Category Archives: Philosophy


This is my third book I’ve read by this author. None have been duds.

My interview with the author on his terrific book about Madison’s political philosophy can be found here:

Staying Home on Election Day? What would James Madison Say?

And my review of Garrett Sheldon’s memoir can be found here:


In The New History of Political Theory, Sheldon ably covers the political waterfront with brief, but meaty chapters on twenty key figures from Socrates to John Rawls. These twenty are covered in a little over 200 pages but be assured that the author presses much into this terrific book. I can report that my marginal notes almost equaled the number of pages in this book.

Early on, Sheldon poses this critical question, “Is man naturally social or naturally solitary?” Much hangs on how we answer that question, not only for our own lives, but also for the societies we want to inhabit. If we are social, and my vote is decidedly in the affirmative, then we need to be about the kind of community building that reflects that priority.

I just read Jesse Norman’s terrific, intellectual biography of Edmund Burke. I am happy to say that Sheldon has a chapter on Burke. Burke equally chided both those on the left and right that they had forgotten how important so-called social issues and interactions are in governing well.

Sheldon’s book is more than a primer on political philosophy. It thoughtfully forces us to wrestle with issues of grand significance. What is the nature of humans? Are we naturally good? And much more.

I often say that we Christians are more beholden to John Locke than John Calvin. Let Sheldon clarify why this may be the case. Being instructed by a master teacher and careful scholar will be time well spent.



There is a good chance that your assumptions about philosophy are mostly wrong. There is even a better chance that you believe little to no “practical” benefits come from thinking philosophically.

Well, Ross Inman is here to gently correct you on both counts.

In short compass (173 pages) Inman packs a lot in. He writing is consistently clear, and he offers wonderful illustrations along the way to drive his points home.

Inman is an enthusiastic salesman for the glories of thinking and living with a philosophical bent.

This is a wonderful book and a delight to read. I will be recommending it with gusto.


I have read many books by Peter Kreeft. His writing is always clear, informed, makes wonderful connections, and he peppers important truths with his signature humor.

This four-volume set is a marvel. Word on Fire puts together beautifully designed books, and it is on vivid display in this work.

I have already encouraged friends to pick up this set. Indeed, I am beginning a weekly discussion with a friend over its contents.

If you want to learn from a master communicator about matters of the utmost importance, then these volumes are highly recommended.


I recently heard an incredible interview with a philosopher on the nature of time. She teaches at Notre Dame but check out how she combines both your loves in her Twitter description. Since our oldest still loves Legos and the younger brother loves philosophy, it was wonderful to see both together!

Meghan Sullivan
Philosopher, Fellow Traveler, Lego Enthusiast


This is a terrific introduction to the thought of Michel Foucault. When I say “introduction” that certainly does not mean this is an easy read. Watkin does make his extensive learning more accessible, but Foucault is not the easiest person in the world to comprehend.

I knew a bit about Foucault from other books but had not read him directly. Watkin does a good job of laying out several of the critical ideas to Foucault’s thought.

In the second half of the book the author does a stellar job of showing how the Christian faith best responds to Foucault.


A terrific introduction to the similarities and differences between Paul and other philosophers.

I have been interested especially in how Christianity interacted with Stoicism. This book has much to offer in that regard. The various contributions are balanced and wise.

Recently, I interviewed C. Kavin Rowe on his influential book, One True Life. There is an entire chapter in Paul and the Giants of Philosophy dedicated to looking at the strengths and potential weaknesses of Rowe’s book. That chapter alone made this book a worthwhile read.


I read a lot of history.  Usually, I have to read long books (400 pages plus) to get as much insight as this much shorter one by Gregg.  In only 166 pages the author gives intellectual insights on every page.  It is a feast for both heart and mind.

The writing is clear and compelling.  Gregg knows the flow of Western ideas very well.  He communicates with ease some of the main currents of thought.

It is rare that the number of my markings (or marginalia) exceeds the number of the pages of a book I have read, but this is one of those rare times.

I highly recommend this balanced and beautifully conceived book!