Philosophy

Chair: C.Tabor Fisher
Professor(s): Karmen MacKendrick, Mario Saenz, Jonathan Schonsheck, Ludger Viefhues-Bailey
Associate Professor(s): Steven Affeldt, William Day, Michael Kagan, Irene Liu
Assistant Professor(s): Cavin Robinson, Eugene B. Young
Adjunct(s): Richard Cocks, Ryan Hubbard, Alex Krantz, Max Malikow, Charles F. Maxfield, Margaret A. Murphy Giordano, Jeremy Pierce


The aim of the study of philosophy at Le Moyne is to orient students in the development of critical and speculative thought, under conditions of intellectual and affective freedom, and with a sense of openness towards alternative visions of life-experience. The study of philosophy at Le Moyne is pluralistic in approach. As such, it allows majors and non-majors alike to focus on those philosophical themes that best respond to their individual concerns and vocational aspirations. These include graduate study in philosophy or related disciplines (e.g., religious studies; women’s studies; critical, literary and film theory; etc.), professional studies (in law, medicine or the ministry), and other career studies (in civil rights, ecology, etc.).

Core Program

The core program of study in philosophy serves majors and non-majors alike, since questions proper to philosophy are common to everyone and should be thematically studied by every liberally educated person. The core program is intended to clarify philosophic questions about human life and reality generally and to help students develop a philosophic understanding of their world and a method for enlarging that understanding in the future. See core curriculum at the beginning of the Undergraduate Programs section for regulations concerning sequence of core courses.

Philosophy Major

The philosophy curriculum for majors emphasizes the relevance of philosophy both to contemporary life and to personal development. Enriched by an understanding of the history of philosophy and in community with other majors, each student is encouraged to develop a course of study that speaks to his or her own concerns. Students with interdisciplinary interests may pursue a philosophy major with a concentration in an allied field, e.g. Legal Studies, Theater, etc. A student who majors in philosophy must take

- The requirements of the core

- A course in logic (PHL 310, 311 or 312)

-Three courses in the history of philosophy (PHL 320, 321 and 322)

-Three semesters of the one-credit Philosophy Colloquium (PHL 376-379)*

-Six philosophy electives

*An additional philosophy elective may be substituted for the three credits of Philosophy Colloquium when the latter is not offered.

Core RequirementsHours
COR 100 First Year Seminar3
WRT 101 Critical Writing3
PHL 110 Introduction to Philosophy3
HST 110 - HST 111 World Civilization6
ENG 210 Major Authors3
PHL 210 Moral Philosophy3
Theology3
EAC Encountering Another Culture/Language6
ENG 310 Literature and Culture3
Mathematics*3
Social Science*3
Natural Science*3
IDS Interdisciplinary Studies*3
Religion3
COR 400 Transformations3
Visual & Performing Arts*1
Diversity*0

* NOTE: Some Core requirements may be fulfilled by major requirements. See core section for more information. Because there have been substantial changes to the core curriculum, the above requirements may not apply to all students; for students who entered Le Moyne College prior to Fall 2013, be sure to consult with your advisor for appropriate course selection(s).

Philosophy Major

Major RequirementsHours
History of Philosophy
PHL 320 Ancient and Medieval Philosophy3
PHL 321 Descartes to Kant3
PHL 322 Kant Through Contemporary Thought3
Logic (PHL 310, PHL 311 or PHL 312) 3
Major Electives 18
Philosophy Colloquium PHL 376-379 (three semesters) or philosophy elective 3
Major SupportHours
Foreign Language* 6
ElectivesHours
Non-major Electives 12
Free Electives 24

* Intermediate level in a foreign language is required for a major in philosophy. For those students who require the introductory courses, 12 hours will be necessary to achieve this level.

