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Winter Academic Term 2003 Course Guide

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Courses in Philosophy


This page was created at 11:47 AM on Thu, Feb 6, 2003.

Winter Academic Term, 2003 (January 6 - April 25)

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PHIL 180. Introductory Logic.

Instructor(s): Theo Korzuhkin

Prerequisites & Distribution: Credit is granted for only one of PHIL 180 or 201. (3). (HU). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course is designed to provide an introduction to formal logic and to improve critical reasoning skills. The course examines elements of deductive and inductive logic, and logical concepts used in analysis and construction of arguments. The course is limited to 50 students, which should permit opportunity for discussion. Texts and methods of evaluation to be determined.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 181. Philosophical Issues: An Introduction.

Section 002.

Instructor(s): James M A Bell (jmab@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 182, 202, 231, 232, 234, or 297. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course examines some of the main problems of philosophy, such as:

  • How do we know that anything exists, other than ourselves?
  • Are minds immaterial spirits, or are minds brains and hence nothing but complex physical objects?
  • If human actions are causally determined by heredity and environment, is there any free will or moral responsibility?
  • Is abortion, or euthanasia, or suicide, morally permissible?
  • Is the nature and extent of our moral obligations determined by our feelings, self-interest, social convention, Divine commands, or something else?
  • What are the different kinds of social, political, and economic organization, and what reasons are there for preferring one to another?
  • How should one live one's life?
  • What is the meaning of life, and what does this question mean?
  • Are there good reasons for believing that God exists?

Students will write papers discussing a number of these topics.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 181. Philosophical Issues: An Introduction.

Section 003.

Instructor(s): Paula L Watson (plwatson@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 182, 202, 231, 232, 234, or 297. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course examines some of the main problems of philosophy, such as:

  • How do we know that anything exists, other than ourselves?
  • Are minds immaterial spirits, or are minds brains and hence nothing but complex physical objects?
  • If human actions are causally determined by heredity and environment, is there any free will or moral responsibility?
  • Is abortion, or euthanasia, or suicide, morally permissible?
  • Is the nature and extent of our moral obligations determined by our feelings, self-interest, social convention, Divine commands, or something else?
  • What are the different kinds of social, political, and economic organization, and what reasons are there for preferring one to another?
  • How should one live one's life?
  • What is the meaning of life, and what does this question mean?
  • Are there good reasons for believing that God exists?

Students will write papers discussing a number of these topics.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 196. First Year Seminar.

Section 002 – Love, Friendship, and Morality.

Instructor(s): James Bell (jmab@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

First-Year Seminar

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This seminar examines the issues concerning important elements of a good life – love, friendship, and morality. What is the nature of love and friendship, and why do they make our lives richer? We begin with a look at philosophical accounts of love and friendship, reading Plato, Aristotle, Kant, as well as some modern philosophers. Next we'll examine the nature of moral obligation, and ask whether the demands of morality can conflict with the commitments that come with friendships and other love relationships. Again, we will read historical figures as well as contemporary writers. Throughout the course, we will also read selected pieces of literature, to see what light may be shed on these issues from more literary sources. The assignments for the course will include essays, exams, and in-class presentations.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 196. First Year Seminar.

Section 004 – Science and Reality.

Instructor(s): Jessica Wilson (jwils@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Only first-year students, including those with sophomore standing, may pre-register for First-Year Seminars. All others need permission of instructor. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

First-Year Seminar

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/phil/196/004.nsf

Here we'll explore a variety of issues concerning what science can and cannot tell us about natural reality. We'll start by considering some general questions, such as: Why think that scientific theories do better at tracking reality than, say, astrological, political or religious theories? How do we choose among the infinite number of incompatible scientific theories that are compatible with any given set of data? Do the unobservable properties (such as evolutionary fitness) and entities (such as quarks) posited by scientific theories really exist, or are they just convenient predictive devices? Given that scientific practice and theorizing is partly a function of social, political and scientific paradigms, can scientific theories tell us about objective reality? We'll also consider several reality-related issues associated with specific sciences. For example, we'll ask: How can we reconcile the probabilistic reality described by quantum mechanics with our non-probabilistic experience? (This touches upon, among other things, the "measurement problem".) We'll also consider what certain scientific theories, past and present, have indicated about the nature of space and time. (This touches upon, among other things, the debate between "substantivalists" and "relationists" about space.) Note: having studied high-school physics will be useful in this course.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: No Data Given.

