Group of students sitting around a table

Philosophy (PHI)

PHI 00U  Topics Philosophy: Probability of God, Human Consciousness and West Philosophy Trading  (3 credits)  
PHI 110  Introduction to Philosophy: Philosophical Problems  (3 credits)  

An examination of some of the major philosophical problems, and an introduction to some of the great figures in the history of philosophy. The emphasis will vary from semester to semester, but the course will generally focus on questions concerning the sources of knowledge, the meaning of moral and other value judgments, the nature of the human mind, the justifications for political authority, and the intellectual presuppositions of religious belief.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
PHI 110T  Introduction to Philosophy: Philosophical Problems - Learning Community  (3 credits)  

This Learning Community develops a vocabulary for thinking philosophically and then, through regular, guided composition, applies philosophical concepts to the realities of our time and place.

PHI 113  Ancient Philosophy  (3 credits)  

An exploration of ancient patterns of thought and how they emerged in response to human experience from about 600 B.C.E. to about 200 C.E. Major themes focus on questions about how we come to know about our world, the relationships between the gods, nature, and man and on human concerns with ethical and political issues.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
PHI 115  Normative Ethics: Contemporary Moral Problems  (3 credits)  

A philosophical examination of such issues as abortion, homosexuality, prostitution, criminal punishment, euthanasia, medical ethics, business ethics, civil disobedience, and just and unjust wars. Discussion of these issues will be framed by an examination of major ethical theories.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
PHI 115C  Normative Ethics: Contemporary Problems (CAP)  (3 credits)  

A philosophical examination of such issues as abortion, homosexuality, prostitution, criminal punishment, euthanasia, medical ethics, business ethics, civil disobedience, and just and unjust wars. Discussion of these issues will be framed by an examination of major ethical theories.

PHI 116  Modern Philosophy  (3 credits)  

A selective introduction to the works of philosophers from Descartes to Nietzsche. Special emphasis will be placed on some of the principal issues that concerned these philosophers, including the nature of reality, the sources of our knowledge of ourselves and of the world around us, the fundamental assumptions of science, the apparent conflict between free will and determinism, and the foundations of morals.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring, Summer.
PHI 121  Ethics in the Workplace  (3 credits)  

This course offers a survey of some of the key issues that face the whole range of corporate stakeholders, from shareholders to the general public. We begin with two classical ethical theories, utilitarianism and deontological ethical theory, and with the relationship between justice and the market system. We continue with ethical issues involving the relationship between the employee and the company, such as whistle-blowing; discrimination, affirmative action, sexual harassment; issues involving the consumer and employee protection, such as product and occupational safety; and finally issues of the relationship between the corporation and society, such as corporate responsibility.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring - Odd years.
PHI 152  Critical Thinking  (3 credits)  

Beginning with a discussion of the nature of critical thinking and its role in both academia and the "real world", this course will investigate the analysis and the creation of different kinds of claims; the difference between claims and non-claims; techniques for the evaluation and grounding of claims; and the analysis of various forms of sound and unsound reasoning. Examples will be drawn from political arguments, advertising, the news media, and textbooks.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring
PHI 153  Logic  (3 credits)  

An introduction to modern symbolic logic. The student will develop a facility with propositional logic, truth tables, and a range of natural arguments, including syllogisms and facilities, and investigate topics such as problem solving, the nature of assumptions and induction.

PHI 170  Introduction to Aesthetics  (3 credits)  

In the West, analysis and reflection about literary and artistic expression begins a relatively brief time after the earliest literary and artistic expression. By the 4th century BC, Plato and Aristotle are creating sophisticated works analyzing topics such as "history", "epic poetry", "rhetoric", "tragic poetry", and more generally, "the beautiful." Texts included in this course will not only provide the analytic tools needed for philosophical deliberation on the various arts, but will also provide some important examples of aesthetic objects.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall - Even years.
PHI 170A  Introduction to Aesthetics - Learning Community  (3 credits)  

The linked philosophical and studio components of this learning community move back and forth between philosophical aesthetics and actual art-making as if the student were taking a course in ornithology while training to become a bird. The readings for this course range from ancient to contemporary philosophy, while the art assignments will be executed in a variety of media.