Typical Program for Philosophy Major

First SemesterHoursSecond SemesterHours
Freshman Year
EAC*3 EAC*3
Free Elective3 Free Elective3
COR 1003 PHL 1103
WRT 1013 Mathematics3
HST 1103 HST 1113
Sophomore Year
Natural Science3 PHL Elective3
PHL 2103 PHL 3203
Free Elective3 Non-Major Elective3
ENG 2103 Social Science3
Theology3 Free Elective3
Junior Year
PHL 3103 PHL Elective3
PHL 3213 PHL 3223
Free Elective3 Free Elective3
Non-Major Elective3 Non-Major Elective3
ENG 3103 PHL 3761
IDS3
Senior Year
PHL Elective3 PHL Elective3
PHL Elective3 PHL Elective3
Free Elective3 Free Elective3
Non-Major Elective3 COR 400A3
Religion3 PHL 3781
PHL 3771

Philosophy Minor

A student wishing to minor in philosophy must complete five courses in philosophy, at least two of which must be philosophy electives (PHL 310-399). Beyond PHL 110 and 210, a student may count one additional core course that is cross-listed with Philosophy toward the minor. All philosophy electives except PHL 490-499 are open to non-majors. Most electives in philosophy may be taken as soon as PHL 110, PHL 210 or an equivalent course has been completed.

Courses


PHL 100 . What Is Philosophy? (1).

What is philosophy? The word "philosophy" means the love of wisdom. But what is the love of wisdom? Philosophy, far from being anti-religious or belonging to any single political outlook, is found in every world religion and in every political outlook. Everywhere, at every time, people search for wisdom and care about questions of truth, goodness or meaning. In this course, we study some of the most basic questions of philosophy, reading classic or good extracts of written philosophy, and exploring some of our own writing, too. (This course, offered during the summer, is open only to West Genesee High School students through their Renaissance Program for pass/fail credit.)

PHL 101 (PHL 110). Phil Foundations of Western (3).

This course explores the nature of philosophical inquiry through a consideration of the writings of major figures in the history of Western thought up to 1650. Philosophers to be considered will include Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas and Descartes. Some effort will be made to reflect on the world views these philosophers represent, the cultural assumptions and values (e.g., ethnocentrism, gender and racial biases) operative in these world views and the effects of these assumptions on philosophical thinking.

PHL 110 (PHL 101). Introduction to Philosophy (3).

As a writing instructional course, this course introduces students to the practice of philosophy and to some of the central questions, modes of inquiry, and forms of analysis and argumentation that distinguish philosophy from other ways of understanding ourselves and our world. Organized around the themes of "the human condition" and "the examined life", the course engages students in reflective dialogue about central concepts that define the human condition (e.g., knowledge and understanding, beauty and value, justice and community, transcendence and the divine, etc.). By linking rigorous analysis with engaged reflection on the concrete task of living an examined life, PHL 110 exemplifies the core value of Le Moyne's Jesuit educational mission of educating both the hearts and minds of our students. Prerequisite: WRT 101 or permission of the department chair.

PHL 201 . Phil Perspectives on the Human (3).

This course examines a variety of interpretations of the human situation, drawn from the following categories: (1) the Western intellectual tradition since 1650; (2) contemporary thought; and (3) nonWestern thought (e.g., Eastern, African, Latin American). Issues pertaining to (a) gender and the human situation and (b) race and the human situation will also be considered.

PHL 210 (PHL 301/PHL 302/PHL 303). Moral Philosophy (3).

This course investigates the philosophical foundations of normative ethics in an effort to clarify the status of moral values in human life. Drawing upon classical as well as contemporary texts in moral theory, the course will consider issues such as: What does it means to be a moral being or a moral agent? Are moral values grounded in human nature, the natural order, the divine? What are the methods and possible limits of reasoning about moral values? Is moral philosophy (merely) descriptive of the practices and values of various groups or can it be prescriptive; can it, that is, tell us what we ought to do? How might we understand the historical development of moral theory and the diversity of systems of value? How might conflicts between these systems of thought be understood, assessed, and/or resolved? Sections capped at 30. Prerequisite: PHL 110 or permission of the department chair.

PHL 301 (PHL 302/PHL 303/PHL 210). General Ethics (3).

This course investigates the nature and kinds of values that affect the quality of human life. It examines the basis of moral responsibility, the notions of good, right and ought, as well as the special characteristics of moral reasoning. Within the time available, specific types of conduct are examined as morally good or bad, in the light of the grounds of goodness discovered and the method of reasoning found appropriate to moral judgment. Prior to registration, faculty teaching sections of this course will publish an appropriate syllabus to help guide students in their choice of courses. Prerequisites: PHL 101, 201.

PHL 301-303 . Ethics (3).

These courses investigate the philosophical foundations of normative ethics in an effort to clarify the status of moral values in human life. The topics considered in these courses include the study of moral concepts, the characteristics of moral reasoning and the nature of moral responsibility. Any one of these courses satisfies the third year core requirement in ethics.

