Steven Arkonovich

Moral psychology, ethics. On sabbatical and leave 2008-09.

Mark Bedau

Philosophy of biology, philosophy of mind, artificial life.

Mark Hinchliff

Metaphysics, philosophy of language, epistemology.

Paul Hovda

Metaphysics, philosophy of language, logic, philosophy of logic.

Gerhard Nuffer

Philosophy of mind.

Robert Paul, Emeritus

Aristotle, Wittgenstein, epistemology.

Margaret Scharle

Ancient Greek philosophy.

Philosophy deals with some of the most enduring and challenging problems and with the attempts we have made to solve them. The following questions are typical: What do we know and how do we know it? Do we project our values onto the world or find them there? Do we invent mathematical truths or discover them? Are we responsible for what we do, or are we helpless victims of our genetic endowment, environment, and upbringing? Are our judgments about the merits of novels, paintings, poems, films, and symphonies justifiable? Are we complex animals or simplified angels, minds or molecules? What are goodness, truth, and beauty? Is there anything in the world besides matter in motion?

While these questions are examined in most of the philosophy department's courses, not all courses examine them in the same way or presuppose the same degree of sophistication. The number of a course is a good guide to its intended level. 200-level courses are intended for sophomores, 300-level courses for juniors, and 400-level courses for seniors. A qualified student, however, may gain admission to a course of any level by consent of the instructor.

Courses of interest to students of philosophy are also taught in the political science and mathematics departments in classical political philosophy, modern political philosophy, Hegel and Marx, judgment, and mathematical logic.

Some students study philosophy together with another subject, such as religion, mathematics, literature, political science, or biology. Students who wish to include philosophy in an interdisciplinary major are required to take Logic, Introduction to Philosophy, and four other philosophy courses (besides the senior thesis), to be chosen in consultation with their philosophy adviser.

Requirements for the Major

  1. Two courses at the 200 level.
  2. One course in each of the following four areas: epistemology, ethics, logic, and metaphysics.
  3. One course in ancient philosophy and one additional course in the history of philosophy.
  4. Six courses above the 200 level, including at least two at the 400 level.
  5. No more than three courses at the 200 level may be used to satisfy requirements for the major.
  6. Thesis (470)

Philosophy Course Descriptions

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