Philosophy

Ancient Philosophy

Module code: V5015
Level 5
15 credits in autumn teaching
Teaching method: Seminar, Lecture
Assessment modes: Coursework, Unseen examination

In this module we will look at some central themes in the works of Plato, concentrating especially on ethics and metaphysics. We will examine the attempts to define virtues in some supposedly early dialogues, and the central Socratic ethical claim that it is impossible to do wrong knowingly. These issues will be pursued into the central moral argument of the Republic. We will also look at the so-called 'theory of forms' as it appears in various dialogues, including (especially) the Republic and the criticisms of it which are made in the Parmenides. We will consider Plato's philosophy of art in connection with the theory of forms.

Module learning outcomes

  • Demonstrate that they are familiar with the central themes of ancient philosophy.
  • Show an understanding of the place of texts from ancient philosophy in the history of philosophy.
  • Critically engage with texts from ancient philosophy.
  • Defend a thesis that relates to texts from ancient philosophy.