Philosophical Texts and Methods

Department of Philosophy, School of Philosophy, Theology and Religion

College of Arts and Law


Code 21819

Level of study First Year

Credit value 10

Semester 1

Module description

This module introduces students to the methods of philosophy, with several `study skills¿ lectures focussing on writing and structuring arguments and essays.

It also introduces students to some classic philosophical texts on a range of topics. Topics may include such issues as identity, freedom, equality, the self, doubt, tragedy, and causality, with authors including Descartes, Hume, Locke, Mill and Schopenhauer. The main aim is to enhance students¿ ability to read philosophical texts carefully and critically, so that they can identify the main claims and argumentative moves and develop their own critical responses. The texts, and students¿ responses to them, will be discussed in detail in weekly seminars, thus enhancing students¿ ability to engage in careful and focused discussion of philosophical issues.

The text for the module will be S. Guttenplan, J. Hornsby & C. Janaway (eds.), Reading Philosophy: Selected Texts with a Method for Beginners (Blackwell 2002).