History of Modern Philosophy

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Course Code: 
PHI 2204
Course Credit Units: 
Semester 2
Year of Study: 
Year 2
Undergraduate or Graduate Level: 
Undergraduate Level
Academic Programs: 
Course Discipline: 
Course Description & Objectives: 

The course considers the history of philosophy that spans from the inception of the modern age to our contemporary period.  This modern period is introduced by the Renaissance that fostered a return to the pre-eminence of ancient philosophy and a paramount attention to nature and by Humanism that placed the human being at the centre of reality.  This early period has the names of N. Machiavelli, T. More, and G. Galilee. With R. Descartes and the rise of Rationalism, modern philosophy begins.  Rationalism considers reason as the source of knowledge and the main names within this tradition are B. Spinoza, N. Malebranche, B. Pascal, and g. W. Leibnitz.  Rationalism is counteracted by empiricism emphasizing experience as the origin of knowledge.                                                                                                                                                                                                                                     Course Objective:

  • This course has the objective of teaching students the main philosophical ideas that specifically shaped the ‘project modernity’. It aims at acquainting students with knowledge of these ideas and capacity to analyse their impact on contemporary life.


Learning Outcomes: 

At the end of the course students should be able to:

  • Critically discuss the  philosophical ideas that shaped the modern era
  • Discern how discussions of modern philosophers laid the foundation for 20th century movements such as liberalism, socialism, feminism, etc.
  • Relate the debate between European rationalism and empiricism to modern challenges of epistemology
History of Modern Philosophy
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