Academic year
2022/2023 Syllabus of previous years
Official course title
Course code
FT0424 (AF:357605 AR:203448)
Blended (on campus and online classes)
ECTS credits
Degree level
Bachelor's Degree Programme
Educational sector code
4th Term
Course year
Go to Moodle page
This course offers a survey of the history of modern philosophy, covering the major figures in the history of Western thought in the 17th and 18th centuries, within the broadest discipline of the history of philosophy. After briefly reviewing the developments in the Renaissance, the Reformation, and the Scientific Revolution which set the stage for the appearance of the modern world view, the course will pay particular attention in reviewing this history of thought to problems in metaphysics, epistemology, ethics and political philosophy. At the end of the course it will be considered how this history of thought shaped the development of subsequent philosophy.

The course aims to provide a good understanding of key problems and ideas which shaped the history of modern philosophy. At the end of the course the students should have a good understanding of the difference between the traditions of Rationalism and Empiricism that divided Western thought during this period, as well as some understanding of how this difference has continued to shape the course of the development of philosophy. Considerable attention will also be given to understanding that intellectual, cultural movement known as the Enlightenment, a movement which came to a culmination in the philosophies of Hume and Kant at the end of the 18th century and which continues to shape, to some extent, the world today. In critically reviewing this history of thought the course also seeks to develop important critical thinking skills.
At the end of the course the students
1) should demonstrate knowledge and understanding in early modern philosophy that builds upon and their general secondary education, and is typically at a level that includes some aspects that will be informed by knowledge of the forefront of the philosophical research;
2) could apply their knowledge and understanding in a manner that indicates a professional approach to their possible work or vocation, and have competences typically demonstrated through devising and sustaining arguments and solving philosophical problems;
3) should have the ability to gather and interpret relevant data of a historical text to inform judgements that include reflection on relevant social, scientific or ethical issues;
4) could communicate information, ideas, problems and solutions to both specialist and non-specialist audiences;
5) should have developed those learning skills that are necessary for them to continue to undertake more advanced courses or further study with a high degree of autonomy.

The readings, lectures, and assignments will be designed to
• introduce students to some of the central figures in early modern philosophy (Descartes through Kant) and the questions and arguments that preoccupied them;
• introduce students to philosophical methodology in the history of philosophy;
• foster critical engagement with the ideas and arguments discussed;
• increase competencies in reading and writing philosophical texts.
The textbook knowledge of the history of early modern philosophy. The attendance to the first course is mandatory.
The subject of the course is the history of the problem of knowledge in Kant with a special focus on the Critique of Pure Reason. The following topics will be examined:

- The distinction between analytic and synthetic
- Space and time
- Categories and apperception
- Noumena
I. Kant, Critica della ragion pura, Bompiani, Milano 2010.
The oral exam, ca. 30 minutes, will be on 4/5 topics discussed in class. Questions will be on the material uploaded on Moodle and on the Critique of Pure Reason. Critical thinking and the capacity of giving reasons will be assessed by asking question on a topic on your choice. The conceptual and linguistic understanding of the text will be tested with a series of open questions. The grade is determined by: - knowledge of the subjects (range 10 points); - ability to deepen the topic (range 5 points); - detailed and precise knowledge of the historical context (eg knowledge of dates and classification events) (range 5 points); - exposure safety (range 5 points); - ability to articulate speech autonomously (range 5 points).
Lectures and seminars with debates on the topics discussed in class.
Accessibility, Disability and Inclusion

Ca’ Foscari abides by Italian Law (Law 17/1999; Law 170/2010) regarding support services and accommodation available to students with disabilities. This includes students with mobility, visual, hearing and other disabilities (Law 17/1999), and specific learning impairments (Law 170/2010). If you have a disability or impairment that requires accommodations (i.e., alternate testing, readers, note takers or interpreters) please contact the Disability and Accessibility Offices in Student Services: disabilita@unive.it.
Definitive programme.
Last update of the programme: 10/04/2023