Existentialism: Philosophy and Literature
Not available in 2012
Students will engage with the philosophy and fiction of Jean-Paul Sartre. The texts studied will include the following English-language translations: Being and Nothingness (London: Routledge, 1993), Nausea (London: Penguin, 2000) and The Wall (New York: New Directions, 1975).
Students will learn to analyse philosophically and negotiate critically various aspects of the Sartrean account of human existence; they will also reflect on Sartre's position within the main movements of twentieth-century French literature, including Modernism, Surrealism and Postmodernism.
Upon successful completion of this course, students will have demonstrated an ability to:
- demonstrate an understanding of existentialist thought;
- analyse both philosophical and literary texts;
- challenge their understanding of existence;
- reflect on the broader philosophical and literary contexts into which Sartre's writing fits;
- perform textual criticism, challenging existing meanings and understandings of canonical texts and offering their own interpretations of primary material;
- develop research skills by engaging with secondary material;
- analyse the ways in which world-views are moulded by society's control structures.
The Philosophy of Existentialism, including: the notions of absurdity, contingency and freedom, being for itself, authenticity & bad faith.
Sartre's seminal novel Nausea as embodying existential and phenomenological themes.
The fictional representations of Existentialism in The Wall and other works;
Consideration of the literature of Existentialism in relation to Surrealism, Modernism & Postmodernism.
Students who have completed ENGL3015 may not enrol in this course
20 units of Philosophy at 1000 level.
Modes of Delivery
Lecture: for 2 hour(s) per Week for Full Term