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Undergraduate Module Descriptor

PHL2053: History of Philosophy

This module descriptor refers to the 2023/4 academic year.


NQF Level 5
Credits 15 ECTS Value 7.5
Term(s) and duration

This module will run during term 1 (11 weeks)

Academic staff

Dr Kirsten Walsh (Convenor)





Available via distance learning


Early Modern Philosophers contributed to huge advances in science and technology, while at the same time witnessing, and sometimes causing, political and social upheaval on a grand scale. In this module, we shall track the philosophical thoughts and motivations behind some of these advances and upheavals. We shall proceed via a close reading of primary texts, drawing on additional material by scholars, background material and influential responses. The particular themes and figures addressed in this module varies from year-to-year, depending on the expertise and research interests of the module convenor. It may focus on the writings of a particular philosopher, or be structured around problems and topics of inquiry. Students should expect to become familiar with the writings of influential philosophers such as (but not necessarily) Bacon, Descartes, Hobbes, Rousseau and Leibniz, while also examining the less well-known philosophical ideas of figures such as Anne Conway, Robert Boyle, Isaac Newton, Margaret Cavendish, Damaris Cudworth Masham and Robert Hooke.

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