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The paragraphs giving the definition of philosophy, which open the philosophy article, are taken from the definition of philosophy. Please help keep those two articles mutually consistent.

Moreover, the paragraphs giving an outline of western philosophy are taken from history of philosophy, and the list of philosophical subdisciplines is from philosophical subdisciplines; please help keep those articles consistent as well.

--Larry Sanger


Ayn Rand was also in this category, with her rationalist philosophy of Objectivism.

I can sympathize with your desire to put that sentence into the history of philosophy section, so let me explain why I removed it. First, Ayn Rand, as she herself would strongly insist, was not an analytic philosopher. Second, she also was not a rationalist, in the sense in which this term is ordinarily used (and in which Rand herself used the term); see rationalism. Finally, and most importantly, I'm sorry, but in terms of historical influence and importance in the world of philosophy--as distinguished from the culture at large, perhaps--Ayn Rand simply does not have the stature of the other people mentioned. This is not to pass judgment on the quality of her philosophizing or the truth of her views, but to make a statement about her influence and stature in the field.

Now, if you were to include Rand, then I would suggest that, in the philosophy article, you should also include such people as Alfred Korzybski, R. Buckminster Fuller, L. Ron Hubbard, and a number of other such people who have done philosophy of a sort, but who are not widely regarded by academic philosophers as important philosophers. This isn't to say that Rand, or these other people, were unimportant hacks--please be clear on what my claim is. Perhaps what is needed is a separate paragraph on "popular and influential philosophers among nonphilosophers" or something like that. The list would also have to include Bertrand Russell and Karl Popper, though, because they too were popular and influential philosophers among nonphilosophers (still are, to some extent). --LMS


I would recommend splitting the top level philosophy page into appropriate sections including possibly

  • myth
  • religion
  • western philosophy
  • eastern philosophy
  • popular philosophy

That Ayn Rand hasn't had much impact on academic thought is unimportant if someone came to the wiki looking for information on Objectivism. (I would put her under popular philosophy though.) The distinction you draw between influential and popular, and that popular philosophers don't belong here, is IMHO a slippery slope. -- ksmathers


How does a 'Philosophical Movement' differ from schools of philosophy, like Platonism or Scholasticism for instance? Are they the same thing? Are they different? -- Simon J Kissane


I've just written a (very short, and highly incomplete) article on Murphys Law. Does it belong in the "popular philosophy" section?