Course Hero. "A History of Western Philosophy Study Guide." Course Hero. 22 Mar. 2018. Web. 13 Dec. 2018. <https://www.coursehero.com/lit/A-History-of-Western-Philosophy/>.
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Course Hero. "A History of Western Philosophy Study Guide." March 22, 2018. Accessed December 13, 2018. https://www.coursehero.com/lit/A-History-of-Western-Philosophy/.
Course Hero, "A History of Western Philosophy Study Guide," March 22, 2018, accessed December 13, 2018, https://www.coursehero.com/lit/A-History-of-Western-Philosophy/.
Bertrand Russell wrote his treatise A History of Western Philosophy to show that philosophy is an important part of the political and cultural lives of civilizations. He also shows how earlier philosophy influences later philosophy. Philosophy is embedded in a cultural context, and for this reason Russell provides connections between the thoughts of philosophers and the events of their time periods. Russell's history was well received when it was published as an important comprehensive survey of Western philosophy. No doubt Russell has also been faulted for bias, flaws in his understanding of philosophers and historical periods, and omissions—and his survey also stops in the early 1940s. Nonetheless, his work has stood the test of time because it is scholarly and highly readable, and it provides a credible view of the sweep of philosophical history by an author who is himself a respected philosopher.
A History of Western Philosophy is written in the third person, for the most part in the past tense. The author frequently interjects his own opinions in this survey, and when he does he often uses present tense.
The author calls his book A History of Western Philosophy to emphasize he is writing about philosophers within their historical contexts. This is a historical as well as philosophical text.
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