Seminar on Freedom and Free Will

Organised by PhD students Fabio Tononi and Vito Guida.

Second Tuesday of the month | October 2019-June 2020 | 16:30-17:30 | Warburg Classroom 2

Freedom is an important and yet precarious idea. A seminar devoted to a multifaceted discussion of the notion of freedom and free will, as argued through four key texts from the medieval to the early modern period, is therefore both appropriate and timely. In different forms, the same concerns and anxieties articulated by Augustine, Anselm, Thomas and Spinoza are voiced today. Participants will engage with the ideas that have shaped Christian theology and philosophy through the centuries, and, prompted by the texts, will gain a fuller appreciation of the issues at stake. 

The Seminar will focus on the concepts of freedom and free will by analysing four key-texts: 

  • On Grace and Free Will [De gratia et libero arbitrio] (426 or 427), by Augustine of Hippo (354–430 AD)
  • On the Freedom of Choice [De Libertate Arbitrii] (1080–1086), by Anselm of Canterbury (1033/4–1109)
  • Summa Theologica (1265–1274), by Thomas Aquinas (1225–1274)
  • Ethics (1664–1665), by Baruch Spinoza (1632–1677)

Participants will be provided with extracts in advance.

The Seminar is open to postgraduate students. If you would like to attend, please email Fabio Tononi: fabio.tononi@postgrad.sas.ac.uk.

Date
Text
Time
Room
8 October 2019 Augustine of Hippo, On Grace and Free Will (I,1-VIII,20) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
12 November 2019 Augustine of Hippo, On Grace and Free Will (IX, 21-XVI,32) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
10 December 2019 Augustine of Hippo, On Grace and Free Will (XVII,33-XXIV,46) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
14 January 2020 Anselm of Canterbury, On the Freedom of Choice (Chapters I-VII) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
11 February 2020 Anselm of Canterbury, On the Freedom of Choice (Chapters VIII-XIV) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
10 March 2020 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica (First Part, Question 19. The will of God). 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
7 April 2020 Thomas Aquinas, Summa Theologica (First Part, Question 82. The will, Question 83. Free-will) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
12 May 2020 Baruch Spinoza, Ethics (Part V. Concerning the Power of the Intellect or Human Freedom, Propositions I-XXI) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2
9 June 2020 Baruch Spinoza, Ethics (Part V. Concerning the Power of the Intellect or Human Freedom, Propositions XXII-XLII) 4.30pm - 5.30pm Warburg Classroom 2