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Why does philosophy give some people a headache, others a real buzz, and yet others a feeling that it is subversive and dangerous? Why do a lot of people think philosophy is totally irrelevant? What is philosophy anyway?

The ABCs of philosophy - easy to understand but never simplistic.

Beginning with basic questions posed by the ancient Greeks - What is the world made of? What is a man? What is knowledge? What is good and evil? - Philosophy For Beginners traces the development of these questions as the key to understanding how Western philosophy developed over the last 2,500 years.

About the Author

Richard Osborne is a philosopher and writer with special interests in Art, Technology and contemporary culture. He is the author of several works including Philosophy For Beginners and Freud For Beginners. Richard Osborne currently teaches art theory and philosophy at the University of the Arts in London. His most recent book is Philosophy in Art (Zidane Press 2008) which examines the relationship between the two.

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4.1 out of 54.1 out of 5
95 global ratings

Top reviews from the United States

Suzie.E
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A fun read
Reviewed in the United States on April 18, 2021
Im not far into it but I am enjoying what I have read so far. Just started being interested in philosophy and this has been a nice appetizer. My only grief with the book is that for some reason ( I have to assume the printing agencies fault ) my book was printed not only... See more
Im not far into it but I am enjoying what I have read so far. Just started being interested in philosophy and this has been a nice appetizer. My only grief with the book is that for some reason ( I have to assume the printing agencies fault ) my book was printed not only upside down but backwards as well. This isnt actually an issue for me the backwards bit reads like a manga but I do feel foolish reading a book on philosophy upside down while ppl walk past me at work lol
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Kathy Britton
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
The best source of information
Reviewed in the United States on July 25, 2016
I purchased 10 books on philosophy, but this book was by far the best source for those wanting a broad exposure to philosophy. Reading it was a pleasure!
5 people found this helpful
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AR
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
It''s very confusing and hard to read
Reviewed in the United States on October 10, 2019
Very hard to read and find it hard to follow the idea. Most of the content are cartoons and you don''t know where to start. It''s very confusing
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M. Hickman
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Save your money!
Reviewed in the United States on March 6, 2019
As other reviewers have commented on, the author''s anti-Christian bias is evident. The author doesn''t even try to be subtle about his obnoxious opinions.
2 people found this helpful
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Joseph J. TruncaleTop Contributor: Boxing
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A wonderfully illustrated basic introduction to the history of philosophy. An enjoyable and informative book.
Reviewed in the United States on April 24, 2015
I have had an interest in philosophy most of my life. Even though I had taken several college courses and read numerous books on philosophy, this illustrated documentary comic book (Philosophy for beginners by Richard Osborne and Illustrated by Ralph Edney) sounded... See more
I have had an interest in philosophy most of my life. Even though I had taken several college courses and read numerous books on philosophy, this illustrated documentary comic book (Philosophy for beginners by Richard Osborne and Illustrated by Ralph Edney) sounded interesting. I purchased this book at a reasonable price on Amazon. I was pleasantly surprised at the amount of information this 186 page volume contained on the history of philosophy. It is true they do not get into great detail on the specifics of each topic; nevertheless, they provide an excellent overview for further study of the subjects.

This fully illustrated volume is organized into twenty-two areas of study. It begins with a brief explanation of philosophy. It moves to the most famous philosophers of Greece, such as Socrates, Plato, Aristotle and others. The Roman philosophers are covered next such as Marcus Aurelius. Early Christianity is explained, medieval religious philosophy, the renaissance, reformation and counter-reformation, the enlightenment and the rise of capitalism, idealism, American philosophers, and other influential social movements such as Marxism is also covered in this text.

In conclusion, even if you have read books or taken philosophy courses, this little volume is great for a brief overview of important philosophical ideas that have occurred the last 2,500 years. The fantastic illustrations make the story of philosophy come alive.

Rating: 5 Stars. Joseph J. Truncale (Author: Never Trust a Politician: A critical review of politics and politicians.
8 people found this helpful
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Temekia cook
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Interesting info
Reviewed in the United States on March 11, 2019
Information was geat and delivered on time!!!
One person found this helpful
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The Learner
1.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Save your money!
Reviewed in the United States on April 29, 2005
I bought this book to help "translate" a very densely written required book for a doctoral-level philosophy class in which I am enrolled. I have never taken a philosophy class. So, I was eager to read Philosophy for Beginners. What a disappointment. This book has a very... See more
I bought this book to help "translate" a very densely written required book for a doctoral-level philosophy class in which I am enrolled. I have never taken a philosophy class. So, I was eager to read Philosophy for Beginners. What a disappointment. This book has a very choppy writing style and the cartoons are confusing because they do not have a context. Unless I missed it, there was nothing about Plato''s Forms, a major omission. I REALLY wanted to read the authors'' take on Russell. Though they list Russell in the Index, Freud is in his place. I also bought Philosophy Made Simple by Popkin and Stroll. Buy that book instead.
13 people found this helpful
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ironpreacher
4.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Easy to see Philosophy
Reviewed in the United States on July 5, 2012
Used this book in seminary. I know use it as I teach philosophy at the University. It is a handy resource.
2 people found this helpful
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Amazon Customer
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Five Stars
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 23, 2018
excellent
One person found this helpful
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Gerry Firth
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Monet well spent.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 9, 2016
Excellently produced, very informative in an entertaining manner. Highly recomended to serious students and to anyone who wishes to know something about the subject.
One person found this helpful
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mary hannon
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
A terrific guide to philosophy.
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on May 17, 2013
This is just wonderful. Why did I not find this before in my life? It does the work of a hundred other books, explaining so much about philosophy. Simply written, but just justice to the complexity of the big ideas in philosophy. Oh, and funny too. Super stuff. Love the...See more
This is just wonderful. Why did I not find this before in my life? It does the work of a hundred other books, explaining so much about philosophy. Simply written, but just justice to the complexity of the big ideas in philosophy. Oh, and funny too. Super stuff. Love the pictures. Thank you Richard Osborne.
4 people found this helpful
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Harryatharrogate
3.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
quite interesting
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 2, 2015
Bought out of curiosity and still reading my way through it, quite interesting so far.
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Tracey
5.0 out of 5 starsVerified Purchase
Deep
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on September 28, 2013
Second hand excellent value, good condition, quicker delivery. Would use this type of service again, gotta love amazon for books.
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