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Brooks Library Research Guides: Philosophy & Religious Studies
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Brooks Library Research Guides: Philosophy & Religious Studies

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Philosophy & Religious Studies
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Biographical Information

American Philosophers Before 1950
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.270

Included in this volume are philosophers not necessarily born in the United States, but those who were educated by American philosophers or who taught in the U.S., and rejected Continental Philosophy going on in Europe. The book spans from the Puritan philosophy beginning in the 1600s through the Transcendental Movement in the 1800s, to the Golden Age of original American philosophy (1865-1940), to the beginnings of the linguistic turn and analytical philosophy.  This is a volume within the series, Dictionary of Literary Biography.

American Philosophers, 1950-2000
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.279

Analytic Philosophy was the major field of philosophy at this time, as lead by the emphasis on logic by British philosopher, Bertrand Russell and later, logical positivism. The focus drew away from one of the "big questions" in life and more on the language used to discuss philosophy--the linguistic turn. A few biographies of libertarians are also found here.  This is a volume within the series, Dictionary of Literary Biography.

British Philosophers, 1500-1799
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.252 Some full text available

Biographies of British philosophers whose thought led to concepts that would later be labeled empiricism, rationalism, naturalism, utilitarianism, and liberalism. The biographies of Jeremy Bentham, Edmund Burke, Thomas Hobbes, David Hume, John Locke, Sir Isaac Newton, Adam Smith and Mary Wollstonecraft are in this volume, among many others. This is a volume from the series, Dictionary of Literary Biography


British Philosophers, 1800-2000
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.262

This time period is marked by the growth of scholars found within British universities, and the development of the Common Sense school of thought, British idealism, and a deeper understanding of ancient philosophy. This is a volume from the series, Dictionary of Literary Biography.

Catalogue of Renaissance Philosophers (1350-1650)
Print Location: Ref Z7125 C3 1982
The entries in this book are short, but useful for connecting schools of thought with names. Includes scientists, ascetics, theologians and rhetoricians, insofar as they wrote on philosophical matters or their works affected the study of philosophy. The entries are organized by schools of thought, for example, Early Italian Humanists, Mystics, Cabbalists, German Logicians, Stoicism, and the Dutch School of Logic, to name a few within the span of 300 years.
Fifty Major Philosophers: a Reference Guide
Print Location: Ref B72 C59 1987
This book does not include contemporary philosophers; it begins with a few ancient Greek philosophers and ends with modern philosophers no longer living at the time of writing (1987). It contains cross-referenced biographies of each individual as well as an overview of each philosopher's arguments.
Medieval Philosophers
Print Location: Ref PS129 D45 v.115
Philosophers writing from c. 345 AD (end of the Roman Empire) to the --Islamic, Jewish, and Christian philosophy. The back of the book has a useful "Checklist for Further Readings" on Medieval Philosophy. See also the Cambridge History of Later Medieval Philosophy, found in CWU Library's stacks B721 C35.
Twentieth-Century American Cultural Theorists
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.246 Some full text available

This volume is interdisciplinary in scope, but many of the same writers of cultural theorists are also philosophers or have influenced the study of philosophy. This volume includes authors still writing today, as well as entries such as Chomsky, Dewey, Du Bois, Friedan, Hofstadter, Lasch, Santayana, Steinem, Veblen and Hayden V. White.  This is a volume from the series Dictionary of Literary Biography.

Twentieth-Century European Cultural Theorists (second series)
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.296
Cultural Theorists study modern culture and the problems possessed within it. This volume includes biographies on Barthes, Deleuze, Freud, Fromm, Gramsci, Heidigger, Hobsbawm, Husserl, Jung, Sarte, and Max Weber, among others.
Twentieth-Century European Cultural Theorists (first series)
Print Location: Ref PS129 .D45 v.242
Cultural Theory is an attempt to question assumptions about modern life and on gender, class and race. Theorists within this volume include Althusser, Arendt, Bakhtin, Derrida, Eco, Foucault, Habermas, Lukacs, Lyotard, Marcuse, and E.P. Thompson, and more.

