PHIL 104

 Intro to PhilOSOPHY: FROM  A Multicultural PeRSPECTIVE

Daniel Berthold

 T  Th    10:10-11:30 am

OLIN 203




This course is an introduction to such major themes in the history of philosophy as the nature of reality and our capacity to know it; issues of ethics and justice; and conceptions of how one should live.  Readings will include selections from a diverse range of traditions, including Western, Hindu, Buddhist, Chinese, African, Native American, and feminist texts.  Class size: 22



PHIL 109

 Intro to Ancient Philosophy

Jay Elliott

M  W      1:30-2:50 pm

OLIN 205



Cross-listed: Classical Studies  In ancient Greece and Rome, philosophy was more than just an academic study: it was a way of life focused on the achievement of happiness through the cultivation of wisdom. This course introduces students to the practice of philosophy through investigation of its ancient origins. The course begins by looking at the emergence of philosophy as a distinct cultural practice in ancient Greece, focusing on its complex relations with neighboring practices, such as those of religion, poetry, politics and science. The centerpiece of the course is a sustained examination of the iconic yet enigmatic figure of Socrates, whose exemplary life and death made him the paradigmatic philosopher in antiquity and for centuries after. In approaching Socrates, we will consider the conflicting accounts of his character and activities given by the historian Xenophon, the comedian Aristophanes, and the philosopher-dramatist Plato. The final part of the course provides an overview of some of the main schools of philosophy to emerge following the death of Socrates, exploring their development of novel philosophical theories, practices, and forms of community.  Class size: 22



PHIL 126

 Rhetoric and Reasoning

Robert Tully

 T  Th    1:30-2:50 pm

OLIN 204



This course navigates the choppy waters between ordinary language (written and spoken) and the formal analysis of language known as symbolic logic.  In the domain of arguments, rhetoric and reason coexist in an eternal tension.  From the standpoint of logic, an argument aims to prove that its conclusion is true.  On the side of rhetoric, the person making an argument aims to persuade others to accept the conclusion.  Some arguments are logically valid but fall flat; some arguments are highly convincing but logically worthless.  The fault lies not in language but in our use of it.  The course encourages an appreciation of the richness of meaning and also seeks to inculcate an analytical understanding of an argument’s working logical parts.  Since this is a Philosophy course, it has an arguable bias towards reason.   Class size: 22



PHIL 203

 History of Philosophy I

Jay Elliott

M  W      3:10-4:30 pm

OLIN 205



The history of philosophy is more than a survey of old books and old ideas: it is a challenging encounter  with radically alien modes of thought, and a journey of self-discovery  in which we uncover the strange origins of many of our most cherished assumptions. This course, the first half of a two­ semester sequence, moves from ancient Athens to medieval Baghdad, focusing on the emergence of philosophy as a practice and tradition in antiquity and its complex dialogue with revealed religion in the first millennium CE. Major figures to be discussed include Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, Epictetus, Sextus Empiricus, Plotinus, Ibn Sina and AI-Ghazali. We will read these authors as sources of intellectual provocation on a wide range of topics, including: the nature of the mind, self, or soul; the origin and structure of the universe; the best life for human beings; the grounds and sources of genuine knowledge; and the proper aims and methods of philosophy itself. This course is a requirement for philosophy majors beginning with the class of 2020. It is also a prerequisite for Philosophy 204: History of Philosophy II.

Class size: 22



PHIL 225

 Chinese Philosophy

Susan Blake

M  W      11:50-1:10 pm

ASP 302



Cross-listed: Asian Studies  This course provides an overview of pre-Qin philosophical thought in China. We will read texts from the major schools—not only Confucianism and Daoism, but also ‘Legalism’, Mohism, and the School of Names. Discussion will range over questions in ethical and political philosophy, as well as questions about the nature of the world, of the self, and of language. Class size: 22



PHIL 237

 Symbolic Logic

Robert Martin


M  W      10:10-11:30 am

     F       12:15 – 1:15 pm

OLIN 205



Cross-listed: Mind, Brain, Behavior  An introduction to logic, requiring no prior knowledge of philosophy or mathematics.  This course aims at imparting the ability to construct correct formal deductions and refutations. Our text (available on-line free of charge) covers the first order predicate calculus with identity; we will cover as much of that as feasible in one semester.  There is software for the course, called Logic 2010, developed by Robert Martin and David Kaplan at UCLA in the 1990s and subsequently rewritten for the internet, that will assist students by providing feedback on exercises. Class size: 22



PHIL 242


David Shein

M  W      8:30-9:50 am

OLIN 204



Cross-listed: Science, Technology, Society A semester-long investigation of philosophical relativism.  The first half of the semester will focus on epistemic relativism and the second half will focus on moral/cultural relativism.  While this will introduce us to several fundamental modes of philosophical inquiry (among them, metaphysics, epistemology, philosophy of language, and meta-ethics), the focus of the class will be a detailed exploration of relativism as a philosophical position.  Authors to be read include: Richard Rorty, W.V. Quine, Thomas Kuhn, Bernard Williams, Peter Winch, and others.  A prior course in philosophy is desirable but not necessary. Class size: 22



PHIL 327

 Philosophers of Christianity

Bruce Chilton

    F        10:10-12:30 pm

OLIN 305



Cross-listed: Theology  Key contributors to the development of theology crafted their thought in active dialogue with philosophical traditions of their eras. Examples include Origen the Platonist, Augustine the Stoic, Aquinas the Aristotelian, Friess the Kantian, Whitehead the Hegelian, and Marion the Wittgensteinian. The seminar will investigate how such theologians were influenced by, and influenced, the philosophical discourse of their times, while shaping the articulation of faith.  Class size: 15



PHIL 375

 The Philosophy of Nietzsche

Daniel Berthold

 T           1:30-3:50 pm

OLIN 309



Cross-listed: German Studies  This course focuses on two intertwined works that Nietzsche wrote over a five year period between 1882 and 1887: the Gay Science and Thus Spoke Zarathustra. The original edition of the Gay Science ends with a passage that is word for word the opening of the Prologue of Zarathustra, and then after Nietzsche finishes Zarathustra, he turns to add a final book to The Gay Science. Thus the two texts, so different in style, tone, and narrative arc, are not only in conversation with each other but literally open up into each other. We will pay close attention to such themes as perspectivism, literary experimentalism, philosophy (and life) as art, the diagnosis of modernity as cultural nihilism, the recovery of the body, the central role of the unconscious, and the concepts of the will to power, the revaluation of values, the overman, and the death of god. Readings also from Maurice Blanchot, Gilles Deleuze, Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, Martin Heidegger, and Laurence Lampert. Prerequisite: previous courses in philosophy.  

Class size: 16



PHIL 385

 Philosophy of Wittgenstein

Garry Hagberg

   Th       1:30-3:50 pm

OLIN 307



A first reading of major works of one of the most influential philosophers of the twentieth-century, Ludwig Wittgenstein. Readings: Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus, The Blue Book, and The Philosophical Investigations. This course fulfills the single-philosopher requirement for junior philosophy majors.

Class size: 15



Cross-listed courses:



HR 243

 Constitutional Law

Roger Berkowitz

Peter Rosenblum

 T  Th    1:30-2:50 pm




Cross-listed: Philosophy; Political Studies



PS 341


Roger Berkowitz

M         4:40- 7:00 PM




Cross-listed:  Human Rights, Philosophy