THE MIDDLE AGES

Chap. II. Scholastic Period

The second period of Christian philosophy, which extends from the ninth century to the fifteenth, is called the Scholastic period, so called because the monks were the chief scholars and the monasteries were the chief depositories of learning.

During the middle ages the continent of Europe was divided into a number of small states, feebly governed and often at feud with one another, over which the Roman hierarchy exercised universal sway. The chief power was ecclesiastical and not political. The Church was supreme, the arbiter in all disputes. In consequence of this religious autocracy life was corrupted and thought crippled. A spirit of despotism crushed intellectual activity. With the exception of a temporary revival of intellectual interest, consequent on the union of the empire under Charlemagne in the beginning of the ninth century, the earlier portion of the middle ages presents a dreary story of superstition, corruption, and mental torpor. The tenth century was a dark age in mediaeval history. In the eleventh the sky began to clear. The ecclesiastical reforms of Hildebrand, the renewed communication with the Greek empire through the crusades, where learning was still cherished, the intercourse with the Arabians in Spain among whom the sciences were cultivated—these were among the causes which stimulated philosophic thought.

 

  The intellectual life of the middle ages is represented by Scholasticism, which is not to be regarded as a fixed doctrine or school like Platonism, but as a name which comprehends the philosophic endeavours of Christendom for nearly a thousand years. The Schoolmen were theologians, who prosecuted philosophy wholly in the interests of the Church, and whose aim was to reconcile faith and reason and to give to the dogmas of Christianity a scientific form.

The first impulse to Scholastic theology was given by Augustine, whose works directed and shaped theological thought, and long remained the authoritative source of doctrine. Side by side with the teaching of Augustine a Neoplatonic influence was exerted which took the form of Mysticism. Accordingly, Scholasticism and Mysticism supplement each other without being mutually exclusive. The one emphasizes more the doctrine of the Church; the other the conduct of the individual life. Along with these two tendencies a third characteristic of mediaevalism is to be noted—the secular interest in Greek and Roman literature, which languished during the earlier centuries, but revived with the introduction of the writings of Aristotle into the Christian schools through the medium of Arabian commentators.

While, therefore, Scholasticism is the general name given to the whole intellectual activity of the middle ages, these three features of it must be clearly distinguished— the theological, dealing with the dogmas of the Church; the mystical, having to do with personal piety; the classical or secular, relating to Greek philosophy.

The great philosophic problem which exercised the minds of the Schoolmen was that of Nominalism and Realism—an antithesis, the origin of which is to be found in the relation of Scholasticism to the philosophy of Plato and Aristotle. The question as to whether universal notions have a substantial existence or whether they consist in bare intellectual concepts only was raised by a passage taken from the introduction to the Isagoge of Porphyry as translated by Boethius. The great battle over this problem, left undetermined by its author, was opened towards the close of the ninth century by John Scotus Erigena. But it is not till we come to the last years of the eleventh century that the strife became keen as between Roscellinus and Anselm. It continues throughout the whole course of Scholasticism, and is brought to bear on almost every question of life and ritual.

The Realists, following the teaching of Plato, held the existence of universal notions prior to concrete things in which they were embodied. The genus is the real, and is identical in all the individuals composing it. The Nominalists, on the other hand, maintained that universal notions were mere names, empty abstractions of the mind, without any objective reality. An intermediate theory, which sought to unite the two, called Conceptualism, was upheld by some, particularly by Abelard.

The spread of Scholastic philosophy was greatly helped by its teaching in the universities, which began to arise both on the Continent and in England about the beginning of the twelfth century. Paris became an important centre of erudition as well as Oxford. To these and the other seats of learning students streamed from all parts of Europe.

In the instruction of the schools and universities importance was attached as much to method as to matter. The logic of Aristotle was the instrument of discussion. The syllogism was the weapon of assault and defence. Every subject was taken up into the formal scheme of logic, with its premisses and conclusions—analysed and defined and argued with keen dialectic skill. Gradually the Schoolmen lost interest in the practical questions of faith and busied themselves with mere speculative abstractions and subtle logical puzzles. The whole Scholastic era naturally falls into two sections; the first being more under the influence of Plato, the second of Aristotle.

The first period extends from the rise of Scholasticism to Alexander of Hales, who was the earliest Schoolman to make use of the other works of Aristotle besides the Logic. The second section begins with the thirteenth century, during which Aristotle rather than Plato dominates and shapes philosophic thought.

The Patristic Period - Philosophy of the Middle Ages         Platonic influence - Philosophy of the Middle Ages

 

 

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