PHI 180  Philosophy of Education  (3 credits)  

This course invites students to investigate several core philosophers that have helped shape various educational settings and initiatives. Through this investigation, students will be able to critically analyze the values inherent in these educational systems.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall.
PHI 181  Contemporary Political Philosophy  (3 credits)  

This course will explore contemporary texts in philosophy in order to interrogate the tradition of classical political philosophy. The course will also revisit questions about the nature of justice and how it applies to contemporary political issues related to race, class, sex, gender, disability, and incarceration. Thinkers will include Cinzia Arruzza, Liat Ben-Moshe, Tithi Bhattacharya, Kimberlé Crenshaw, Angela Davis, Enrique Dussel, Lewis Gordon, Patricia Hill-Collins, and Mariame Kaba.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring
PHI 196B  The Impact of Classical Civilization on the Modern World  (1 credits)  

The high point of this course will be our journey around Greece, The curriculum materials and various notes for this course will give students and faculty the opportunity, by means of reflection and discussion, to begin to come to conclusions about the nature of the impact of the ancient world on the world in which we live, including insights into possible reasons why Greece and Rome could have had such an impact. To assist in this learning process, students will maintain an annotated photo-journal that will be submitted by the assigned date during the spring semester.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring.
PHI 210  Theories of Human Nature  (3 credits)  
PHI 215  Inward Journey: Search for Self/Contemporary World  (3 credits)  

This course is a journey into the depths of the self and out to the expanse of reality. With the help of both Eastern and Western Philosophical and Religious traditions it investigates the various ways persons have sought to achieve wholeness and "beyond". Topics to be considered are the self, the body, nature, other persons and meditative experiences.

PHI 216  Myths, Symbols, and Reality  (3 credits)  

Myths and symbols are indirect ways of dealing with the riddles and mysteries of human nature and the world. Thus they offer major teachings that can assist us in forming a philosophy of life. The course will consider these teachings, referring to the works of Jung, Campbell, and other recent students of mythology.

Course Rotation: PLV: Spring.
PHI 217  Existentialism  (3 credits)  

This course examines the works of existential philosophers who emphasize the need for each of us to choose for ourselves and "become what we are" in the face of death, alienation, and the threats of modern mass society.

Course Rotation: Spring - Even years.
PHI 218  Legal and Political Philosophy  (3 credits)  

The nature and origins of law, and the relations of law to morals. An exploration of the question of whether there is an eternal law, or a divine law, to which human legislation must conform. The relations of rights, duties, and the foundations of human society are explored.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring - Even years. PLV: Fall - Even years.
PHI 220  Introduction to Latin American Philosophy  (3 credits)  

This course will explore questions about the nature of Latin American philosophy, as well as significant contributions made by Latin American philosophers in several areas of philosophy, including analytic, continental, ethics, metaphysics, as well as social & political philosophy. This course will explore the works of thinkers such as Linda Martin Alcoff, Gloria Anzaldúa, Enrique Dussel, Paulo Freire, Gustavo Gutiérrez, Maria Lugones, and Eduardo Mendieta.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring, Odd Years
PHI 222  Philosophy for Children  (3 credits)  

Using select children's literature, curricular materials from the Institute for the Advancement of Philosophy for Children as well as typical philosophical texts, this course offers a practical introduction to techniques for enabling both children and adults mutually inquire into issues of both traditionally philosophical and directly personal concern, such as: meaning; thinking for one's self; choice; change and growth; the good, the right and the fair; standards and rules, sharing and community.

PHI 223  Environmental Ethics  (3 credits)  

Philosophers have always been interested in the world of nature and continue to be. In this class we will examine how philosophers and religious thinkers have broached the question of the proper relationship between nature and civilization. Through readings from primary sources we will study how various thinkers approach the question of the value of nature and of the possibility and desirability of extending moral consideration of the natural world. Writings from ancient, medieval, modern and contemporary philosophers will help frame our discussion and assist in answering the perennial question: ¿Is there a proper relationship between humans and nature?¿

Course Rotation: NY: Fall- Even Years; PLV: Fall-Even Years
PHI 224  Medieval Philosophy  (3 credits)  

A study of western philosophy in the medieval period, from the 4th to the 15th centuries, with particular emphasis on those concepts and issues that have been most influential in the development of modern ethical, political and religious thought.

