Philosophy, Religion, Psychology, and Linguistics

The division of philosophy, religion, psychology, and linguistics encompasses humanistic and scientific approaches to the study of human thought, behavior, and belief. The four departments within the division address fundamental questions about the nature of the mind, the activities and experiences of humans and animals, and the traditions and culture of faith as a means to understanding humanity's position in the universe. Each department approaches these questions from different perspectives, using a range of methodologies and drawing upon rich traditions within each field.

The departments share a commitment to interdisciplinary study, both within the division and in many fields outside the division, including mathematics, humanities, natural sciences, and social sciences. Students develop interdisciplinary majors with approval from the relevant departments.

Notable Alumni

  • Michael Levine, philosophy '62: chairman of the board, Rohn Industries, Inc.; former dean of Yale School of Organization and Managements, adjunct professor of law, Harvard Law School
  • Nancy Cochrane, philosophy '70: agricultural economist and project manager for technical assistance in Central and Eastern Europe for the Economic Research Service of the USDA
  • Lafcadio Cortesi, religion '84: tropical forest and coral reef campaigner for Greenpeace Pacific
  • Anne Chartier Steele, religion '70: president, Muskingum College
  • Howard Wolpe, psychology '60: visiting fellow, Brookings Institution, Washington, D.C.; former U.S. congressman, 3rd district, Michigan; special U.S. envoy to Burundi
  • Howard Rheingold, psychology '68: editor and technology journalist, Whole Earth Review; best-selling author; founding executive editor, HotWired magazine; noted expert on computing and its effect on communication
  • Sara Nichols, psychology '83: legislative director, California Nurses Association
  • Peter Jacobson '95, psychology: owner of Sound and Fury, Manhattan indie record store
  • Thor Prichard '97, psychology: president and CEO, Clarity Innovations