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Summer Institute 2018

In the summer of 2012, Douglas College began a project entitled the Summer Institute for Continental Philosophy. The institute takes the form of a third-year Philosophy course, PHIL 3380, attended by members of the Philosophy Department and other scholars, and includes a lecture by a visiting guest speaker. Students from all institutions are invited to attend.

This summer semester 2018, PHIL 3380 is entitled Existentialism and Psychology. The course will include readings from R.D. Laing, Medard Boss, Ludwig Binswanger, Rollo May, Jean-Paul Sartre, Erich Fromm, Michel Foucault, Irvin Yalom and others.

See the Course Outline below.

The course runs from May 10 - August 2, 2018 at the New Westminster Campus. Students must apply for admission to PHIL 3380 by completing the admission form or by emailing Dr. Robert Nicholls:

PHIL 3380: Continental Philosophy is open to all post-secondary students with 9 credits in Philosophy (or suitable equivalents) and transfers for third-year credit to universities across British Columbia, including UBC and SFU.

Students currently enrolled in a BC post-secondary institution do NOT need to apply for admission to Douglas College in order to take this course. To enrol, simply complete the admission form, attach an e-copy of your transcript, and email this to Dr. Nicholls.

Each summer, the institute invites a scholar with a background in a specific area of Continental Philosophy to give a public lecture followed by informal discussion. The course will be held once per week for approximately three hours Thursday evenings, and the guest lecture will constitute one of the course classes.


Visiting Speaker

This year we are very pleased to announce that Andrew Feldmar will be our visiting guest speaker. Andrew Feldmar is a practising psychotherapist who studied and trained under the renowned and controversial psychiatrist, R.D. Laing. He also studied and worked with Francis Huxley (the anthropology of healing), John Heaton (existential psychotherapy), Hugh Crawford (community therapy), and Leon Redler (spiritual emergency).
        From the mid 1970s on, Andrew Feldmar has written and lectured extensively about psychotherapeutic theory and practice. In addition to numerous lectures and film presentations about the work of  R.D. Laing, including the three part series for CBC's Ideas entitled R.D. Laing Today, he has spoken professionally on Freud, Jung, Rank, Adler, Winnicott, Bateson, as well as an extensive number of related topics, including "Love, Sex and Desire," "The Embryology of Consciousness," and "Entheogens and Psychotherapy."
        He has taught, lectured and lead workshops at SFU, UBC, Emily Carr and Douglas College; The Cold Mountain Institute, The Collingwood Institute and meetings of BC Psychologists Association. He has also worked extensively overseas, mainly in Hungary where, in 2002, the book Conversations with Andrew Feldmar was published.

Andrew Feldmar's talk will be held Friday June 15th, at 7:00 PM in Lecture Theatre N2201. This is a
public lecture: everyone is welcome.

Participating Faculty 2018

Dr. Glen Baier, Philosophy, UFV
Dr. John Bruin, Philosophy, DC
Dr. Raquel Chapdelaine, Psychology, DC
Dr. Mano Daniel, Philosophy, DC
Dr. Robert Nicholls, Philosophy, DC
Dr. Edrie Sobstyl, Philosophy, DC
Dr. Peter Wilkins, English, DC

Douglas College Institute Directors

The Summer Institute for Continental Philosophy is directed by three Douglas College faculty, philosophers who have specialized in this area of Philosophy:

Dr. John Bruin received his PhD from Guelph/McMaster with a dissertation on Husserl which was subsequently published by the University of Ottawa Press in 2001 under the title Homo Interrogans. Dr. Bruin has also published articles on Heidegger.

Dr. Mano Daniel received his PhD from the University of Waterloo, completing his dissertation on Hannah Arendt. Dr. Daniel spent three years working at the Centre for Advanced Research in Phenomenology (CARP) at the Florida Atlantic University, where he co-edited the journal Phenomenology and the Cultural Disciplines.

Dr. Robert Nicholls also received his PhD from the University of Waterloo with a dissertation entitled Sense and Existence: Heidegger 1925-29. Dr. Nicholls has published essays on Nietzsche, Husserl and Heidegger.


