Great Books of the Western Canon Video Series

11 May 2020

In search of a creative outlet during this COVID-19 period?  The Ramsay Centre is pleased to release a series of videos featuring academics discussing the major themes and ideas of the some of the great texts of the west. Read the texts and watch the videos or simply watch the videos.

Texts include:
• Sophocles, Oedipus Rex
• Plato, The Apology
• Augustine, Confessions
• Machiavelli, The Prince
• Shakespeare, Macbeth
• Aristotle and Aquinas on happiness
• Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals

Recommended reading

1. Oedipus Rex – The Theban Plays (trans E F Watling) Penguin
2. Plato – The Last Days of Socrates  – Penguin Classics
3. Augustine Confessions (Oxford) Trans. Henry Chadwick
4. Machiavelli – The Prince (trans. Tim Parks)
5. Shakespeare – Macbeth Oxford
6. Online  texts – Aristotle, Nicomachean Ethics, Bk 1 http://classics.mit.edu/Aristotle/nicomachaen.1.i.html and Aquinas, ‘Treatise on Happiness’, Summa, Aquinas, Summa, Prima Secundae Partis Questions 1-5, selections https://wmpeople.wm.edu/asset/index/cvance/Aquinas6
7. Neitzsche – Genealogy of Morals Penguin

More videos will be added to the collection over the coming months.

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The goal toward which Western society moves is the Civilization of the Dialogue. The spirit of Western civilization is the spirit of inquiry…. Nothing is to remain undiscussed. Everybody is to speak his mind. No proposition is to be left unexamined. "
- Robert Maynard Hutchins