laden with much content and written in a good, yet sometimes dry fashion, this book walks you through the history of western philosophy from the ancient Greek to modern times. certainly highly recommendable.
Never did I think that a book written in 1926 would resonate so well in modern times. Much care was taken crafting the prose, more than in modern books. Half the time I was bookmarking insight of philosophers, and half the time I was noting the author's own elegant turns of phrase. Example: "To see how short life is, one must have lived long". And "a man who has lived to 70 has survived his pessimism"
Faced with mindless duty, when an audio book player slips into a rear pocket and mini buds pop into ears, old is made new again.
Edward R. Murrow interviewed several famous people in a 1950s series called This I Believe. One of the participants was Will Durant.
Durant wrote his own “THIS I BELIEVE ESSAY” after having spent fifty years of his life researching and writing an eleven volume work titled “The History of Civilization”. His wife, Arieal Durant, a scholar in her own right, also labored those fifty years on this and other historical works. Durant writes, in his “THIS I BELIEVE ESSAY”,: “I find in the Universe so many forms of order, organization, system, law and adjustment of means to ends, that I believe in a cosmic intelligence and I conceive God as the life, mind, order and law of the world. I suspect that when I die I shall be dead. I would look upon endless existence as a curse as did the Flying Dutchman and the Wandering Jew. Death is life’s greatest invention; perpetually replacing the worn with the new.”
Durant is not irrefutably or completely revealing the world of philosophy. He is opening a door to the importance of philosophy. He shows that philosophy addresses the fundamental questions of human life.
In Durant’s updated (1950s) version of, “The Mansions of Philosophy”, he decries the paucity of philosophical interpretation of science and the failure of late 20th century philosophers to synthesize current scientific discoveries. He infers humanity is losing its way because scientific discoveries have little context and no direction.
I would recommend this book to individuals who wanted a good overview of the history of philosophy.
I initially read this book in a Introduction to Philosophy course some 35 year ago and just wanted a refresher on what was contained in this book. Needless to say, I forgot a lot, and maybe some sections of the book I never read. It was an enjoyable visit with a great American Professor of philosophy.
Ideas and thoughts never change
This is a introductory story of philosophy. The author reffers to some important philosophers. The book begins with greek philosophy and ends with "contemporary" american philosophy (George Santayana, William James and John Dewey). Some of the greatest thinkers were there. The reader should not expect though an exaustive exposition. The story is straight and give relevant insights about the works of the philosophers examined.The narration is good, specially for a foreig like me.
Grover Gardner is excellent -
Grover Gardner is in synch with Will Durant. Grover Gardner (under the name Alexander Adams) narrated Will Durants Story of Civilization. The Story of Philosophy is sort of like Will Durants practice for his larger work on the history of human civilazation. Its a treasure.
Great audio book. Recommended to everyone. Its a delight to listent to the words of Will Durant and Grover Gardner is an awesome narrator!!!
A journey through philosophy that everyone who enjoys thinking philosophically will enjoy.
The subject matter and presentation would be considered dry, but I like this stuff, I like to pause the book and think about tangents that come into my mind, and then resume.
Not a book for everyone, but if philosophy is a subject matter that you enjoy spending time on you will find this book well done.
I'm a professional painter and love ennobling, enlightening literature
open your mind
honestly, most of the stories rush you to read, in greater depth, about the lives and philosophies introduced in this book
his pacing allows for digestion
the whole book; I love this book and am listening to it again.
don't let your life pass without reading the Story of Philosophy.
A very enjoyable read- not the subject matter/ type of book that I could really put at the top of my all time best listens- can't fault wither Durant or Gardner for that.
How surprisingly pleasant it was to follow.
I found this a nice introduction to philosophy- a history coming from the perspective of a 20th century philosopher.
The Story of Philosophy is a very worthy listen but is a work of its times. First written in 1926, it remains remarkably relevant but is also full of the colour of its day. The author's voice and views sing through the work and brings the philosophies to life but this can skew the view one gets of some of the philosophers.
The book is fantastic as a primer to philosophy but be prepared to re-listen to some sections or do further reading on some of the works discussed before forming a view on the philosophers discussed. It should not be considered definitive.