Moral Philosophy (2018/2019)

Course not running

Course code
Name of lecturer
Carlo Chiurco
Carlo Chiurco
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. 1A dal Sep 24, 2018 al Nov 10, 2018.

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

The course provides students with a ground knowledge of the main ethical conceptions, as well as the history of moral reflections through the centuries. In doing so, it doesn’t neglect to focus on the ethical problems of our time. Students are expected to learn:
1. To possess an academically accepted knowledge of the main philosophical reflections on the most important ethical issues;
2. To compare the arguments, the answers and the problems brought forth by moral reflection in time with the most relevant contemporary ethical issues.
1. To recognize to which ethical model, past and/or present, a given moral theory belongs;
2. To autonomously formulate assessments on the genesis, the nature, the meaning and possible weak and/or strong points in the issues dealt with during the course:
- 2a. To make the ethical reflections of the past interact with those of today in a critical and historically sound perspective;
3. To recognize today’s pluralism and promote its value, in particular when approaching issues concerning the many forms of difference (philosophical, religious, cultural, sexual) and multiculturalism.


The course consists of two parts:
The first studies the main ethical models and the main philosophical reflections on the great ethical issues;
The second is devoted to the analysis of a relevant contemporary ethical issue.
This year, the subject of the course is inspired by the title of a famous essay of Byung-Chul Han, "The Society of Transparence". Transparence, seduction, spectacle, appearances are the four pillars, around which the life of individuals is ever more spinning. What are the mechanisms presiding today’s over-exposure of the image(s) of the self? Is it possible to imagine an escape route from the prison of the virtual, to retrieve a lived life?

Beside usual class lessons, which may include the usage of slides, the course will rely on movie projections, and on readings and discussions of texts of different authors and periods, in order that students may learn:
- The main ethical models, as they have been imagined and outlined in time, including their mutual relations, be they conflictual or not;
- To conduct a specifically ethical approach to relevant issues of our time.
Students who cannot attend the classes are not asked to follow a different program. It is always possible for all students to devise a customized program: in this case, students are requested to discuss it in advance.
Beside the program texts, it is compulsory to study the audio files of the classes found on the e-learning website of the university.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
Jean Baudrillard Della seduzione Studio Editoriale 1997 Solo il capitolo 1, “L’eclittica del sesso”.
A cura di Carlo Chiurco Filosofia di Berlusconi. L'essere e il nulla nell'Italia del Cavaliere ombre corte 2011 Solo il saggio di Lorenzo Bernini: “Not in my name. Il corpo osceno del tiranno e la catastrofe della virilità”.
Byung-Chul Han La società della trasparenza nottetempo 2010
Guy Debord La società dello spettacolo Baldini & Castoldi 2013

Assessment methods and criteria

The examination tests aims to ascertain that students meet the course targets as outlined above. They consists of:
- A mid-term text, which will be held after the completion of the first part of the course, concerning the history of Western ethics. The text will consist of a written examination, featuring three open questions, aiming to ascertain the students’ knowledge on the first part.
- An oral examination, which will be held the end of the course, consisting of two open questions, aiming to ascertain the students’ knowledge on the subjects dealt with in the second part of the course.
Students who cannot attend the classes will give only an oral examination, which in this case will probe their knowledge on the subjects taught in both parts of the course.