Introduction to Philosophy
Full course description
One of the greatest and most influential Ancient philosophers, Aristotle of Stageira (384-322 BC) once remarked, “Wonder is the beginning of philosophy”. What he was referring to is our habit of asking fundamental questions about our every-day life, such as, “Suppose I am certain that I am right about something, what is that certainty based upon?”; “Suppose I am engaged in a discussion with someone (for example about some controversial matter), what can objectively guarantee the stringency of my argument?” Thinking about and discussing such questions will force us to reconsider the things we have always taken for granted. And ultimately they will lead us to more fundamental questions about the proper nature of Truth and Knowledge as such.
Assignments during the course include the following: the nature of philosophical enquiry, problems of knowledge and truth (including the understanding and evaluation of arguments), ethics.
- To teach students how to “think philosophically”.
- Blackburn, S. (1999). Think. A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Blackburn, S. (2001). Being Good. Oxford: Oxford University Press.
- Horner, C., & Westacott, E. (2000). Thinking through Philosophy. An Introduction. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press.