The Story of Philosophy Test | Mid-Book Test - Hard

Will Durant
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This test consists of 5 short answer questions, 10 short essay questions, and 1 (of 3) essay topics.

Short Answer Questions

1. What is a special element of soul in the human being according to Aristotle?

2. At what age does Plato advocate taking children from their parents to avoid learning bad habits?

3. What does the Roman empire eventually become?

4. How does Voltaire think what is wrong with most recorded history could be corrected?

5. What does Aristotle define as the entire vital principle of any being?

Short Essay Questions

1. Briefly describe Plato's ideal rulers.

2. What is Voltaire's reaction to Rousseau's suggestion that men were responsible for the deaths in the Lisbon earthquake?

3. what methodology marks a difference in the thought processes of Plato and Aristotle?

4. How does Plato state the cause of political problems in the world?

5. What is Voltaire's reaction to Voltaire's desire to be a professional writer?

6. How does the scope of Bacon's philosophy miss his goal?

7. Describe the idols Bacon identifies and wants to eliminate.

8. How does Plato see population as a political problem of war that can be controlled?

9. Explain the reasons for a break between Plato and Aristotle.

10. How can Voltaire's life be compared to that of socrates?

Essay Topics

Write an essay for ONE of the following topics:

Essay Topic 1

Write an essay on education. Begin with Socrates, Plato's Academy, and Aristotle's Lyceum. Analyze why these were so successful because the select students were there from self-motivation. Include Dewey's vocational education idea. Then give your opinion of education today.

Essay Topic 2

Write a critical essay on Durant's book. Discuss his organization of the book and the selection of philosophers he chose to feature. Conclude with a recommendation for others to read the book.

Essay Topic 3

Write an essay on Spencer's idea that a militant society exalts certain virtues and condones what other people might call crimes. Use the modern debate over the use of torture in wartime investigations as an example.

(see the answer keys)

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