PHL 302 (PHL 301/PHL 303/PHL 210). Issues in Ethics (3).

This course attempts to investigate the ethical dimension of the human condition by focusing on a specific set of ethical problems or by focusing on a particular perspective of special interest to those carrying on the investigation. This course might well include such issues as capital punishment, euthanasia and the quality of the environment. It might also study various questions and problems that arise when one considers issues of gender and race. Prior to registration, faculty teaching sections of this course will publish an appropriate syllabus to help guide students in their choice of courses. Prerequisites: PHL 101, 201.

PHL 303 (PHL 301/PHL 302/PHL 210). Great Traditions in Ethics (3).

This course aims at an understanding of the activity of making moral judgments or affirming one value or set of values over another. At issue are, typically, the meaning of the words spoken when people make ethical assertions, the possibility of justifying or proving the truth of such assertions and the implications of discovering situations in which the ethical dimension is problematic. Integral to this course is a study of these questions in the light of the great traditions of ethical thinking as they have come to light in the various wisdom literatures. Prior to registration, faculty teaching sections of this course will publish an appropriate syllabus to help guide students in their choice of courses. Prerequisites: PHL 101, 201.

PHL 310 . Informal Logic (3).

An introduction to critical thinking, this course focuses on developing skills in evaluating and constructing arguments. Fallacy detection and analysis will be of central gender and culture on argument, both as product and as process, will also be stressed. (A,E)

PHL 311 . Introduction to Formal Logic (3).

Students will have the opportunity of discovering and exploring the structure and interrelations of the various kinds of propositions that occur in deductive reasoning. Logic will be presented as applying to the actual world incidentally, but to possible types of order explicitly. Propositional logic, predicated logic, classes and relations will be part of its content. Quantified expressions will be studied. Some attention will also be given to the non-deductive processes of the scientific method and the analysis of probabilities. Throughout the course there will be a wide selection of problem-solving challenges. (E)

PHL 312 . Symbolic Logic (3).

Building upon a foundation of an introductory course in logic, this course will examine the construction and comparison of axiomatic systems. It will study the propositional calculus that is developed in Principia Mathematica and the axioms and theorem of Boolean class calculus. Duals, paradoxes, multivalue logic and modal logic will be included in the content of this course. It will included opportunities for developing problem-solving skills. Prerequisite: PHL 217 or permission of the instructor. (E)

PHL 320 . Ancient and Medieval Philosophy (3).

This course is an introduction to ancient and medieval philosophy. The course covers a variety of topics, e.g. happiness, nature, knowledge, and God, through engagement with Plato, Aristotle, and other major philosophers of these periods. In addition to addressing philosophical topics of perennial interest, this course seeks to cultivate an appreciation of philosophical inquiry in its intellectual and historical context by considering developments such as the emergence of philosophy from traditional Greek wisdom, the challenge of the Sophists, the encounter between Greek philosophy and Christianity, etc.

PHL 321 . Descartes to Kant (3).

This course examines, in historical context, the philosophical ideas ingredient to the emergence of the modern world. Attention will be paid to theories that undergird major developments of the early modern period, e.g. in science, politics religion, or art. Themes covered may include, for example, the increasing emphasis on epistemology (rationalism & empiricism) at the expense of metaphysics, the subjectivist birth of the modern idea of the self, and the modern transformation of approaches to moral and ethical questions. Texts will be drawn from (among others) works of Descartes, Locke, Hume, Rousseau and Kant.

PHL 322 . Kant Through Contemporary Thought (3).

This course is a survey of Western philosophy from the nineteenth century until today. It begins with the rise of German idealism (Kant, Fichte, Schelling, Hegel) and its nineteenth century critics, for example, the "dialectics of suspicion" concerning the transcendental subject as elaborated by Marx, Kierkegaard, and Nietzsche, or the utilitarian tradition. Depending on student or faculty interest, the course may continue with a study of existentialism and phenomenology ( for example, the analysis of lived experience and intersubjectivity), logical positivism and analytic philosophy (for example, the linguistic turn, or philosophical reflections on science and scientific method), and/or critical theory, poststructuralism and postmodernism (e.g., critiques of positivism and metanarratives, as well as the introduction of the relational subject).