Course Outline

PHIL 3380: Continental Philosophy: Existentialism and Psychology

PREREQUISITES: 9 prior credits in Philosophy or permission of the instructor

REQUIRED TEXTS: Rollo May, et. al., eds., Existence: A New Dimension  in                                Psychiatry and Psychology, (MD: Rowman & Littlefield, 1994)

R.D. Laing, The Divided Self, (NY: Penguin Classic, 2010)

J.-P. Sartre, Being and Nothingness, (NY: Washington Square Press, 1993)

HANDOUTS/DOWNLOADS: Irvin Yalom, from Existential Psychotherapy, (NY:                              Basic Books, 1980)

Eric Fromm, from Escape from Freedom, (NY: Henry Holt, 1991)

Medard Boss, from Psychoanalysis and Daseinsanalysis, (MA: Da Capo,                      1982)

COURSE DESCRIPTION:  The course this semester will focus on the relationship between existential thought and psychoanalysis as this relationship was developed by some of the theoreticians who inaugurated "existential psychoanalysis."
  Ludwig Binswanger was a close colleague of Freud's who, in the 1930s, discovered Heidegger, and subsequently initiated a new approach to psychoanalysis, employing many terms from Being and Time. Sartre developed his existential approach to the subject, including his critique of Freud, explicitly throughout Being and Nothingness. In the late 50s, Medard Boss invited Heidegger to give a series of lectures at the Burghölzli Clinic at the University of Zurich which were later published as the Zollikon Seminars, and which provided the foundation for much Boss' own work in the field. 
         In America in the 60s, the project was undertaken and developed especially by Rollo May and colleagues. May was influenced considerably by the work of Ricouer and Sartre, but also by Tillich and Frankel, and other philosophers whose writings had begun an existential approach to psychoanalysis. Rollo May was himself the author of many works in the field. Concurrently, in England, R.D. Laing published his controversial masterpiece, The Divided Self, subtitled, "An Existential Study in Sanity and Madness." Also at this time, the journal Review of Existential Psychology and Psychiatry was founded.
More recently, numerous other works in the area of existential psychotherapy have appeared, including perhaps notably the writings of Irvin Yalom, whose 1980 text was seminal. A short Bibliography of authors in is available.

         This course represents the seventh Summer Institute for Continental Philosophy at Douglas College. The course is simultaneously a research institute as well as a third year undergraduate course in Philosophy that transfers for upper level credit to UBC, SFU and all other universities throughout the province. The course is intended primarily for Philosophy majors and minors, or for those otherwise appropriately prepared to undertake the work. In addition to comprising a welcomed component, the course includes a public lecture by an invited scholar, which will be open to the community at large, followed by a reception. 


COURSE REQUIREMENTS: 1) two essays, both worth 40% of the final grade. Essays must employ accepted scholastic format and must each be minimally 3,000 words in length (approximately 6 - 8 pages);

2) term mark: the term mark is comprised of an oral exam. There are no pre-set questions. The exam will focus upon material covered in students' essays. The term mark is worth 20% of the final grade.

There is no final exam.


Past Summer Institutes

2017: After Heidegger: a Survey of Continental Philosophy

Guest Speaker: Professor Alan Schrift, F. Wendell Miller Professor of Philosophy at             Grinnell College, Iowa

2016: Heidegger's Nietzsche Volumes

Guest Speaker: Professor Patricia Glazebrook, Director of the School of Politics,                  Philosophy and Public Affairs, Washington State University.

2015: Heidegger's Essays: Basic Writings

Guest Speaker: Professor Raj Singh, Philosophy, Brock University

2014: Marcuse: One-Dimensional Man

Guest Speaker: Professor Andrew Feenberg, Canada Research Chair in Philosophy of                     Technology, School of Communication, Simon Fraser University

2013: Heidegger's Being and Time

Guest Speaker: Professor Jeff Mitscherling, Philosophy, University of Guelph

2012: Sartre's Being and Nothingness

Guest Speaker: Professor Bruce Baugh, Philosophy, Thompson Rivers University