Philosophy Research Guide

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Use this guide to find print and digital materials related to philosophy.

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Reference Works

These reference materials present overviews and background information, define terms and concepts, and suggest more in-depth readings. Use reference books to begin your research or to clarify terms that you don't understand.

Magill, Frank N., ed. World Philosophy: Essay-Reviews of 225 Major Works. 5 vols. New Jersey: Salem Press, 1982.

B29.W68 1982 v. 1-5 REF

Summarizes major philosophical works with bullet points of main ideas and a longer description (several pages). Important essays about that work are also summarized with a short bibliography for further reading.

Audi, Robert, ed. The Cambridge Dictionary of Philosophy. 2nd ed. New York: Cambridge University Press, 1999.

B41.C35 1999 REF

Entries for both people and concepts, with major topics having articles several pages in length. Extensive cross-references direct to further relevant entries.

Edwards, Paul, ed. Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 8 vols. New York: Macmillan, 1967.

B41.E5 v. 1-8 REF

This encyclopedia features mostly longer articles, which may discuss several related terms. It was updated by a Supplement (B41.E5 1996 REF) published in 1996 that includes topics and philosophers that have recently come into the field.

Craig, Edward, ed. Routledge Encyclopedia of Philosophy. 10 vols. New York: Routledge, 1998.

B51.R68 1998 v. 1-10 REF

The best philosophy encyclopedia in English. Articles contain a brief introduction followed by a longer article. All articles include bibliographies; a philosopher's own works are listed with a brief description and best/critical editions.

Copleston, Frederick Charles. History of Philosophy. 9 vols. Westminster, Md.: Newman Press, 1960-1975.


Copleston's work chronologically examines the major people and themes of Western thought, from the pre-Socratic philosophers to Sartre.

Find more philosophy reference books in the reference room between call numbers B-BD, or browse this bibliography of the philosophy reference books (in MLA format).

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Articles and Journals

Find articles

Search databases and indexes to find articles about your topic. Articles that are not online or in print at McCartney Library can be ordered through Interlibrary Loan.

Philosopher's Index
The primary index for philosophy research, Philosopher's Index covers articles, books, anthologies, etc. The best place to search for topics in philosophy.
Academic Search Complete
Large multi-disciplinary database with many articles available full-text. Learn how to search Academic Search Complete with McCartney Library's research guide.
ATLA Religion Database
Extensive index of journal articles on Biblical studies, religion, and related topics. This database will be most helpful for information about philosopher-theologians or research about areas where religious and philosophical ideas intersect.

Recommended journals

Search Dr. Frazier′s Top 21 Journals in Philosopher′s Index


American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly


Indexed 2003-present in Academic Search Complete

American Philosophical Quarterly



Indexed 2003-present in Academic Search Complete

Augustinian Studies



Indexed 2005-present in Academic Search Complete


Table of contents from 1997-present at

Episteme: a Journal of Social Epistemology



Table of contents online at

Faith and Philosophy: Journal of the Society of Christian Philosophers



Indexed 1984-present in ATLA Religion Database.


Indexed online at

History of Philosophy Quarterly


Publisher's Web site:

The Journal of Philosophy


In print 1967-present at McCartney Library


Indexed 1993-present in Academic Search Complete

Journal of the History of Ideas


Full text online 2000-present (on campus only)


In print 1940-present at McCartney Library
Indexed 1991-present in Academic Search Complete

Journal of the History of Philosophy


Indexed 1993-present in Academic Search Complete


Table of contents 1963-present at



Full text online 1998-one year ago in Academic Search Complete (Indexed 1998-present)

Mind: a Quarterly Review of Philosophy



Indexed 1993-present in Academic Search Complete


Table of contents 1976-present at

The Monist: an International Quarterly Journal of General Philosophic Inquiry



Full text online 1990-present in Academic Search Complete


In print 2003-2006 at McCartney Library



Full text online 1997-one year ago in Academic Search Complete (Indexed 1997-present)

Phenomenological Inquiry: a Review of Philosophical Ideas and Trends


Publisher's Web site:

The Philosophical Quarterly


Full text online 1974-one year ago in Academic Search Complete (Indexed 1974-present)

The Philosophical Review



In print 1966-present at McCartney Library


Indexed 1994-present in Academic Search Complete

Philosophy and Public Affairs


Full text online 2005-present (on campus only)


In print 1979-present at McCartney Library

Phronesis: A Journal for Ancient Philosophy


Full text online 1991-one year ago in Academic Search Complete (Indexed 1991-present)

The Review of Metaphysics


In print v.57 (2003)-present at McCartney Library
Indexed 1994-present in Academic Search Complete

Tradition and Discovery: The Polanyi Society Periodical


Full text online at

Transactions of the Charles S. Peirce Society: A Quarterly Journal in American Philosophy


Full text online 1965-present in Academic Search Complete

Additional journals to browse:

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At McCartney Library

Search MacCAT for books that McCartney Library owns.

Looking for ... Type in search box Select search type Example
Works by a philosopher Last name, first name Author Search Dewey, John
A particular book Title of book (don't include a, an, or the if it's the first word) Title Search abolition of man
Works about a philosopher Last name, first name Subject Heading Search Dewey, John
Works about philosophy Philosophy Subject Heading Search Philosophy (click on a relevant topic to see titles)
Philosophy of a subject [keyword] and philosophy Subject Keyword Search economics and philosophy
Specific topics [keyword]
[keyword] and [keyword]
"exact phrase"
Keyword Boolean Search stoics
necessity and logic
"set theory"

Online and in other libraries

Search Netlibrary to find books that you can read online.
Search by keyword to find whole books related to your topic
Search by Full Text to search every single word of a book. This works best for very specific terms or less common names and phrases

Search WorldCat to find books from libraries all over the world (Available on campus only).
The database is big, so search for a specific topic.
Add dates in the YEAR box to get only the most recent works, e.g. 1985-2008.
Most books that McCartney Library doesn't have can be ordered for free through Interlibrary Loan. It usually takes about a week for the items to arrive.

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Web sites

Philosophy professors at Geneva College suggested the following Web sites that might be useful in your research.  As with all information, you still must evaluate the source's reliability, currency, accuracy, and relevance.

Research and writing

Guidebook for Publishing Philosophy, 1997 edition

Short essays offering tips about writing and submitting books/articles for publication.

Links to additional resources

Philosophy Resources on the Internet

Organized site listing Web sites by type, topic, philosopher, and other categories. Includes listings of blogs about philosophy, search engines customized to search only philosophy-related sites, online bibliographies, and much more.

Online dictionaries and encyclopedias

Glosario de términos filosóficos (en inglés)
[= Glossary of philosophy terms (in English)]

List of definitions for philosophical words from The Blackwell Companion to Philosophy. Browse the alphabetical list of words, or to find a specific term, press Ctrl+F and search for that word.

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Like Wikipedia, many editors and contributors add content to the pages. Unlike Wikipedia, only qualified experts are allowed to write and edit articles.

The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy

Similar to the Stanford Encyclopedia, IEP has editors who control the submission of articles. Editors and contributors are qualified with advanced degrees and work at colleges/universities.

Web sites of philosophical societies, organizations, etc.

American Catholic Philosophical Association

In addition to information about the association's publication, American Catholic Philosophical Quarterly, this Web site includes APCA conference information and some job postings.

American Philosophical Association

Some content on Web site is restricted to members only. Useful freely accessible information includes conference information, newsletters, and publications

Calvin College Philosophy Department

Calvin College is a Christian college with a strong tradition in philosophy. Its department web page includes many helpful links and a virtual library with over 170 articles posted online.

Cambridge Study Center

The Cambridge Study Center seeks to help Christians engage with culture and develop a Christian worldview. Its links page has a wealth of sites listed to explore further.

Society of Christian Philosophers

Contains information about joining the organization, society newsletters, meetings and conferences. Also notes how to subscribe to the SPC email discussion list and archives.

Polanyi Society

In addition to information about the organization, the Web site also includes links to some essays and lectures by Polanyi, conference information, and back issues of the society's journal.

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