Course Rotation: NY, PLV: Fall
PHI 225  Contemporary Philosophy  (3 credits)  

Contemporary Philosophy can be characterized as an extension or continuation of modern enlightened thought (modernity) and as a radical departure from its philosophical heritage. By way of contrast this course examines this apparent inconsistency through the work of influential late 19th and 20th century philosophers. Themes to be discussed may include phenomenology; pragmatism, instrumentalism logical positivism; existentialism; feminist theory; deconstructionism and post-modernism. Thinkers to be discussed may include Martin Heidegger; Hannah Arendt; Bertrand Russell, Alfred North Whitehead; Willard von Norman Quine and Jean-Paul Sartre.

Course Rotation: Spring.
PHI 230  Philosophy of Happiness  (3 credits)  

This course will focus on the philosophical issue of happiness. Some of the issues we will consider include: What is happiness? Is happiness necessary for a worthwhile life? Is happiness sufficient for a worthwhile life? Is morality necessary for happiness? What is the relationship between happiness and a meaningful life?

Course Rotation: PLV: Fall
PHI 253  Logic  (0-3 credits)  

An introduction to modern symbolic logic. The student will develop a facility with propositional logic, truth tables, and a range of natural arguments, including syllogisms and fallacies, and investigate topics such as problem solving, the nature of assumptions and induction.

Course Rotation: Fall:Spring
PHI 256  Philosophy of Art: Aesthetics  (3 credits)  

What are art and beauty? How are these terms defined, and how are they experienced? This course examines these questions through a study of actual works of art and the writing of great philosophers and artists.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall - Odd years. PLV: Spring - Odd years.
PHI 258  Film and Philosophy  (3 credits)  

This course focuses on the relation between philosophy and film from both aspects: The Philosophy of Film, or a philosophical investigation of the cinematic medium, and Film as Philosophy, which means an examination of how the cinema itself can "think" or serve as a mode or model of thought in its own terms. We will be reading of a variety of philosophical texts from Plato to the present and viewing a selection of films and film clips, examining how philosophical ideas are expressed in writing and in the cinema and seeking the cinematic equivalent to verbal thought.

Course Rotation: Spring
PHI 260  Business Ethics  (3 credits)  

An examination of moral theories as applied to particular issues in the area of business and corporate practice, e.g., economic justice; the social and ethical responsibilities of corporations; employee rights; affirmative action; and environment issues.

Course Rotation: NY and PLV: Spring - Odd years.
PHI 283P  Seminar: Human Freedom in the Age of Machinery  (3 credits)  
PHI 288  Classical Political Philosophy  (3 credits)  

Classical Political Philosophy begins with questions about the nature of political things: What are the duties and rights of a citizen? What is the best possible form of government? Is there a science of politics? If so, must those who fill political offices know the science of politics?

Course Rotation: Spring, even years.
PHI 289  Political Philosophy from Machiavelli to Marx  (3 credits)  

Classical Political Philosophy began with questions about the nature of political things. Modern Political Philosophy begins with a radical critique of the answers provided by the classical political philosophers and ends with a radical critique of the possibility of political philosophy. This course begins with Machiavelli's Discourses on the First Ten Books of Livy and so the two volumes of Livy are recommended texts. The course ends with Selected Writings of Karl Marx. In between we read Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, Montesquieu and Kant.

Course Rotation: NY and PL: Fall and Spring, odd years.
PHI 290  Philosophical Perspectives on Technology  (0-3 credits)  

The primary objective of this course is to analyze the role(s) of technology in society by first attempting to define it. Is technology merely an instrument in the service of social/political ideology, or does it have a substantial life of its own - an implicit logic of development immune from social values, i.e., technological determinism? If technology is seen to be immune from the social/political sphere of normative action and has evolved to its highest level in industrial society then, is history over; has humanity come to the final resting place in a culture of utter banality, or what one author calls, "the age of consummate meaninglessness"?

