Spinoza’s Ethics: Text and Contexts

Open UvA Course

06mei2019 16mei2019


In this course, prof. Steven Nadler, occupant of the Menasseh Chair for Jewish Studies will teach Bento (Baruch, Benedict) Spinoza’s philosophical masterpiece, the Ethics.

Spinoza began this work in the early 1660s, not very long after his excommunication from Amsterdam’s Portuguese-Jewish community, put it aside (in light of certain political developments in the Netherlands) in 1665 to work on his Theological-Political Treatise, and then returned to it in the early 1670s. He did not publish it in his lifetime, however; it appeared in print only in 1677 (in Latin and Dutch editions), just after his death. We will engage in a close reading of the text, with special attention to the main metaphysical, epistemological, moral and political themes of the work. Of special interest will be Spinoza’s views on God, on human nature, on ethical behavior, and on happiness. We will also consider Spinoza’s relationship to other philosophers, including Desartes, Hobbes, and Maimonides.

Date, time, location and price

  • Date: 6, 8, 9, 13, 15 and 16 May 2019
  • Time: Mondays, 19:00 - 21:00 
  • Location: P.C. Hoofthuis, 5.56
  • Price: 160 / 144 (discount price for AUV-members)

Important information

Course type Open UvA Course
Education Seminars
Semester/blok Semester 2, block 2
Language English
Study material To be announced
Deadline registration 24 March 2019 (subject to availability)


Canvas is the (new) digital learning environment of the University of Amsterdam and is used by all teachers and students of the UvA. Students of the Illustere School who are registered for an Open UvA Course are entitled to a temporary Canvas account. Your account information will be send to you by email, shortly before your course starts. For more information on Canvas please click on the link below.

Gepubliceerd door  Illustere School