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Classical Philology and the History of Philosophy

Classical Philology at the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science (FLoV) – past and present.

Classical Philology with an emphasis on textual criticism and the history of philosophy has a long tradition at the University of Gothenburg (GU). Ingemar Düring (1903–1984), who was a professor of Classical Philology at the university 1945–1970, published a number of groundbreaking works on Aristotle, e.g. Aristoteles: Darstellung und Interpretation seines Denkens (1966), and is still internationally recognized as one of the most influential scholars in the tradition of research on Aristotle.

In the early 00's, two PhD students at the (then) Department of Classical Studies, GU, did their doctoral theses in Greek and Latin respectively within the field of the medieval reception of Aristotelian philosophy. A collaboration gradually developed with the University of Copenhagen, where there had been a strong tradition for philological research on ancient and medieval philosophy since the 50's.

See this pdf for the history of the research environment in Copenhagen, History of the research environment in Copenhagen

The collaboration between GU and the University of Copenhagen was formalized and further developed in the network The Aristotelian Tradition: The Reception of Aristotle’s Works during the Middle Ages, which was funded by Riksbankens jubileumsfond and coordinated from GU between 2009 and 2011. During this period, the Swedish-Danish research group was extended to include members also from outside the Nordic countries.

The international collaboration with other research environments in North America, Norway, England, and Germany was also intensified and in 2013, the group was awarded a grant of SEK 32.7 million by Riksbankens jubileumsfond for the research programme Representation and Reality: Historical and Contemporary Perspectives on the Aristotelian Tradition, hosted by the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science, GU.

There is a strong philological component in Representation and Reality. Out of the 12 members of the research group, eleven members are working directly on Greek and Latin sources. Seven members are producing critical editions of Greek and Latin texts within the framework of the programme. The Text Editing Group has a key role in the programme.

In 2013, professor Sten Ebbesen, University of Copenhagen, was appointed Honorary Doctor at GU for his contribution to the development of Classical Philology and History of Philosophy at the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science at the University of Gothenburg.

In 2018 Charles Burnett, professor of the history of Islamic influences in Europe at the Warburg Institute, University of London, was appointed Honorary Doctor of Philosophy at the University of Gothenburg – for longstanding support and inspiration in the development of the research and education environment in Classical Philology and History of Philosophy at FLoV.

The fact that Classical Philology at the Department of Philosophy, Linguistics and Theory of Science has an emphasis on the History of Linguistics and History of Philosophy has not only resulted in a strong interdisciplinary research environment but also in a unique model for teaching Greek, Latin and Textual Criticism on the undergraduate level. This is achieved within the framework of the department’s BA programme in Liberal Arts.

Latin, Greek and also Arabic are here taught both in specific modules where the main focus is on the language and philological approach and in interdisciplinary modules where they are primarily studied as ancillary disciplines.

For further information on the BA in Liberal Arts, see our Liberal Arts webpage or contact Madelaine Miller.

Page Manager: Monica Havström|Last update: 11/2/2018

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