Francisco Goya, Fight With Cudgels, 1820-23
Philosophy and English Parts
Although both parts of the course use the same five texts, it is important to remember that the emphasis and, therefore, assessment for each is different:
The Philosophy part will place more emphasis on
developing your understanding of the ideas and
arguments expressed by each philosopher.
English part will place more emphasis on
developing your ability to read challenging
texts and your ability to express yourself
verbally and in the written form.
How are the grades for the Philosophy and English parts of the course combined?Your final grade is the simple average of your score for the Philosophy part and your score for the English part. Click here for more details.
Philosophy Part: Objectives
By the end of
the second semester you should be able to: (a)
Identify, explain, and discuss key arguments from a
range of key texts (b) Read and understand portions of
studied texts which have not been discussed in class
(c) Write clear and well structured essays which
provide close readings of the texts studied together
with intelligent and informed critical commentary
(d) Respond appropriately and intelligently to
feedback from peers and instructors on spoken and
Given that the primary aim of this course is to develop your ability to read, think and write philosophically, considerable emphasis will be placed on:
(a) Reading and taking notes from the text: Identify the key distinctions that are being made by the author, unpacking the different parts of the author's argument, and identifying potential weaknesses in the author's argument.
(b) In-class discussion: Using a process of question and response between students to help clarify and assess a problem, meaning or argument in the text.
(c) Drafted essay
writing: Writing is viewed as essential
because it will push you to clarify and examine each
problem or argument in sufficient depth and develop
your ability to communicate clearly and persuasively
with the reader.
The two drafted essays that
you write during each semester represent the
cornerstone of the course. Click here
for a useful guide to writing a philosophy
In the English part of
the course you will continue to develop and practice
the reading, writing and critical thinking skills
that you were introduced to and worked on in first
year English (ENG101-102).
Some of the skills we
will work on include how to deal with unfamiliar
language/ writing styles, how to identify the
different parts of arguments, and how to better
communicate your own views on the topic being
In the second semester
you will continue to build upon the language skills
you began to develop in Social and Political
Philosophy I. As reading, analyzing, discussing and
writing on philosophy are no longer new to you, we
do expect a higher standard of work in Social and
Political Philosophy II.
Click here for a more detailed description of the objectives for the English part.