Philosophy Pages

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Philosophy Pages F A Q

  1. Who is responsible for the material on this site?
  2. Why did you include (or omit) these philosophers and ideas?
  3. What is the best way to navigate through the information here?
  4. What do all of the acronymns mean?
  5. How do I get an individual page to print effectively?
  6. Is it possible to obtain a copy of the entire site?
  7. Are there any limits on how freely I may use this information?
  8. Where can I obtain the rights to copy one of the pictures?
  9. Can you help me understand the philosophy course I'm taking?
  10. Will you write my term paper for me?

Who is responsible for the material on this site?

The sole author of the Philosophy Pages site is Garth Kemerling. After twenty-five years of teaching philosophy courses at the undergraduate college level, I began developing on-line materials as an aid for students enrolled in the courses I commonly teach. Because some of it turned out to be useful for a wider audience as well, the site soon took on a life of its own and now has loyal users around the world.

Both the content of the site and its design are mine. I've written all of the text (except, of course, for direct quotations) about philosophical thinkers, schools, and concepts. You'll find a more detailed explanation of my academic qualifications for doing so in my Curriculum Vitae. Although my own convictions about many issues are evident, I've tried to be clear in the defense of these positions and fair in the presentation of alternate views.

I also do all of the hypertext markup myself. There's a lot of interactivity, but everything is designed to work quickly in different kinds of browsers. One aim is to provide alternate representations of all content, as recommended by the Council for Applied Special Technology, and I hope that individual readers will find it engaging to exercise their flexible control over the medium.

Why did you include (or omit) these philosophers and ideas?

Since the work began in service to my undergraduate courses, there's a fairly direct relationship between the content here and what I teach. The intellectual figures discussed on this site are the ones to whom I commonly refer, and those selected for full-page treatment in the Philosophers Locke section are the ones to whom I devote special attention in one or more courses. As my teaching responsibilities change, the content of the site will expand to meet the needs of my students. As time permits, I'll be working to fill in the gaps in coverage as well.

More generally, I've written about what I know—the issues, traditions, and thinkers in whom I have the most interest, training, and expertise. That's an expanding realm, too. As my own curiosity and the prompting of users lead me into the study of new areas of philosophy, I'll continue to share what I've learned and to revise the views expressed and defended here.

What is the best way to navigate through the information here?

Just dive in and surf around. There are about ten thousand internal hypertext links to two thousand distinct points in the two hundred fifty individual pages of this site, so individual users can move around freely, following their own train of thought through the material. You'll always be able to retrace your path by using the "Back" button or "History" list in your browser. Material from other web sites will appear in a second window, so you'll never lose your place in the Philosophy Pages.

There's a tabular menu at the top of each page that points users to the main divisions of the material. The "Dictionary" provides an alphabetical index of the concepts and people discussed here, while the "Timeline" organizes all of the philosophers chronologically. The "History" section has a more detailed discussion of important texts in the Western philosophical tradition, and "Logic" covers the introductory study of reasoning. The popular "Study Guide" is just a list of suggestions about how to learn philosophy.

What do all of the acronyms mean?

Short-hand citation of other on-line resources, especially in the Philosophical Dictionary, saves a lot of space (and bandwidth) in these pages. The current list of most-frequently-cited sources includes the following, with the acronym and approximate number of links to each:

BIO   (330)   Biography.com
CE(90)The Catholic Encyclopedia
ColE(450)The Columbia Encyclopedia
DPM(65)Dictionary of Philosophy of Mind
ELC(110)Episteme Links
FF(35)The Fallacy Files
FTW(15)Feminist Theory Website
GLF(30)Guide to the Logical Fallacies
IEP(200)The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
ISM(75)The Ism Book
MMT(70)Mathematical MacTutor
PP(130)The Perseus Project
SEP(380)The Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
WSB(70)The World of Scientific Biography

How do I get an individual page to print effectively?

The layout for these pages is designed for its on-screen appearance and easy navigation through different segments of the site. Interactive hypertext of this sort is not entirely at home in print. The final look of any HTML document, however, is completely controlled from within your own browser, and that means you can produce any layout you want on a printed page.

First, turn off the "Style Sheet" that produces the initial layout or replace it with one of your own devising. You'll be able to do this:

  • in Netscape Navigator under: Edit | Preferences | Advanced
  • in Internet Explorer under: View | Internet Options | General | Accessibility
Then, play around with the options supported by your browser until the "Print Preview" looks like what you want and print out the results for yourself.

Is it possible to obtain a copy of the entire site?

If you expect to make repeated use of these materials, or if you have to pay for connection time, you may wish to have a copy of the Philosophy Pages for use on your own computer.

For quick, free access, the HTML files are compressed in a large ZIP file, which may take several minutes to download.

Download PhiPages.zip (about 4 Mb)

Save the file to the location where you'd like to install the copy, then extract the files to the "PhiPages" directory. Bookmark the "index.htm" file, and you can study all the material on your own hard drive. Of course, links to external sites will work only when you're connected to the Internet, but the internal connections will be operative all of the time.

Are there any limits on how freely I may use this information?

The information on this web site is openly available for the personal use of students of philosophy everywhere. You may read it, contemplate it, absorb it, argue with it, and share it with friends. You may even copy it, print it out, or quote it directly, provided always that you include an appropriate citation of its original source and the copyright notice. I am especially delighted when portions of the site prove helpful to other philosophy teachers, to whom I offer great latitude in its fair use for educational purposes.

What you may not do with any of this text is change it, sell it, or publish it without my express permission. Anyone is welcome to include a hyper-text link to any page of this site, but no one is authorized to "mirror" it—in whole or in part—on any Internet server or World-Wide-Web site other than www.philosophypages.com. If you have any questions about whether or not a specific use would meet my approval, please inquire by e-mail in advance.

Where can I obtain the rights to copy one of the pictures?

To the best of my knowledge, all of images included on this site are in the common domain and may be used freely without attribution of any kind. Certainly I claim no rights to any of them. All were gleaned from web sites where they appeared without any statement of restrictions or ownership. If you're looking for good images, you'd do better to search for the originals elsewhere, since what's here are small, low-resolution copies. If you discover any image here in violation of a copyright claim, please let me know immediately.

Can you help me understand the philosophy course I'm taking?

I hope that I can. Certainly all of the materials you'll find on this web site are meant to be helpful for serious students of the subject. If you have any ideas about how it could be made better, I'd be happy to hear them.

Will you write my term paper for me?

Of course not. If you're enrolled in a college-level course in philosophy, your professor will provide you with detailed explanations of her expectations for each assignment. You're welcome to use this site and other sources to help you understand philosophical concepts and arguments, and you may wish to consider the suggestions on writing philosophy papers contained in the Study Guide, but careful thought and cogent writing are your own responsibility.




©2001-2006 Garth Kemerling.
Last modified 1 January 2007.
Questions, comments, and suggestions may be sent to: the Contact Page.
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