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Catalog

Philosophy

PHL1001 Introduction to Philosophy (3)
Introduces some of the major figures and doctrines in the history of philosophy and some enduring and contemporary philosophical questions. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL1100 Ancient Philosophy (3)
Examines the origins of philosophical inquiry in the ancient world. Figures to be discussed may range from Confucius and Lao-Tzu to Plotinus and the Neo-Platonists. There is special emphasis on the writings of Plato and Aristotle and their continued influence. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL1105 Modern Philosophy (3)
The 17th and 18th centuries were marked by the intellectual turmoil produced by the scientific revolution. This course introduces students to the ideas of some of the major philosophers of this period from Descartes to Kant and their efforts to come to terms with developments that remain crucial for us today. Topics to be discussed include the nature and limits of knowledge, science and religion, and freedom and determinism. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL1110 Nineteenth Century Philosophy (3)
Offers detailed discussions of the philosophical work of such figures as Hegel, Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Marx, and Nietzsche. This course is essential background for anyone who wants to understand the contemporary intellectual scene. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL1200 Moral Problems (3)
After a brief introduction to some basic concepts in ethical theory, this course allows students to examine and discuss critically various contemporary moral problems such as fertility issues, the death penalty, affirmative action, free speech, and civil disobedience.  Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL1205C Law, Morality, and Society (CE) (3)
Students in this class will discuss the philosophy of labor and the philosophy of immigration—such as immigrant and post-immigrant phenomenology, the rights of non-citizens, the defense and critique of several economic and political assumptions about immigration—and reflect on these topics through community-based engagement. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2100 Ancient Philosophy (3)
Examines the origins of philosophical inquiry in the ancient world. Figures to be discussed may range from Confucius and Lao-Tzu to Plotinus and the Neo-Platonists. There is special emphasis on the writings of Plato and Aristotle and their continued influence. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2105 Modern Philosophy (3)
The 17th and 18th centuries were marked by the intellectual turmoil produced by the scientific revolution. This course introduces students to the ideas of some of the major philosophers of this period from Descartes to Kant and their efforts to come to terms with developments that remain crucial for us today. Topics to be discussed include the nature and limits of knowledge, science and religion, and freedom and determinism. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2110 Nineteenth Century Philosophy (3)
Offers detailed discussions of the philosophical work of such figures as Hegel, Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Marx, and Nietzsche. This course is essential background for anyone who wants to understand the contemporary intellectual scene. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit.  Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2115 Asian Philosophies (CDiv) (3)
This course introduces students to the philosophical schools, thinkers, and arguments produced in China, India, and Japan between 4000 BCE and the present. Particular focus will be given to Daoism, Confucianism, Buddhism, and the Astika Indian Schools. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2200 Moral Problems (3)
After a brief introduction to some basic ideas in ethical theory, this course allows students to examine and discuss critically various contemporary moral problems such as fertility issues, the death penalty, affirmative action, free speech, and civil disobedience.  The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2210 Political and Social Philosophy (3)
This course raises basic questions about politics, society, and social change. Why is government necessary? What are the limits of government action? When is it permissible to disobey the law? When is revolution justified? Why is democracy a good thing? When are human beings genuinely free? Does capitalism promote or undermine democracy and freedom? Are there feasible alternatives to capitalism? Readings may be from historical figures (e.g., Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Marx, Mill) or contemporary sources or both. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills the General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2215 Theories of the Good Life (3)
What constitutes a good life for a human being? Where, if anywhere, is human happiness to be found? What makes a human life worth living? What gives meaning or purpose to a human life? Beginning with Plato and Aristotle and continuing into modern philosophy, we will examine what makes a life worth living. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit.  Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2220 Philosophy and the Environment (3)
Offers a philosophical examination of a variety of key environmental issues. Topics to be discussed include the value of nature, property rights, world hunger, and the moral status of animals. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2230 Ethics and Professional Responsibility (3)
Examines major ethical theories and explores the application of those theories to current business, moral, and social issues. Illustrative case studies are used as well as other group exercises to enable the student to identify justice issues involved in specific problem areas of the work environment. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2235 Bioethics (3)
Considers some of the many ethical issues arising from the biological and medical sciences. Topics may include reproductive rights, genetic research and engineering, ethical, social, and legal implications of the Human Genome Project, euthanasia and assisted suicide, resource allocation, organ donation, experimentation with humans and nonhumans, and ethical issues in health care. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2301 Logic (3)
This course introduces students to formal, symbolic logic and to informal, non-symbolic logic.  The formal component of the course may be satisfied by first-order sentential logic, first-order predicate logic, Nyaya logic, or Aristotelian syllogistic logic.  The informal logic covered in the course may include such items as fallacies, the logic of question and answer, hermeneutics, as well as the logic of persuation.  Recommended for anyone who wants to improve his/her critical thinking and reading skills.  Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2400 Philosophy of Science (3)
Prerequisite:
A previous course in Philosophy or Natural Science or permission of the instructor
The philosophy of science addresses questions about the nature and methods of science, about conceptual and foundational issues within the various sciences, and about the broader implications of scientific research. Specific topics may vary, but students will be introduced to competing views of the nature of scientific reasoning, learn to think critically about important scientific developments, and consider some of the ethical, social, political, and religious questions that they raise. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2405 Philosophy of Mind (3)
Prerequisite:
A previous course in Philosophy or Psychology or permission of the instructor
The nature of mind and its relation to the physical world has been a perennial philosophical question. Can modern science offer a solution to this problem? This course examines both traditional issues (such as the mind-body problem, personal identity, and free will) and contemporary variants of these issues raised by research into artificial intelligence and work in cognitive science. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2410 Women and Philosophy (CDiv) (3)
Examines philosophical questions of special concern to women. Topics include the nature, status, and role of women in religious, philosophical, and various cultural contexts and theoretical and practical feminist issues addressed by traditional and contemporary philosophers throughout the world. Emphasis is placed on ethical and political problems facing women today. The amount of work required for upper-division credit will differ in both quantity and quality from that required for lower-division credit. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2415 Philosophy of Religion (3)
Surveys traditional and modern problems associated with religion. Topics may include the nature of God, arguments for theism, the problem of evil, foreknowledge and freedom, science and religion, faith and the nature of religious belief, myths, symbols, and rituals, and spirituality. May be taken to satisfy 3 units of elective credit for Religious Studies majors. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement or 3 units of the General Education Religious Studies requirement.

PHL2420 Philosophy of Love (3)
“What is love?” Does love have a core or essence? We talk about love all the time, we all “know” that love is the alchemy of life. We all experience it, yet it is diverse and largely unexamined. This class will study love in its many forms from filial love, friendship, compassion, and empathy for the other, a desire for justice, and passionate and sexual love to divine love and the longing to become one with the universe. Through poetry, film, and philosophy, we will discuss the many ways in which love forms our world and in which we form it. We explore this vague, all-embracing, and constantly desired feeling or concept from the point of view of different philosophers, beginning with Plato but also covering Freud, Kierkegaard, Heidegger, Rumi, and de Beauvoir on love, among others. Fulfills General Education Philosophy requirement.

PHL2994 Teaching Assistant (1-3)
Philosophy majors are required to earn at least 1 unit of credit as a teaching assistant to an instructor.

PHL2997 Senior Thesis (3)
Taken by majors in their senior year. Students write a 15-25 page paper on a topic of their choice in conjunction with an upper-division Philosophy course being offered in the same semester.

PHL2999 Independent Study in Philosophy (1-3)
Provides an opportunity for independent study or research in Philosophy under the direction of the instructor. See Undergraduate Policies and Procedures for more information on Independent Study.