Course Descriptions Spring 1999

CAS PH 100
Professor Roochnik
An introduction to philosophy. In this course we will employ works of literature as well as classical works of philosophy in order to exhibit the human context of philosophy.

CAS PH 110
Professor Ferrarin
Introduction to some basic questions of human existence, with particular reference to the relationship between man and nature, between the individual and the political domain; the soul and the passions; the definition of virtue and of ethics; morality and freedom.

CAS PH 150 A1
Professor Fahy
A systematic and historical inquiry into differing accounts of the good life, alternating lectures with discussions of selected texts.

CAS PH 150 B1
Professor Wong
A systematic and historical inquiry into differing accounts of the good life, alternating lectures with discussions of selected texts.

CAS PH 150 C1
Professor Garrett
A systematic inquiry into alternative ways of discerning between good and evil, alternating lectures with discussions of selected texts from contemporary ethics.

CAS PH 155
Professor Rosen
An introduction to modern political philosophy, with special emphasis on the most important differences between ancient and modern political thought, and in particular on the problem of enlightenment.

CAS PH 160 A1
Professor Janssen
A systematic study of the principles of both deductive and informal reasoning, with an emphasis on reasoning and argumentation in ordinary discourse, and on their strategies. The aim of the course is to train the student in the skills of argument analysis, argument construction, and argument evaluation.

CAS PH 160 B1
Professor Webb
A systematic study of the principles of both deductive and informal reasoning, with an emphasis on reasoning and argumentation in ordinary discourse, and on their strategies. The aim of the course is to train the student in the skills of argument analysis, argument construction, and argument evaluation.
Textbook: Hintikka and Bachman, What if…? Toward Excellence in Reasoning and Weston, A Rulebook for Arguments.

CAS PH 160 C1
Professor Ostrow
A systematic study of the principles of both deductive and informal reasoning, with an emphasis on reasoning and argumentation in ordinary discourse, and on their strategies. The aim of the course is to train the student in the skills of argument analysis, argument construction, and argument evaluation.
Textbook: Hintikka and Bachman, What if…? Toward Excellence in Reasoning.

Prerequisite: one philosophy course or sophomore standing
CAS PH 246
Professor Rouner
Introductions to the Indian philosophical tradition, study of the classical Six Systems, and an overview of the rise of neo-Hindu philosophy from Ram Mohun Roy to Gandhi.

CAS PH 253
Professor Cahoone
A philosophical examination of nineteenth and twentieth century theories of ‘modernity,’ that is, of the distinctive character of modern societies. Readings will include Karl Marx, Sigmund Freud, Max Weber, Hanna Arendt, Jean-Francois Lyotard, and Peter Berger.

CAS PH 258
Professor Speight
Philosophy and the Theater Exploration of the “ancient quarrel” between philosophy & poetry as it concerns the modes of tragedy and comedy. The course will consider a number of famous philosophical theories of or complaints about drama, as well as the comic and tragic works which inspired those reflections. Philosophical texts to be considered include Aristotle’s Poetics, Hegel’s Aesthetics, Nietzsche’s Birth of Tragedy, Max Scheler’s “On the Phenomenon of the Tragic,” Rousseau’s “Lettre á d’Alembert”; dramatic works will include Sophocles’ Antigone and Philoctetes, Euripides’ Bacchae, Diderot’s Rameau’s Nephew, Aristophanes’ Clouds, and Moliere’s Misanthrope.

CAS PH 259
Professor Dahlstrom
Introduction to aesthetics, considering such questions as: What is a work of art? How does one know when it is good or bad? What is the purpose of art? Emphasis on examining major works of art.

CAS PH 260
Professor Janssen
This course, taught by one of the editors of the Einstein Papers Project, will offer an in-depth yet non-mathematical look at the surprising picture of the physical world emerging from relativity theory and quantum theory. The focus will be on the contributions of Albert Einstein to this modern view of nature. The goal is not just to get a clear image of the unexpected features of physical reality uncovered by Einstein and others, but also to understand the reasoning behind their claims.
To give just two examples of the sort of question that will be guiding us: How does one get from the notion that the velocity of light is independent of the velocity of its source to the claim that an astronaut returning from a mission in space will be younger, albeit only a tiny bit, than his or her twin who stayed at home, an unexpected effect Einstein immediately accepted as a consequence of his special theory of relativity? How does one get from the splitting of a beam of electrons sent through some magnetic field to the claim that electrons do not have definite properties until one performs a measurement on them, one of the basic tenets of standard quantum mechanics, a theory Einstein never accepted?