PHI 296  Special Topics in Philosophy  (3 credits)  

Topics vary from year to year but provide an opportunity to examine either the work of an author, issue, or a specific philosphical problem.

Course Rotation: Fall and Spring.
PHI 296A  Topic: The Philosophy of Happiness  (3 credits)  

The Philosophy of Happiness: The philosophy of happiness will consider questions such as: What is happiness? How do you achieve happiness? Are good people happier than those who are evil? Is happiness necessary for a worthwhile life? What do both classical and contemporary philosophers affirm about happiness?

Course Rotation: PLV: Fall
PHI 296I  Topic: Existentialism, Feminism, Gender and Race  (3 credits)  

In this course we study gender and race from a philosophical perspective – specifically from the perspective of Existentialism. At the same time we will study Existentialism from the perspective of feminism, gender and race. A central focus for this exploration will be questions about the meaning of agency, coercion, oppression and freedom.

PHI 296N  Topic: Philosophical Issues in Feminism  (3 credits)  
PHI 296Q  Philosophical Issues in Feminism  (3 credits)  
PHI 296S  Topic: Feminism and Human Rights  (3 credits)  

In this course we will examine several theories concerned with feminist perspectives on women and international justice. These theories may include liberal human rights theory, Neoaristotelian capabilities theory, such as that developed by Martha Nussbaum in her work on women and international development, and theories of the politics of difference, as developed by Iris Young. We well be concerned with whether any feminist theory is adequate to questions of international justice, as well as with particular questions regarding violence against women, just distribution of goods and opportunities, and the intersection of gender with other group affiliations, such as race, ethnicity, disability, age, sexual preference, and religion.

PHI 296U  Topic: Feminism Film and Philosophy  (3 credits)  

This course explores the construction of gender in and through film. Adopting philosophical approaches, we will focus on how masculinity and femininity, in their various forms and combinations, are signified in film and how film a feminist philosophy represent and conceptualize women's "oppression", and form of resistance to oppression.

PHI 296V  Topic: Philosophical Reflections on Social Thought: The Works of Karl Polyani  (1 credits)  

Polyani's book The Great Transformation: the political and economic origins of our time" was a monumental achievement in intellectual history. Yet it remains mostly obscure and unread. This course is an attempt to correct that oversight. Written in 1944 the book had seismic consequences shaking the foundation of political/economy. Leaving behind Karl Marx and his theory of economic determinism, Polyani argues that 'satanic mills' of capitalism are diabolical not because of human greed and relentlessness acquisition, but because capitalism tore apart the fabric of society and created in its place the isolated individual whose only attachment to others is contractual.

Prerequisites: One 100-level Philosophy course.
PHI 296W  Topic: Philosophical Reflections on Social Thought: Population According to Thomas Malthus  (1 credits)  

Thomas Malthus-arguably the first economist-predicted a dismal future for the humanity: Population crashes caused by recurring famines. His reasoning was populations' grow exponentially while resources like food grow arithmetically. That was two hundred years ago and it hasn't happened. This course attempts to answer the following questions: 1) Was he mistaken about population dynamics? 2) Have we found and ingenious way to avoid his logic? 3) Are there too many people? and 4) Should we prohibit production?

Prerequisites: One 100-level Philosophy course.
PHI 296X  Topic: Philosophical Reflections on Social Thought: Capitalism and the Protestant Ethic  (1 credits)  

Widely discredited today, Max Weber's classic work in economic history was destined to become a source of disagreement among a variety of academic disciplines-economics, history, philosophy, sociology, and theology. This course is an attempt to sort out these academic complaints and analyze their accuracy.