PHL 324 (REL 383). Philosophies of Judaism (3).

An examination of a variety of Jewish philosophical tendencies as responses to fundamental crises and challenges. The course will focus on several paradigmatic philosophies of Judaism in terms of the following: (a) the human person (philosophical anthropology); (b) revelation and obligation; (c) theology; and (d) Jewish identity and existence. The influence and importance of gender and culture in the development of these philosophies will also be stressed. (D)

PHL 325 (PGS 335). Asian Philosophy (3).

An examination of the main philosophical traditions of India and the Far East: Hinduism, Buddhism, Taoism and Confucianism. This course will focus upon mysticism as a primary determinant of Eastern thought and will seek to place these philosophies in their historical and cultural setting. (C,D)

PHL 326 (PGS 343/GWS 343). U.S. Latina Thought (3).

U.S. Third World women in general and Latinas in particular have raised important philosophical questions that have enriched philosophical and feminist considerations about the nature of the self, reality, knowledge and politics. This course will involve a close reading of a number of philosophical and literary texts by U.S. Latinas from a number of different social locations.

PHL 327 . Phil in the United States (3).

This course examines the development of philosophical thought in the United States from the colonial period to the middle of the twentieth century. The main emphasis falls upon the rise of pragmatic philosophy, as exemplified in the writings of Charles Sanders Pierce, William James and John Dewey. Other traditions such as Puritanism and Transcendentalism are considered, along with readings dealing with race and gender issues. (B,C,D)

PHL 329 . Freud and Philosophy (3).

An investigation of Freud's contributions to philosophy. The course will be divided between an intensive examination of texts from the founder of psychoanalysis (The Interpretation of Dreams, Beyond the Pleasure Principle, Moses and Monotheism, etc.) and readings of philosophical interpretations and evaluations of Freud. Topics covered may include the therapeutic claims of psychoanalysis, Freud and politics, psychoanalysis and the arts (literature, etc.) and psychoanalysis and feminist theory. (B,E)

PHL 340 . Philosophy of Art (3).

Why do we call some things beautiful and others not? And why do we often disagree? Is "This is beautiful" never more than an opinion, or can it be true? If it can't be true, then are works of art meaningless? If they aren't meaningless, how do we know what they mean? This course will examine these and related questions through careful reading and discussion of classic and contemporary writings in the philosophy of art. Visual artists, musicians, dancers, actors, and creative writers should find it especially valuable, as will anyone who likes to think about art. Fulfills core Visual and Performing Arts requirement. (VPA)

PHL 341 . Philosophy and Literature (3).

This course will explore the various literary and philosophical dimensions of the imagination in order to appreciate how poets, novelists and philosophers have interpreted the world we live in through the ages. Representative works from the English Renaissance to the present will be analyzed and discussed. (B)

PHL 342 (THR 342). Philosophy & the Theatre: Ancient Greek (3).

This course offers one a study of the intimate weave between the development of ancient Greek philosophy and that of ancient Greek theatre. Through careful analysis of both philosophic and theatrical texts, one is afforded a richer and more sophisticated sense of the genealogical/conceptual/cultural interdependence of both genres of wisdom literature. Set within a phenomenological resurrection of the political and religious realities that nurtured to life such philosophical artistry, the study will walk through the great pillars of classical theatre, tragedians and comic playwrights both, as well as those of classical philosophy (Plato and Aristotle).

PHL 343 . Phil & Theatre: Transition to Modernity (3).

A philosophical exploration into the nature of theatre, this course would attempt to elucidate the richly theatrical dimensions of daily life. A careful interweaving of selections from the theatre (both classical and modern) and selections from the philosophical literature, will afford students the opportunity to enhance their appreciation of the artistry of the theatre as well as the theatrical artistry of life. The thesis which underlies the study is that meaningful life requires the presense (in one's life) of the fictive (i.e., the theatrical). Central to the development of this thesis will be the philosophical theory of the "as if" of Hans Vaihinger. Fulfills core Visual and Performing Arts requirement. (VPA)

PHL 344 . Art and Politics (3).

This course uses art manifestos and a variety of current works in both art and philosophy to examine and question the relation between art and politics. We will ask whether this relationship is necessary, desirable, or detrimental to art, or for that matter, politics. (A) Fulfills core Visual and Performing Arts requirement. (VPA)

PHL 345 . Issues in Medical Ethics (3).