Dictionaries & Encyclopedias

Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Print Location: Ref B51 .E53 2006
This second edition of the Encyclopedia builds on the foundations of the first, which is cited in Books for College Libraries, 3rd ed., Public Library Catalog, and Guide to Reference Books. For the new edition, chief editor Borchert (philosophy, Ohio U.) and his collaborators have chosen entries from the first edition and its Supplement "that were so well done that they merited retention" and have made bibliographical updates and significant addenda. To this core they have added 450 entries on new topics and 300 new entries on topics originally treated in the first edition. The philosophical inclusiveness of the first volume, already quite broad, has been modified and expanded in terms of representation of analytic and continental traditions and in cultural diversity, with inclusion of topics related to Buddhist, Chinese, Islamic, and Indian philosophy. From Italian existentialist Nicola Abbagnano to Spanish Christian ontologist Xavier Zubiri, the entries discuss the thought systems of important individual philosophers from around the world, as well as important topics, ranging from aesthetic experience to Zoroastrianism. The entries tend to be longer and more comprehensive than in similar works and include guides to related entries. Appearing in the final volume is an appendix of additional articles; a thematic outline of the contents based organized by historical periods and subfields of philosophy; a number of articles on philosophy bibliographies, dictionaries, encyclopedias, and journals; and, of course, an index for the entire set.

Encyclopedia of Science, Technology, and Ethics
Print Location: Ref Q175.35 .E53 2005 4 vols.

Encyclopedia covering wide-reaching ethical topics in the areas of science and technology. Signed authors from the fields of science, philosophy and political science write entries from a practical perspective, placing each topic in its historical context in order to show how ethics play out in real-life scenarios. Types of articles include biographies, topical overviews, specialized case studies, and key concepts or issues-based articles. Each entry includes a bibliography.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Focused on philosophy, this scholarly online encyclopedia is valuable for research regarding any topic or person with overlap with philosophy, including anthropology, psychology, other sciences and social sciences, as well as mathematics. Some articles focus on topics while others are biographical. "[T]he SEP was designed so that each entry is maintained and kept up to date by an expert or group of experts in the field. All entries and substantive updates are refereed by the members of a distinguished Editorial Board before they are made public."  So, right there you've got currency and authority. Nice! Plus, sources are cited in abundance giving you ample literature to find, read, and cite in your own research. Yes, there is an iPhone reader available! Read or print from the web site, or, with a very affordable membership, support this quality work and get access to PDFs in two formats.

Encyclopedia of the Enlightenment
Print Location: Ref B802 .E53 2003
This set looks at the Enlightenment, the intellectual movement in Europe (1670s to early 1800s), in which accepted authorities and norms were questioned and replaced by rational thought. The encyclopedia is useful to students of philosophy in that it places thinkers and concepts attributed to the time period (or to the later understanding of the time period) within a historical, political and social context.
Oxford Reference Online Restricted Resource Some full text available
With over two million entries, Oxford Reference Online is a superb cross-searchable resource to use when you are at the "looking for a clue" or "needing verification" stages of your research. Oxford Reference provides quality, up-to-date information from a series of well-respected books--and unlike Wikipedia you can cite Oxford Reference in a paper!

Use Quick Reference materials to discover a variety of Subjects, Timelines, Quotations, English Dictionaries, and Bilingual Dictionaries.

Oxford's Reference Library is divided into Subject Categories, drawn from the 308 volumes of the Oxford Reference Library. Those categories are:
ArchaeologyMedia studies
Art & ArchitectureMedicine and health
Bilingual dictionariesMusic
Classical studiesNames studies
EncyclopediasPerforming arts
English Dictionaries and ThesauriPhilosophy
Language referenceReligion
LawScience and technology
LinguisticsSocial Sciences
LiteratureSociety and culture

Assistance and advice with using the Quick Reference and the Reference Library are available at this link, and by contacting your friendly neighborhood Brooks Library Librarians.

