Philosophy of Arts and Music (2020/2021)

Course code
Name of lecturer
Markus Georg Ophaelders
Markus Georg Ophaelders
Number of ECTS credits allocated
Academic sector
Language of instruction
Sem. 1A dal Sep 21, 2020 al Oct 31, 2020.

Lesson timetable

Go to lesson schedule

Learning outcomes

Philosophy of Art and Music The course aims to deepen the knowledge (conceptual, methodological and cultural tools, interpretative theories and artistic practices, learned during the Bachelor degree course) in order to refine their application skills (analyze and interpret the works of art, knowing how to read their texture, insert them in specific areas and cultural and historical environments). The course aims to make people understand the conceptual logics and structures, developing the ability to use a precise and adequate language; moreover, it aims to give the student the skills to confront the art world so that he can independently form a critical judgment and be able to express it in an appropriate language.


Nothing is funnier than unhappiness, nothing is more grotesque than the tragic. Philosophical logic and artistic experience: Samuel Beckett – art music theatre

1. During the course we intend to investigate the relationships, especially the conflicting ones, between logic - formal, analytical, but also dialectic - and artistic experience that then leads to creation. In this sense, some works by Samuel Beckett will be analysed. We will begin with the juvenile essay on Proust in which not only a profound critique of logic is elaborated, but also the relationships between the concepts of voluntary memory and involuntary memory, intellect and sensitive perception, time, habit and death.
2. Subsequently, some ways in which these elaborations are translated into theatrical compositional procedures will be examined. Thus we will read and comment Waiting for Godot, as regards the grotesque of the tragic, and then Endgame, as regards the funny aspects of unhappiness. In addition, the artistic aspects (in the sense of the figurative arts) and music in the theatrical style of Beckett will be underlined.
Prior knowledge and skills: It is convenient that the student has taken the Aesthetic exam during the Bachelor Degree Course; otherwise it is advisable to study an Introduction to the subject, for example: Markus Ophälders, Filosofia Arte Estetica, Mimesis, Milano 2008.


- S. Beckett, Aspettando Godot, in: Id, Teatro completo, Einaudi-Gallimard, Torino 1994, pp. 1 – 83.
- Id, Finale di partita, in Id, Teatro completo, cit., pp. 85 – 131.
- Id, Proust, a cura di P. Pagliano, SE, Milano 2004.
- T. W. Adorno, Tentativo di capire il Finale di partita, in: Id., Note per la letteratura, Einaudi, Torino 1979 e sgg., pp. 267-308 .
- N. Pasqualicchio, Il sarto gnostico. Temi e figure del teatro di Beckett, Ombre corte, Verona 2006.
- M. Ophälders, A che punto siamo della notte?, in: Id, Labirinti, Mimesis, Milano 2008, pp. 11 – 22.
- Id, “Pensa, porco (pausa …)”. La filosofia sul palcoscenico di Samuel Beckett, in: La filosofia a teatro, a cura di A. Costazza, Cisalpino, Milano 2010, pp. 263 – 283.
- Id, Sarà una risata che vi seppellirà, in: L’utopia alla prova dell’umorismo, a cura di Rosalba Maletta, Mimesis, Milano 2018 (forthcoming).


The didactic methods adopted are not distinct between attending and non-attending students. They consist of frontal lessons and collective discussions devoted to the transmission and critical examination of concepts and structures of thinking and reflection and their respective application tools to implement theoretical notions in the direction of autonomous critical judgment.
Throughout the academic year, the teacher also holds a regular individual Reception at the times indicated on his page (without having to set a specific appointment). However, it is recommended that you consult the messages to be informed of any changes. During the first lesson, attending students will receive the full lesson schedule with the dates and topics discussed. Information on timetables and classrooms is also provided.
The content of books and lessons is adhering to the program.

Reference books
Author Title Publisher Year ISBN Note
S. Beckett Aspettando Godot, in: Id, Teatro completo Einaudi-Gallimard 1994 pp. 1 – 83.
S. Beckett Finale di partita, in Id, Teatro completo Einaudi-Gallimard 1994 pp. 85 – 131.
N. Pasqualicchio Il sarto gnostico. Temi e figure del teatro di Beckett Ombre corte 2006
Markus Ophälders Labirinti Mimesis 2008 pp. 11 – 22.
M. Ophalders “Pensa, porco (pausa …)”. La filosofia sul palcoscenico di Samuel Beckett, in: La filosofia a teatro, a cura di A. Costazza Cisalpino 2010 pp. 263 – 283.
S. Beckett Proust SE 2004
M. Ophalders Sarà una risata che vi seppellirà, in: L’utopia alla prova dell’umorismo, a cura di Francesco Clerici, Sara di Alessandro e Rosalba Maletta, Mimesis, Milano 2018, pp. 283-301. Mimesis 2018 pp. 283-303.
T. W. Adorno Tentativo di capire il Finale di partita, in: Id., Note per la letteratura Einaudi 1979 pp. 267-308 .

Assessment methods and criteria

The assessment of the learning outcomes will be defined within the 15th of September 2020.