Philosophy Reading Group

Are you interested in joining a reading group dedicated to the history of ideas? Join us at Picton Branch Library! We will read one text over several weeks. Meetings will involve: close reading, critical engagement and discussions of the cultural and intellectual impact of the text.


The poll results are in! Our text is Baruch Spinoza's Ethics. Click HERE to access the recommended version of the text in digital format, using your library card.
Baruch Spinoza: Ethics (186 pages) c.1677.

The culmination of nearly fifteen years of philosophical reflection, The Ethics is an integrated system of thought comprehending physics, psychology, knowledge, ethics, and theology; and purporting to prove this system on the basis of geometrical demonstration.

E. A. Burtt: The Metaphysical Foundations of Modern Science (368 pages) c. 1924.

A fascinating and accessible analysis of the works of the early-modern thinkers (Copernicus, Kepler, Galileo, Descartes, Hobbes, Gilbert, Boyle, and Newton) who developed the mechanical philosophy of nature which obtains to this day.

Friedrich Nietzsche: The Birth of Tragedy (142 pages) c.1872.

The Birth of Tragedy is one of the seminal philosophical works of the modern period. The theories developed in this relatively short text have had a profound influence on the philosophy, literature, music and politics of the twentieth century.

Plato: The Symposium (55 pages) c. 385-370 BC.

A series of speeches made at a supper party (a symposium) on the subject of love. The culminating speech is spoken by Socrates. The Symposium is one of Plato's greatest dialogues. Of all of them it tells the most vivid story and it gives the most arresting and the most detailed portrait of Socrates.


When and Where

Starting May 4 (2023), we will meet weekly on Thursdays, 6:00 PM at Picton Branch Library. For more information or to sign up, contact Adam at