An Abbreviated History of Western Philosophy II – CANCELLED

Matthew Teismann

Max Enrollment:

Jan 13-16, 10-1

Gund 517

This course introduces major philosophical movements in Western philosophy from the Rousseau to Karl Marx. This course, like ‘An Abbreviated History of Western Philosophy I’, is intended for those who are beginners or have intermediate knowledge of the major philosophers and philosophical problems. No prior knowledge of philosophy is required. This course will focus on the foundational issues, such as Kant’s Sublime and Hegel’s Dialectic. Why, according to Kant, do human beings have a different kind of value, which is incomparably greater than the sort of value than inanimate things or even plants or non-human animals? What are the modern implications of Marx’s conception of Aesthetics, or Rousseau’s Social Contract?

The main text of the class will be Betrand Russell’s The History of Western Philosophy. Since its first publication, this text has been universally acclaimed as the outstanding one-volume work on the subject – unparalleled in its comprehensiveness, its clarity, its erudition, its grace and wit. Russel writes: “Philosophy…is something intermediate between theology and science. It consists of speculations on matters as to which definite knowledge has been unascertainable; but like science, it appeals to human reason.” The structure of the one-week course will be one philosopher per class, outlined as follows:

From Rousseau to Present Day
Karl Marx

Each student will be responsible for obtaining a copy of the text (available at the COOP or Amazon), and will be required to read the chapter(s) regarding each philosopher before their respective class. Readings, responses and participation are expected as these ensure the liveliness of our discussions. Students may also enroll in ‘An Abbreviated History of Western Philosophy I’, but it is not required. Students may enroll in either of these courses, or both.


$25 to purchase Bertrand Russell\’s \”The History of Western Philosophy\”