Solomon and Higgins wrote A Short History of Philosophy (Oxford Univ. Press, 1996), but that was apparently too long at 305 pages, so in 1997 they came out with A Passion for Wisdom: A Very Brief History of Philosophy, which accomplishes the task in a mere 128 pages. That's as far as they have gone, but if you are really obsessed with brevity, go read Eric Schulman's History of the Universe in 200 Words or Less. He also did it in 6 words and even in 2 words here, here, and here. But I digress. What themes get covered in the 128 pages of Solomon and Higgins' very brief history of philosophy?
FAITH AND REASON IS THE TITLE of the middle section of the book and is really its heart. From their presentation, it is clear that religion saved philosophy (Islam saved the Greek texts, then Christianity rediscovered them for the West) and for centuries faith and reason marched in step. Only in the modern era have they seemingly diverged. Faith stands, I think, not for theism but for a common sense understanding of the world, the idea that appearances and intuition can get to the truth of the world. Reason stands not for atheism or science but for the idea that appearances may be deceiving, that careful observation and a skeptical attitude are required to move from appearance to the underlying structure of reality.
As an odd illustration of the difference between the two and the triumph of reason in the Enlightenment, the authors spend a precious page at the end of the chapter talking about Adam Smith, who popularized the counterintuitive notion that self-interest was the engine of economic prosperity via the invisible hand of free markets (as opposed to the visible hand of government regulation). But faith is not so much abandoned as transferred to a new object. In the Enlightenment the new object of faith was man, with a new-found faith in his improvement, even perfectibility, via liberation and education. Today faith in God seems to be flourishing again. But I think a lesson one can draw from the authors' rather sympathetic view of the role of religion in the development of philosophy is that modern faith must be paired with a good measure of reason. Blinkered faith is no longer fashionable or sufficient.
THE AUTHORS TAKE AN UNUSUALLY BROAD VIEW of philosophy, bringing in the perspective of the great religions (Hinduism, Buddhism, and Taoism as well as Christianity, Judaism, and Islam) and non-Western cultures as part of their history of philosophy. It is an unusual but enlightening appraoch. And you can look a long time before finding a shorter history of philosophy!