History of Medieval Philosophy

Fall 2002

Marist College

Greg Moses

Course Description: In this course, we will explore two texts that explore self-knowledge, two texts that explore the knowledge of God, and two mystical explorations of reality.

Outcomes: By the end of the course, students should be able to articulate a critical appreciation for some issues that characterized inquiry during the medieval period of philosophy.

Assessment: Participation, papers, and portfolios will provide regular opportunities to assess student development.

Required Texts (in order of use):

  • Augustine. Confessions. Image Doubleday, 1960.
  • Sankara. Self-Knowledge. Ramakrishna-Vivekananda Center, 1974.
  • Anselm. Major Works. Oxford UP, 1998.
  • David B. Burrell. Knowing the Unknowable God. Notre Dame, 1986.
  • Catherine of Siena. The Dialogue. Paulist, 1980.
  • Gershom Scholem. Zohar: The Book of Splendor. Schocken, 1977.

Course Requirements: The final grade will be based upon the following components:

  • 40% Midterm Portfolio & Participation
  • 60% Final Portfolio & Participation

Attendance Policy: Documentation will be accepted within two weeks of an excused absence. More than two undocumented absences will result in deduction of a letter grade from the final average. More than three undocumented absences, two letter grades. More than four undocumented absences, and the instructor reserves the right to issue a failing grade.

Late Grades: Preparations and assignments should arrive in class with the student. Any preparations or assignments not accompanied by students to class will be marked "late" or "absent" with a grade penalty.

Weather: If the College announces official closing for weather, we will cancel class accordingly. Otherwise, class will be held. Please call the College Weather Line x5500.

Schedule of inquiry:

Sept. 3—Introduction & selection of video

For each of the following class sessions prepare two pages typed and double-spaced (a) summarizing
what you take to be the essential lessons of the readings, and (b) evaluating some part of the lesson.

Sept. 10—Confessions (43-112)

Sept. 17—Confessions (113-180)

Sept. 24--Confessions (181-275)

Oct. 1--Confessions (277-370)

Oct. 8—Self-Knowledge (Passages 1-34)

Oct. 15— Self-Knowledge (Passages 35-68)
Midterm Portfolio Due
In addition to the usual two-page preparation, please write a midterm reflection of two
pages, pulling together your own reflections on the question of self-knowledge as they have
been affected by the texts. Work is due at the beginning of class for workshop purposes.
Penalties for lateness or absence will apply.

Oct. 22—Anselm's Proslogion (84-104)

Oct. 29—Anselm's On Truth (152-174)

Nov. 5— Anselm's De Concordia (435-474)

Nov. 12— Burrell (Chs. 1-3)

Nov. 19— Burrell (Chs. 4-6)

Nov. 26— Zohar

Dec. 5—Introducing Siena's Dialogue (25-63)

Dec. 12—Siena on Tears & Truth (161-204)

Final—Revisiting, Reflecting, Recollecting
Add to your semester's portfolio a four-page reflection on the meaning and value of studying
these Medieval texts. Work is due at the beginning of the final period. Penalties for lateness
or absence will apply.
Portfolios Due of All Class Work

Contact Information

Fontaine 322
Home: 473-4737

Ofc. Hrs.: MTWR 1-3