R S 356E • Existentialism
Philosophy is often described as the enterprise of reason and rationality. Those philosophers who have been called "existentialists," by contrast, have been characterized (and sometimes have characterized themselves) as suspicious of reason, as champions of passionate engagement, even as "irrationalists." This would include many variations and qualifications-Soren Kierkegaard and Friedrich Nietzsche in the last century and Martin Heidegger, Albert Camus and Jean-Paul Sartre in this century. This course will be a study of existentialism and emotions, in particular, the notion that emotions give meaning to life and that our emotions are, in some important sense, our own responsibility, even our own "choices." We will read selections from both the philosophical and literary works of the existentialists. We will also read works on the nature of emotions in phenomenology and analytic philosophy, biology, social psychology and anthropology.
R S 361 (TOPIC: EXISTENTIALISM) AND 356E MAY NOT BOTH BE COUNTED
class participation (including a daily journal) 25%, three exams @ 25% each.
Camus: The Stranger (Random House/Vintage) ISBN 0679720200 The Plague (Random House/Vintage) ISBN 0394712587 The Fall (Random House/ Vintage) ISBN 0679720227 Sartre: Being and Nothingness (Citadel) ISBN 0-8065-2276-3 Transcendence of the Ego in P&E (below) The Emotions (excerpts, handout) Solomon: Not Passion's Slave (Oxford) ISBN 0-19-514549-6 Two Anthologies: Solomon, ed. Existentialism ["ex'm"] (Modern Library) ISBN 0075537117 Solomon, ed. Phenomenology and Existentialism ["P&E"] (Rowman & Littlefield) Recommended (Optional): Solomon, ed. Introducing the Existentialists (Hackett) Solomon, R. From Rationalism to Existentialism (UPA)