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Comparative Philosophy I: Classical Readings


Admission requirements

Admission to this course is restricted to:

  • BA students in Philosophy: Global and Comparative Perspectives.


This is a course in close reading of two philosophical texts from two Chinese traditions: Analects and Zhuangzi. Both are read in translation with a strong focus on their philosophical reasoning and argumentation.

Course objectives

Students who successfully complete the course will have a good understanding of:

  • The insights of the selected text or texts.

Students who successfully complete the course will be able to:

  • Engage with philosophical reasoning and arguments presented by the authors of the texts;

  • Understand and reconstruct philosophical positions and arguments from philosophical texts;

  • Express, critique and defend these positions and arguments, both orally and in writing;

  • Develop skills in textual analysis through close, guided readings;

  • Improve their ability to interact with philosophical ideas, both in active participation during class, and in written work in the form of (take home) exams.


The timetables are available through My Timetable.

Mode of instruction

  • Seminars

Class attendance is required.

Assessment method


  • Mid-term in-class sit-down examination (40%)

  • An open-book written examination (take home) exam with one or more essay questions (50%)

  • Regular punctual attendance, thorough preparation of reading material, and continuous participation (10%)


The final mark for the course is established by determining the weighted average of the subtests.


The resit consists of one take home examination with one or more essay questions, covering the entire course content. No separate resits will be offered for mid-term or final tests. The mark for the resit will replace all previously earned marks for subtests.

Class attendance is a mandatory requirement for taking the resit.
Students who have obtained a satisfactory grade for the first examination(s) cannot take the resit.

Inspection and feedback

How and when an exam review will take place will be disclosed together with the publication of the exam results at the latest. If a student requests a review within 30 days after publication of the exam results, an exam review will have to be organized.

Reading list

These two books are mandatory for this course:

  • Graham, Angus C., trans. Chuang-tzu: The Inner Chapters. Reprint. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing, 2001.

  • Slingerland, Edward, trans. Confucius: Analects with Selections from Traditional Commentaries. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing, 2003. (This work is online available through the University Catalogue)


Enrolment through uSis is mandatory.
General information about uSis is available on the website

Students are strongly advised to register in uSis through the activity number which can be found in the timetables for courses and exams.

Registration Studeren à la carte and Contractonderwijs

Not applicable.


  • For substantive questions, contact the lecturer listed in the information bar at the right hand side of the page.

  • For questions about enrolment, admission, etc., contact the Education Administration Office Huizinga


Not applicable.