Western Philosophy forms the 50% part of Paper 1 of Philosophy optional in civil services. Given below are the philosophy articles which will surely help you to get a good grasp of Western Philosophy.

  • Plato’s Philosophy
  • Aristotle’s Philosophy


Rationalists - Rationalists believe in theory of knowledge with primacy to reason or intellect. They rejects all knowledge derived from sense experience . Rationalism is also called as a-priori theory of knowledge i.e. knowledge is prior or independent to experience. Socrates & Plato were the earliest rationalist philosophers to propagate that ‘true knowledge originates from reason’

  • Descartes Philosophy
  • Spinoza’s Philosophy
  • Leibnitz Philosophy


Empiricists – Empiricists reject rationalism &believe that knowledge is derived from experience. They represents a reaction against rationalism & explains knowledge in terms of sense experience. As contrast with rationalism, empiricism is called a posteriori i.e. knowledge is dependent on experience

  • John Locke’ Philosophy
  • Berkeley’s Philosophy
  • Hume’s Philosophy


Modern Western Philosophy - Modern Western Philosophy is marked by Immanuel Kant who set forth a groundbreaking philosophical system which claimed to bring unity to rationalism and empiricism. Later it came to be dominated by the strands of neo-Hegelian thought, and as a reaction against this, figures such as Bertrand Russell and George Edward Moore began moving in the direction of analytic philosophy

  • Kant’s Philosophy
  • Hegel’s Philosophy
  • Moore’s Refutation of Idealism
  • Russell’s Logical Atomism
  • Logical Positivism – Rudolph Carnap, A J Ayer
  • Quine – Two Dogmas of Empiricism
  • Existentialism – Kierkegaard, Sartre, Heidegger
  • Strawson’s Concept of Person
  • Phenomenology by Husserl
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