Philosophy & Literature Courses


The Philosophy of Western Antiquity [ten week course]

7th January until 15th 

April 2021. 

Thursdays 13:00 until 14:30 UTC [1pm until 2.30pm GMT]

From the beginning of history, people have asked questions about the world and their place within it.  For early societies, the answers to these fundamental questions were found in religion.  Many of the ancient Greeks found traditional religious explanations inadequate and so philosophy was born.  This course will try to inhabit the ancient world, explore some of the ideas of the Pre-Socratics, Socrates, Plato, Aristotle and the Romans, including Epicurus and the Stoics, before investigating the demise of antiquity.

Political Philosophy: In Search of Utopia [nine week course]

6th April until 

8th June 2021. 

Tuesdays 7pm until 8.30pm BST [18:00 until 19:30 UTC]

Is democracy the best form of government?  How should wealth be distributed?  What are the limits of our freedom?  Political philosophy doesn’t confine us to how things are, but allows us to consider how things could be.  This course will explore the key thinkers from Plato to Rawls as we reflect upon the possibility of a utopian society.  

Philosophy of the Medieval World [seven week course]

29th April until 

17th June 2021. 

Thursdays 1pm until 8.30pm BST [12:00 until 13:30 UTC]

During the first millennia Christianity became assimilated into Roman culture. The Greek idea of philosophy as rational examination independent of religious doctrine sat uncomfortably with the rise of Christianity. Questions about the nature of the universe and what constitutes a virtuous life were held to be answered in the scriptures and were no longer considered subjects for philosophical discussion. The philosophers in this course sought to integrate Greek philosophy into Christian religion.