Seminars VII and VIII

In 1988, PLS student Brian Farmer recognized that three years isn't nearly enough time to engage all teachers of the Great Books. He surveyed the faculty of the Program of Liberal Studies faculty and assembled readings lists for Seminars VII and VIII. 

Seminar VII and VIII Reading List

Aristophanes: Lysistrata

Aristotle: De Anima

Aristotle: Metaphysics

Euripides: Bacchae

Xenephon: Memorabilia

Plato: Timaeus

Ovid: Metamorphoses


Cicero: De Finibus, De Officiis, De Re Publica, De Natura Deorum

Plutarch: Parallel Lives

Seneca: Epistulae Morales

St. Paul: Epistle to the Romans

Marcus Aurelius: Meditations

Boethius: The Consolation of Philosophy

Galen: On the Natural Faculties

Augustine: On the Teacher




The Song of Roland

Gawain and the Green Knight

Christine de Pizan: The Book of the City of Ladies


William Shakespeare: Hamlet, King Lear, Winter's Tale

Francis Bacon: New Atlantis

Galileo: Dialogue Concerning the Two Chief World Systems

William Harvey: On the Motion of the Heart and Blood

Christiaan Huygens: Treatise on Light

Blaise Pascal: "Conversation with Monsieur de Saci"

Rabelais: Gargantua and Pantegruel

Baruch Spinoza: Ethics


George Berkeley: Three Dialogues between Hylas and Philonous

Boswell: Life of Johnson

Jean de Caussade: Abandonment to Divine Providence

David Hume: Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion, Enquiry Concerning the Principles of Morals

Immanual Kant: Critique of Judgment, Part II; Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysics of Morals

Leibniz: Monadology

John Milton: Areopagitica, Paradise Lost

Isaac Newton: Opticks

Voltaire: Candide

Henry Adams: Mont St. Michel and Chartress, The Education of Henry Adams

Honoré de Balzak: Pére Goriot

Sadi Carnot: Reflections on the Motive of Power of Fire

Joseph Conrad: Heart of Darkness

Charles Darwin: Autobiography

Fyodor Dostoevsky : Crime and Punishment, Short stories, esp. "Notes from the Underground," "Dream of a Ridiculous Man"

George Eliot: Middlemarch

Thomas Hardy: Jude the Obscure, Tess of the d'Ubervilles

Nathaniel Hawthorne: Scarlet Letter

Hermann von Helmholtz: Popular Scientific Lectures

Soren Kiekegaard: Concluding Unscientific Postscript

Friedrich Nietzsche: Ecce Homo

Therese Raquin: Emile Zola

Leo Tolstoy: Anna Karenina

William Whewell: Thoughts on the Study of Mathematics as a Part of Liberal Education (in the Great Ideas Today ca. 1990)

Walt Whitman: Leaves of Grass


Joan Andrews: You Reject Them, You Reject Me

Maurice Blondel: Letter on Apologetics

Whittaker Chambers: Witness

Kate Chopin: The Awakening

Pierre Teilhard de Chardin: The Divine Milieu

G. K. Chesterton: The Everlasting Man

R. G. Collingwood: The Idea of History

Christopher Dawson: The Making of Europe

Mircea Eliade: The Myth of the Eternal Return

T. S. Eliot: Four Quartets

William Faulkner: The Sound and the Fury

Etienne Gilson: The Spirit of Medieval Philosophy

Graham Greene: The Power and the Glory

Vassily Grossman: Life and Fate

Dietrich Van Hildebrand: Liturgy of the Hours, Transformation in Christ

James Joyce: Ulysses

Claude Levis-Strauss: The Savage Mind

Henri de Lubac: Catholicism

Bernard Lonergan: Insight

Thomas Mann: Dr. Faustus

Gabriel Marcel: Creative Fidelity

Thomas Merton: The Seven Storey Mountain

Burnt Njal: Icelandic Saga

Flannery O'Connor: The Habit of Being (Letters), Wiseblood

Rudolf Otto: The Idea of the Holy

John Paul, II: Love and Responsibility

Josef Pieper: Leisure the Basis of Culture

Jean-Paul Sartre: The Flies

Erwin Schrödinger: What Is Life?

Wallace Stevens: The Palm at the End of the Mind

Igor Stravinsky: The Poetics of Music

D'Arcy W. Thompson: On Growth and Form

Sigrid Undset: Kristen Lavransdatter

Simone Weil: Gravity and Grace

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