Wisdom Course Reading Schedule

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Return to Wisdom

12/13 Jan

  • First Day Information
  • Preliminary Discussion of Wisdom
  • Small Group Discussion Task

19/20 Jan

  • Hall, Chapters 1: “What is Wisdom?”
  • Robinson, “Wisdom through the Ages”
  • Hall, Chapter 2, "The Wisest Man in the World"
  • Osbeck and Robinson, “Philosophical Theories of Wisdom, up to p. 70

26/27 Jan

  • Labouvie-Vief, “Wisdom As Intergrated Thought: Historical and Developmental Perspectives”
  • Clayton, V., and J. E. Birren. “The Development of Wisdom Across the Life Span”
  • Carstensen, “The Influence of a Sense of Time on Human Development”
  • Ardelt, “Wisdom and Satisfaction in Old Age”

2/3 Feb

  • Birren, James E. and Svensson, Cheryl M., “Wisdom in History” (from p. 12-29)
  • Hall, Chapter 3, “Heart and Mind: The Psychological Roots of Wisdom”
  • Hall, Chapter 4, “Emotional Regulation: The Art of Coping” (Begins a section of Hall: “Neural Pillars of Wisdom”)

9/10 Feb

  • Baltes, P. B, and Jacqui Smith. “Toward a Psychology of Wisdom and Its Ontogenesis.” (Sternberg) This is your primary introduction to the Berlin Wisdom Paradigm.
  • Baltes, Paul B., and Alexandra M. Freund. “The Intermarriage of Wisdom and Selective Optimization With Compensation.”
  • Kunzman, Ute and Paul Baltes. “The Psychology of Wisdom: Theoretical and Empirical Challenges.”

16/17 Feb

  • Hall, Chapter 6, “Moral Reasoning: The Biology of Judging Right from Wrong”
  • Haidt, Jonathan. “The Emotional Dog and Its Rational Tail: A Social Intuitionist Approach to Moral Judgement.”
  • Hall, Chapters 7 and 8: “Compassion: The Biology of Loving-Kindness” and “Humility: The Gift of Perspective”

23/24 Feb

  • Sideritis, Chapter 2, "Early Buddhism: Basic Teaching"
  • Pali Canon, “The Greater Discourse on the Destruction of Craving”
  • Ricard, Matthieu. Chapter 6, The Alchemy of Suffering" & 7 "The Veils of the Ego"

1/2 Mar

  • Hall, Chapter 5. “Knowing What's Important: The Neural Mechanism of Establishing Value and Making a Judgement”
  • Sternberg, “Wisdom and its relations to intelligence and creativity” (recommended)
  • Hall, Chapters 12 and 13: “Youth, Adversity, and Resilience: The seeds of wisdom”

15/16 Mar

  • Epictetus, Enchiridion
  • Long, “Epictetus in his Time and Place” (recommended)
  • Boyd and Richerson. “Culture and the evolution of human cooperation.”"

22/23 Mar

  • Wilson, David Sloan, “Chapter 4: The Secular Utility of Religion”
  • Sosis, Richard. “The Adaptive Value of Religious Ritual.”

29/30 Mar

  • Haidt, Jonathan, “Divinity with or without God,” The Happiness Hypothesis.
  • Hall, Chapter 9, "Altruism: Social Justice, Fairness, and the Wisdom of Punishment"
  • Edgerton, from “Sick Societies”, Chapter 2 (Chapter 1 if you have time).

5/6 Apr

  • Estes, Daniel. “Proverbs.” from, Handbook on the Wisdom Books and Psalms
  • Proverbs (read through any translation)
  • Job

12/13 Apr

  • Ecclesiastes
  • Song of Solomon

19/20 Apr

  • Wilson, Timothy. “Chapter 8: Introspection and Self-Narratives” in Strangers to Ourselves
  • Wilson, “Chapter 9: Looking Outward to Know Ourselves”

26/27 Apr

  • Wilson, Timothy. “Chapter 10: Observing and Changing Our Behavior,” in Strangers to Ourselves
  • Go back to later part of “Emo Dog” on social cognition, pp. 826-830.


  • Student conferences and paper workshops