Policy Last Updated: December 1, 2018

Subject: Philosophy


The Collection Development policy serves as a guide to shape relevant collections and to ensure consistency in collection development. Decisions to purchase library materials is primarily the responsibility of the Collections Librarian in consultation with faculty in the Department.


To support teaching, study and research up to the Master‟s level. Secondary critical studies will be selected in relation to specific research and teaching needs of the faculty in the department.


  • Language: the collection will contain all works of important philosophers, at least in English translation. Major philosophers will be represented in the best critical standard editions; and, in the case of non-English writers, in the language of origin, as well as in English translation. The exception to this guideline would be for languages not written in the Roman alphabet. Secondary critical studies will be preferably in English. Such non-English works, if unavailable in translation, will be collected in the language of origin, if their importance is commonly acknowledged (e.g., as indicated in book reviews,standard bibliographies, etc).
  • Chronological Period: all periods
  • Geographical Areas: all areas
  • Publishers: emphasis on academic publishers

Types, formats, and readership of material collected

  • Materials aimed at academic-level readership are selected
  • Web-based formats for reference sources, journals and indexing sources are preferred. Print and microform are considered for reasons of cost, availability,expected use or long-term access.
  • Single copies of books in print formats are generally selected. Web-based formats are selected on a title-by-title basis, especially if the title is of interest to users at multiple Laurier campuses. Duplication of print across Laurier campuses is generally avoided.
  • Excluded types generally include textbooks, abridgements, study aids, limited editions, works by vanity presses, juvenile literature, audio-visual materials,reprints and partial contents (e.g., single issues of journals, electronic versions of single chapters of books).

Subjects collected and collecting priorities

Collecting priorities are categorized into 3 levels:

A - highest emphasis
The collection includes major published materials required to support the core teaching and research at the highest degree level offered by the Department.
B - secondary emphasis
The collection includes a selection of materials to complement the discipline as a whole, although it may not be a primary focus for courses.
C - selective emphasis
Materials, including reference materials and basic journals and indexes are collected to introduce and define an area.
Subjects collected Classification Collecting priority
General Areas    
Buddhist philosophy B162 A
Ethics, theoretical and applied BJ1-BJ1725 A
Existentialism B819 A
Greek philosophy B165 - B491.W6 A
Indian philosophy B130 - B133 A
Language, philosophy of B840; P101 - P120 A
Logic BC1 - BC199 C
Medieval philosophy B720-B785 B
Metaphysics and epistemology BD95 - BD131; BD143 - BD237 A
Modern philosophy B790 - B5802 A
Modern philosophy, Early (17th - 19th) B790 - B5802 A
Science, philosophy of Q174 - Q175.3 A
Social, political and legal philosophy B63; B65; H61 - H61.15; HM479.2 - HM499; JM1 - JA84; JC11 -JC273; K230 - K264 A
Special Ares of Concentration    
Action, philosophy of BD450 A
Advaita vedanta B132.V3 A
Autonomy B808.67 A
Communities B105.C46 B
Consciousness B105.C477; B808.9 A
Critical race theory KF4755 B
Critical theory B809.2; B3183.5 B
Death BD443.8 - BD445 A
Dialogue (language and logic) BC57 A
Duty, obligation, responsibility BJ1450 - BJ1458 A
Emotions B105.E46 A
Epicureanism B512 B
Freedom and determinism BJ1461 A
Friendship B105.F75; BJ1533.F8 A
Gender, feminist theory HQ1190 A
Identity (Philosophical Concept) BC199.I4; BD236 A
Informal logic BC60 - BC78 A
Intercultural political philosophy JA71; JA76 B
Literature, philosophy of PN49 B
Love BD436 A
Mind, philosophy of BD418 - BD418.8 A
Mind-body problem B105.M55; BD418.3; BF161 A
Modal Logic BC199.M6 B
Multiculturalism BD175.5.M84; HM1271 A
Personal / self / narrative / identity BD331; BD438.5; BF697 A
Materialism / physicalism B825 A
Phenomenology B829.5 A
Pragmatism B832 A
Pre-socratics (in particular, Democritus, Parmenides, Heraclitus) B187.5 - B305 A
Pyrrhonism (see also skepticism) B525 A
Qualia BD418.3 A
Realism B835 B
Relativism BH301.R43 B
Self, philosophy of; self-knowledge BD450 A
Sex, philosophy of; sexual ethics BD436; HQ12 A
Skepticism B1499.S4 A
Stoicism B538 A
Truth BH301.T77 A
The will BF608 - BF635; BJ1460 - BJ1468 A
Philosophers Note: Main call number is given, although it is recognised that individual works may be classified under specific subjects.  
Aristotle B400-B491 A
Berkeley, George B1347-B1349 A
Carnap, Rudolph B945.C16 B
Davidson, Donald B945.D384 A
Descartes, Rene B1830-B1848 A
Dewey, John B945.D4 A
Epicurus B570-B573; PA3970.E2 A
Foucault, Michel B2430.F722 B
Frege, Gottlob B3245.F2 A
Habermas, Jurgen B3258.H32 A
Hegel, G.W.F B2900 - B2949 A
Hobbes, Thomas B1203 - B1248 A
Hume, David B1450 - B1499.5 A
James, William B945.J2 A
Kant, Immanuel B2750-B2799 A
Leibniz, Gottfried B2550-B2599 A
Locke, John B1250-B1298 A
Nietzche, Friedrich B3310 - B3318 A
Ockham, William of B765.O3 B
Parfit, Derek B1649.P37 A
Rawls, John B945.R28 A
Russell, Bertrand B1649.R9 B
Sartre, Jean Paul B2430.S3 A
Schmitt, Carl JC263.S34 A
Socrates / Plato B310 - B318; B350 - B398 A
Spinoza, Baruch B3950-B3999 A
Taylor, Charles B995.T3 A
Wittgenstein, Ludwig B3376.W56 A


Faculty in the Department of Philosophy have indicated that the works of the following authors should also be acquired.

Alcoff, Linda Martin

Frankfurt, Harry

Nussbaum, Martha

Appiah, Anthony

Fraser, Nancy

Putnam, Hilary

Bordo, Susan

Friedman, Marilyn

Quine, W. V.

Beauvoir, Simone de

Goldie, Peter

Ramsay, Frank

Butler, Judith

Hempel, Carl

Rosenthal, David

Chalmers, David

Horgan Terence

Seager, William

Christman, John

Huxley, Thomas Henry

Searle, John

Churchland, Paul & Patricia

Irigaray, Luce

Shankara, Adi

Dennett, Daniel

Jackson, Frank

Shelby, Tommie

De Sousa, Philip

Kim, Jaegwon


Dretske, Fred

Levine, Joseph


Dworkin, Gerald

Melnyk, Andrew


Dworkin, Ronald

Meyers, Diana T.


Flanagan, Owen

Mills, Charles


Fodor, Jerry



Related programs and support

Consortial purchases with the TriUniversity Group of Libraries (Guelph, Waterloo, Laurier university libraries), with the Ontario Council of University Libraries, and on a national level, are pursued.