A Cultural History of Ideas

A Cultural History of Ideas pictured as a six volume set of books

Sophia Rosenfeld


How has the nature of ideas evolved over time? How have ideas been shaped, employed and received in different social and cultural contexts?

In a work that spans 2,800 years, these ambitious questions are addressed by 62 experts, each contributing an overview of a particular theme in a specific period in history. The volumes explore the development of ideas , primarily in the West, from a range of disciplinary angles.

Individual volume editors ensure the cohesion of the whole and, for ease of navigation, chapter titles are identical across each of the volumes. This schema offers the reader the choice of reading about a specific period in one of the volumes or following one theme across history by reading the relevant chapter in each of the 6.

The 6 volumes cover: 1. – Classical Antiquity (800 BCE - 500 CE); 2. – Medieval Age (500 - 1450); 3. – Renaissance (1450 - 1650) ; 4. – Age of Enlightenment (1650 - 1800); 5. – Age of Empire (1800 - 1920); 6. – Modern Age (1920 – 2000+).

Themes (and chapter titles) are: Knowledge; The Human Self; Ethics and Social Relations; Politics and Economies; Nature; Religion and the Divine; Language, Poetry and Rhetoric; The Arts; History.

The page extent is approximately 1,728pp with c. 240 illustrations. Each volume opens with Notes on Contributors, Series Preface and Introduction, and concludes with Notes, Bibliography and an Index.