Contemporary philosophy is often approached as an abstract and problem-driven discipline, but many great philosophers of history saw themselves as giving practical advice on how to achieve happiness — practices and worldviews that were meant to directly improve the lives of those who immerse themselves in the systems. This Institute aims to equip college professors to develop effective curricula for teaching philosophy as a way of life.
Faculty will spend half of the Institute studying key texts in Stoicism, Buddhism, Ancient Skepticism and other “way of life’’ traditions in sessions led by expert scholars. The remainder will be dedicated to finding effective and innovative assignments to help undergraduate students “try out” these teachings. We will critically examine the arguments behind these proposals. Participants will build a complete syllabus tailored to the needs and interests of their college or university. And we will build professional relationships that will help to sustain and invigorate this approach to philosophy.