CAS PH 271
Professor Cao
Considering the centrality of science in our world today, students in all fields–including the sciences and engineering as well as the social sciences and the humanities–should appreciate both the role of science in society and its nature as an intellectual system. One way to acquire this perspective is through studying the history of science. In this course we will examine key events in the history of science and the historiographical problems as to how the evolution of the history of science is to be explained. Various views on the nature of scientific progress offered by Sarton, Merton, Koyré, Popper, Kuhn, as well as the social constructivist, the feminist, and the post-modernist, will be briefly examined. We seek to understand the nature of the conceptual developments in modern science, to appreciate the character of the interactions between modern science and society, and to appreciate the philosophical, religious, and other cultural issues involving science.

CAS PH 278
Professor Tauber
The question of how historians fulfill a moral agenda in writing history will serve as the theme of this course. Consideration of biblical narratives, early Greek historians, Augustine, Vico, Hegel, and Nietzsche will focus contemporary historiographic issues concerning objectivity, historicism, and perspectivism.

CAS PH 310 A1
Professor Devlin
The course will explore Greek philosophy and will concentrate on its chief representatives: Socrates, Plato, and Aristotle. Platonic dialogues, and major chunks of the Aristotelian corpus will be read with some care. The focus will be philosophical rather than historical, and the emphasis will be on the analysis and interpretation of texts.
Requirements: One paper, midterm, final.

CAS PH 310 A1
Professor Joseph
Examination of theories of major seventeenth and eighteenth century philosophers, from Descartes to Kant. Our focus will be accounts of the ultimate nature of existence and knowledge.
Requirements: Two papers and final examination.

CAS PH 310 B1
Professor Webb
Examination of theories of major seventeenth and eighteenth century philosophers, from Descartes to Kant. Along with their confidence in reason, the Continental Rationalists share a conception of philosophy as a universal discipline whose propositions are derivable from first principles regarded as necessary. The British Empiricists, on the other hand, beginning with Locke’s “historical, plain method,” claim to rely primarily on experience as the basis of their theories of knowledge. There are lessons in all of this that Kant takes to heart.
Requirements: Two papers and final examination.

CAS PH 350
Professor Haakonssen
The course provides a history of modern Western ethics through detailed study of representative thinkers, including Thomas Hobbes, David Hume, Immanuel Kant, and John Stuart Mill. We consider such questions as whether morality is invented or discovered? What is the good life? What is the relationship between moral virtue and happiness? What is duty? What is supererogation? What is the relationship between morality and religion?

CAS PH 360
Professor Hintikka
Study of the basics of modern logic, including propositional logic, quantifiers, identity and functions, completeness and incompleteness. A special emphasis is placed on strategies of deductive reasoning.

Undergraduates: Register for 400 level courses
Graduates: Register for 600 level courses

CAS PH 403
Professor Roochnik
Prerequisite: PH 300 and two other PH courses
“The Trial and Death of Socrates.” A close reading of the Apology, Crito, and Phaedo.

CAS PH 408
Professor Garrett
This class will be an introduction to the central themes of Christian philosophy of middle and late Medieval philosophy. After a broad introduction we will concentrate on three thinkers: St. Thomas Aquinas, William of Ockham, and John Duns Scotus. These three thinkers will help us to address some of the central concerns and tensions of medieval philosophy: the analogy and univocity of being, the realism of universals, God’s foreknowledge of future contingents, the relation between science and theology, and others. The class will conclude with a discussion of the implicit and explicit impact of Scholastic philosophy on Early Modern rationalism (Descartes, Spinoza, Malebranche, and Leibniz) and empiricism (Hobbes, and Hume).

CAS PH 415
Professor Zank
Prerequisite: PH 310, and two other PH courses
Requirements: Basic knowledge of at least one of the following areas: modern European history, Jewish thought, history of religion.
The course focuses on Continental philosophy in the late 18th-, 19th-, and early 20th-century looking at major shifts in metaphysics and epistemology as reflected in political and religious problems from the perspective of Jewish thinkers. Primary readings cover Moses Mendelssohn, Hermann Cohen, and Franz Rosenzweig, reading them as critical respondents to Enlightenment, critical and absolute idealism, and the crises of materialism and nihilism. Among the major Continental thinkers considered are Kant, Hegel, Marx, and Kierkegaard.