PHIL 201. Introduction to Logic.

Instructor(s):

Prerequisites & Distribution: Credit is granted for only one of PHIL 180 or 201. (3). (HU). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course aims to give students a thorough understanding of the fundamental forms of reasoning and rational argument, and to improve critical reasoning skills that could be of use in a wide range of disciplines and careers. The course examines some of the problems and fallacies which arise in informal reasoning and logical concepts used in the analysis and criticism of arguments. Some elements of formal (symbolic) logic might be introduced. Though students will be expected to master some technical detail, the course emphasizes informal logical techniques applicable to problem solving and argument in any area of inquiry. Both deductive and inductive patterns of argument will be examined. The small section size (25 students) is conducive to informality and considerable student participation. There will also be lectures, demonstrations of problem-solving techniques, and a variety of exercises. Normally, there are weekly assignments and short, periodic quizzes.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 202. Introduction to Philosophy.

Instructor(s):

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 231, 232, 234, or 297. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/phil/202/001.nsf

This course introduces students to philosophy through an examination of some central philosophical problems. Topics might include:

  • Are minds immaterial spirits, or are minds brains and hence nothing but complex physical objects?
  • If human actions are causally determined by heredity and environment, is there any moral responsibility?
  • Is abortion, or euthanasia, or suicide, morally permissible?
  • Is the nature and extent of our moral obligations determined by our feelings, self-interest, social convention, Divine commands, or something else?
  • What are the reasons for preferring one kind of social, political, and economic organization to another?
  • Are there good reasons for believing that God exists?
  • How do we know that anything exists, other than ourselves?

In addressing these questions, some sections focus on major historical figures, e.g., Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Hume, and Kant; others focus on writings of twentieth-century philosophers. Requirements usually include a number of short, critical papers.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 232. Problems of Philosophy.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): J David Velleman (velleman@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 234, or 297. (4). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course is open to students from all schools and all years. First-year undergraduates are welcome. No prior acquaintance with philosophy is assumed. The course will introduce students to philosophy through a number of issues that have puzzled philosophers over the centuries. Can we know anything about the world beyond my own experience? Is it possible for a person to survive after his body dies? Is time real? Is time-travel possible? Students will be helped to develop skills in critical thinking and argumentation. Graded work will include a final exam and four or five short papers.

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PHIL 297. Honors Introduction to Philosophy.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Thomas Hofweber (hofweber@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Honors students or permission of instructor. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 232, or 234. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

An introduction to philosophy, focusing on five major topics:

  1. Can the existence of God be proven? Can there be an all-powerful and good God in a world with suffering?
  2. What is it to be the same person over time? Is it possible to survive the death of one's body?
  3. Does the state have any authority over us, and if yes where does it come from, and how far does it extend?
  4. Can we know that there is anything other than ourselves? Might the world around you just be an illusion, or a dream?
  5. Why, if at all, should you ever do something other than what is in your best self-interest? What is it to be a good person, and why should one care about being one?

Readings will be partly from major historical figures, and partly from contemporary authors. Evaluations will mostly be based on papers and exams.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 1 Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 297. Honors Introduction to Philosophy.

Section 002.

Instructor(s): Kendall L Walton (klwalton@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Honors students or permission of instructor. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 232, or 234. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course will introduce the student to several major areas of philosophy, including ethics, epistemology, metaphysics, and philosophy of mind, concentrating on issues concerning values and morality, our knowledge of the external world, the nature of persons, and relations between the mental and the physical.

