Skip to content

PhilArt 2009

PHIL2375: Philosophy of Art.

Semester 1, 2009-10

Rene Magritte: The Eternally Obvious (1948)

Rene Magritte: The Eternally Obvious (1948)

Course Outline:

Coordinator: Dr Timothy O’Leary
Room: MB 309
Ph: 2859 2796
Lectures: Tuesdays  & Thursdays    10:40-11:30pm

Room Change: M305 (all lectures)


The course textbook (available from HKU Bookstore) is:

Daniel Herwitz, Aesthetics: Key Concepts in Philosophy. Continuum, London, 2008.

This book will provide invaluable background information, general discussion, and applications to particular works of art.

However, you will also have to read a range of key primary texts by the philosophers under discussion. These readings will be available in the Department Office for photocopying.

There will also be additional readings on Reserve in the library (search under this course code or the lecturer’s name). This list will added to during the semester, so please check back from time to time.

To start you off, you might like to look at this recent piece from the New York Times:

At Louvre, Many Stop to Snap but Few Stay to Focus


Tutorial Presentation (with written summary): 20%
Tutorial Participation: 10%
First Essay (1,500 words), Due Oct 26th: 30%
Second Essay (2,000 words), Due Monday Dec 7th : 40%

Tutorials will be an integral part of the course. You will be expected to have done the reading before each tutorial and to participate actively in discussion (worth 10%).
Each student will attend  5 tutorials during the semester and will make one oral presentation (worth 20%). You will be expected to present the ideas of one of the texts for that week, and to relate them to an art work, or art works, of your choice.

Plagiarism: You must consult this website:

%d bloggers like this: