To present the great books in a 54-volume set. The original editors had three criteria for including a book in the series drawn from Western Civilization: the book must have been relevant to contemporary matters, and not only important in its historical context; it must be rewarding to re-read repeatedly with respect to liberal education; and it must be a part of "the great conversation about the great ideas", relevant to at least 25 of the 102 "Great Ideas" as identified by the editor of the series's comprehensive index, what they dubbed the "Syntopicon", to which they belonged. The books were not chosen on the basis of ethnic and cultural inclusiveness, (historical influence being seen as sufficient by itself to be included), nor on whether the editors agreed with the views expressed by the authors. A second edition was published in 1990 in 60 volumes. Some translations were updated, some works were removed, and there were significant additions from the 20th century located in six new, separate volumes.