We will explore such questions as:

  • How are we to decide what we ought to do and how to live our lives?
  • Is there any such thing as "objective" morality?
  • What is value?
  • Is there a real world independent of our ways of thinking and talking about it?
  • What kinds of evidence do we have about the world?
  • How is a person's mental life, her thoughts, desires, intentions, etc., related to her physical and verbal behavior, and to her physiological or neurological states?
  • Can machines think?
  • Can we be mistaken about our own mental states?
  • How can we know about the mental lives of other people?

We will discuss what a number of philosophers have said on these topics, including important historical figures such as René Descartes, David Hume, and J.S. Mill, and a variety of recent and contemporary philosophers.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 303. Introduction to Symbolic Logic.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Greg Sax (gmsax@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 203, 296 or 414. (3). (MSA). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Symbolic logic is the application of mathematical methods to forms of human reasoning. Its goal is to determine which forms are valid, i.e., are guaranteed to lead to true conclusions when applied to true premises. This course will examine the two simplest but most important systems of symbolic logic. The first third of the course will focus on the propositional calculus which codifies truth-functional logic – inferences involving the expressions 'and,' 'or,' not,' 'if…then,' and 'if and only if.' We'll study an artificial language adequate for expressing these inferences and then develop a system of proof with which to test their validity. In the second third, we'll take up meta-logic – the mathematical study of logical systems. Using mathematical induction, we'll first prove that our language is expressively complete. We'll then prove the Soundness Theorem and the Completeness Theorem for our system of proof. In the final third, we'll expand our language and proof system in order to study the predicate calculus, the system that codifies first-order, quantificational logic – inferences involving the expressions 'all' and 'some.' Grades are based on weekly homework, a midterm, and a final exam.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 355. Contemporary Moral Problems.

Section 001 – Meets with Philosophy 455.001.

Instructor(s): Rebecca L Walker (walkerrl@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 455. (4). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

R&E

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

In contemporary life, we are faced with many questions that have moral dimensions only some of which may be obvious to us. In this course, we will delve into the moral dimensions of a range of contemporary issues, including biotechnology and modern medicine, equality, affirmative action, freedom of expression, justice across national boundaries and across generations, and the treatment of animals. In the process, we will also be examining different conceptions of morality and justice, and the presuppositions about human nature, society, and value that underlie them. Throughout the course we will be concerned with issues of race and gender and how these categories interplay with the moral issues that we grapple with in contemporary society.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 360(475) / ASIAN 360 / HISTART 387 / RCHUMS 375. The Arts and Letters of China.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Shuen-Fu Lin (lsf@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: (4). (HU). May not be included in a concentration plan in philosophy. May not be repeated for credit.

Foreign Lit

Credits: (4).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/asian/360/001.nsf

See Asian Studies 360.001.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 1

PHIL 366. Introduction to Political Philosophy.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Edwin M Curley (emcurley@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One philosophy introduction. (4). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/phil/366/001.nsf

Political philosophy is concerned with questions about how political authority might be justified, what limitations on political authority that justification implies, what form of government would best secure the ends for which we form political societies, and what characteristics of human nature political orders must take into account.

We will examine key texts by important figures in the history of modern political philosophy, including Machiavelli, Hobbes, Spinoza, Locke, Montesquieu, Voltaire, Diderot, and Rousseau.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 383. Knowledge and Reality.

Section 001 – What exists?

Instructor(s): Eric P Lormand (lormand@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One course in philosophy. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

What exists? This course aims to dig as deeply as possible from that spot.

First comes the epistemological shovel: for any given answer "A exists!", we'll ask whether and why one should believe A exists. For any given answer "Because B exists, one should believe A exists!", we'll ask whether and why one should believe B exists. And so on. Should this series of questions go back to infinity (believe in A because one believes in B, believe in B because one believes in C ...) with no starting point? Should the series circle back on itself (believe in A because ... one believes in X, believe in X because ... one believes in A)? Are there other possibilities, e.g., some good answer to the question "In forming any beliefs, at all, about what exists, what makes one method better than another?"

