The course gives an overview of key issues of ancient philosophy from the Presocratics to the Hellenistic Age. The course does not require or build on any specific previous knowledge of ancient philosophy. We will read and discuss a selection of texts from different authors and periods, focussing on their argumentative methods and philosophical concepts, interpretative problems discussed in the contemporary literature and the major alternatives in trying to answer these problems.
By the end of the course students will be expected to possess the skills to work with ancient philosophical texts on their own at an intermediate level. They are expected to be able to analyse the argumentative structure of a text and identify the main concepts (also in their different current translations) used by the author of the text. They should know where to find further literature and linguistic and other tools for a deeper analysis.
• For two-year MA students: in-class written examination as part of the History of Philosophy Final Examination at the end of the first year
• For one-year MA students, and for non-philosophy students: 20% class participation; 20% position papers; 60% term paper