Philosophy doesn’t need a concept of progress

Yafeng Shan*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Philosophical progress is one of the most controversial topics in metaphilosophy. It has been widely debated whether philosophy makes any progress in history. This paper revisits the concept of philosophical progress. It first identifies two criteria of an ideal concept of philosophical progress. It then argues that our accounts of philosophical progress fail to provide such an ideal concept. Finally, it argues that not only do we not have a good concept of philosophical progress, we also do not need a concept of philosophical progress in order to arrive at a good understanding of the history of philosophy.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)176-184
Number of pages9
Issue number2-3
StatePublished - Apr 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • consensus
  • disagreement
  • novelty
  • philosophical progress
  • philosophical success


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