Using a practical, context-specific approach that is sensitive to the philosophical, scientific, social, legal and economic dimensions that shape and define the field of bioethics, this course is devoted to a detailed study of ethical issues debated in the health professions. Specific topics will vary, but may include some of the following: death and dying, the medicines, choices in reproduction, presymptomatic testing for genetic disease, AIDS and social justice, allocation of medical resources and access to health care. Open only to students in the Physician Assistant Program.

PHL 346 . Ethics and the Nurse (3).

Using a practical, context-specific approach that is sensitive to the philosophical, scientific, social, legal and economic dimensions that shape and define the field of bioethics, this course is devoted to a detailed study of ethical issues in nursing. Specific topics will vary. Open only to students in the Bachelor's of Science in Nursing.

PHL 347 (CCM 408/CCM 508). Ethics & Health Professions (3).

This course examines the origins and use of ethical theories in the clinical, professional, organizational, and political-economic fields of action in health care. Specific issues presented in the context of case studies illuminate the several fields. These issues include assisted suicide, professional codes of ethics, the ethics of "cost-cutting," and justice with respect to care.

PHL 348 . Social & Polit Phil:Historical (3).

This course investigates central issues in social and political philosophy from ancient times through the 19th century. Specific issues may vary, but will include some of the following: attempts to design the ideal state, attempts to provide a moral justification for the actions of states (the problem of power vs. authority), philosophical foundations of individual property rights, principles limiting the scope of legitimate governmental actions, principles of just revolution. (A,C)

PHL 349 . Social & Pol Phl: Contemporary (3).

An examination of methodological and substantive issues in contemporary social and political philosophy. Methodological issues center around the question: "What sort(s) of arguments (if any) justify the existence of states?" Substantive issues center around the questions: "What state functions are morally permissible? Morally obligatory?" Some current social issues are examined in light of the theories discussed; e.g., moral limits (if any) on political dissent, income redistribution, covert non-compliance with laws. Prerequisite: PHL 301 or 302 or 303. (A,C)

PHL 350 (LGS 350). Philosophy of Law (3).

This is not a course in the study of law. It is a course designed to afford students who have an interest in the law (not necessarily professional) an opportunity to reflect on the philosophical presuppositions of the law and the philosophical problems that arise within the general domain of jurisprudence. Based on readings (historical and contemporary) written by both philosophers and jurists, the course typically addresses general theories of law, law and morality, judicial reasoning and crime and punishment. Students should expect to do a great deal of linguistic analysis as well as some case study. (A)

PHL 352 . Critical Theory & Technological Society (3).

An examination of modernity, rationality and technological society through the lens of the twentieth century critical theory movement (also known as the Frankfurt School). Emphasis will be upon (a) critical theory's relation to Hegelian and Marxist theories, (b) its reflections on the rise of positivism and "scientism" in epistemology, and (c) the distinction between instrumental reason and communicative rationality. Figures studied may include Adorno, Horkheimer, Benjamin, Marcuse and Habermas. (A,B,C,)

PHL 353 (PGS 353). Latin American Social Philosophy (3).

This course will study some of the major philosophical trends in Latin America in the light of both the search for cultural identity and the discovery of difference in the heart of sameness. Therefore, it will also consider those philosophies of social change which (a) provide a critique of hegemonic ideologies, (b) try to rediscover the submerged validity of pre-conquest and non-Western world views and (c) seek a dialogical integration of the diversity of voices in Latin America. (A,C)

PHL 354 . Phil and the Social Sciences (3).

A critical examination of certain assumptions, methods and goals of the social sciences, particularly with reference to ways of observing, describing and explaining human behavior. Issues raised are whether the social sciences can be sciences; the meaning and possibility of "value-free" inquiry (the fact-value distinction); whether one can understand human activity without moral categories; the relation of the philosophical enterprise to that of the social sciences. These issues are studied as they present themselves in sociology, psychology, political science and anthropology. (A)

PHL 355 (GWS 321). The Anatomy of Cruelty (3).