CAS PH 420/620
Professor Cahoone
A critical examination of that late twentieth century intellectual movement called “postmodernism” as it has developed in philosophy. We will trace its evolution through the work of Martin Heidegger and others; focus our attention on the key postmodernist figures of Jacques Derrida, Michel Foucault, Jean-Francois Lyotard, and Richard Rorty; and explore two differing critiques of postmodernism, in the work of Jürgen Habermas and Alasdair MacIntyre.

CAS PH 424/624
Professor Dreben
A detailed examination of Wittgenstein’s Philosophical Investigations.
Texts by Wittgenstein:
1) Philosophical Investigations
2) Remarks on the Foundations of Mathematics
3) On Certainty

CAS PH 426
Professor Ferrarin
The aim of this course is to provide an introduction to phenomenology as a way of doing philosophy. To this end the course concentrates on central themes and methods of the phenomenologies of Husserl and Heidegger. The course begins with a review of Brentano’s concept of intentionality and its critical appropriation by Husserl.
We will analyze some of Husserl’s Shorter Works, especially Philosophy as Rigorous Science and other brief general introductions to phenomenology, with special emphasis on categorial intuition, the natural attitude and phenomenological reductions, and the general structures of pure consciousness. Husserl’s Crisis will be examined with special focus on such themes as phenomenology and psychology and the life-world.
We will follow Heidegger’s description and employment of phenomenology in History of the Concept of Time. Special attention is paid to the way in which the themes and method from Husserl’s early phenomenology are re-worked in Heidegger’s existential analysis of being-in-the-world. This course presupposes the ability to do advanced work in philosophy.

CAS PH 427/627
Professor Brinkmann
An analysis of the philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre centering around his theory of consciousness and the self, his theory of freedom, his ontology of the ‘in-itself’ and the ‘for-itself’ and his ethics. Readings will include:
The Transcendence of the Ego
Sketch of a Theory of the Emotions
Being and Nothingness
Existentialism and Humanism

CAS PH 447
Professor Berthrong
(cross-listed with STH TT 815)
Prerequisites: PH 300, 310, and one other PH course
This course, “The Confucian Tradition,” examines the intellectual history of the Confucian tradition. The primary focus will be on the development of Confucianism in China, Korea, and Japan. The course will emphasize the classical (the Chou and Han founders) and the Neo-Confucian (the Sung, Yüan, Ming and Ch’ing masters) periods; we will also deal briefly with contemporary New Confucianism. The course will also briefly review the permutations of Confucian-Christian dialogue as an illustration of the interaction of religious traditions.

CAS PH 450/650
Prerequisites: PH 350, and two other PH courses
Professor Wong
This course focuses on three questions: 1) whether morality should moderate its demands in the light of the human tendency to attach great importance to one’s own projects and personal relationships; 2) whether morality is created through convention and social practice or something to be discovered in the world; and 3) whether valid moral requirements remain constant or vary with culture.
Readings include contemporary Anglo-American philosophy (e.g., Bernard Williams, Alasdair MacIntyre, Susan Wolf, Owen Flanagan, John McDowell) and Chinese Philosophy in translation (Mencius, Mo Tzu, Hsun Tzu and Chuang Tzu). Comparing these different philosophical traditions will sometimes raise the question of how to understand and deal with cultural differences in values and philosophical approach. However, the different traditions sometimes converge strikingly upon the same problems and present solutions that invite comparison and possible synthesis. For example, some contemporary moral philosophers have criticized mainstream moral theories for demanding an equal concern for all that overrides ties of loyalty, friendship and kinship to particular others. A very similar debate took place in ancient China. Reflection on the common problems addressed within very different philosophical traditions suggests the possibility that there are significant constraints on what constitute an adequate morality for human beings, even on the view that holds a great deal of morality to be invented and to vary significantly over culture.

