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Reference Materials

Use the reference sources below to get background information on your topic: 


Philosophy Books

Library of Congress (LC) subject headings is available online. You can also perform a Subject search in our discovery layer, Omni using the following subject headings:


Book Reviews

There are a number of ways to find book reviews in philosophy.. If you are searching within a philosophy database, such as Philosopher's Index, make sure to choose Advanced Search. Scroll further down and locate the "Document Type" field for "Book Review." Select this item and enter your search terms, and run the search.  

Consult our Find Book Reviews guide for help to find book reviews in general databases. You can also check Omni, for open-access reviews of philosophiccal works. See for example:

  • Analytic Philosophy (Online)
  • Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews (2002 -)
  • Philosophy in Review = Comptes rendus philosophiques (1997 -)
  • Philosophischer Literaturanzeiger ein Referateorgan für die Neuerscheinungen der Philosophie und ihrer gesamten Grenzgebiete (1949-)

Branches of Philosophy

The five main branches of western philosophy are:

  • Aesthetics is the study of philosophical questions about art and beauty.
  • Epistemology is the study of knowledge and how and what we know.
  • Ethics is the study of how people should act, and what is good and valuable.
  • Logic is the study of good reasoning.
  • Metaphysics is the study of existence and the nature of reality.

These branches of philosophy also overlap with other areas of philosophical thought.

Philosophical Approaches

  • Philosophy of Language is the study of the nature, origins, and usage of language.
  • Philosophy of Mind is the study of the nature of mind.
  • Philosophy of Science is the study of philosophy and computer science.

Listed below are reference materials, books and eBooks from our library collections.


Aesthetics Reference Materials




Aesthetics Books/eBooks

Web Resources


Epistemology Reference Materials


  • Handbook of Risk Theory : Epistemology, Decision Theory, Ethics, and Social Implications of Risk / Sabine
    Roeser et. al. (2012) (Online) (Online)
  • The Oxford Handbook of Epistemology / Paul K. Moser (2002) (Online) (Online) (Online)

Epistemology Books/eBooks



Ethics Reference Materials

Handbooks /Guides

Ethics Books/eBooks

Special Topic: Medical Ethics

Web Resources


Logic Reference Materials


  • Handbook of Philosophical Logic / M. Gabbay ; Franz Guenthner (2014) (Online) (Online)
  • Handbook of Mathematical Logic / Jon Barwise ; Jerome H. Keisler (1977) (Online at HathiTrust)
  • The Oxford Handbook of Philosophy of Mathematics and Logic / Stewart Shapiro (2005) (Online) (Online

Logic Books/eBooks

Web Resources



Metaphysics Reference Materials

Metaphysics Books/eBooks


Language Reference Materials

Language Books/eBooks



Mind Reference Materials

Mind Books/eBooks

Web Resources


Science Reference Materials

Science Books/eBooks

Web Resources


Philosopher's Index
Provides citations with abstracts to articles, books and other published literature on philosophy and related topics. Topics include:  aesthetics, epistemology, ethics, logic, and metaphysics. Also covers the philosophy of related interdisciplinary fields such as education, history, law, and science.

PhilPapers: philosophical research online
PhilPapers is a comprehensive directory of online academic philosophy. Index includes philosophy books, journal articles, and open access archives.

Provides access to the complete archives of major journals in a variety of subjects. JSTOR is a "moving wall" archive: newer years are added as publishers allow. For example, one journal may cover everything up to 3 years ago, while another may cover everything up to 5 years ago.

Année Philologique
Contains the citations of journal articles, books for ancient Greek and Roman history, literature, languages, archaeology, religion and philosophy.

Academic OneFile
Includes the full text of philosophy journals.

Web of Science
This science and social science index also contains a wide selection of philosophy content on science or social science topics.

  • Philosophy TV
    - a video website devoted to philosophical thinking
  • Philosophy (Youtube)
  • Philosophy for Beginners (University of Oxford)
    - According to the producer, Dr. Marianne Talbot "This is the series for you if you are a complete beginner to philosophy. It is an introduction to the main areas of philosophy, to the philosophical method, and to some of the sub-disciplines of philosophy."
  • Philosophical Installations (University of Oregon)
    - "1588 Philosophy videos all in one place - free for non-commercial use."


Sites of Interest





Content last reviewed: January 22, 2021