Prerequisites: One 100-level Philosophy course.
PHI 296Y  Topic: Minds, Computers and Intentionality  (3 credits)  

Aside from all the obvious benefits of computers, they have also offered philosophers and psychologists the 'computer metaphor', which is a way of looking at issues that have been largely intractable in the history of Western thought: the mind-body problem, the relationship between mind and world, how our mental states represent, and other related issues. This metaphor, in short, states that the relationship between the mind and the brain is analogous to the relationship between the software and hardware of a computer. After introducing students to the intellectual landscape of the philosophy of mind, we will explore the implication of this metaphor in theorizing about the mind.

PHI 296Z  Do the Right Thing: An Introduction to Kant's Moral Philosophy  (3 credits)  

The title and content of Spike Lee's powerful movie, "Do the Right Thing" evokes one of the most significant and influential works in the History of Ethical Theory: Immanuel Kant's "Fundamental Principle of The Metaphysics of Morals." Working from this seminal work, supplemented by Kant's "Lectures on Ethics" we will explore the nature and knowability of morality and the issues arising from the attempt to "do the right thing" in everyday life.

PHI 297A  Introduction to Environmental Philosophy  (3 credits)  

A relatively new and rapidly growing field in philosophical studies, Environmental Philosophy reexamines the place of humanity in the world by focusing on its relation with non-human nature. Engaging with a variety of issues such as animal rights, biodiversity, and environmental justice, Environmental Philosophy is especially concerned with the ongoing ecological crisis by striving to reshape a conceptual worldview that could inform a course of action that will divert the catastrophic outcome scientists predict. This course reviews the core questions in Environmental Philosophy as appearing in the writing of contemporary thinkers such as J. Baird Callicott, Holmes Rolston III, Bryan Norton, Peter Singer, Karen Warren, Mary Evelyn Tucker, and others.

Course Rotation: NY and PL: Fall.
PHI 297B  Philosophy of Psychology  (3 credits)  

In this course we will examine the systematic relationship between the concerns of philosophy and psychology. We will discuss common sense psychology, cognitive science, and neuroscience. We will discuss the relative merits and disadvantages of these conceptions of the mind, and explore how their philosophical foundations bear on various philosophical issues.

Course Rotation: NY: Fall.
PHI 297C  Topic: Kant's Critique of Pure Reason  (3 credits)  

The Critique of Pure Reason, the first of the three great Critiques, written in 1781 was Kant’s monumental attempt to reposition metaphysics as the Queen of the Sciences, through a new Copernican revolution in epistemology and metaphysics.

Course Rotation: NY and PL: Fall
PHI 297D  Topic: Philosophy of Law  (3 credits)  

This course teaches basic legal concepts and philosophical problems relating to law. General legal theory; human and legal rights; legal responsibility; punishment; justice; property; judicial reasoning; the legal enforcement of morals.

Course Rotation: Spring: odd years.
PHI 297E  Topic: Liberty Justice and Community  (3 credits)  

Liberalism, the moral foundation of state neutrality and the question of distributive justice. Liberal individualism vs. egalitarianism. Left-wing libertarianism and equal liberty. The claims of community and the politics of identity. Global injustice.

Course Rotation: NY: Fall, odd years.
PHI 297F  Topic: Socrates and the Sophists  (3 credits)  

This course will include a thorough reading and discussion of Platonic dialogues involving discussions between Socrates and some of the most famous of the 5th century BC sophists, Protagoras and Gorgias. The course will begin with The Apology of Socrates, the speech he gave to defend himself in 399BC, part of which was aimed at proving that Socrates himself was not a Sophist.

Course Rotation: NYC and PLV: Fall, odd years; Spring, even years.
PHI 297G  Ancient Greek Philosophy and Literature  (3 credits)  

In this course, we will read texts from ancient Greek literature and philosophy and trace the development of philosophical ideas and schools of thought in antiquity. The course includes Homer, Hesiod, some of the lyric poets, historians (Herodotus and Thucydides), dramatists such as Sophocles and Aristophanes, the Pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle, and the philosophers of the Hellenistic and Roman Age.

