Policing the Body

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Together at last, two thinkers who attempted, by different routes, to step outside of the history of philosophy by realizing it in concrete practices of life. This course will return us to two of the major, nineteenth-century theoretical edifices that continue to shape the intellectual space we inhabit. Our course will reconstruct the respective worldviews of Marx and Nietzsche through a close reading of their major works. We will situate their thought within the history of philosophy more generally, as well as discuss how their perspectives can be brought to bear on our present. Special attention will be paid to their conceptions of truth, history, politics, morality, art, as well as the nature and practice of philosophy. We will trace the intellectual development of each thinker, while comparing, contrasting, and evaluating their often-antagonistic proposals. Seminar participants will be required to purchase and read the basic writings of Marx and Nietzsche, conduct independent research, and complete a series of research papers.