T PHIL 358
Explores continuity in the concerns of thinkers from different places and eras, including such medieval and early modern philosophers as Augustine, Aquinas, Descartes, Hume, and Kant. Examines how they address questions about reality, thought, and the beautiful and the good.
This course focuses on the reading of three "classics" in philosophy: - Plato's "Dialogues" - Augustine's "Confessions" - Descartes's "Discourse on Method" The common thread will be their views on discourse, which include different perspectives on metaphysics, religion, science, and morality. Classic questions such as "what is knowledge?" (Plato), "What is time?" (Augustine), and "what does 'I think, therefore I exist' mean?" (Descartes) will be discussed in depth.
Student learning goals
1. Discuss 3 classic authors in ancient, medieval, and modern Western philosophy;
2. Connect traditional philosophical questions to contemporary practical issues;
3. Focus on the different conceptions of "dialogue" (metaphysical, religious, scientific, moral) in the authors discussed;
4. Use dialogue as a tool in the study and practice of philosophy today.
General method of instruction
Reading of required texts, participation in class dialogue, completion of assignments, class presentations, discussions with instructor, and submission of a final paper/report.
Class assignments and grading
Assignments will be based on readings and class discussions, which will be integrated into final paper/report.
1. Letter of introduction (5%) 2. Class reports (10%) 3. Participation (15%) 4. Assignments (20%) 5. Interview/presentation (25%) 6. Final paper (25%)