Upon successful completion of the course students will be able to:
- recognize the methods, the peculiarity and the importance of philosophy as an intellectual performance and the key points in which it differs from the sciences, theology and art
- approach in a reflective way the great questions posed by human being about its existence and its meaning and to critically approach the answers given to such questions in the history of philosophy
- elaborate a philosophical question or problem and express (orally or in writing) their own point of view with solid arguments
- know the main branches and questions of philosophy.
Course Content (Syllabus)
This course offers an orientation to philosophical studies, an introduction to key issues of philosophical thought, with emphasis on metaphysics, and the acquaintance with few major philosophical texts. In the course the following topics will be discussed:
A. The definitions of philosophy and the characteristics of philosophical activity, the main questions of the traditional fields of philosophy and the demarcation of philosophy from areas such as science, art and religion.
B. The definition and the possibility of metaphysics and certain central theories about the nature of reality (dualism, materialism, idealism etc.), with references to contemporary debates as well as significant moments in the history of philosophy (Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Locke, Kant).
C. Current debates on the problem of body and mind, the existence of God and the free will problem. Final comments on the question whether philosophy is (still) of any use.
Introduction to Philosophy, Metaphysics, Body and mind, God, Free Will