In various works that I've read recently, the writers referred to the skeptics several times, and I thought that maybe I should try actually learning something about them. I was hoping for some text that would really introduce me to their philosophy, but still something deeper than, say, Wikipedia.

  • Can you tell us what you mean by "skepticism"? The term's meaning has some pretty broad variation that might validate or invalidate the answers you're getting.
    – virmaior
    Oct 25, 2014 at 1:44
  • Honestly, if i could really define skepticism well, I might not need the sources, but I'm specifically referring to what begin as one of the Greek schools of thought, and has been studied and discussed since.
    – ewkochin
    Oct 25, 2014 at 19:08
  • that's probably helpful enough. Knowing you mean the actual Greek skeptics rather than the more broad meaning of the term is helpful.
    – virmaior
    Oct 26, 2014 at 0:48

2 Answers 2


In many cases, the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy has much more depth on introductory philosophical topics than does Wikipedia. And this is one of those cases: it has good articles on both modern skepticism and the ancient skeptics. (There is some overlap between the two articles.)


I would point you at Neitche's "Beyond Good and Evil", Schopenhauer's "The Will to Survive", and Sartre's "Nausea" at the modern end (they are the short forms), Montaigne's "Defense of Raymond Sebond" in the middle, and Cicero's "De Natura Deorum", Sextus Empiricus' "Pyrrhonism", and "The Man in the Tub" about Diogenes of Sinope on the classical end.

I also think Liberation Theologians like George Pixley, who propose political and ethnographic understandings of Christianity and Judaism, and folks who read the Tao Te Ching as a political treatise have a lot to tell us about the deeper motivations and mechanics of skeptical inquiry.

Obviously, for introductory material, I would look for stuff about these people and these books, and not at the primary sources, which are annoying to read.

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