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Title: PHIL 101-01, Introduction to Philosophy: Philosophy, Art and Literature, Fall 2005
Authors: Tolero, Maria
Keywords: Philosophy, Department of;Syllabus;Curriculum;Academic departments;Text;2005 Fall
Issue Date: 30-Aug-2005
Publisher: Memphis, Tenn. : Rhodes College
Series/Report no.: Syllabi CRN
Abstract: This course is primarily an introduction to philosophy, but in addition to reading standard central and representative texts from the history of philosophy, it will also focus on using art as a tool for thinking philosophically and using philosophy as way of understanding art. There will be three segments of this class: The City, The Mind, and The Situation. These three segments of the class will offer three different ways of understanding the fundamental nature and meaning of human life, and also the place of artistic expression within the personal, cultural and political dimensions of that life. Though these perspectives are all prominent, viable contenders in our ongoing attempts to understand ourselves, and therefore are not the property of any particular person or era, these perspectives nonetheless correspond to the central orientations of three of the most definitive periods in the history of philosophy: Ancient ("The City"), Early Modern, ("The Mind") and Contemporary ("The Situation"). Studying these perspectives will introduce you to the basic changes of perspective on human reality that have shaped the discipline of philosophy (and culture in general). We will also use artworks--works of painting, architecture and music and also literature and poetry--to help us to see into the perspective under consideration, and we will also consider how art is understood, is valued, and functions differently within each perspective. In the first segment of the class—The City—we will take the human political and social context as the primary arena for determining our human experience. We will use Plato’s Republic to investigate this perspective, and we will consider what art looks like from the perspective of the city. In the second segment—The Mind—we will consider the human world as defined primarily by the power and capacities of the human mind. In other words, the mind will be taken as that which defines humanity. We will consider how the human looks from this perspective, and what art looks like when the mind is taken as what defines the human experience. Here, our primary texts will be drawn from the writings of Immanuel Kant. As we did in the first segment, we will use works of art to help us to see from within the perspective of the mind. In the final segment of the class—The Situation—we will draw on the concept of the ecosystem to understand the human experience. In an ecosystem, living beings do not exist as isolated individuals; instead, they are contextualized and defined by the network of involvements that make up their situation. We will draw on this concept to understand the human situation as one that necessarily involves a network of involvements. Here our basic text will be Russon’s Human Experience. Once again, we will use artworks to help us see what this experience is like. We will also consider what art looks like when considered from the perspective of a network of involvements—that is, from within the human situation.
Description: This syllabus was submitted to the Rhodes College Office of Academic Affairs by the course instructor.
Appears in Collections:Course Syllabi

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