Philosophy Course Descriptions

Philosophy 200 - Introduction to Philosophy

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to the central problems and topics of metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics. Prerequisite: Humanities 110. Conference.

Philosophy 201 - Logic

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to the formal logic of propositions, identity, and quantification, culminating in an introduction to metalogic and a study of some alternate and deviant logics. Lecture.

Philosophy 202 - Introduction to Metaphysics

Full course for one semester. An examination of selected topics in metaphysics, such as: What kind of beings are we? Do we have free will? Does God exist? Is time real? Does anything exist independently of our minds? Conference.

Philosophy 203 - Introduction to Ethics

Full course for one semester. An examination of selected historical and contemporary accounts of how we should live, of what makes life good, of what does harm, of what constrains our actions, and of what gives our lives meaning. Conference.

Philosophy 301 - Ancient Philosophy

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to ancient Greek philosophy focusing on the works of Plato and Aristotle. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 302 - Modern Philosophy

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to the metaphysical and epistemological views of major Modern philosophers such as Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 303 - Hellenistic Philosophy

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to Hellenistic philosophy, including skepticism, stoicism, and Epicurianism. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Cross-listed as Classics 303. Not offered 2006-07.

Classics 303 Description

Philosophy 304 - Empiricism: Locke, Berkeley, and Hume

Full course for one semester. This course offers a detailed examination of the three philosophers at the center of English empiricism in the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries: Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. Prerequisite: Philosophy 200 or another 200-level course in philosophy other than Philosophy 201. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 308 - Post-Kantian Continental Philosophy

Full course for one semester. This course is an examination of the development of philosophy in Germany following the publication of Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason in 1781. Figures to be studied include Kant, Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 309 - Existentialism

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to some central topics in modern continental philosophy including subjective freedom, self-deception, anxiety, and death. Figures to be studied include Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 310 - Metaphysics

Full course for one semester. This course is a study of the central topics and problems of metaphysics, including the mind-body problem, free will and determinism, persistence and change, and the natures of particulars, properties, time, space modality, causality, identity, and persons. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 311 - Epistemology

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to the central topics in the theory of knowledge, including the nature of knowledge, the nature of epistemic justification, and varieties of skepticism. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 312 - Ethical Theories

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to the central theories and problems of ethics. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 314 - Aesthetics

Full course for one semester. This course is a study of the principal theories of criticism and taste. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 315 - Philosophy of Language

Full course for one semester. This course is a study of such topics as truth, reference, meaning, convention, linguistic and non-linguistic communication, and the relationships between language, thought, and reality. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 317 - Philosophy of Mind

Full course for one semester. This course is a philosophical study of the mind through the examination of such topics as the mind-body problem, intentionality, consciousness, first-person authority, other minds, folk psychology, artificial intelligence, and connectionism. Among the theories to be examined are dualism, materialism, behaviorism, the identity theory, functionalism, emergentism, eliminativism, and dynamical systems theory. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 318 - Philosophy of Biology

Full course for one semester. This course is a philosophical study of such topics as adaptation; units of selection; emergence and reduction; function and teleology; the status of species and systematics; evolutionary trends; implications of evolutionary theory for psychology, culture, epistemology, and ethics; and social implications of contemporary biology (such as the human genome project, genetic engineering, and artificial life). Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 321 - Modal Logic and Metaphysics

Full course for one semester. This course is an introduction to modal logic, possible-world semantics, and associated philosophical issues. Prerequisites: Philosophy 201 and one other 200-level course in philosophy. Conference.

Philosophy 405 - Senior Seminar

Half course for one semester. This course is an intensive study of selected philosophical problems or works. Primary emphasis is placed on exercising and developing the skills required for original and creative work in philosophy. Open to majors with senior standing, and to others with consent of the instructor. Discussion.

Philosophy 411 - Advanced Topics in Metaphysics: Modality and Tense

Full course for one semester. This course is a study of the logic and metaphysics of modality and tense. Prerequisites: Philosophy 310 and 315 or consent of the instructor. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 412 - Advanced Topics in Epistemology

Full course for one semester. This course is an intensive study of a subject within epistemology. Specific topics vary from year to year. Prerequisite: Philosophy 311 or consent of the instructor. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 413 - Advanced Topics in Ethics: Ethics and Biotechnology

From microbes to humans, the fundamental nature of life forms are being increasingly reshaped by innovations in biotechnology, and the pace of these changes will only increase in the future. This course will investigate the social and ethical implications of contemporary and future advances in biotechnology, including such topics as cloning, genetic engineering, gene therapy, and the prospect of synthesizing life from scratch Prerequisite: a 300-level course or consent of the instructor. Conference.

Philosophy 414 - Advanced Topics in Contemporary Philosophy: Meaning, Necessity, and the A Priori

Full course for one semester. The traditional descriptivist framework of Frege and Russell supplied an elegant picture of the relations between meaning, necessity, and the a priori: A sentence is true in virtue of meaning if and only if it is a necessary truth, and the latter if and only if it is a priori. The aim of this course is to clarify how the relations between meaning, necessity, and the a priori should be understood in the aftermath of Kripke’s critique of the traditional descriptivist framework. Prerequisites: Philosophy 315 or Philosophy 321. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 415 - Major Figures in Philosophy

Frege
Full course for one semester. This course is a study of Frege’s work in logic, philosophy of language, and philosophy of mathematics. Prerequisite: one 300-level course in philosophy. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Nietzsche
Full course for one semester. In this course we will examine Nietzsche’s critique of morality in the context 19th century continental philosophy. We will also consider Nietzsche’s views on truth, psychology, and religion, as well as his doctrines of the will to power and the eternal recurrence. Prerequisites: a 300-level philosophy course or consent of the instructor. Conference. Not offered 2006-07.

Philosophy 470 - Thesis

Full course for one year.

Philosophy 481 - Individual Work in Special Fields

One-half or full course for one year. Prerequisite: approval of instructor and division.




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