The philosophy collection serves the needs of faculty and students in the Philosophy Department as well as a number of other departments across campus including the Centre for Applied Ethics.

Current areas of collecting

The philosophy selector covers epistemology, metaphysics, ethics, applied ethics, political philosophy, social philosophy, logic, the philosophy of language, philosophy of mind, the history of philosophy, and ancient philosophy. Special emphasis is on twentieth century Anglo-American philosophy (all sub-areas), logic and the history of logic, the history of philosophy (emphasis on Classical Greek and seventeenth/eighteenth century, English and Continental), and nineteenth century Anglo-American philosophy.

Research and publishing characteristics

Philosophy is primarily a pure discipline with some new applied aspects (applied ethics). Volume is relatively low and average price is medium. Monographs, retrospective materials, and conference proceedings are as important as journals.

Publication date

The majority of acquisitions will be for current publications, with retrospective purchasing to fill collection gaps and to meet research needs of users, in particular faculty.


Predominantly in English with some emphasis on German (particularly in the area of logic) and selective coverage of other major European languages.

Geographic origin

Emphasis is on North America, Europe and Asia.

Collections in other UBC Libraries/ Areas of overlap

Asian Library: Vernacular materials on the religion and thought of South, East and Southeast Asia.

Law Library: Philosophy of law.

Woodward Library: Ethics relating to treatment of animals and experimentation with animals, neurophilosophy; and the philosophy of biomedical sciences.