Academics

Courses

  • PH105 Introduction to Ethics

    4 Credits

    Introduces important theories on nature of the good in human conduct. Theories belong to Western philosophical tradition and include works of Plato, Aristotle, Kant, Mill, and others.

    Instructors Bianca Janssen Groesbeek, Elizabeth Baeten
  • PH200 Contemporary Ethics

    4 Credits

    Uses philosophic analyses/arguments to better understand contemporary issues. These may include abortion, euthanasia, capital punishment, affirmative action, transgender rights, and others. Fulfills the Ethics and Values Perspective.

    Instructors Lucas Fain
  • PH203 Special Topics in Ethics or Value Theory: Aristotle’s Legacy

    4 Credits

    Topics announced prior to each term may include: Art and Politics, Media Ethics, Feminist Ethics, Political Philosophy, or Judaism. May be repeated for credit if topics differ.

    Instructors Eric Michael Dale
  • PH203 Special Topics in Ethics or Value Theory: Chinese Philosophy

    4 Credits

    Topics announced prior to each term may include: Art and Politics, Media Ethics, Feminist Ethics, Political Philosophy, or Judaism. May be repeated for credit if topics differ.

    Instructors Eric Michael Dale
  • PH203 Special Topics in Ethics or Value Theory: Philosophy before Socrates

    4 Credits

    Western philosophy does not begin with Socrates; the values and ideas that continue to shape our lives – change and constancy, knowledge and skepticism, the nature of the world and of human life – were being debated long before his birth. This course investigates the complex relationships between myth, science, and philosophy at the birth of Greek thought. We begin with a look at the origins of Greek thinking in Homer and Hesiod. We then turn to the development of various schools of philosophy, such as the Milesians, Pythagoreans, and Eleatics, and the course conclude with a discussion of the Sophists.

    Instructors Eric Michael Dale
  • PH203 Special Topics in Ethics or Value Theory: Problems of Exclusion in a Pluralistic Democracy

    4 Credits

    Topics announced prior to each term may include: Art and Politics, Media Ethics, Feminist Ethics, Political Philosophy, or Judaism. May be repeated for credit if topics differ.

    Instructors Pablo Muchnik
  • PH203 Topic: Chinese Philosophy

    4 Credits

    Summer Session 1 Course Description: Arising during the tumultuous Warring States period (5th-3rd centuries BC), the seminal thinkers and texts of Confucianism, Daoism, and many other of the Hundred Schools set the foundation for discourses in ethics, religion, and political philosophy in Chinese civilization over the next two millennia. This course introduces a broad range of classical, Neo-Confucian, and modern Chinese thought, exploring its philosophical, religious, and social dimensions using both primary and secondary sources in translation. Attention is paid not only to classical thinkers but also contemporary theorists, including the New Confucianism of Mou Zongsan and Tu Wieming and the development of Boston Confucianism.

    Instructors Eric Michael Dale
  • PH203 Topics in Ethics: Humans 2.0: The Ethics of Genetic Engineering and Synthetic Biology

    4 Credits

    In this course students will learn to think critically about the ethical challenges presented by genetic engineering and synthetic biology. First, students survey the morally fraught history of genome science that has brought us to this moment in history. Second, we will study the ethical challenges presented by contemporary cases, including human gene editing and the creation and use of transgenic organisms. Third, students critically engage with the ways in which science facts are transformed, envisioned, and interrogated by science fiction creators by surveying genome and synthetic biology science fiction in the novel, the short story, and the film.

    Instructors Robb Eason
  • PH204 Environmental Ethics

    4 Credits

    Considers philosophical ethics in relation to environmental issues. Topics include: religious beliefs as a foundation for environmental commitments, duties, and obligations toward other species; ""deep ecology""; ecofeminism; economic imperatives versus environmental concerns; and disproportionate burden of environmental problems borne by certain groups.

    Instructors Bianca Janssen Groesbeek, Charles Oliver
  • PH205 Virtues, Vices & Temptations

    4 Credits

    A key assumption in traditional moral philosophy is that the acquisition of a virtuous character is necessary for a good life. Experimental results in social psychology, however, indicate that situational pressures may be more reliable predictors of human behavior than presence of stable character traits. This course surveys key concepts in the history of moral philosophy and examines criticism of those concepts arising from the situationist literature and our possible responses to them.

    Instructors Pablo Muchnik