Second comes the metaphysical shovel: for any given answer "A exists!", supposing we should believe it, we'll ask why A exists. (Pause to think about how that's different from the first shovel.) For any given answer "Because B exists, A exists!", we'll ask why B exists. And so on. Back to infinity (A exists because B exists, B exists because C exists, ...) with no starting point? In a circle (A exists because ... X exists, X exists because ... A exists)? Are there other possibilities, e.g., some good answer to the question "Why does anything, at all, exist?"

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 389. History of Philosophy: Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Louis E Loeb (lloeb@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One philosophy introduction. (4). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course examines the development of modern philosophy in Europe during the seventeenth and eighteenth centuries. Considerable attention is devoted to each of Descartes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. The primary emphasis is placed upon philosophical and interpretive issues that arise in conjunction with the philosophers' works. The philosophical issues addressed are drawn from epistemology and metaphysics: skepticism about the existence of the material world, theories of perception and of the nature of material objects, the problem of induction, the nature and limits of a priori knowledge, innate knowledge, empiricist theories of meaning, analytic and synthetic truth, necessary and contingent truth, God, substance, causation, free will and determinism, the self, the relationship between mind and body, and personal identity. Students are evaluated on the basis of two or three papers and midterm and final examinations. There are three hours of lecture and one hour of discussion per week.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 399. Independent Study.

Instructor(s):

Prerequisites & Distribution: One philosophy introduction and permission of instructor. (1-4). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May be elected twice for credit. Repetition requires permission of the concentration advisor.

Credits: (1-4).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Independent study of a topic not otherwise available through a regular departmental offering.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 5, Permission of Department

PHIL 402. Undergraduate Seminar in Philosophy.

Section 001 – Concepts of Imagination.

Instructor(s): Kendall L Walton (klwalton@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Open to junior and senior concentrators and to others by permission of concentration advisor. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Upper-Level Writing

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course will center on concepts of imagination (and related notions such as mental imagery, pretense, make-believe, supposition), and their employment in philosophical theories in a wide variety of areas: ethics and moral psychology, philosophy of mind, aesthetics, epistemology and metaphysics, philosophy of language. The specific issues to be examined will depend partly on students' interests, but are likely to include discussions of empathy, metaphor, simulation theories of knowledge of other minds, thought experiments (in philosophy, science, etc.), and the role of the imagination in appreciation of the arts (novels, poetry, film, painting, theater).

There will be extensive writing assignments. These will include several medium sized papers and a term paper. Students will write the term paper, and perhaps some of the other papers, in two stages: a draft, and then a revised version.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 402. Undergraduate Seminar in Philosophy.

Section 002 – Concept of the 'Self' or the 'Person'.

Instructor(s): Ian N Proops (iproops@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Open to junior and senior concentrators and to others by permission of concentration advisor. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Upper-Level Writing

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

The seminar examines a variety of philosophical questions relating to the concept of the 'self' or the 'person'. We will examine such questions as: What makes someone the same person over time? Were you already a person before you were born? Can you cease to be a person before you die? Does the notion of a multiple personality make sense? Can the self be observed? Is the concept of a person culture-dependent? Do I choose who I am? The required text is John Perry ed., Personal Identity. Other readings will be assigned as the course progresses.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 402. Undergraduate Seminar in Philosophy.

Section 003 – Topic?

Instructor(s):

Prerequisites & Distribution: Open to junior and senior concentrators and to others by permission of concentration advisor. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

No Description Provided. Contact the Department.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 418. Philosophy of Mathematics.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Thomas Hofweber (hofweber@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: PHIL 414. (3). (Excl). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course will aim to treat in reasonable depth a number of central topics in modern philosophy of mathematics. These will include whether pure mathematical theories should be regarded as having a special "platonistic" subject matter, whether a purely logical foundation can be provided for any nontrivial parts of pure mathematics, the significance and treatment of the paradoxes of classical set theory, whether mathematical knowledge is a priori, a controversy between classical and intuitionistic mathematicians, and special problems raised by the notions of infinity and mathematical truth by the meta-mathematical results of Skolem and Gödel. Particular emphasis will be given to the problem of the application of mathematics to the material world. Every effort will be made to keep technicalities and presupposed philosophical background to a minimum, but this will not always be possible. It is probably students with prior experience of 300- or 400-level courses in epistemology and philosophy of language, and some knowledge of at least elementary formal logic, who will derive most from the course. Undergraduate mathematics, though useful, is not essential.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 420. Philosophy of Science.

