Life and Death Matters: Through Philosophical Discussion

Socrates’ unfortunate demise (399BC) left an indelible mark on his admiring student Plato. The dialogues contained in The Last Days of Socrates bear witness to central issues surrounding Socrates’ trial and execution; and what it means to live and die well from a philosophical perspective. The course aims to stimulate and guide philosophical discussion of life and death matters; and will interest any groups wishing to explore and develop their capacity for thoughtful discussion.

Independent Study Discussion Courses are for study by groups without a tutor, so there is no need to write reports. These courses were written by tutors who have now since retired from the Discussion Group Program. Some courses were written a number of years ago, and therefore contain references to events which are now more historical than current, however, all are entertaining, well-produced and worthwhile.


Course Author: Marnie Hanlon

Course Code: D162

Supplied Material: Course Booklet

  • Plato, The Last Days of Socrates

Units & Pricing: 6 units / $54 per person


Start your Group: Anyone can start a Discussion Group – seek out some like-minded friends or put up a notice in your local library, bookshop or workplace. Please note a minimum of 6 people is required to start a new discussion group.

Arrange the Meetings: New groups need to decide where and when to meet, and for how long – whatever best suits members' particular situations.

Run your Group: Choose a secretary to liaise with WEA and your tutor, a Discussion Leader to chair meetings, a reporter to take discussion notes to send to your tutor, and maybe a librarian to look after the books.

Start the Course: Contact WEA Sydney to enrol. Bookings can be made for one year, divided into two terms – Term 1 commences in February, Term 2 in July (Groups may make forward bookings for popular choices). Please indicate in what order your Group wishes to study the courses, if more than one course is booked.