Language and Thinking is the fundamental course within the EHU Core Curriculum, which aims at introducing students to the academic tradition of Humanities.
The seminar is an intensive introductory course in the ‘liberal arts’ tradition that places an emphasis on writing, thinking and creative practices. Developed in collaboration with EHU’s international partners since 2013, the Language and Thinking seminar establishes EHU’s strength in engaging students in their own learning process. It aims at overcoming the difficulties faced by students, trying to express their thoughts, and to write and think both critically and creatively. The course promotes the development of habits of thoughtful reading and discussion of texts, encouraging students to accurately organize their thoughts and ideas, self-reflect and engage in collaboration with others around questions such as “What does it mean to be human?” and “How do we realize freedom and responsibility?”
The community atmosphere created by this unique course makes it a staple feature of EHU’s new vision for a Core Curriculum that will give confidence to students entering the university to actively participate in how higher education will shape their own lives, their peers and society in general.
The aim of the course is to form and to develop skills and values of independent and creative thinking and ideas, formulation of personal standing positions and ability to perceive Other’s position, to participate in group discussion of ideas and opinions and finding solutions to problematics highlighted in the course among students. The students will analyze and evaluate oral, written and visual communication in terms of situation, audience, purpose and diverse points of view; express the structure of their ideas in compelling statements and order supporting points logically, convincingly and creatively; recognize the distinctions among opinions, facts, and inferences in reasoned discourse, etc.
The course was developed in collaboration with Bard College (USA), The Faculty of Liberal Arts and Sciences (Smolny College) of St.Petersburg State University (Russia).
“Language and Thinking” course ontology is composed of various genres of texts – classical philosophical works, poetic writings, fiction texts, visual materials. etc.:
- Hermann Hesse. Five Essays about Reading and Readers (extracts).
- Anton Chekhov. In Moscow on Trubnaya Square.
- Franz Kafka. Before the Law.
- William Shakespeare. The Tragedy of Hamlet, Prince of Denmark (Hamlet’s monologue).
- Paul Gauguin. Where Do We Come From? What Are We? Where Are We Going?
- Wisława Szymborska Utopia. Psalm. Conversation with a Stone.
- Mikhail Bulgakov. Heart of a Dog (extracts).
- Friedrich Nietzsche. On the Advantage and Disadvantage of History for Life (extracts)
- Edward Wilson. The Meaning of Human Existence (chapter 1.2).
- Hannah Arendt. Between the Past and the Future (chapter “The Conquest of Space and the Stature of Man”).
- Roger Penrose et al. The Large, the Small and the Human Mind (chapter 3 “Physics and the Mind”)
- Albert Camus. The Myth of Sisyphus (chapter about Sisyphus).