Early Modern Philosophy; Reason vs Experience (PHIL*2160) | College of Arts

Early Modern Philosophy; Reason vs Experience (PHIL*2160)

Code and section: PHIL*2160*01

Term: Winter 2020

Instructor: Peter Eardley


An introduction to the major figures of the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries during which the so-called Scientific Revolution occurred. Although the course will focus on the metaphysics and epistemology of the major early modern thinkers and their predecessors, we will also devote attention to developments in the areas of philosophy of mind, philosophy of religion and political philosophy. Thinkers to be discussed will include well-known figures as René Descartes (1596-1650), Thomas Hobbes (1588-1679), John Locke (1632-1704), Gottfried Leibniz (1646-1716) and David Hume (1711-1776). Lesser known, though influential, authors to be treated will include Michel de Montaigne (1533-1592), Francis Bacon (1561-1626) and Robert Boyle. 


Course outline

The University of Guelph resides on the land of the Between the Lakes Treaty No. 3, the territory of the Mississaugas of the Credit. This land is part of the Dish with One Spoon, a covenant between Indigenous nations to live peaceably on the territories of the Great Lakes region. We recognize that today this gathering place is home to many First Nations, Inuit and Métis peoples and acknowledging them reminds us of our collective responsibility to the land where we learn, live and work.