Scientific Disciplinary Sector (SSD)
M-FIL/07 - HISTORY OF ANCIENT PHILOSOPHY
semestrino IA dal Oct 1, 2012 al Nov 21, 2012.
Beyond offering a general picture of authors and schools within the ancient philosophy, the course aims at teaching to use the proper philosophical terminology. Also it aims at teaching the critical use of an original philosophical text, for acquiring basic philosophical matters and concepts.
Prerequisites: Surely a previous knowledge of the history of the ancient philosophy (from VI Century B.C. to 529 A.D.) allows to work easier within this scientific field: however it is not compulsory. The same can be said as to the ancient Greek and Latin languages. Better, an attention to lexical research and an interest in a critical reading of philosophical texts are very useful.
Course's title and content: “Kòsmos: the divine and the order of the world”
First of all we will analyze the ancient Greek notion of kòsmos, particularly in Plato’s Dialogues. It refers to an ordered and beautiful universe, a living whole whose parts are well-proportioned to each other. However it is not perfect, settled, eternal and free from evil. On the contrary the kòsmos is non-stop becoming and including within itself oppositions, hierarchies and negative aspects as sufferance and death. Nevertheless, in the order itself it shows, it refers to a notion of the divine, namely to an intelligent principle always engaged in taking care of this universe, notwithstanding its constructional difference. We will analyze also this notion of the divine, particularly in its relations to the ordered universe.
Believing in God or not, the man recognizing his participation in such a universe on his turn must take care of it, accepting and honouring its different forms of life and natural dynamics. This ancient Greek notion of kòsmos seems to advance some today’s environmentalist and ecological views, of a biosphere to be respected and protected from a possible destruction, more than it up to now was done by the contemporary pragmatic iper-productional liberism and by the narcissistic consumerism.
Books to be studied
a) General Part: E. BERTI-F. VOLPI, Storia della filosofia: dall'antichità ad oggi, Edizione compatta, 2 voll. indivisibili, Roma-Bari 2007 (vol. I : from the origins to Neoplatonism);
b) Lecture notes (at students' disposal online and in the photocopies shops “La rapida” and “Ateneo”): introductive texts;
c) Lecture notes (at students' disposal online and in the photocopies shops “La rapida” and “Ateneo”): basic texts: particularly PLATO, Phaedo 96a-102a; Republic II 377d-383c, and X 595e-597e; Politicus 268d-274e; Sophist 264c-267a; Timaeus 29d-47e; Laws 889e-893b;
d) Critical Texts: one at choice between: L.M. NAPOLITANO VALDITARA, Il sé, l'altro, l'intero. Rileggendo i Dialoghi di Platone, Milano-Udine Mimesis 2010; L. M. NAPOLITANO VALDITARA, Pietra filosofale della salute. Filosofia antica e formazione in medicina, Verona QuiEdit 2011
e) Integrations and substitutions: students who cannot attend lessons, or those who must substitute the General part must get in touch with the teacher, in order to receive indications on adding texts, whose reading will compensate for lacking attendance: these texts will be agreed for every student, with regard to his previous knowledge, curriculum and interests.
Teaching Methods: The course will be carried on by frontal lessons, with an introductory presentation of thinkers and philosophical schools, with direct reading of the texts on the monographical subject and following discussions. Therefore attendance at classes will be very useful and desirable, though obviously not compulsory.
Some oral questions will be put to the student; he will be invited to read and comment some passages of the original texts already read together during classes. As to the basic texts of the course, the student can choose also to write a brief paper (5-10 pp., to be given at least one week before the exam) on some subjects discussed together, or on some passages read together during classes: this relation will be orally discussed during the exam.
a) students enrolled in Beni Culturali, who must collect only 3 credits, will study only the General Part and the Lecture Notes with Introductive Texts (see above , Books to be studied, a and b);
b) the undergraduate students until 2007-8 will study, for Storia della filosofia (A), only 6 credits and then will choice between this first Module, or the second one on history of mediaeval philosophy (the second Module does not substitute the specific Course of History of Mediaeval Philosophy).