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Ideas of Freedom (PH132-15)

Timing & CATS

This module runs in the Autumn Term and from 2017-18 will be worth 15 CATS.

Module Description

The module aims to help students understand and engage critically with some of the central debates on freedom in modern philosophy, in the areas of political philosophy, ethics, philosophy of mind and metaphysics. It will involve a study of a selection of key texts. The module also aims to foster an understanding of the interrelations between problems relating to freedom as they are considered in these areas of philosophy and across different historical periods.

Learning Outcomes or Aims

By the end of the module the student should have a good analytic and historical understanding of core debates about the nature of freedom in several areas: politics, ethics, aesthetics, metaphysics and philosophy of mind

Contact Time

Students must attend 2 hours of lectures and 1 hour of seminars per week.

Lectures for 2017-18
  • Thursday 12pm to 1pm in LIB2
  • Friday 2pm to 3pm in L5

There will be no lectures in reading week (week 6)

Seminars for 2017-18

Seminars start in week 2 and run for the rest of the term

There will be no seminars in reading week (week 6)

Please sign up for a seminar group using Tabula.

Assessment Methods

This module can be assessed in the following ways:

  • 1 x 1,500 word essay (worth 15% of the module)
  • 1 x 2-hour exam (worth 85% of the module)

Background Reading and Textbooks

The course covers many different areas in philosophy. Under course materials you will find readings for each lecture. However, you may find the following collections and textbooks particulary useful as general background.

Gary Watson (ed.) (1982) Free Will. Oxford Readings in Philosophy. Oxford: OUP.

Tom Pink (2004) Free Will: A very short introduction. Oxford Paperbacks.

David Miller, ed. The Liberty Reader, EUP (A good collection of readings)


From October 2016 course materials will be available on Moodle. Simply sign in and select the module from your Moodle home page.

Module tutor:

Professor Naomi Eilan

n dot eilan at warwick dot ac dot uk