Course Rotation: NY: Fall.
PHI 297I  Topics: Hobbes's Leviathan  (3 credits)  

Thomas Hobbes' Leviathan, published in 1651, is arguably the greatest work of political philosophy ever written in English. Deemed controversial and even offensive in its time, it is a work of tremendous literary power and rhetorical force, and its ideas on the nature of the commonwealth and political sovereignty are a touchstone for all subsequent political philosophy. This course is devoted to a careful reading of this text in its entirety.

Course Rotation: Fall;NY
PHI 297J  Topic: The History of 19th Century Philosophy  (3 credits)  

The primary focus of this course will be on two broad developments in philosophy during the 19th century: post-Kantian idealism and reaction to it. Various metaphysical, epistemological, and axiological topics will be considered under these headings, including the nature of reason, self, and freedom, the possibility of non-empirical knowledge, and the relationship between moral and other sorts of value. Time permitting, we will also consider some key contributions on these topics of yet another 19th century philosophical development, viz. pragmatism.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall, odd years.
PHI 297K  Ancient Greek Philosophy, History and Literature  (3 credits)  

In this course, we will read texts from ancient Greek literature, history and philosophy and trace the development of philosophical ideas and schools of thought in antiquity as well as in the Hellenistic and Byzantine periods. The course includes Homer, Hesiod, some of the lyric poets, historians (Herodotus), dramatists, the Pre-Soeratics, Plato, Aristotle, the philosophers of the Hellenistic and Roman age and the history and philosophy of Byzantium.

PHI 297L  Topic: Great Ideas in Western Thought I: The True  (0-1 credits)  

Each of these one credit topic courses will seek to introduce First year Honor students to the assumptions, the methods of inquiry, and the truth and values claims which emerge from the intellectual disciplines offered within the University. The students will meet with various faculty for two hours every other week. Faculty who are invited will represent a range of academic expertise and be in a position to address the epistemological and ethical philosophical assumptions of their disciplines.

Course Rotation: Fall (Odd Years); PLV
PHI 297M  Great Ideas in Western Thought II: The Good  (0-1 credits)  

Each of these one credit topic courses will seek to introduce First year Honor students to the assumptions, the methods of inquiry, and the truth and values claims which emerge from the intellectual disciplines offered within the University. The students will meet with various faculty for two hours every other week. Faculty who are invited will represent a range of academic expertise and be in a position to address the epistemological and ethical philosophical assumptions of their disciplines.

Course Rotation: PLV: Spring
PHI 297N  Topics in Philosophy: Ethics and Economics  (3 credits)  

To the question, ‘What is Economics?’ the answers usually depend on who you ask and which disciplinary perspective you are asking from. Ask Robert Solow, Nobel Prize Laureate in Economics (1987) and he answers: “There is a single universal model of the world. It only needs to be applied. You can drop a modern economist from a time machine, at any time, in any place, along with his or her personal computer, and he or she could set up business without even bothering to ask what time and which place.” In other words, there are economic laws that are as real as any of the laws of physics; they are natural laws written into the organization of the universe and, as we shall see, arguably, discovered by Adam Smith. Now ask Robert Heilbroner, distinguished professor of political economy, ‘What is Economics?’ and his response is: “Economics is the name we give to a process found in all societies as a precondition for existence. The process consists of both activities of production and distribution, and of the means for orchestrating these activities in accordance with the aims of the social order…There is therefore no mystery involved in the assertion that economics is fundamentally an embodiment of the forces of morality and politics, interpreted broadly.” Not only are these two answers different, they are conflicting. Solow seeing economics more as a science with a demonstrable internal logic, while Heilbroner see economics as embedded in social processes and founded more on values then on scientific facts. We will return to this organizing question and the attendant fact/value distinction throughout this course by asking scholars such as Aristotle, Thomas Aquinas, Thomas Malthus, David Ricardo, Adam Smith, Karl Marx, Karl Polanyi and other more contemporary thinkers, where on the spectrum of knowledge should we locate economics?

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring, Even Years.
PHI 297P  Topic: The Meaning of Life  (3 credits)  

The Meaning of Life: The meaning of life course will consider questions such as: Does human life have a meaning? How do we determine meaning for our lives? How does meaning related to life satisfaction and happiness? What do both classical and contemporary philosophers affirm about the meaning of life.

