PHI 111 - Basic
Problems of Philosophy
Prof. Hannah Hardgrave
MWF – 12:00-12:50 pm – Tribble Hall A308
Contemporary medical ethics is a development of the last half of the 20th century, the result of the progress of medical research and its application in clinical practice. Bioethics is a field of applied ethics, applying fundamental concepts of philosophical ethics to problems arising out of developments in medical research and practice. The ethical principles include; (1) Autonomy (respect for persons), (2) Beneficence (the promotion of human well-being) and (3) Justice (a fair distribution of the benefits and burdens of medicine). How these principles of bioethics are applied will be the subject of this course. Historically important cases, contemporary issues, and films will be used. The course requirements will include three short papers on films, an oral presentation by each student of an issue chosen by the student, and a research paper on the topic of the oral presentation.
Prof. Stavroula Glezakos
MW - 3:00–4:15 p.m. - Tribble Hall A307
In this course, we will learn increasingly sophisticated techniques for establishing the validity of arguments in a formal language. We will study both propositional and predicate logic; along the way, we will learn how to represent sentences of English by sentences in our formal language, and develop a formal system of derivation – a way to demonstrate that an argument’s conclusion follows by valid reasoning from its premises. No prior study of logic or mathematics is required. Requirements: completion of regular homework assignments; 2 midterm exams; 1 final exam.
Ancient & Medieval
Prof. Patrick Toner
MWF – 11:00-11:50 am - Tribble Hall A307
This course will be a survey of ancient Greek philosophy. We will read some pre-socratic philosophers, and then turn to an extended study of some of the main works of Plato and Aristotle. The course will end with a brief consideration of some of the Hellenistic philosophers, such as Epicurus and the Stoics.
Prof. Adrian Bardon
MWF – 12:00-12:50 p.m. – Tribble Hall A307
This course covers the central ideas of some of the most influential European philosophers of the 17th and 18th centuries. The early modern period was characterized by a revolution in scientific thought, accompanied by closely related revolutions in thought regarding knowledge, reality, religion, politics, and morality. The central concern of the great figures of this period was the possibility and nature of scientific knowledge, and its relation to religious and moral subjects. We shall study the work of several great philosophers of this critical era, including Hobbes, Descartes, Newton, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. Regular written assignments and a term paper will be required.
Hegel, Kierkegaard, & Nietzsche
Prof. Charles Lewis
TR – 3:00-4:15 pm – Tribble Hall B313
Is there a best or superior way of life? Is an examined life compromised by questioning, provoking doubt and insecurity? Is there a best political form of life? Is there any good reason to fear death? What is love? What account of causation is required by a good explanation of human and of non-human things or states of affairs? Is there any way to know the answers to such questions or are we confined to our opinions? What is the status of religious or poetic answers? What is knowledge and is it something different from well-justified true belief? What is truth?
Prof. Gilead Bar-Elli
TR – 3:00-4:15 pm – Tribble Hall A307
Wittgenstein's conception of meaning will be the focus. We shall deal with his critique of various previous conceptions, and lay special emphasis on the role of the notion of use in his own conception – in his two main books: the 'Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus' and 'Philosophical Investigations'. Other topics' like Intentionality and Rule-Following will be geared in. Reading: The above-mentioned two books.
Social & Political Philosophy
Prof. Win-chiat Lee
MWF – 2:00-2:50 pm – Tribble Hall A307
The main theme of the course is: liberalism and its critics. We will begin with John Rawls's influential account of the liberal conception of justice. While some attention will be paid to his methodology, the main focus will be on Rawls's substantive view on political, social and economic justice and his attempt to reconcile our concerns for liberty and equality. The rest of the course will be devoted to the study of criticisms of the liberal conception of justice, especially those directed specifically at Rawls’s account. Our study of the critics will begin with Robert Nozick's libertarian account of the origin of the state, the moral limits of the exercise of state power and the role of free market in distributive justice. In addition to discussing whether Rawls’s theory of justice can meet the challenges posed by Nozick’s libertarian view, we will also examine the adequacy of Rawls’s theory in dealing with a number of other issues – issues such as virtues, the good life, class and gender inequalities, culture, citizenship, and community – which are the focus of some of Rawls’s feminist, Marxian, and communitarian critics. Besides Rawls and Nozick, readings for this course will include works by Plato, John Locke, Karl Marx, Charles Taylor, G. A. Cohen, Susan Okin, and Will Kymlicka.
Topics in Epistemology
Prof. Ralph Kennedy
TR – 1:30-2:45 pm – Tribble A307
The sources, scope and structure of human knowledge. Topics include: skepticism; perception, memory, and reason; the definition of knowledge; the nature of justification; theories of truth. P -- One 200 level course in philosophy or permission of instructor.
Seminar: PHI of Music
Prof. Gilead Bar-Elli
TR – 12:00-1:15 pm – Scales M307
We shall deal with some topics in western, classical, written music and its philosophy. It will be mainly analytical, though some historical sources will be discussed. It is designed for students with some background in philosophy, who can read music notes, though very elementary such knowledge is presumed. Among the topics to be discussed: The ontology of music, musical understanding, the expression of emotions in music, music and its performance.
N. Wollterstorff: Works and Worlds of Art, Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1980.
R. Scruton: The Aesthetics of Music, Oxford: Oxford University Press. 1997.