Vienna, Austria

Doctor of Philosophy

Language: English Studies in English
Subject area: humanities
University website:
Doctor of Philosophy, PhD
6 Semester
180 ECTS
Philosophy (from Greek φιλοσοφία, philosophia, literally "love of wisdom") is the study of general and fundamental problems concerning matters such as existence, knowledge, values, reason, mind, and language. The term was probably coined by Pythagoras (c. 570–495 BCE). Philosophical methods include questioning, critical discussion, rational argument, and systematic presentation. Classic philosophical questions include: Is it possible to know anything and to prove it? What is most real? Philosophers also pose more practical and concrete questions such as: Is there a best way to live? Is it better to be just or unjust (if one can get away with it)? Do humans have free will?
Philosophy makes progress not by becoming more rigorous but by becoming more imaginative.
Richard Rorty, introduction to Truth and Progress: Philosophical Papers, Volume 3 (1998).
The name philosopher, which meant originally 'lover of wisdom,' has come in some strange way to mean a man who thinks it is his business to explain everything in a certain number of large books. It will be found, I think, that in proportion to his colossal ignorance is the perfection and symmetry of the system which he sets up; because it is so much easier to put an empty room tidy than a full one.
William Kingdon Clifford, as quoted by A. D'Abro, The Evolution of Scientific Thought from Newton to Einstein (1927) p. 343
Pretend what we may, the whole man within us is at work when we form our philosophical opinions. Intellect, will, taste, and passion co-operate just as they do in practical affairs; and lucky it is if the passion be not something as petty as a love of personal conquest over the philosopher across the way.
William James, The Sentiment of Rationality (1882).
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