'Epistemology' - inquiry into the nature, possibility and scope of human knowledge - has been at the heart of the philosophy from ancient Greek times to the present. Christopher Norris provides a survey and analysis of the issues that have shaped that enterprise and continue to dominate present-day discussion. He also brings out with exceptional clarity the ways in which certain 'technical' issues in epistemology can have a decisive bearing on matters of practical concern. The text highlights continuities and contrasts between early and contemporary approaches, and between the sorts of thinking that have typified the mainstream analytic and the modern 'continental' lines of descent. Norris introduces the main topics of debate, among them arguments for and against adopting a realist position with regard to various fields of knowledge, from mathematics to the physical sciences and history.