Basic Program of Liberal Education

Courses

Quarter
Day(s)
Black-and-white photograph of philosopher Ludwig Wittgenstein.
BASC80019 Summer

Against Explanation: Wittgenstein on Frazer Against Explanation: Wittgenstein on Frazer

One of the few truly great thinkers of the last century, Wittgenstein’s genius is perhaps nowhere more fully on display than in the collection of strange, enigmatic, and provocative comments published...

First-edition dust jacket cover of Against Interpretation (1966) by Susan Sontag.
BASC80018 Summer

Against Interpretation: Susan Sontag and the Erotics of Art Against Interpretation: Susan Sontag and the Erotics of Art

"To interpret is to impoverish, to deplete the world—in order to set up a shadow world of ‘meanings," Sontag proclaims in her brilliant and inciting "Against Interpretation." "Away with all duplicates...

The painting "St. Augustine Reading the Epistle of St Paul" by Benozzo Gozzoli.
BASC80017 Summer

Augustine's De Magistro Augustine's De Magistro

Augustine's De Magistro. an Augustinian dialogue picking up on central insights of the Meno and trying to wrestle them into the neo-platonic/christian paradigm.

Image of woman student in classroom.
BASC10404 Summer

Basic Program Year 1 Makeup Course Basic Program Year 1 Makeup Course

This course is for students who need to make up the Year 1 Autumn Quarter of the Basic Program of Liberal Education for Adults to complete the certificate.
We recommend that new students to the Basic...

Red carpet under a spotlight with velvet ropes
BASC70157 Summer

Criticism of Films - Its Philosophical Bases and Practices: Critiquing the Critics Criticism of Films - Its Philosophical Bases and Practices: Critiquing the Critics

We are frequently told that “beauty is in the eye of the beholder.” One problem with this formulation is that it raises the question, “Are there any criteria—universal or particular—for value...

Engraving from Rousseau's Emile
BASC70149 Summer

Education and Utopia Education and Utopia

This course examines the relationship between schemes of education and utopian projects for human life, mostly by way of a sustained, close reading of Jean-Jacque Rousseau's Emile, or On Education...

Photo of statue of Plato
BASC70130 Summer

Freedom, Morality and Rationality in Contemporary Philosophy Freedom, Morality and Rationality in Contemporary Philosophy

Over roughly the last 50 years, philosophers writing in English have made groundbreaking contributions to conversations in ethics and the philosophy of action that stretch back to Plato and Aristotle...

On the left: the first-edition front cover of the novel Nineteen Eighty-Four. On the right: a black-and-white photograph of George Orwell.
BASC80020 Summer

George Orwell’s 1984  George Orwell’s 1984 

You read it as a kid. Now understand it as an adult. You’ll be sorry when you’re done (but in a good way). Please read Part One prior to the first class.

Impressionistic painting of a ballroom dance scene
BASC70155 Summer

Great Short Stories of Tolstoy Great Short Stories of Tolstoy

Leo Tolstoy is one of the world's great storytellers. this collection, we will explore works ranging from 1862 to 1905 from "The Cossacks" through the great "Hadji Murad" and "Alyosha the Pot." They...

Closeup of two hands on the pages of an open book.
BASC70059 Summer | Autumn | Winter | Spring

How to Read Classic Texts How to Read Classic Texts

Looking to read deeper? Close reading—zeroing in on a text’s words, sentences, and syntax—has the power to transform a text and reveal new meaning. In this introductory-level course, learners will tap...