As the catalogue description suggests, this course is a “survey of ancient Greek philosophy, beginning with the pre-Socratics and proceeding on through Plato to Aristotle.” We will focus on the physical views of these philosophers while also making sure to incorporate notes of metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics. This course, then, might be construed as a re-introduction to philosophy via the study of nature that begins with Thales of Miletus and ends with Aristotle.
There will be weekly writing assignments and a final paper. The weekly assignments will be primarily exegetical though critique will certainly be welcome. The final paper will offer a historical narrative of one sort or another that ties together the work of three philosophers studied in the course.
Concerning format, the course is a “discussion class.” For most class meetings, we’ll have a discussion which will consist in offering multiple exegetical accounts, whether our own or those of the authorities we read, and evaluating and elaborating on these accounts.