Loyola University Chicago

Department of Philosophy

PHIL 319: Studies in Philosophy and Literature

PHIL 319: Studies in Philosophy and Literature

The Generic Catalog Description

A study of selected works of literature and a discussion of philosophical issues in relation to these works. Issues such as the nature of literary work, the relations of philosophical and literary language, and methods of interpretation may be studied.

PHIL 319: Studies in Philosophy and Literature: Love and Beauty

The course examines beauty and love as analyzed by philosophers and as depicted passionately by creative writers.  In Part One, postmodern writers like Foucault and Lyotard set up beauty and love as cultural constructs.  The structure of beauty and love experiences may be universal, but their content is socially constructed.  Part Two deconstructs the western views of beauty and love with the help of philosophers like Plato and Hume and stories like the Legend of Tristan and Iseult and Madame Bovary.  In Part Three, students utilize the analytical skills developed in the course to deconstruct Aania.  Part Four presents alternative views of beauty and love with selections from Beauty: The Sources, C.S. Lewis’s Four Loves, and C.G. Jung’s writings on depth psychology.  The stories for this section are Hesse, Demian, and Mayer, Beauty and the Beast.  In Part Five, students re-construct beauty and love in a final exam paper and 30-minute oral.  The reconstruction of beauty and love, it is hoped, will stay with students the rest of their lives.  

Required Work: My teaching style is to lead students through regular, graded, thinking exercises that include quizzes, short papers, in class essays, group discussions and presentations, individual presentations, dramatizations, and so on.  In other words, students must prepare for graded performance activities in each class.