Phil Cartoon

Summer  & Early Autumn Terms 2019 Workshop Programme - Life's Big Questions

Having completed our discussion of Linguistic Philosophy, we are now examining some of life's big questions through discussing two books with contrasting approaches: David Benatar's The Human Predicament Oxford University Press (2017) and Thomas Hurka's The Best Things in Life Oxford University Press (2015 in paperback).

This is a draft programme, amended 28/06/19.

Date Author Chapter Where Led BY
1 May Hartmann (2) 3 A Science of Language? Judy's Pat
8 May

Benatar

1 & 2, Introduction, Meaning Steve's Anita
15 May Benatar 3 Meaninglessness Steve's Judy
22 May Benatar 4 Quality [of Life] Judy's Barbara
29 May Benatar 5 Death Barbara's Sue
5 June Benatar 6 Immortality John's Renny
12 June Benatar 7 & 8 Suicide, Conclusion

Barbara's

John
19 June Hurka Introduction & 1 Feeling Good Barbara's Steve
26 June Hurka 2 Finding That Feeling Judy's Peter
3 July Hurka 3 The Place of Pleasure Judy's Renny
25 September Hurka 4 Knowing What's What Renny's Dee
2 October Hurka 5 Making Things Happen Renny's Pamela
9 October Hurka 6 Being Good Barbara's Pat
16 October Hurka 7 Love and friendship Barbara's Anita
23 October Hurka 8 Putting It Together John's Judy

The Philosophy Workshop in December 2016:-

Philosophy Group 2016 (2)

Summer Vacation Programme

In the vacation those of us who are not stuck on a beach or a cruise will be listening to and discussing the latest BBC Reith Lectures fortnightly. Jonathan Sumption argues that there has been a decline in politics and a consequent unwelcome rise in the power of the courts.

Draft programme - amended 01/07/19

Reith Lecture Discussions
Date Topic Where
17 July 1. Law's Expanding Empire Barbara's
31 July 2. In Praise of Politics Barbara's
14 August 3. Human Rights and Wrongs Renny's
28 August 4. Rights and the Ideal Constitution Judy's
11 September 5. Shifting the Foundations Renny's
       
       
       
       

What We Have Studied

When Who Topic Led By Comments
2006 - 2007 Hayakawa Language in Thought and Action Peter Jones This stimulating text on semantics was used by Peter to introduce his own slant on Philosophy.
2008 Jayne Waterworth A Philosophical Analysis of Hope Jayne Colvin Led by the author!
2008-9 Ray Billington Living Philosophy Peter Stevenson. Lively text with ethical  slant
2008-9 Nigel Warburton Philosophy: the Classics Peter Stevenson. Useful overview of the classic texts
2009-10 Gordon Graham Eight Theories of Ethics Group Effort Excellent treatment of Ethics
2010 Mary Warnock Women Philosophers Group Effort Earlier extracts were tough but we got a lot out of the book
2011 John Hosper Introduction to Philosophical Analysis Group Effort Was our least favourite text until Hartman (below).
2011/12 Michael J Sandel Justice: What's the Right Thing to Do? Group Effort

We watched the Harvard lectures from the internet & read the book - highly recommended.

2011/12 Plato Republic Jayne Colvin By a beginners group
2011/12 John Stuart Mill On Liberty Jayne Colvin By a beginners group
2011/12 Jayne Wateridge A Philosophical Analysis of Hope. Jayne Colvin By a beginners group
2012 Johnathan Wolff Ethics and Public Policy Group Effort Good linkeage of philosophy to current politics and ethics

2013

Bryan Magee Talking Philosophy Group Effort We watched some programmes of the BBC series Men of Ideas on which the book is based
2013 Ronald Dworkin Sovereign Virtue Group Effort We gave up on this - good stuff but too densely written for a group like us
2013/14 Scott M James An Introduction to Evolutionary Ethics Group Effort Good beginners guide to the philosopical implications of evolutionary psycholgy
2014 Aristotle Nichomachean Ethics Group Effort Surprisingly readable - we recommend Penguin 2nd ed.
2014/5 Contemporary Philosophers Overview of Individual Authors Group Effort Stimulating Variety
2015 Edward Feser Philosophy of Mind Group Effort Tough going - but we enjoyed it!
2015/6 Nicholas Fearn Zeno and the Tortoise Group Effort Lively selection of topics illustrating different philosophical methods
2016 Peter Singer (ed.) Applied Ethics Group Effort Stimulating collection of classic articles on Ethics - recommended
2016/17 Victoria Harrison Eastern Philosophy: the Basics Group Efffort We enjoyed this excellent introduction to Eastern Philosophy
2017 Vicent Geoghan & Rick Wiford (eds.) Political Ideologies Group Effort Good Introduction to the topic.
2016/7 Naomi Scheman Engenderings Jayne Colvin We enjoyed discussing feminist philosophy over lunch, but in places knowledge was assumed in the text we did not have.
2017 Kwame Anthony Apiah Mistaken Identities Group Effort We listened to, and discussed the 2016 Reith Lectures
2017 A H Basson David Hume Group effort We found Hume stimulating but preferred the Stanford Encyclopaedia articles on Hume to Basson's book.
2017/19 Stephen Cahn & Christine Vitrano (eds.) Happiness: Classic & Contemporary Readings in Philosophy Jayne Colvin Generating some lively discussions. Recommended.
2017/8 Julian Baggini

Ethics: the Big Questions Paperback Title: Without God Is Everything Permitted?