CAS PH 452/652
ETHICS OF HEALTHCARE: Birth, Life and Death
Professor Grodin
What is life? What is death? What distinguishes being alive or having a life from living a life? What is the nature of personhood? How can one relate causality to intent, predictability or fallibility? Medicine and health care offer a unique opportunity to explore the nature of humanity and the world and to ask fundamental questions concerning the nature of life, death, and what it is to be human. This course will analyze these problems in the context of medical care at the beginning and end of life. After an introduction to the foundational questions and problems of medical ethics and an exploration into the historical views of birth, life, and death, the class will explore the following topics: abortion, selective fetal termination, the new reproductive and genetic technologies, fetal-maternal conflicts, the human genome projects, human death, brain death, personal death, persistent vegetative coma, termination of life support, euthanasia, and assisted suicide. Throughout the course case studies will be used as philosophical paradigms to assist in critiquing and clarifying metaphysical and normative ethical arguments.
Readings will be from both classical and contemporary writings in ethics, medicine, law and public health policy.
Requirements: class participation, presentations, short papers and a longer final term paper.

CAS PH 465/665
Prerequisite: PH 310, 360, and one other PH course
Professor Cao
An introduction to philosophical issues in cognitive science (computer science and neuroscience in particular) with special attention to the issue of emergence of cognitive activities from non-cognitive processes: the condition and nature of the emergence and its bearings to the mind-body problem. This course is for advanced undergraduates and graduate students; students from related departments (e.g., Cognitive & Neural Systems) are welcome.

CAS PH 468/668
(cross-listed with MA 532)
Professor Kanamori
The course begins, if necessary, with a review of first-order logic and formal systems. It then focuses on axiomatic set theory as the basic framework for mathematics, and as a distinctive field of mathematics. With emphasis on the historical context, the theory is developed from its beginnings in the work of Cantor and Zermelo through to modern preoccupations.
Proceeding through the basic axioms, the algebra of classes, and the set vs. class distinction, mathematical concepts of number from integers to reals are discussed. Then Cantor’s transfinite numbers and Continuum Hypothesis are considered, and Zermelo’s Axiom of Choice and its role in mathematics surveyed. Finally, recent results and current problems are broached.
Grading: Exercises, 60%; midterm, 15%; and final exam 25%.
Required Text: Yiannis Moschovakis Notes on Set Theory (New York Springer-Verlag 1994).

CAS PH 472/672
Professor Tauber
Darwinism is at the core of contemporary philosophy of biology and we will consider this theory’s evolution from Darwin’s writings, through the synthesis with genetics, to modern dynamic theories. Over-arching our particular consideration of Darwinism is the structure of scientific theory more generally and the nature of its development.

400 level: Limited to Senior Philosophy Majors
600 level: Open to All Graduate Students

CAS PH 482
Professor Olson
(Cross-listed with RN 510 Topics in Religion and Literature)
Readings in Hegel and Kierkegaard, Schopenhauer, Nietzsche, Charles Taylor and Paul Ricoeur, and selected novels of the 20th Century.

The following courses are open to Graduate Students ONLY
Note that courses listed above, bearing a 600 level number, may be taken for graduate credit.

GRS PH 812
Professor Allison
This will be a continuation of the seminar on Kant’s Critique of Judgment which began in the Fall. It is open only to students who have taken the first part or to students who receive special permission from the instructor.

GRS PH 820
Professor Dahlstrom
This course investigates Heidegger’s lectures in 1925 (“Prolegomena to the History of the Concept of Time”) and 1925-26 (“Logic. The Question of Truth”). In addition to the significance of these lectures (the last lectures given prior to the publication of Being and Time) for understanding the development of Heidegger’s early thought, they are philosophically important because they contain his initial argument for a notion of truth, more basic than the notions of truth invoked in some traditional logical and epistemological contexts. Heidegger develops his argument by means of (a) considerations of the influence of Lotze’s logic, (b) an extensive assessment and criticism of Husserl’s phenomenology, (c) an unorthodox reading of Aristotle’s writings on truth, and (d) the first draft of a new interpretation of Kant’s transcendental project. The examination and evaluation of Heidegger’s argument is the main objective of this course.

GRS PH 840
Professor Rosen
An investigation into the origin of philosophy in ordinary experience. Discussion of Husserl, Heidegger, and Wittgenstein.

GRS PH 854
Professor Haakonssen
The focus of the course is John Locke’s Tow Treatises of Government. The work will be seen against the background of Locke’s moral philosophy and theology and we will also be reading the early work on natural law and a number of essays.

GRS PH 860
Professor Hintikka
A selection of important epistemological problems will be examined, among them knowledge-seeking by questioning, the interplay of empirical and a prior knowledge, objects of knowledge in relation to different individuation methods, the Cartesian cogito, Wittgenstein’s epistemology, and the concept of intuition.
Requirements: A substantial term paper, to be first submitted in draft, then rewritten in the light of comments.