Section 001 – Meets with Nursing 570.001.

Instructor(s): James P Tappenden (tappen@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: A course in logic, and either PHIL 345 or 383. (3). (Excl). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course provides upper-level undergraduates and beginning graduate students with a broad overview of the philosophy of science. It seeks to clarify the nature of the "scientific method" and to explain its success. Topics to be covered include: the process by which scientific hypotheses are confirmed by empirical evidence, the nature of scientific laws and their role in explanation, the logical and semantic structure of scientific theories, the "realism/anti-realism debate" concerning the nature of unobservable entities and processes, the objectivity of science, the distinction between science and nonscience. Students will be asked to read about 50 pages of material per week, to write two 10-12 page papers, and to take a midterm examination and a final.

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PHIL 425. Philosophy of Biology.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Eric P Lormand (lormand@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One course in philosophy or biology. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Biologists study how individually purposeless things combine into "properly" functioning hearts, "damaged" cells, genetic "codes" ... is this kind of "teleological" talk misleadingly anthropomorphic, or does it accurately reflect something objective? If the latter, can it be used in turn to account for psychological or cultural norms, via evolutionary psychology, sociobiology, biosemantics, evolutionary epistemology, or evolutionary ethics? We'll address these questions directly, and use them to see what's at stake with large-scale theoretical issues in and around biology: whether biology should be reduced to physics; the extent of life (through viruses, bacteria, artificial life, extraterrestrial life, the distinction between organism and environment); how widespread adaptations are; and the scope and basic units of natural selection (molecules, individual genes, gene sequences, organs, organisms, memes, cultures, species, ecosystems, replicating universes, ...).

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 430. Topics in Ethics.

Section 001 – Normative Ethics.

Instructor(s): Elizabeth S Anderson (eandersn@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: PHIL 361. (3). (Excl). May be repeated for credit for a maximum of 6 credits.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course will explore the motivation, structure, and implications of three major schools of normative ethics: Kantianism, pragmatism, and sentimentalism. In contrast with consequentialist theories, which are very well understood, these other schools of thought remain somewhat mysterious. From a formal point of view, our goal will be to develop for these other schools what has long been an asset for consequentialists: a clear set of alternative specifications of the underlying idea for each (much as options for consequentialists are divided among act vs. rule consequentialism, welfarism vs. ideal utilitarianism, etc.), with consideration of the advantages and disadvantages that attend each specification. Substantively, the central theme of the course will be to explore relations among reason (both practical and theoretical), value, and the emotions. Readings will include works by Kant, Korsgaard, Herman, and O'Neill (our Kantians), Dewey, Rorty, Herzog, Smiley, and Stout (our pragmatists), and Brentano, D'Arms, Jacobson, and Wiggins (our sentimentalists). Classes will combine lecture and discussion. There will be two papers and a final examination.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 455. Contemporary Moral Problems.

Section 001 – Meets with Philosophy 355.001

Instructor(s): Rebecca L Walker (walkerrl@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: Not open to graduate students in philosophy. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 355. (4). (Excl). Does not meet the Philosophy Department's 400-level course requirement for Philosophy concentrators. May not be repeated for credit.

R&E

Credits: (4; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Intended primarily for graduate students outside the philosophy department. Course content is the same as in PHIL 355. PHIL 455 requires longer and more substantial papers than those expected in PHIL 355.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 3 Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 458. Philosophy of Kant.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Ian N Proops (iproops@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: PHIL 389, 461, or 462, or permission of instructor, or concentration advisor. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

This course studies Kant's mature philosophical system with particular attention to Kant's metaphysics and epistemology. We'll look at Kant's effort to work out the scope and limits of possible human knowledge and his effort to give a purely moral basis to religious faith. But the bulk of our time will be devoted to the account of human experience and human factual knowledge in the Critique of Pure Reason. There Kant argues that the world of our experience must possess certain very general features if experience is to be possible – for example, that every event must have a cause. And he argues that 'behind' the familiar world of our experience is a second, more fundamental world about which we can know next to nothing.