Oxford Reference Online: Religion and Philosophy Restricted Resource Some full text available

Oxford Reference Online is a suite of databases available electronically to most CWU affiliated users.  The entire suite of encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks and companion works can be accessed and searched from the "Databases by Title" link found on the library's homepage.  The set of references covering religion and philosophy include resources on Christianity, Islam, Judaism, Buddhism, other world religions as well as core and current topics in philosophy.

Finding News Articles

LexisNexis Academic Restricted Resource Some full text available

Extensive array of full-text news (newspapers, wire services, transcripts and newsletters), business literature, industry and company information, legal, biographical, and reference resources.  Includes a "Subject Area" search for Accounting, Environmental Studies, Health & Medical Care, and Government & Politics.  For search strategies, you may wish to view the Lexis Nexis YouTube channel.

Finding Scholarly Journal Articles

JSTOR Restricted Resource Some full text available

Our subscription to JSTOR (short for 'Journal Storage') contains every issue of over 600 core scholarly journals in the arts, humanities, the social sciences, as well as the natural and applied sciences.  These journals have been digitized back to the first issue published (in some cases that is the 1600s).  JSTOR also contains citations (bibliographic records) for more than 1,500 leading academic journals, as well as select monographs and other materials valuable for academic work.  (This is why it may not be a good idea to check "Include only content I can access," even if you are in a hurry.  Articles not available in JSTOR are often available in our other databases or through Interlibrary Loan.)

As always, please consult the Reference Desk or the nearest librarian if you have any questions about finding articles in JSTOR or elsewhere.

Humanities Index
Print Location: Ref Index AI 3 H83 1974-

Indexes topics on performing arts, archaeology, classical studies, folklore, history, literature, philosophy in over 450 journals.

Philosophers' Imprint
Philosophers' Imprint is a refereed series of original papers in philosophy, edited by Stephen Darwall and J. David Velleman, with the advice of an international Board of Editors; and published on the World Wide Web by the University of Michigan Digital Library. Although the Imprint is edited by analytically trained philosophers, it is not restricted to any particular field or school of philosophy. Its target audience consists primarily of academic philosophers and philosophy students, but it also aims to attract non-academic readers to philosophy by making excellent philosophical scholarship available without license or subscription.

Philosopher's Index Restricted Resource

Abstracts covering scholarly resarch in all areas of philosophy; back to 1940 and includes journal articles, books, book chapters such as contributions to an anthology, and book reviews. Monitors over 550 journals from more than 40 countries and updated quarterly.

Academic Search Complete Restricted Resource Resource contains images Some full text available

A scholarly, multi-disciplinary database containing more than 5,300 full-text periodicals, including 4,400 peer-reviewed, scholarly journals, and with indexing and abstracting for more than 9,300 journals.  Academic Search Complete is an EBSCO database, and like most EBSCO databases it includes a "Choose Databases" link near the top of the page that enables you to search multiple EBSCO databases at the same time (an EBSCO multi-disciplinary database that is good to search at the same time as ASC is "MasterFILE Premier").

If the article whose title and abstract you found is not available in the Academic Search Complete database try clicking on "Search for Full Text".  If that option does not provide you with the full-text of the article please consult a librarian or submit an Interlibrary Loan Request.  Many articles are readily available in another database or through Interlibrary Loan and we are here to help you get the information you need!

Project Muse Restricted Resource Some full text available

Project MUSE contains scholarly journals from many of the world's leading university presses and scholarly societies. Currently MUSE includes: 274,848 articles and 479,457 chapters by 199 publishers, and probably has some useful information about your topic.

