Literature and Theories of Knowledge (Literature Elective; US)

Linda Johnson

Grades 11–12

In this philosophy-based literature course, students develop a coherent approach to learning and understanding through thoughtful inquiry into different ways of knowing and different types of knowledge. They focus on how reality is perceived, with emphases on Plato’s and Aristotle’s doctrines. Students question their assumptions about reality through diverse philosophical and literary texts, and try to answer this seminal question: What level of certainty, if any, can I assign to a given assertion of knowledge? Through diverse readings in various genres, students reflect on their own experiences as learners and discover how different academic disciplines are interconnected. They read literary works that explore realms of knowledge spanning the arts to mathematics, and make connections between and across ways of knowing and areas of knowledge. They read a combination of excerpts from philosophical works and complete works from various literary genres, including Aristotle, Cantor, Descartes, Frege, Gödel, Heidegger, Hume, Kierkegaard, Kant, Leibniz, Locke, Machiavelli, Maimonides, Nietzsche, Pascal, Plato, Rousseau, Russell, Sartre, and Wittgenstein.

Summer:
Watch: Andy and Lana Wachowski, The Matrix
Nolan, Inception

Texts:
    Carroll, Through The Looking Glass
    Doxiadis, Logicomix: Epic Search for Truth
    Hesse, Narcissus and Goldmund
    Mann, Death in Venice
    Murakami, Hard-Boiled Wonderland and the End of the World
    Machiavelli, The Prince

 

  • Humanities/Language Arts

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