Not currently offered
Course code



10 units


2000 level

Course handbook


Examines a number of issues in philosophical theology which came to the fore in the medieval and early modern periods. Issues to be discussed may include proofs for the existence of God, the nature of deity, God's knowledge of the future and predestination, the nature of religion, the relation of religion and science, and the sources of the concept of deity. Philosophers and theologians to be considered in the discussion of one or more of these issues may include St Thomas Aquinas, Luther, Calvin, Lord Herbert of Cherbury, Descartes, the Cambridge Platonists, Locke and Hume.


Not currently offered.

This Course was last offered in Semester 1 - 2016.

Learning outcomes

On successful completion of the course students will be able to:

1. Demonstrate familiarity with, and knowledge of, the main issues addressed and approaches taken by Western philosophers and theologians in the medieval and early modern periods.

2. Demonstrate critical skills to deal with these issues in their historical forms and to prepare them to employ these approaches in their assessment of the current philosophical discussion of these matters.

3. Develop high level written and oral skills in understanding and presenting philosophical issues in their historical contexts.

4. Develop an understanding and appreciation of the ways in which historical context can help generate but not exhaust the ways in which an issue can appear and reappear in the history of philosophy.


The content focuses on the presentation of particular issues in philosophical theology as they came into prominence in the medieval and early modern period.

The issues are those surrounding the existence, nature, and attributes of God, the source of the concept of God, the nature of religion, ways of understanding the relation between God and the created order from a scientific perspective.

There will be some variation in emphases within this framework from year to year as appropriate to student needs.

The lectures and discussions in class will focus on:

  • interpreting the texts,
  • examining the philosophic issues,
  • discussing how the historical context helps shape the issues, and
  • indicating the contemporary relevance of the matters discussed.


This course replaces PHIL3030. If you have successfully completed PHIL3030 you cannot enrol in this course.

Assumed knowledge

At least 10 units of PHIL courses at 1000 level, or 40 units of any courses at any level.

Assessment items

Essay: Essays