RICHARD L. W. CLARKE


 

 

 

LITS2306 HISTORY OF CRITICISM

2019-2020

MODULE ONE: CLASSICAL FOUNDATIONS

 

WEEK ONE:
WHAT IS LITERARY THEORY?
CLASSICAL RATIONALISM: PLATO
(Week of September 02)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

SEMINAR 1: Introduction
  • Course objectives, schedule, etc.
  • Abrams, M. H. The Mirror and the Lamp: Ch. 1 "Introduction: Orientation of Critical Theories" (pp. 3-29):
    • "Mimetic Theories" (pp. 8-14)
    • "Pragmatic Theories" (pp. 14-21)
    • "Objective Theories" (pp. 26-29)
    • "Expressive Theories" (pp. 21-26)
Notes:
TUTORIAL: The Sophists
Notes:
SEMINAR 2: Plato on Knowledge, Being and the Mind Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

COMMENTS:
  • Each week, please read and study the Required Readings (listed in the middle column) on your own.
  • Each week, please bring to class copies (hard or soft) of the Notes (found in the column on the right) which we shall read and discuss. 
  • Rather than printing the notes, it is probably in your financial interest to access them in class via a laptop, an iPad or some such device.  Please download and save them before class.

WEEK TWO: CLASSICAL RATIONALISM: PLATO CONTINUED
(Week of September 09)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

SEMINAR 1: Plato on Knowledge, Being and the Mind Continued
  • Plato, The Republic Continued
Notes:
TUTORIAL:
  • Branches of Philosophy:
    • Metaphysics: what is the ultimate nature of reality ('being')?
    • Epistemology: where do our ideas come from, what are they about and how do we know if they are true?
    • Logic: how, ideally, should we reason?
    • Philosophy of Language: What role does language play in the formation of our thoughts and, thus, knowledge of reality?
    • Philosophy of Mind: what is the mind?  Is it synonymous with the brain and, thus, merely a physical organism or does it transcend the body?
Notes:
SEMINAR 2: Plato on Poetry Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

COMMENTS:
 
  • We hold our first tutorial this week.

WEEK THREE: CLASSICAL EMPIRICISM: ARISTOTLE
(Week of September 16)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

SEMINAR 1: Aristotle on Knowledge, Being and the Mind Notes:
TUTORIAL:
  • Branches of Philosophy Continued
Notes:
  • See handout from last week's tutorial
SEMINAR 2: Aristotle on Knowledge, Being and the Mind Continued
Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

  • Shields, Christopher: Aristotle (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

COMMENTS:
 

WEEK FOUR: ARISTOTLE ON POETRY
(Week of September 23)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

SEMINAR 1: Notes:
TUTORIAL:
  • Revision questions on Plato
Notes:
SEMINAR 2:
  • Aristotle, Poetics Continued
Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

 
COMMENTS:
 

WEEK FIVE: CLASSICAL RHETORIC AND SKEPTICISM: ANTI-PHILOSOPHY?
(Week of September 30)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

LECTURE 1:
  • The Sophists, Selections (pp. 80-88 in Readings in Ancient Greek Philosophy, ed. S. Marc Cohen, et al.)
  • Plato, Gorgias [c.380 BCE]: see extract (pp. 533-554 in The Dialogues of Plato, trans. Bernard Jowett)
  • Aristotle, Rhetoric: Rhys Roberts Translation (pp. 2152-2269 in Vol. 2 of Complete Works, ed. Jonathan Barnes): read especially Bk I, Chs. 1-3; Bk. II, Chs. 1 and 18; Bk. III, Chs. 1-2, 13-14, 17-19
Notes:
TUTORIAL:
  • Revision questions on Aristotle
Notes:
LECTURE 2:
  • Sextus Empiricus, Outlines of Pyrrhonism [c. 2nd or 3rd Century BCE]: Book I (pp. 1-64 in Outlines of Skepticism, trans. Julia Annas and Jonathan Barnes)
Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

  • Rhetoric:
    • General:
      • Corbett, Edward P. J.  Classical Rhetoric for the Modern Student.  Oxford: OUP, 1965.
        • Chapter I "Introduction": "A Brief Explanation of Classical Rhetoric" (pp. 20-29)
        • Chapter II "Discovery of Arguments" (pp.34-142)
        • Chapter III: "Arrangement of Material" (pp. 277-312)
        • Chapter IV "Style" (pp. 386-448)
    • Aristotle:
  • Skepticism:
    • Sextus Empiricus:

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

COMMENTS:
 

WEEK SIX: 'LONGINUS' ON ORATORY AND POETRY
(Week of October 07)
 

REQUIRED READINGS:

 

 

SEMINAR 1:
  • 'Longinus,' On the Sublime [1st century CE?] (Roberts Translation, pp. 76-98 in Adams; Russell translation, pp. 138-154 in Leitch; pp. 346-358 in Bizzell and Herzberg): read especially chapters I, II, VI-X, XV-XXXII, XXXVII-XLIII
Notes:
TUTORIAL:
  • Plato vs Aristotle on Literature
  • See Questions on Plato and on Aristotle above
SEMINAR 2:
  • 'Longinus' Continued
Notes:

RECOMMENDED READINGS:

  • 'Longinus':
    • Abrams, M. H. The Mirror and the Lamp: Ch. 4 "The Development of the Expressive Theory of Art": "Longinus and the Longinians" (73-78)
    • Russell, D. A.  "Longinus on Sublimity."  Classical Criticism.  Ed. George A. Kennedy.  Vol. 1 of Cambridge History of Literary Criticism.  Cambridge: CUP, 1989.  306-311.
  • Ancient Greek Skepticism:

PHILWEB RESOURCES:

COMMENTS:
 
 

You should be working at this point on your Term Paper, which is based on Module 1.

 

END OF MODULE ONE
 

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