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PHIL 376 Early Modern European Philosophy

This course concentrates on the period of time in which what people call "the modern world view" was formed. With the dawn of modern science, the centuries old grip of Aristotle and the Church was broken and replaced by a fundamentally new philosophy that was responsive to the new science and assisted in its defense. We will study selected thinkers of the period from the 16th to the 19th centuries: Descartes, Locke, Hume, Kant, and others. The course also pays attention to the role of race, gender and colonialism in the thought of these philosophers.
4 Undergraduate credits

Effective January 27, 2000 to present

Meets graduation requirements for

Learning outcomes


  • Analyze and critique philosophical works drawn from that period of time in which what people often call ¿the modern world view¿ was formed, focusing on Descartes, Locke, Hume, Kant and others.
  • Assess particularly, the role of race, gender and colonialism in the philosophical thought that emerged at this historical moment.
  • Locate these works in the political, social and economic contexts in which they were created, and explore how, in turn, these works were constitutive of ensuing philosophical traditions, understanding, at an advanced collegiate level, the complex relation between these contexts and intellectual work.

Minnesota Transfer Curriculum

Goal 6: The Humanities and Fine Arts

  • Demonstrate awareness of the scope and variety of works in the arts and humanities.
  • Understand those works as expressions of individual and human values within a historical and social context.
  • Respond critically to works in the arts and humanities.
  • Engage in the creative process or interpretive performance.
  • Articulate an informed personal reaction to works in the arts and humanities.

Fall 2023

Section Title Instructor books eservices
50 Early Modern European Philosophy Atchison, Thomas C Books for PHIL-376-50 Fall 2023 Course details for PHIL-376-50 Fall 2023