Paul B Woodruff
Professor — PhD, Princeton
Professor of Philosophy and Classics; Dean of Undergraduate Studies
- E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Phone: 475-7000
- Office: FAC 406
- Campus Mail Code: G8000
Well-known for his influential articles on Socrates and Plato, Professor Woodruff has also published critical editions of Plato's Hippias Major (1982), Ion(1983), and (with Alexander Nehamas) Symposium(1989) and Phaedrus (1995). He has also written on topics in aesthetics and ethics. His recent publications include Reverence: Renewing a Forgotten Virtue(Oxford University Press, 2001), Socrates on Reason and Religion (edited with Nicholas Smith, Oxford, 2000), Early Greek Political Thought from Homer to the Sophists (Cambridge, 1995, with M. Gagarin), Thucydides on Justice, Power, and Human Nature (Hackett, 1993), and contributions to Essays on the Philosophy of Socrates (Oxford, 1994), Essays on Aristotle's Poetics (Princeton, 1992), and The Cambridge Companion to Early Greek Philosophy (1999). He has been Visiting Professor at the University of Pittsburgh and has twice directed NEH seminars on ancient philosophy.
GK 390 • Justice In Ancient Philosophy
M 600pm-900pm WAG 312
(also listed as
PHL 381 )
Graduate Standing and Consent of Graduate Advisor or instructor required.
Very new and very old approaches to the age-old problem of justice, with attention to questions such as these: Can justice be, at the same time, a political virtue and a virtue of character? Is compassion compatible with justice? What kinds of difference in individuals justifies difference in expectations, whether of benefits or of duties? Must justice be principled? Can it be consequentialist? What sort of commitment could a particularist have to justice? What is fairness in relation to justice? Can there be justice among nations? Across nations? Among species?
We will bring new eyes to ancient texts, and we will cast eyes steeped in ancient lore on very recent ones. After a very brief survey of early Greek thought about justice (including tragic poets), we will spend a few weeks on Plato, then Aristotle, then John Stuart Mill. That will take less than half the semester. After that, we will divide up modern authors. Members of the seminar may choose from the list below or introduce authors they are interested in themselves.
Two shortish papers (well under 2000 words), both to be presented in class (assuming the class is fairly small). After the first month, there will be at least one paper presented per week. One paper about a topic in ancient philosophy, and one paper about a recent work chosen by you (not necessarily from the list above). The papers will count 40% each, and seminar participation will count 20%.
I will order no books, as I assume you will have most of these already, or else we will be reading different books. For Plato, I prefer Hackett translations (Crito, Gorgias, Republic (Grube-Reeve version, 1992). For Aristotle I prefer Reeve's Politics (Hackett, 1998) and Ostwald's Nicomachan Ethics (LLA 1962).
Otherwise, lay in what books you wish, borrow from me, or depend on photocopies, as we will be reading what the class decides to read, and not all the same things. We will allow one week for a brief review of Rawls (Political Liberalism, Expanded Edition 2005). Among recent authors, I suggest, in alpha order: Gillian Brock (Global Justice, 2009), G.A. Cohen (Rescuing Justice and Equality, 2008), Raymond Geuss (varia), Richard Kraut (What is Good and Why, 2007)), Martha Nussbaum (Frontiers of Justice, 2007), Joseph Raz (varia) , Amartya Sen, The Idea of Justice (2009), David Wiggins (in Ethics, 2006). I promise not to read all of these, and you will not do so either. We will divide up the work in order to achieve a general view of current work in this area.
This seminar satisfies the History requirement