Group Effort We didn't always agree with Julian but found his essays stimulated some great discussions.
2018 Niccolo Machiavelli The Prince Group Effort Still very relevant in the C21st.
2018/9 Ralph A Hartman Philosophies of Language and Linguistics Group Effort Interesting topic and discussions but we do not recommend the book.
2019 David Benatar The Human Predicament Group Effort A pessimistic look at life which generated very lively discussions.
     
       
       
       
In addition, every summer in recent years, we have discussed a selection of philosophical podcasts from the Philosophy Bites web site - which we recommend (but, as you can see, this summer, for a change, we are discussing the latest Reith lectures).      
       
       

Philosophy & Politics Local Adult Education Links

Listing Links 1 to 10 of 12

1
University of the Third Age
Learning resources, forthcoming events and details of this voluntary organisation for retired and semi-retired people. No qualifications required or awarded.
Open University
For first class undergraduate and postgraduate courses in UK and all over the world. Now rather expensive - but financial help available (especially to non-graduates).
Poole Universty of the Third Age
This website gives a good idea of the wide range of Poole U3A activities.
Free On-line Philosophy Courses
This is a list of free on-line philosophy course on the openculture web site which also has many other educational on-line resources in Politics, Philosophy & other subjects.
Bournemouth U3A
Bournemouth U3A is particularly strong in Philosophy groups.
Oxford University Continuing Education
Currently (February 2017) 67 Philosophy offerings some on-line & in Newbury and elsewhere as well as in Oxford itself. 80 Politics offerings. Jackson & Tansey is one of two recommended texts for the on-line Introduction to Politics course!
Southampton University Lifelong Learning
Southampton's Lifelong Learning Programme is on a limited scale - but has some interesting offerings including the Philosophy Cafe and Politics Study Days. You can also take a first degree in Philosophy or Philosophy & English on a part-time basis
Bournemouth University
The Media School has an innovative full time undergraduate course in Politics with emphasis on modern media, and postgraduate courses on Political Psychology and International Political Communications.At first degree level Politics can also be combined with Law or Economics. There are is no Philosophy or Extra-Mural Department - but the Annual Festival of Learning is worth investigating.
WEA
The WEA (the Workers Educational Association) is an excellent provider of part-time short non-examination educational courses for all adults. However no Politics or Philosophy courses are planned in 2018/19 for the local area - unless you count Winchester!
Bournemouth & Poole College
In 2018/19 there are no Philosophy courses but 'A' level Government and Politics is available.'A' level Religious Studies has some philosophical content too.
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Philosophy Group News

One Article

Details of U3A Poole Philosophy Workshop classes in the summer and in early autumn are now on the site. The schedule is subject to amendment and has been revised since first posted. Please check on this site to ensure you have the latest version.

Unfortunately there will be no more classes led by Jayne because of her move to Kent.

Philosophy Links

9 Links

Stanford Encyclopaedia of Philosophy
My first port of call for introductory articles on philosophers and philosophical topics
Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy
High quality articles on philosophers and philosophical subjects.
Philosophy Pages
Useful guide for beginning Philosophy students.
Philosophy Bites
Short interviews with contemporary philosophers.
Squashed Philosophers
Abbreviated versions of many classic texts - usually readable in c. 1 hour!
History of Philosophy
Peter Adamson's 'History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps' - 20 minute talks. Added to regularly and has now (November 2018) Byzantine Philosophy. Having covered Philosophy in Classical India, Classical Greek & Rome, Later Antiquity and Medieval Europe as well as Islamic, Jewish and Precolonial African Philosophy.
Academic Earth
Free Philosophy & Politics Courses. More courses and lectures can be found on You Tube,iTunesu, Futurelearn, Coursera, EdX and Udacity.
Justice Lectures
Michael Sandel's excellent free course on Justice with Readings and Discussion Guides.
Adelaide University ebooks
Contains many classic philosophy texts and useful links. Texts also found on Project Gutenberg.
Please let me know of any sites which would be particularly useful for beginning Philosophy students using the feedback page.

See also Politics Links on other pages

Article Listing

2 Articles

A newish page commemorates the life of Sue Tansey. A fairly recent page is about Free Attractions in Dorset. Please let me have any suggestion for further content.

One page on the site deals with the book I am working on at present. This is a book on ethics and politics in a secular age provisionally entitled What Should We Do? (Apologies to Tolstoy!) Your comments would be very welcome!

www.intergage.co.uk