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What are the characteristics of goal-directed or intentional action? How and to what extent are our actions shaped by action affordances - i. How are actions shaped by rational thinking, by past experience, by social structures, or by moral obligation? The course will touch on all these factors of influence and introduce different ways of theorizing the very nature of choices, actions and agency.

The readings for the course will be both historical and contemporary and be rooted in philosophy of mind but will draw on interdisciplinary sources such as theories and empirical findings from neuroscience, developmental psychology, sociology and behavioral economics. Further as questions of action are always also questions of value, issues of moral responsibility and politics will repeatedly be taken up as well. Description: In this course we will read one or two major medieval Christian philosophers e.

We will focus on some or all of the following themes: God's existence, God's nature, God's justice, the creation of the universe, the priority of reason versus faith, the literal versus metaphorical nature of religious language, and the soul's immortality.

Structural qualia: a solution to the hard problem of consciousness

Description: This course examines the genesis of the idea of ''race'' as a way of viewing human differences from the 16th to the 19th centuries. It also explores conceptions of ''racism'' in relation to such contemporary phenomena as white privilege, ''institutional racism,'' race and crime, race and intelligence, affirmative action, racial hostility among non-''white'' groups, ''internalized racism,'' race and class, and anti-immigrant hostility.

Theories of Everything? Lessons From the History of Science - Helge Kragh

Finally, the course looks at the notion of ''mixed race'' persons, their place in the hierarchy of racism and their role in challenging the concept of ''race'' itself. Though the course focuses primarily on whites and African Americans, racism as it bears on Native Americans, Asian Americans and Latinos is also considered. Description: This advanced introduction to public health ethics examines the ethics of society's organized measures to prevent disease and improve population health. Starting with a range of public health initiatives and laws, the course explores how a government's obligation to respect individual freedom should be weighed against an obligation to prevent diseases and improve population health.


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The course then examines data on health disparities and social determinants of health to ascertain how far a government's obligations should extend to narrow inequities that out certain groups at increased risk of disease and poor health outcomes. Description: Exploration of themes in recent European philosophy, such as the self and the social world, anti-Cartesianism, subjectivity, language, and embodiment. Special attention to the life-world, being-in-the-world, and forms of life.


  1. Exposures: Versions of Reality.
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  3. Yann benétreau dupin forthcoming in south african.
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  6. Description: A study of some of the major contemporary approaches to issues of right and wrong, good and bad, and good character: utilitarianism, deontology, the ethics of care, virtue ethics, feminist ethics, and issues of current importance in ethics-relativism, moral excellence, gender differences in morality.

    A systematic rather than historical approach. Course offered about every two years. Description: This course is an advanced introduction to the ethics of human subjects research. The course starts with a brief history of the tragedies and triumphs of human subjects research, before introduction the codes, regulations and scholarly work that guide the ethics of this enterprise. Three philosophical concepts - consent, coercion and exploitation - are then used to introduce some of the most pressing issues in medical research ethics today. Description: The nature of mind and its relation to body and matter, with emphasis on recent advances in philosophy and psychology.

    Description: Knowledge-its nature, forms, methods, scope, and validation. What are the relations of knowledge and justification to sense experience? For example, does knowledge of our surroundings rest upon a foundation of sense experience? Is knowledge of the so-called ''truths of reason'' in some way independent of evidence provided by sense experience? How is a body of knowledge related to an individual knower? Does the justification of one's beliefs depend upon what psychology reveals about the reliability of methods for acquiring the beliefs?

    Linked bibliography for the SEP article "Structural Realism" by James Ladyman

    Readings from contemporary sources. Description: The nature of scientific explanation, with attention to the social and philosophical aspects of scientific methodology. Description: Ideas such as substance, causality, mind and body, and free will, as they appear in several major metaphysical systems.

    Description: What is it with which we identify ourselves? We will critically examine, discuss, and write about different viewpoints concerning what we think we know most intimately - the self. Description: Plato's ethics, metaphysics, and theory of knowledge in the Phaedo, Republic, Theaetetus, Cratylus, Parmenides, Sophist, Statesman, and Philebus, as a solution to problems raised by his predecessors, notably the Pythagoreans, Heraclitus, Parmenides, and the Sophists.

    Description: This course is a survey of American Pragmatism. In it we will examine the three central figures of the pragmatic traditions: Charles S. Peirce, William James, and John Dewey. While Pragmatism is the most important philosophical movement produced by the United States, it also has a global philosophical significance owing to the fact that it was the first movement to decisively break with certain key assumptions governing Modern philosophy. Specifically, it broke with the rationalist notions that cognition could be examined in abstraction from action and that truth could be defined independently of human inquiry.

    The goal of this course-besides coming to an in-depth understanding of each of the major pragmatic figures-is to understand how Pragmatism challenges these assumptions while also providing us with a new picture of cognition, knowledge, truth, inquiry, communication, action, and freedom. At the end of the course we shall see how Pragmatism was applied to concrete social problems and issues by looking at the work of Jane Adams and Alain Locke.

    Description: Individual autonomy, or the capacity for self-governance, plays an important role in our lives. When we possess this capacity, we can live a life in accordance with our own values and preferences, and we have the power to demand a distinctive kind of respect from others, namely that they not interfere with our life choices. However, while most philosophers agree about the value and power of autonomy, they disagree about the conditions for self-governance.