Course Rotation: PLV: TBD
PHI 305  Symbolic Logic  (3 credits)  

An examination of modern logical theory. The student will develop a facility with first-order sentential calculus and investigate such topics as: formal systems and their properties (consistency, completeness, decidability); theory of descriptions; the problem of induction; logic, language and reality.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall- Even Years; PLV: Fall- Even Years
Prerequisites: PHI 253
PHI 308  Theory of the World  (3 credits)  

What is the world? While there are many means by which one might respond to this question - for instance, in terms of sociology or of the natural sciences - the aim of this course is to adress the world as a philisophical and political concept. To proceed in this manner, which is often technically described as "politclal ontology", is to concieve the world as the way in which reality is conditioned - that is, organized, framed, defined or distributed. The world is a philosiphical concept in so far as it has to do with the way that we relate to reality; it is simultaneously a political concept in so far as it has to do with various ways in which reality organizaed. In this sense, the world marks the intersection between, and the inseparability of, a philosophical theorization of reality and a poltical critique of established conditions. This intersection will be given specificity through attention to the critical - theoretical lenses of marxism ("multitude theory"), queer theory ("the anti-social thesis"), and black studies ("afropessimism"). NYC, Spring

PHI 310  Seminar in Philosophy  (3 credits)  
PHI 312  Indian Philosophy  (3 credits)  

This class will an introduction to specific philosophical topics that were discussed and debated in ancient South Asia. The first two weeks of the course will involve a broad introduction to the topic, and how to study it. Topics covered in this period will include an overview of the various schools of philosophy active in India between roughly the 4th and 17th centuries, as well as an introduction to the types of issues they debated, the structures of the arguments they used, and the basic vocabulary in which they spoke. After this we will focus on more specific topics, and we will begin looking more closely at primary material in translation. These will include inference and logic, metaphysics (theories of relations, inherence, causality, time, motion, etc), categories/ontology (substance, property, universal, absence etc), philosophy of language (sense and reference, semantics, pragmatics, speaker purport), proofs and refutation of God's existence, hermeneutics (theories and methods of linguistic interpretation), and various cosmologies and soteriologies (Buddhist, Hindu, Jain, etc). Focusing on one of these topics will involve grasping what the philosophical problems involved are, which positions were taken on the question by which philosophers and schools of philosophy, what was at stake in taking these positions, and what these positions implied and/or entailed about the philosophers in question.

Course Rotation: Fall, Spring, and Summer.
PHI 355  Ethical Theories  (3 credits)  

A critical examination of some of the classical theories of ethics, including those of Plato, Aristotle, Hume, Kant and Mill, as well as modern theories such as deontological ethical theory, utilitarianism, virtue ethics and the ethics of care.

Course Rotation: NYC: Spring - Odd years.
PHI 357  Philosophy of Religion  (3 credits)  

A critical examination of philosophical discussions concerning the existence of God, God's attributes, the creation of the universe, miracles, the sources of morality, and other issues that arise out of religious thought and practice.

Course Rotation: Fall - Odd years.
PHI 395  Independent Study in Philosophy  (1-9 credits)  

With the approval of the appropriate faculty member, the department chairperson, and the academic deal, students may select a topic for guided research that is not included among the regular course offerings. The student meets regularly with the faculty member to review progress. A research project or paper is required.

Course Rotation: NYC: Fall, Spring, and Summer. PLV: Fall and Spring.
Prerequisites: Junior standing and a minimum CQPA of 3.00.
PHI 395A  Independent Study in Philosophy  (1-9 credits)  
PHI 499  Senior Year Experience in Philosophy and Religious Studies  (3 credits)  

Preparation of a seminar paper is the culminating experience of the program in Philosophy & Religious studies. There are three possible foci for the course: interdisciplinary, hermeneutics or applied ethics. Typically, the seminar will begin with discussion of classic texts in both philosophy and religious studies, chosen with a view to possible solutions to a central problem adopted for that year. In carrying out their research, students will be encouraged to cast as global a net as is appropriate and possible.

Course Rotation: Fall