FA21 PHIL418/518

Note: This course is currently scheduled for in-person instruction.

Existentialism (PHIL418/PHIL518)
Dr. Kyle Banick

Tuesdays & Thursdays  ·  5:00pm–6:15pm  ·  FCS–126

This course will guide students through a close reading of a selection of classic existentialist texts, including works from Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. The questions that arise in these texts probe central philosophical concepts such as the self, value, the nature of time, consciousness, religious experience, embodiment, rationality and irrationality, and society. Also central to the existentialist tradition is a re-examination of the idea—originating with the ancient Greek tradition—that systematic advances in theoretical philosophy concerning the fundamental nature of the world may play a role in unifying one’s intellectual and concrete lives. Students will be challenged to engage deeply with primary texts; to cultivate an appreciation for the deep differences between the various existentialist thinkers; to identify where existentialist themes have entered extra-philosophical domains such as art and pop culture; and to examine existentialist concepts both through theoretical and practical lenses.