    The purpose of this course is to provide an advanced survey of this disagreement. Some philosophers argue that autonomy is a non-social concept: the capacity for self-governance is simply a matter of possessing certain competencies, or attaining a particular kind of psychic unity, or a responsiveness to reasons. Others argue that autonomy is inherently social: the capacity for self-governance requires dialogue with others, or recognition from others, or the ability to resist being subject to a foreign will.

    This course relates these differing conceptions to issues of whether and how manipulation, dementia, addiction, procrastination, identity, socialization, oppression, and love can undermine one's capacity for self-governance. Description: It is ordinary believed, either consciously or subconsciously, that ''reality'' is being experienced and known by way of perceptions of things under optimal conditions.

    What is this reality believed to be like say, causally governed? Are those characteristics immediately present in perceptions? Is it the only reality that there is? In this course, these questions will be explored and investigated through close examinations of philosophical works from both East e. Description: Representative problems and themes of social and political philosophy, especially the concepts of human rights, liberty, justice, equality, law, social obligation and the social contract.

    These topics are explored through the work of classical and contemporary political and social philosophers. Description: This course offers study of selected topics within this subject. Course content and credits vary according to topic and are announced prior to the registration period. Description: a comparative study of the philosophical foundation of two major systems of economic production and distribution.

    Through readings of representative authors the course focuses on the values embodied in each system. For Example: equality, justice, civil liberties, cooperation, and individual initiative. The nature and importance of underlying assumptions about human needs and desires are also considered. Description: This course examines moral and political arguments concerning government and individual actions in the area of foreign policy, international relations, and global economic policy. Questions considered include: When, if ever, is war or intervention justified? Does justice require redistribution of wealth around the globe?

    Do universal human rights exist? Can they be enforced? Description: A philosophical exploration of the thought of Karl Marx, based on a reading of his early and mature works. Topics discussed are idealism and materialism; the relation between theory and practice; dialectic; alienation; ideology; class; the analysis of capitalism; reification; and some contemporary theories, including critical theory and socialist feminism. Description: This course deals with some major trends in analytical philosophy in the twentieth century.

    It examines such movements as logical atomism, logical positivism, ordinary language philosophy, contemporary pragmatism, and irrealism, in order to explore their emphasis on the role of language in the formulations of solutions to traditional problems in epistemology, metaphysics, and ethics. The course also explores current debates over relativism. Some knowledge of logic is desirable. Description: This course focuses on philosophical questions raised by the remarkable contemporary diffusion of constitutional democracy.

    What is the proper conception of ''constitutionalism''? Of ''democracy''? Of their surprising combination in ''constitutional democracy''? What institutions, legal structures, political arrangements and practices are required for, conducive towards, or antithetical to constitutional democracy?

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    And, what method or methods should we adopt in approaching these vast and various questions? Description: This course presents contemporary literary theory in connection with related developments in contemporary philosophy of language. Philosophy of language asks: What is it for a set of signs or symbols to have meaning?

    How is meaning, in general, possible, and how is it that a particular set of signs can have a particular meaning? What is a language? What is the relation between the sign and the signifier, the word and the object? What is the relation between writing, speech, and being?

    Literary theory and critical theory ask: What is a literary text? What is a genre and why do we distinguish them? What is an author? What is interpretation? Is paraphrase saying the same thing two different ways really possible? What is the role of the critic? How do the norms governing interpretation help to shape the ''reality'' that is interpreted? Readings range from ordinary language philosophy e. Description: This course examines 20th century analytic approaches to understanding the role of language in understanding mind, self, and world.

    Questions about the interplay between semantics and pragmatics will be addressed throughout the course, while focusing on questions about meaning, reference, truth, and the varieties of actions we accomplish through what we say. Topics include Russell's theory of descriptions and its critics, speech acts, and inferentialism. Description: This course examines a range of contemporary theories, including those of Rawls, Nozick, Feinberg, and Dworkin. It outlines the classical tradition, and introduces the work of legal positivists like Austin and Hart.

    Browse by Academic Unit (A-Z) - White Rose Research Online

    Emphasis is placed on alternatives to rights based theories and on criticisms of rights systems, such as that put forward by contemporary communitarians, virtue theorists, and feminist theorists. Description: Aristotle's philosophy as a response to Plato's views about meaning, being, knowledge, ideas, number and the good. Description: This course is an introduction to the philosophy of Hegel and to the Hegelian tradition, through a reading of Hegel's major work, The Phenomenology of Spirit. More recently, philosophers of science have adopted structuralist approaches to many other issues in the philosophy of science, such as scientific explanation and intertheory relations.

    The nine articles collected in this volume, written by the leading researchers in scientific structuralism, represent some of the most important directions of research in this field. This book will be of particular interest to those philosophers, scientists, and mathematicians who are interested in the foundations of science. Your Inner Fish: A Journey into the 3. Chemistry 8th Edition. Hence if facts are true propositions, as usually understood, they cannot perform such a role.

    Philosophy

    The typical response is to propose a substitute for facts and the obvious choice would be objects ultimately, elementary particles. Above all, Worrall focuses on mathematical relationships between theories when he tries to make this notion of preservation of structure more precise. In the ideal case for his proposal, we have the very same mathematical equation appearing in the succeeding theory. Harkening back to what they see as a Spinozian metaphysics, they view properties, including relations, as modes or ways in which objects exist.