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PH923-30 Hegel's Science of Logic

Taught Postgraduate Level
Module leader
Stephen Houlgate
Credit value
Module duration
10 weeks
100% coursework
Study location
University of Warwick main campus, Coventry
Introductory description

The purpose of this module is to provide an introduction to Hegel's philosophy through a close reading of the Science of Logic. Hegel's philosophy has exercised an enormous influence on 19th- and 20th-century thinkers, from Marx and Kierkegaard to Sartre and Gadamer, and the Logic is perhaps the single most important text for anyone seeking to understand what is distinctive about Hegel's thought. In this module we will examine Hegel’s critique of Kant’s derivation of the categories of thought, (from the basic forms of judgement), and we will then turn to consider Hegel’s own “presuppositionless” derivation of the categories. We will look closely at Hegel’s account of the initial categories of being, nothing and becoming, and then trace his derivation of the further categories of quality, including something, limit, finitude, infinity, and the one and the many. In the course of our study we will examine why Hegel thinks any “something” must always be related to another “something”, why true infinity does not transcend but is immanent in finitude, why the one multiplies itself into many ones, and why quality as a whole makes quantity necessary.

Module aims

By the end of this module students will have developed an understanding of, and an ability to assess, the principal arguments presented by Hegel in his Logic.

Outline syllabus

This is an indicative module outline only to give an indication of the sort of topics that may be covered. Actual sessions held may differ.

Weeks 1 - 2: Introduction to Hegel's Logic Weeks 3 -4: Being, Nothing, Becoming; Dasein and Something Weeks 5 - 6: Being-in-itself and Being-for-Other; Determination and Constitution Weeks 7 - 8: Limit and Finitude Weeks 9 - 10: Infinity; the One and the Many Syllabus may be subject to revision.

Learning outcomes

By the end of the module, students should be able to:

  • An understanding of, and an ability to assess, the principal arguments presented by Hegel in his Logic.
Indicative reading list

Primary Text:

Hegel's Science of Logic, trans. A.V. Miller (New York: Humanity Books, 1999), or: G.W.F. Hegel, The Science of Logic, trans. G. di Giovanni (Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 2010).

Secondary Texts:

J. Burbidge, On Hegel's Logic. Fragments of A Commentary (New York: Humanity Books, 1999). S. Houlgate, The Opening of Hegel's Logic. From Being to Infinity (West Lafayette, IN: Purdue University Press, 2006). R. Pippin, Hegel’s Realm of Shadows. Logic as Metaphysics in The Science of Logic (Chicago: University of Chicago Press, 2019). R. Winfield, Hegel’s Science of Logic. A Critical Rethinking in Thirty Lectures (Lanham: Rowman & Littlefield, 2012).

Subject specific skills

An ability to understand and assess the arguments in Hegel's Logic. An ability to relate Hegel's arguments to those of other thinkers, such as Spinoza and Kant, and to assess their relative merits.

Transferable skills

An ability to understand and assess complex arguments. An ability to read texts carefully and with intelligence. An ability to enter sympathetically into a different way of thinking and to assess its merits from an internal vantage point. An ability to explain complex ideas to others.

Study time

Type Required
Seminars 10 sessions of 2 hours (7%)
Private study 280 hours (93%)
Total 300 hours
Private study description

No private study requirements defined for this module.


No further costs have been identified for this module.

You must pass all assessment components to pass the module.

Students can register for this module without taking any assessment.

Assessment group A1
Weighting Study time
7500 word essay 100%
Feedback on assessment

Feedback on essays will be provided on the coversheet for the essay, addressing standard areas
of evaluation and individual content.


This module is Option list A for:

  • TPHA-V7PN Postgraduate Taught Philosophy and the Arts
    • Year 1 of V7PN Philosophy and the Arts
    • Year 2 of V7PN Philosophy and the Arts