In the introduction to his exemplary study, Peter Park dryly cites almost interchangeable passages from two radically different thinkers: “Bertrand Russell's A History of Western Philosophy (1945) states, ‘Philosophy begins with Thales.’ Martin Heidegger said in a lecture at Cerisy-la-Salle, France, in 1955: ‘The often heard expression “Western-European philosophy” is, in truth, a tautology. Why? Because philosophy is Greek in its nature; Greek, in this instance, means that in origin the nature of philosophy is of such a kind that it first appropriated the Greek world, and only it, in order to unfold’” (5). There is perhaps no other thesis that would generate agreement between Russell and Heidegger. Writing in the mid-twentieth century, the two philosophers agree that there was no such thing as philosophy before the wise men of ancient Greece began to inquire into the ways of nature. Two hundred years earlier there would have been no such...

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