The Brooks Library has a partial subscription to Project MUSE, thus some items are available to you in Project MUSE and some items are only available elsewhere. You can do a Journal Title Search, a Book Title Search, a Summit Search, a Google Scholar Search, or contact the Reference Desk to access a fulltext copy of any citations that might be unavailable in Project MUSE.

Project MUSE can be searched by Keyword (options for narrowing your search will be to the left of your results), browsed by Research Area, by All Title, by Publisher, by Book Title, and by Journal Title. An option for displaying "Only content I have full access to" is usually available, but since we often have access to that content through another database, Summit, or Interlibrary Loan, you should probably search Project MUSE both ways.

Handbooks & Guides

Philosophy: A Guide to the Reference Literature
Print Location: Z7125 .B97 2006 Some full text available

A good place to start for resource ideas. It describes various bibliographies, encyclopedias, dictionaries, handbooks, and indices, broken down into categories of schools, fields and geographical regions. There is also a list of core journals, which one could enter into the Cattrax catalog to see if we have the title in print or electronic format. For the newer (2006) 3rd edition in print form, see the library stacks 4th Floor  Call # Z7125 .B97 2006


Images & Primary Resources

American Memory Collection (Library of Congress) Resource contains images Some full text available

American Memory is the Library of Congress’s digital collection of American historical materials. Containing more than 9 million items, American Memory is organized into more than 100 thematic collections based on the original format, subject, or who first created, assembled, or donated them to the Library.

The original formats include manuscripts, prints, photographs, posters, maps, sound recordings, motion pictures, books, pamphlets, and sheet music. Each online collection is accompanied by a set of explanatory features designed to make the materials easy to find, use, and understand. Collections may be browsed individually, searched individually (including full-text searching for many written items), or you may search across multiple collections, by region, and by date.

American Memory will continue to expand online historical content as an integral component of the Library of Congress’s commitment to its mission "to sustain and preserve a universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future generations".

ArtStor Restricted Resource
ARTstor is a nonprofit digital library of more than one and a half million images in the arts, architecture, humanities, and social sciences. Registered users can save and organize ARTstor images into groups in their ARTstor accounts. For detailed instructions for registering, see ARTstor's online Help.  Also access images through ARTstor Mobile!

Organizations & Directories

American Philosophical Association

Provides a nice introduction to the study of philosophy, with an explanation of the different fields and sub-fields of philosophy. (see page It also gives reasons for studying philosophy and a link to jobs in the profession.

American Philosophical Society
An eminent scholarly organization of international reputation, the American Philosophical Society promotes useful knowledge in the sciences and humanities through excellence in scholarly research, professional meetings, publications, library resources, and community outreach.
American Society for Aesthetics
The American Society for Aesthetics also publishes the Journal of Aesthetics and Art Criticism which can be found on the JSTOR database. The website is useful for it's bibliography page, which has bibliographies compiled on the works of individual philosophers or concepts.
Center for Democracy and Technology

The mission of the Center for Democracy & Technology is to conceive and implement public policies that will keep the Internet open, innovative, and free.  CDT fights for the right of individuals to communicate, publish and make their own choices about the information they share and receive on the Internet.

CDT has established ongoing working groups that bring together companies, trade associations, public interest groups, technologists, and academics.  Current working groups and articles by the members can be found under these labels:


Book Index with Reviews Restricted Resource Some full text available

Book Index with Reviews™ (BIR) is a comprehensive database that provides information on over 5 million book titles.  BIR also contains almost 800,000 full-text searchable book reviews from some of the most trusted reviewers: Library Journal, School Library Journal, Publishers Weekly, Booklist, Kirkus Reviews, and the New York Times Book Review.

Fiction and non-fiction book titles are included in the database, in all genres, to help you find books to read for fun, for information, or for research.  BIR’s subject headings/genres and flexible search engine can help you find out about popular titles that are currently available, along with those that will soon be published or released.

