The first objective – linked to the specific professional profile of the students attending this course (i.e. teacher of philosophy, history and pedagogy) – is to provide students precise and clear knowledge regarding philosophy as a means to exercise thought, but also as specific knowledge on contemporary Western philosophy.
The second objective – directly linked to the previous one and aimed at equipping students with the “abilities” and "ways of doing" that are needed for their future teching profession – is to guide them in their learning of how to teach philosophy.
The third objective – more specifically connected to the holistic education of the students – aims to the develop: 1) students' critical thinking regarding our contemporary world; 2) students' ability to reflect autonomously; 3) students' speculative creativity.
It is necessary that students have foundational knowledge of the history of philosophy from Plato to modern times, with particular reference to the period ranging from the 19th Century to contemporary times.
The main topic of the study-unit is THE BODY - epistemological paradigm for the analysis of the different historical-philosophical perspectives and the peculiar vision of contemporary times
The study-unit is divided into three phases:
a)in the first three weeks a sort of preliminary 'history of philosophy' will be elaborated; starting from Plato and the analysis of some parts of "Phaedrus", some extracts from the Letters of St. Paul and others from the "Passions of the soul" by Descartes (all the extracts will be provided by the Professor), the analysis will concern the understanding of the body during the different historical periods until modernity;
b) in the following two weeks – in the wake of the historical-philosophical process - the "epistemological shift" that took place in the 19th century with the advent of biology will be taken into consideration; Hegel's connected reflections will be analyzed (in particular in the Phenomenology of spirit), to then draw particular attention to the development of philosophical thought, starting from Nietzsche and Freud, precisely in order to underline the clear discontinuity that begins to emerge within the general ontological perspective;
c)in the following six weeks, Merleau-Ponty’s approach will be analyzed, as he has dedicated specific and relevant attention to the issue of the body, in the Phenomenology of perception, so as to give rise to a "new ontology" that marks our current vision of things .
Teaching Methods
Attendance to lectures is not compulsory. However, it is highly recommended. In addition to the 36 lecture hours envisaged, an additional 8 hours of further activities are planned for those wishing to attend.
During the 36 hours students will be guided to read some parts of the textbooks in a critical way and they will be asked to give personal comments.
During the the 8 optional hours students will be given the possibility to: 1) take part in some lectures of professors from other departments or other universities on "Didactics of Philosophy"; 2) watch some artistic videos in which the body becomes a “place” for questioning traditional categories; 3) attend a performance at the University Theater on dance (as art of the body) - in collaboration with Prof. Pina De Luca (DISPAC), professor of Aesthetics.
Verification of learning
Oral exam. The students can agree with the Professor if they wish to take formative tests during the course (useful to reduce the study-load for the final exam).
The final oral exam consists of a discussion of the duration of 15/20 minutes, depending on the students’ preparation. The oral exam takes place in two stages.
The first question will always focus on a theme chosen by the student - in order to verify his/her level of preparation, maturity and autonomy in the ability to choose and adequately argue, with logical-deductive abilities, the theme that he/she found most interesting.
The following questions will be aimed to ascertain a) the level of knowledge reached; b) the ability to use the contents learned in the future profession.

Students not attending the lectures will prepare an overall written report, of not less than 7 pages, on Plato's Phaedrus and on Merleau-Ponty's Phenomenology of perception. The first part of the oral exam will be based on this report.
Extracts from the following books will be provided by the Professor
Plato, Fedro
S. Paolo, Lettere
R. Descartes, Le passioni dell’anima
F. W. Hegel, Fenomenologia dello spirito – only the part on “Antigone”
Students need to acquire the following book:
M. Merleau-Ponty, Fenomenologia della percezione, first part, “Il corpo”
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