Readings will be drawn both from Kant's works and from some of the more accessible secondary literature. Written work is three short (6-8 page) papers. Class participation is strongly encouraged.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: 2 Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 461. Continental Rationalism.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Edwin M Curley (emcurley@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One philosophy introduction. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/phil/461/001.nsf

"Continental Rationalism" usually refers to a philosophical movement in the 17th Century, whose most important representatives were Descartes, Spinoza, and Leibniz, and who are supposed to have shared an epistemological program which was overly optimistic about what could be known by pure reason, independently of experience.

I'm out of sympathy with the historiography which makes that assumption. So this course will not focus as much on metaphysics and epistemology as is normal in courses which bear this label and will involve a somewhat different cast of characters. It will be a broadranging course, which will pay attention to moral and political philosophy and philosophy of religion as well as metaphysics and epistemology. We will look in detail at Descartes and Spinoza. But we will not do Leibniz, and we will give significant attention to Hobbes (who is not usually classed as a rationalist).

As background to the 'rationalists,' we will look briefly at other figures: Machiavelli, Erasmus, Luther, Montaigne, and Galileo. And we will give brief attention to Pascal and Malebranche, two important intermediary figures in the period between Descartes and Spinoza.

This course is the first in a sequence of two courses, the second of which is PHIL 462, currently titled 'British Empiricism.' Courses with that title normally focus exclusively on Locke, Berkeley, and Hume. My 462 course looks in detail at Locke and Hume, but pays only passing attention to Berkeley. It does, however, deal with Leibniz and various French Enlightenment figures: Voltaire, Montesquieu, Diderot, and (in some detail) Rousseau.

Between them the two courses are intended to provide a good survey of European intellectual history from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment. But the courses are independent of one another. PHIL 461 is not a prerequisite for PHIL 462, nor must students who enroll in PHIL 461 go on to PHIL 462.

The formal prerequisite for these courses is only one introductory course in philosophy. But students who have only that minimal requirement may find the course too difficult. We will be covering a lot of ground. I recommend that students have two courses at the 300-level (any of PHIL 345, 361, 366, 383, 388, and 389 would be very helpful). If you have doubts about your preparation for the course, check with me by email: emcurley@umich.edu. For more information about the course, check my personal web site: http://www.sitemaker.umich.edu/emcurley/.

All materials for the course will be in a coursepack, the first installment of which should be available at Excel Test Prep by January 3.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 466. Topics in Continental Philosophy.

Section 001 – Kierkegård and post-Kantian German Philosophy.

Instructor(s): Michelle A Kosch (mkosch@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: One of PHIL 371, 375, 385, or 389. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Kierkegård will be the main focus of the course, though substantial time will be devoted to Kant, Fichte, and Jacobi. Depending on student interest, we may spend some time looking at one or more contemporary debates in the philosophy of religion (and at Kierkegård's place in them). Readings will be drawn from both primary and secondary literature.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 481. Metaphysics.

Section 001.

Instructor(s): Jessica M Wilson (jwils@umich.edu)

Prerequisites & Distribution: PHIL 345 or 383. (3). (Excl). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: http://coursetools.ummu.umich.edu/2003/winter/phil/481/001.nsf

Metaphysics is the study of the most general features of reality. In this course, we will investigate into several such general features, including particulars and properties, time, modality (possibility and necessity), causation, and material constitution.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 2

PHIL 499. Senior Honors in Philosophy.

Instructor(s):

Prerequisites & Distribution: By departmental permission only. (3). (Excl). (INDEPENDENT). May not be repeated for credit.

Credits: (3; 2 in the half-term).

Course Homepage: No homepage submitted.

Students who wish to elect the Philosophy 498-499 sequence should consult with the departmental Honors advisor by the end of the preceding academic year.

Check Times, Location, and Availability Cost: No Data Given. Waitlist Code: 5, Permission of Department

Graduate Course Listings for PHIL.


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