Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin - Philosophy, Science and the Sciences

Humboldt-Universität zu Berlin | Department of Philosophy | Philosophy, Science and the Sciences | hpold | Courses | Summer Semester 2012 | HS Curriculum Platonicum: Ancient and late ancient theories of place and space

HS Curriculum Platonicum: Ancient and late ancient theories of place and space

Helmig, Christoph

Fri. 10-12, FRS 191, 4031

This course is devoted to the study and comparison of ancient and late ancient theories of place and space. We will start with Plato’s Timaeus and its theory of chōra, which is a kind of ‘space-matter’, and then proceed to Aristotle’s Physics IV, 1-5. Next, we will analyze Hellenistic theories of place and space (Stoics, Epicurus, Sextus Empiricus). The last part of the course will focus on late ancient Neoplatonic interpretations of Plato and Aristotle, in particular, the so-called corollaria on the concept of topos by Philoponos and Simplicius. Our main concern will be TO FIND OUT how a certain theory of place / space deals with basic physical phenomena such as movement, time, and the vacuum.

The relevant literature will be announced in the first session of the course. Students should read Timaeus 47e-53c and Physics IV, 1-5 before the first meeting.

  • Platon, Werke, in acht Bänden, griechisch und deutsch, hrsg. von G. Eigler, Wissenschaftliche Buchgesellschaft: Darmstadt.

  • Aristoteles, Physik, hrsg. von H.G. Zekl, Meiner Verlag: Hamburg.

These texts will available from the secretary of the Classics Department and on moodle. (To get the password, send an email to christoph.helmig@topoi.org.)