Learning outcomes of the course unit
1-Knowledge and understanding
The course introduces some the main themes of theoretical philosophy and the role it plays in different philosophical traditions. This allows the students to grasp the logical space in which the debate is situated as well as the state of the contemporary debate on the topic.
2-Applying Knowledge and understanding
Through a close analysis of arguments proposed by classical philosophers students acquire techniques necessary for formulating and criticizing an argument. In addition, they sharpen their conceptual tools to engage in the debate.
3-4- Making judgments, communication skills
Students are encouraged to participate actively in discussion in class, which should train them to weigh arguments, arrive at defending a specific position and formulate arguments in favor of it.
Great emphasis will be put on reading skills: students will be trained to recognize philosophical arguments and come up with a rational reconstruction which highlights the impact of the respective argument for the debate. In short, they acquire techniques necessary for studying other topics and doing philosophy autonomously.
Course contents summary
In its institutional part the course will discuss some of the main themes of theoretical philosophy by analysing concrete arguments that have been proposed by philosophers in the past. We will pay attention not only to the positions developed, but also to the way how they have been developed, paying attention to questions of philosophical method: to the methodologies applied in different philosophical traditions, to the structure of the arguments, and to the relation between scientific and philosophical knowledge.
The course bibliography consists of selections of works from great philosophers (Descartes, Locke, Kant, Husserl, Putnam, and others). The detailed list of texts will be communicated at the beginning of the course and can be consulted at the course-website on http://didattica.unipr.it
Lectures and discussion in class. Moreover, there will be meetings ("ora di approfondimento") that allow to discuss and further develop the topics discussed in class. These meetings will be scheduled in the later afternoon in order to invite working students who cannot participate in the lectures. The participation is not obligatory.
Assessment methods and criteria
The exam consists of a written part with short questions, and, a few days later, an oral part with more general questions. Each part weighs 50% of the final grade.