UPSC Books for Philosophy Optional Booklist for UPSC Mains

Books for Philosophy Optional: Philosophy is a popular optional subject among UPSC candidates. It has the reputation of having the smallest syllabus of any of the UPSC’s optional courses. Furthermore, candidates from virtually any background can choose it and succeed if they put forth the necessary effort.

Out of all the optional syllabi for the IAS mains exam, it has the shortest syllabus. In two months, the entire course can be completed. In addition, the syllabus is well-defined and concise. The philosophy curriculum is virtually totally static.

Paper 1

  1. W. T. Stace: A Critical History of Greek Philosophy (Plato and Aristotle).
  2. Copleston: A History of Philosophy (Relevant Chapters from volume I, IV, V, VI, VII, VIII, IX & XI).
  3. Anthony Kenny: A New History of Western Philosophy. OUP Oxford.
  4. Datta & Chatterjee: An Introduction to Indian Philosophy. Rupa Publishing.
  5. C. D. Sharma: A Critical Survey of Indian Philosophy. MLBD.
  6. Oxford Dictionary of Philosophy.

Paper 2

  1. John Hick: Philosophy of Religion.
  2. Michael B. Wilkinson: Philosophy of Religion: An Introduction.
  3. O. P. Gauba: Social & Political Philosophy.
  4. Political Theory, An Introduction. Edited By Rajeev Bhargava & Ashok Acharya.
  5. Oxford Dictionary of Politics.