H-Net Reviews Some full text available

Reviews of books of interest to the humanities and social sciences.  The reviews are published online only, within the H-net discussion networks (listserves) and/or on the website.  It is likely that you will find not only the review, but also a discussion of the book amongst the listserve members.

Web Sites

PhilPapers is a comprehensive directory of online philosophy articles and books by academic philosophers. The directory monitors journals in many areas of philosophy, as well as archives and personal pages. Philosophy Resources on the Internet
Thousands of links arranged by resource type.
Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
Most of the articles in the Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy are original contributions by specialized philosophers around the internet; these are identifiable by the author's name at the foot of the article.
Internet Public Library Arts & Humanities Resources

Interesting and sometimes educational websites are featured on this annotated, topical gateway of websites.  Each website is recommended and annotated by a librarian working for the Librarians Internet Index as a quality resource.  You can also quickly group resources by domain type, so it is easy to see which sites are commercial, from organizations, and from the government.

Miniature Library of Philosophy
Search by author or browse the list of titles; 140 philosophers throughout 400 years.
Noesis: Philosophical Research On-Line

This is a "limited area" search engine for locating philosophy-related websites.  It searches specific areas of the internet, areas deemed most likely to contain the information you're seeking (specifically those areas--associations, departments, faculty webpages, online journals and reference works--connected to philosophers.  Noesis is the product of a merger between Hippias' editor Peter Suber and Hippias and Noesis' creator, Anthony Beavers.

OAIster Catalog of Digital Resources
OAIster is a catalog more than 25 million records of open access digital resource.  The Catalog was built by harvesting information from open access collections around the world  The digital resources in OAIster include items such as digitized books and articles, born-digital texts, audio files, images, and movies.

The OAIster Catalog is searchable by title, author/creator, subject, language, keyword and several other forms of metadata.  Searching in the OAIster Catalog is by Boolean Search (And, Or, Not).  Like playing chess the best way to become good at boolean searching is to do a lot of boolean searching.  Here are the 'basic moves' for searching the OAIster Catalog:

Combining the search terms 'Cat' and 'Dog' (Boolean)
    Cat and Dog
    Cat or Dog
    Cat not Dog
Note: 'and', 'or', & 'not' are in drop-down boxes to the left of the search boxes.

Plurals, truncation, and wildcards
    Use + for plurals (s and es)
    Use * for truncation
    Use # for a wildcard character
    Use ?N for up to N characters

Adjacent terms (proximity)
    Cat w Dog    (Cat is followed by Dog)
    Cat wN Dog  (Cat is followed by Dog with at most N terms between)
    Cat n Dog     (Cat is next to Dog, either order)
    Cat nN Dog   (Cat is within N terms of Dog, either order)

The available Limiters are Year, Document Type, and Language.  A Basic Search and an Expert Search interface is also available.  You can also create an account that will enable you to save searches.

NOTE:  Sometimes OAIster may direct you to items that are access restricted.  The Librarians in the ARC or at any of the service desks can help you with accessing information that is ‘access restricted’ and with any questions that you might have.

Items Of Interest

PIVOT (Formerly COS Funding Opportunities) Restricted Resource
COS Funding Opportunities has been replaced by COS PIVOT.
This database provides access to funding opportunities as well as scholar profiles, with the ability to add your own scholar profile and to view the profiles of various research organizations.  PIVOT allows you to also prioritize and save your searches to receive weekly alerts.

You must register your own account and log in thereafter in order to use PIVOT. 
Registration and log in is in the upper righthand corner of screen.  Previous CWU users of COS Funding Opportunities may log in with their existing username and password, as the accounts have been transferred over into PIVOT. For more information, please see: Pivot Video Tutorials.

Note: For some opportunities, sponsors accept only a limited number of proposals or applications from an institution, or require an institution to rank or prioritize applications before submission.
If an opportunity is marked "Internal Coordination Required," please contact the Office of Graduate Studies and Research before applying.
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