Questions of Ontology - 2nd semester


a) Acquire a deep understanding of the meaning and specific characteristics of Ontology as the sought after science (zêtoumenê epistêmê) and of its interlinking with the other branches of philosophy and science b) Acquire a deep understanding of the various approaches that have been taken in trying to provide an answer to ontological questions c) Acquire detailed knowledge of a wide range of ontological concepts d) Acquire increased proficiency in understanding, comparing and using these concepts critically and independently, and in interpreting and discussing ontological claims and questions e) Acquire detailed knowledge of the fundamental texts in this field, with a mastering of past interpretations, of the current state of research and of all the relevant bibliography f) Acquire the ability to carry out research work under supervision in this field that meets high scientific quality standards. g) Acquire the ability to carry out independent research in this area.

General characterization





Responsible teacher

Mário Jorge Carvalho


Weekly - 3 letivas + 1 tutorial

Total - Available soon

Teaching language



Not applicable.


J. G. FICHTE, Gesamtausgabe der Bayerischen Akademie der Wissenschaften, Stuttgart/Bad Canstatt, FromannHolzboog II,5: Nachgelassene Schriften 1796–1801, 1979 IV,3: Kollegnachschriften 1794–1799, 2000 J. G. FICHTE, Wissenschaftslehre nova methodo Kollegnachschrift K. Chr. Fr. Krause 1798/99, ed. E. Fuchs, Hamburg, Meiner, 1994 J. G. FICHTE, Foundations of Transcendental Philosophy (Wissenschaftslehre nova methodo 1796/99), ed. D. Breazeale, Ithaca, Cornell Univ. Pr., 1992 J. G. FICHTE La doctrine de la science nova methodo suivi de ‘Éssai d´une nouvelle présentation de la doctrine de la science’, ed. I. Radrizzani, Lausanne, L’Age d´Homme, 1989 J. G. FICHTE, Doctrine de la science : nova methodo, ed. I. Thomas-Fogiel, Paris Librairie générale française, 2000 J. G. FICHTE, Teoria della scienza 1798 Nova Methodo , ed. A Cantoni, Milano-Varese, Istituto edit. Cisalpino, 1959 J. G. FICHTE, Doctrina de la Ciencia - Nova Methodo, ed. José Luis Villacañas, Valencia, Natán, 1987

Teaching method

This curricular unit has a theoretical-practical character. Seminar-oriented classes. Reading and interpretation of and commentary on Fichte´s WLnm and NB and related philosophical questions and concepts. The teaching methodology combines: a) a thorough interpretation of the two texts in question (of their different components, of their connection both with each other and with the rest of the corpus fichteanum) b) a theoretical analysis of philosophical problems, and c) a discussion of alternative views, objections, counter-examples, etc.

Evaluation method

Appraisal: Individual appraisal. Each student will have to present a research paper (of about 20 pages) on a topic individually agreed upon with the Lecturer and then discuss this paper with the latter. This counts for 3/4 of final marks. Class participation (participation in the discussion) counts for 1/4 of final marks.

Subject matter

Fichte’s Wissenschaftslehre nova metodo and Neue Bearbeitung Together with his Neue Bearbeitung (the two texts are closely connected and complementary) Fichte’s Wissenschaftslehre nova methodo is a philosophical treasure-trove and one of the most groundbreaking texts in the history of philosophy. Both pose a serious challenge to all major doctrinal and methodological approaches in the field of Ontology. But sheer prejudice and the so-called “philosophia pigrorum” are very powerful – the result being that these two texts have not been given the attention they deserve. Our purpose is to counter this trend and accept the challenge posed by these two expositions of Fichte’s Wissenschaftslehre. We have two main tasks: 1) an in-depth analysis of Fichte’s text, 2) a thorough discussion of his philosophical claims viz. of whether 2.1 they stand up to scrutiny and 2.2 other views prove themselves able to withstand the challenges posed by Fichte’s thorough and insightful analysis.