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This article presents a strategy for introducing Presocratic thought to students in a manner that is both engaging and relevant. The first section addresses students' reactions to the claim that the Presocratics were the first philosophers. The second section considers how the fragmentary state of Presocratic thought does not hinder its comprehension. The third section proposes a classroom exercise for testing the scientific merits of each of the Presocratic theories. The final section proposes the use of a mock trial as a means of applying the materialist approach introduced by the Presocratics to contemporary debates about free will and determinism.
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Keywords: Presocratics; free will and determinism; materialism; philosophy pedagogy

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: University of Houston-Clear Lake, 2700 Bay Area Blvd., Box 371, Houston, TX 77058, USA, Email: [email protected]

Publication date: 01 October 2009

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