The MA programme in Philosophy is characterised by a firm integration of historical and systematic approaches in philosophy and an emphasis on studying primary philosophical texts. This constantly links both historical scholarship and current philosophical debates.
The Leiden Institute for Philosophy represents a wide range of research interests, enabling students in the one-year MA Programme in Philosophy to take courses in
The institute has strong international links with philosophy departments worldwide, resulting in an active programme of visiting scholars and lecturers.
The institute’s research programme ‘meets the highest international standards’, according to the latest external research assessment.
“Provocative philosophical claims rely on sound historical knowledge and vice versa.”
“I hold the chair of Ancient and Medieval Philosophy. In the master’s in Philosophy, I teach Ancient Philosophy and its relation to mathematics and the sciences. It is characteristic of the study of philosophy in Leiden that historical and systematic aspects of philosophy are correlated with one another. Provocative philosophical claims rely on sound historical knowledge and vice versa. This is clear from our programme: in many courses philosophical issues are interwoven with the history of philosophy and the sciences.
In philosophy of science, for instance, Aristotle played a fundamental role. This Greek philosopher wrote a standard work on true knowledge and how to acquire it. He established which demands science had to meet, and defined the structure of proofs. His model was the mathematical practice of his day, and it is likely that Aristotle, in turn, influenced Euclid when he was writing his Elements of Geometry.
In the Renaissance, there was a revival of interest in late antiquity in philosophers and scientists who studied Aristotle’s texts anew. The scientific revolution in the 17th century cannot be understood without knowledge of the Aristotelian model of science. Even today, it is difficult to keep up with the number of works on Aristotle that are being published. It is a pleasure to work with students on these and related topics.”