Syllabus of “A History of Modern Western Philosophy”

A History of Modern Western Philosophy

Syllabus for

Islamic College for Advanced Studies (ICAS)


Dr. F. Budi Hardiman

Description of the Lecture

Modern science, technology and life style cannot be understood without understanding the intellectual background of our modernity. The discourse on scientific truth, secularization, and rationality is based on the intellectual and promethean struggle of the modern western philosopher against what so called “metaphysics”. This lecture focuses on the three characteristics of modern worldview, i.e. the idea of subjectivity, the concept of critique and the idea of progress. So, the modern western philosophy is called “philosophy of consciousness” or “philosophy of the subject” by the contemporary philosophers. The lecture surveys the main doctrines of major modern philosophers.

Lecture Aims

  1. To understand the main thought of the greatest modern western philosophers
  2. To comment critically their thought in the light of our contemporary intellectual context.


Seminar with presentation and class discussion


  1. Presentation: The participants choose a theme and explain it in the seminar [30%]
  2. Final test (written): consists of two themes about two philosophers, i.e. first one that can be formulated voluntary by the participants and the second one that comes from the lecturer [30%]
  3. Final Paper: The participant describes a selected theme. The paper is a 2-5 pages description on the thought of a modern philosopher, e.g. about the doctrine of substance according to Spinoza, the meaning of “existence” according to Kierkegaard or Kant’s critique on metaphysics etc. The participant may use references but he/she must write in his/her own words (how simple they are). [40%]
  4. Your presence in the lecture (75%) as a condition for your end-result

Lecture Program

1. Introduction: Renaissance, Reformation and the Rise of modern Thought

2. Rene Descartes and Rationalism

3. John Locke and Empiricism

4. Immanuel Kant: Critique of Pure Reason

5. Immanuel Kant: Critique of Practical Reason

6. German Idealism: Fichte and Schelling

7. German Idealism: G.W.F. Hegel

8. Karl Marx and Materialism

9. Auguste Comte and French Positivism

10. Arthur Schopenhauer and the Metaphysics of the Will

11. Soren Kierkegaard and Existentialism

12. Friedrich Nietzsche and the Limit of Modernity

13. Final Test


Handbook: F. Budi Hardiman, Filsafat Modern. Dari Machiavelli sampai Nietzsche, Gamedia, Jakarta, 2004

Berlin, Isaiah, The Age of Enlightenment. The 18th Century Philosophers, New York, 1976

Briton, Crane, The Shaping of the modern Mind, Mentor Books, New York, 1958

Budi Hardiman, F., Filsafat Modern. Dari Machiavelli sampai Nietzsche, GPU, Jakarta, 2004

Copleston, Fridrich, A History of Philosophy, Volume IV (From Descartes to Leibniz) , London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1958

Copleston, Fridrich, a History of Philosophy, Volume V (From Hobbes to Hume), London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1959

Copleston, Fridrich, A History of Philosophy, Volume VI (From Wolff to Kant), London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1960

Copleston, Fridrich, A History of Philosophy, Volume VII (From Fichte to Nietzsche) , London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1963

Copleston, Fridrich, A History of Philosophy, Volume IX (From Maine de Biran to Sartre), London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1974

Copleston, Friedrich, Friedrich Nietzsche. A Philosopher of Culture, London, Burns Dates & Washbourne Ltd, 1975

Delius, Christoph, Geschichte der Philosophie. Von der Antike bis Heute, Koenemann, Koeln, 2000

Hamersma, Harry, Tokoh-tokoh Filsafat Barat Modern, Jakarta, Gramedia, 1986

Hampshire, Stuart, The Age of Reason. The 17th Century Philosophers, New York, Mentor Books, 1958

Huunex, Milton D., Chronological and Thematic Charts of Philosophies and Philosophers, Michigan, Academie Books, 1986

Jones, W.T., A History of Western Philosophers. Kant to Wittgenstein, New York, Harcourt, Brace & World Inc., New York, 1969

Kant, Immanuel, Die Drei Kritiken. In ihrem Zusammenhang mit dem Gesamtwerk, (disunting oleh Raymund Schmidt), Kroener Verlag, Stuttgart,1993

Kaufmann, Walter, Nietzsche. Philosopher, Psychologist, Antichrist, Princeton University Press, 1974


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