Makers of Modern Thought

Ref: C2228482

An exploration of the lives, ideas and legacies of some important thinkers both past and present and East and West. Diverse contributions from the fields of science, religion, politics and culture will be connected by placement within a philosophical framework of understanding. Major figures from Classical antiquity will include Socrates, Plato, Confucius, Buddha, Jesus and Muhammad: from the Renaissance- Aquinas, Galileo, Luther and Shakespeare: from the Enlightenment- Descartes, Newton, Voltaire, Paine and Wollstonecraft: from more modern times Darwin, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, Einstein and Wittgenstein. The course will seek to draw out the issues, questions and answers which continue to shape thinking in today's world.

Course aim

MAKERS of MODERN THOUGHT is an introduction to key thinkers who have shaped the understanding of ourselves and the world.

Do I need any particular skills or experience?

  • This course is for beginners and improvers
  • A general interest in news, current affairs, history, science and religious ideas will be an advantage. TV Documentaries by Bethany Hughes, Mary Beard and others are useful.

By the end of the course I should be able to:

  • Identify and comment upon a philosopher from Antiquity e.g. Plato, Buddha
  • Identify and comment upon a philosopher from the Renaissance period e.g. Galileo, Luther
  • Identify and comment upon a philosopher from the Enlightenment period e.g. Descartes, Paine, Voltaire
  • Identify and comment upon a philosopher from modern times e.g. Darwin, Marx, Freud
  • Comment upon the nature and importance of philosophy past and present.

How will I be taught?

What kind of feedback can I expect?

What else do I need to know?

Material (slides) will be available on Canvas after each session. Notes will be available on paper and on Canvas but do make your own! Books about the key thinkers and philosophy are easily located. Some links to video material will be available on Canvas too.

Pre-course work, reading and information sources

What can I do next?

View full course information sheet

Makers of Modern Thought

Enrolment Conditions

As a registered charity, and to meet our funders’ requirements, we need to check a few things with you before you enrol. Please check the details below to ensure you meet the basic eligibility critiera:

  • You are paying the standard fee (with a credit or debit card) or you are on any of the qualifying benefits
  • You have a valid email address so that you can receive confirmation of your booking
  • You have been resident in the UK, EU or EEA for the last 3 years
  • You are aged 19 years or older on 1st September 2021
  • You declare that the address you provide is correct and that you will provide evidence of this and your eligibility to live and work in the UK
  • You have read and accept our standard terms and conditions

Not sure or have further questions? Contact courseenquiries@wea.org.uk

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