New: The Philosophy Of Jean-Paul Sarte

Everyone knows Sartres name and the movement of Existentialist philosophy he inspired, but how many have actually read his major tome Being and Nothingness (1943)? This course presents you with the opportunity to read and discuss the book from start to finish over 12 weeks. Starting with a discussion of his early work on Husserl and phenomenology, the course will then dive into Sartres central theories about nothingness, freedom, bad faith, temporality, the gaze, sexuality and resistance to oppression. Along the way, we will assess Sartres influence on Lacan, Deleuze and Badiou, and look ahead to the emergence of Marxist Existentialism in Sartres later, underrated classic, the Critique of Dialectical Reason (1960).

Who is this course for

This course is for anyone who is prepared to have a go at reading Sartre's 600 page tome Being and Nothingness over the course of three months. Some previous knowledge of phenomenology would be useful, but is not essential. It would be an ideal continuation course for students who have previously studied on our Intermediate level courses and who now want a course that will look at the work of a particular philosopher in some depth.

What does this course cover

The first sessions will discuss the influence of Husserl's Phenomenology on Sartre, but the course is focused on a reading of Sartre's Being and Nothingness. By the end of the course, students should be able to understand the basic ideas of Sartre's ontology, key concepts such as bad faith and the gaze, and the essential features of the Existentialist approach to freedom.

What will it be like

Sessions will generally begin with a 25 minute presentation, then move to the analysis of texts, and open out from there into a general discussion of the ideas covered. We will assess your expectations of the course in the first sessions. Thereafter, you will be able to monitor your progress on the course through participation in class discussion. At the end of the course, you will be able to measure your progress against the stated outcomes for the course.

What else do you need to buy or do

All you need is a copy of Sartre's Being and Nothingness. There is only one translation (by Hazel Barnes), and it does not matter what edition of the text you bring.

What this course could lead to

Other Advanced level Philosophy courses at the Mary Ward Centre or other similar establishments. Other courses in the Humanities and Social Sciences with a strong emphasis on theory and the study of the mind and human behaviour (e.g., Psychology, Economics, Sociology, Anthropology, History).

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I've been to many Centres to study in London and the Mary Ward Centre is one of the nicest I've studied in.

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Got a Question about this Course?

Contact The Departmental Administrator.

Why come to Mary Ward Centre?

Mary Ward Centre is the adult education centre with a difference. We provide a wide range of subjects for people at all levels and run courses during the day, evening or weekend to suit your timetable.

Get inspired and enjoy excellent teaching in an environment where each individual’s learning experience is valued. That’s what makes Mary Ward Centre ‘the friendly place to learn.’