cod. 1005329

Academic year 2013/14
2° year of course - Second semester
Academic discipline
Storia della filosofia (M-FIL/06)
Storia della filosofia
Type of training activity
30 hours
of face-to-face activities
6 credits
course unit
in - - -

Learning objectives

The discipline of History of Ideas studies the philosophical and scientific thought and its connections in the historical, political and even artistic fields. Its research is mainly carried out by reading and analysing classic texts of Western thought. The aim is reaching a full understanding and evaluation of the texts, also referring on critical literature (D. 1). In other words, History of Ideas is a philosophical subject on an interdisciplinary basis, and it allows to discover the connections between different fields. So it contributes to the achievement of independence of judgment and also provides the conceptual tools to consider and evaluate the complex contemporary issues (D. 2). The aims of the course include a critical approach to philosophical concepts and to the texts (D. 3), to be able to explain the content of them and discuss them (D. 4), and ultimately to strengthen the ability to learn (D. 5).


None specific competence required. It is required some general knowledge of the major historical events and philosophical movements of the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.

Course unit content

History of Ideas (M-Fil/06) 6 cfu
The History of Ideas course will be about the historical development of the philosophical and dynamic idea of Psyche in Freud and Bergson. The first lessons will be about a general introduction to History of Ideas and then we will consider the concept of psyche as progressive revelation of unconscious. The second part of the course will be about the birth of Psychoanalysis and Freudian research, from a philosophical point of view. The last part will be dedicated to Bergson’s philosophy and his theory of ‘élan vital’, as creative impulse. We will study the concept of artistic pulse compared with Freud’s philosophy.

Full programme

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- S. Freud, L’interpretazione del sogni, Torino, Bollati Boringhieri 1993 (pp. 109-129, 551-560 and other pages).
- H. Bergson, L’evoluzione creatrice, a cura di F. Polidori, Milano, R. Cortina 2002 (pp. 1-24, 77-127, 149-154, 195-222, 244-274).
- H. Bergson, Ipnosi e fantasmi, Roma, Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura 2012.
- P. Janet, L’automatismo psicologico. Saggio di psicologia sperimentale sulle forme inferiori dell’attività umana, Milano, R. Cortina 2013 (chapters to establish during the course).
- H.F. Ellenberger, La scoperta dell’inconscio. Storia della psichiatria dinamica, Torino, Bollati Boringhieri 2003 (vol. I, pp. 297-333).
- G. Scarpelli, Ingegno e congegno. Sentieri incrociati di filosofia e scienza, Roma, Edizioni di Storia e Letteratura 2011 (chapters 1, 3, 11, 12, 13, 14, 16, 17).

More readings (one text chosen from the following):
- V. Jankélévitch, Debussy e il mistero, Milano, SE 2012 (100 pages of your choice).
- V. Jankélévitch, Bergson, Milano, SE, book in press (100 pages of your choice).
- R. Corsa, Edoardo Weiss a Trieste con Freud. Alle origini della psicoanalisi italiana, Roma, Alpes 2013 (all the text).
- W.V. Harris, Due son le porte dei sogni. L’esperienza onirica nel mondo antico, Bari-Roma, Laterza 2013 (250 pages of your choice).

Books recommended (not required):
- A. La Vergata e F. Trabattoni, Filosofia e Cultura, Scandicci, La Nuova Italia 2007, vol. 3b, Il Novecento, pp. 68-86 e 125-136.
- M. Lavagetto, Freud, la letteratura e altro, Torino, Einaudi 2001.
- O. Sacks, L’occhio della mente, Milano, Adelphi 2013.
- E. Lisciani-Petrini, Il suono incrinato. Musica e filosofia nel primo Novecento, Torino, Einaudi 2001.
- G. Guidorizzi, Il compagno dell’anima. I greci e il sogno, Milano R. Cortina 2013.

Teaching methods

Frontal lessons. Lecture and discussion of texts.

Assessment methods and criteria

Final verbal examination. It will be judged the level of learning, the ability to discuss the contents of the course and the critical analysis of the texts, and lexical competences.

Other information

Some more materials will be provided during the course, including the screening of a film.