What is philosophy? How does it differ from science, religion, and other modes of human discourse? This course traces the origins of philosophy in the Western tradition in the thinkers of Ancient Greece. We begin with the Presocratic natural philosophers who were active in Ionia in the 6th century BCE and are also credited with being the first scientists. Thales, Anaximander, and Anaximines made bold proposals about the ultimate constituents of reality, while Heraclitus insisted that there is an underlying order to the changing world. Parmenides of Elea formulated a powerful objection to all these proposals, while later Greek theorists (such as Anaxagoras and the atomist Democritus) attempted to answer that objection. In fifth-century Athens, Socrates insisted on the importance of the fundamental ethical question—“How shall I live?”—and his pupil, Plato, and Plato’s pupil, Aristotle, developed elaborate philosophical systems to explain the nature of reality, knowledge, and human happiness. After the death of Aristotle, in the Hellenistic period, Epicureans and Stoics developed and transformed that earlier tradition. We will study the major doctrines of all these thinkers. Part I will cover Plato and his predecessors. Part II will cover Aristotle and his successors.
Ancient Philosophy: Plato & His PredecessorsUniversity of Pennsylvania
About this Course
University of Pennsylvania
The University of Pennsylvania (commonly referred to as Penn) is a private university, located in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, United States. A member of the Ivy League, Penn is the fourth-oldest institution of higher education in the United States, and considers itself to be the first university in the United States with both undergraduate and graduate studies.
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TOP REVIEWS FROM ANCIENT PHILOSOPHY: PLATO & HIS PREDECESSORS
Highly recommended. This course was a great guide to understand to pre socratic philosophers. Professor Susan Sauvé Meyer is very clear in her explanations. Thanks a lot. I enjoy the course.
Before this course the topic of philosophy had never appealed to me, while from now on it turns out to be an interesting subject. A wonderful introduction to ancient philosophy of Greece !
I was always wanted to know things on Ancient Philosophy, This course has an over all understanding for Plato's work and his students with their different prospective on him and his philosophy.
This is a brilliant course. Professionally designed and very well structured. I have enjoyed it thoroughly and more importantly I have learnt significantly. I highly recommen
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