Drawing on a combination of philosophical texts and other genres (e.g., novels, films, TV shows), this course seeks to provide students with an opportunity to study contemporary constructions of cruelty and criminal violence. We will probe the central images and tropes that permeate contemporary depictions of cruelty and criminal violence, with an eye to discerning the philosophical sources, the socio-political contexts, and the political uses of these representations. Particular attention will be paid to the structure of torture, the philosophy of emotion and cruelty, the paradoxes of cruelty, the Gothic imagination, and the impact of social hierarchies on contemporary constructions of cruelty and criminal violence. Prerequisites or corequisites: PHL 101, 201 or the permission of the instructor.

PHL 356 (GWS 316). Philosophy of the Body (3).

Examining both classical and contemporary texts, this course will present a variety of perspectives-metaphysical, phenomenological and cultural-on the body as a subject of philosophical exploration. Particular attention will be paid to the relationship between culture and body, contemporary attitudes toward the body and various dimensions of the experience of embodiment. Prerequisite: PHL 301 or 302 or 303. (A,B)

PHL 357 (GWS 323). The Social Production of Space (3).

This course is an introduction to the work done in philosophy, geography and cultural studies that addresses the social production of space. In contrast to modern conceptions of space as a pre-given, homogenous and infinite grid of possible locations, the idea of a social production of space leads to a conceptualization of space as deeply textured, often conflicted, and historically produced and reproduced. Key concepts to be covered are: abstract space, time-space compression, the decorporealization of space, the impact of everyday practices on spatial production, multiple spaces, raced spaces and spaces of resistance.

PHL 358 . Philosophy of Race (3).

This course is designed to familiarize the student with the historical discourse and contemporary debates concerning race, racial identity, and racism in philosophy. The discipline of philosophy has traditionally viewed the philosophical enter- prise as an investigation into a universal human condition. To this extent, the philosophical salience of race and thinkers whose main concern was to understand race and racism has been obscured within the tradition. This course will examine the history of the concept of the race, discussions of race and race consciousness, as well as the formation and viability, or lack thereof, of racial identities. These discussions bring to the forefront the need for a critical perspective on how we understand race and racialized identities today.

PHL 359 . Environmental Values (3).

Environmental Values examines the ways we value the environment- and the main values involved. The idea is to help students realize how valuable the environment can be to human beings. At the heart of this exploration is how something can be valuable to us, although it is not valuable for us. A subsidiary and pragmatic task of the course is to prepare students to be able to discuss- or advocate for- environmental issues with a depth, coherence and clarity often missing from public discourse. Prerequisites: PHL 201

PHL 360 . Questioning Existence of God (3).

An inquiry in a rational way into the things human reason can disclose concerning God. The course examines the logical and methodological issues involved in various arguments for the existence of God as well as objections raised to the whole enterprise of theistic proofs. (D)

PHL 361 . Evil, Freedom and God (3).

This course focuses on various classical and contemporary treatments of the problems that the existence of evil and human freedom pose for the recognition and intelligibility of an underlying omnibenevolent, omnipotent and omniscient agency. (D)

PHL 362 . Theory of Knowledge (3).

The adequate appreciation and mastery of any intellectual discipline demands that the individual have a firm grasp of scope, operation, structure and limitations of human knowledge. This course intends to provide the student with a grasp of what knowledge is, how it is acquired, how it is evaluated, what distinguishes valid from invalid knowledge, evidence, theory construction, etc. Special attention is given to the theory of cognitive paradigms, i.e., the position that different theoretical models generate different sets of facts and different descriptions of reality. The course is recommended for philosophy and psychology majors and should be of particular interest to students majoring in the natural or social sciences. (E)

PHL 363 . Analytic Philosophy (3).

A presentation and examination of selected texts in the analytic tradition from J. S. Mill and Frege to Kripke. Focus is on topics such as reference, naming, predication, necessity and truth with an emphasis on their import for questions concerning the meaning of existence. (C,E)

PHL 364 (GWS 355). Philosophy of Science (3).

This is a meta-mathematical/meta-scientific course in philosophical analysis. The concepts to be investigated are drawn from the fields of mathematics, physics and cosmology (e.g., number, shape, gravity, force, energy, matter, space, time, infinity, singularity). Focused attention will be given to the traditional "paradoxes" associated with the attempt to understand these concepts as well as to the more contemporary "anomalies" brought to light in the investigations of physics and astrophysics. (E)

PHL 365 . The Crisis in the Financial Markets: Vivisection, Justice , Reforms (3).

The Crisis in the financial markets, which exploded in the fall of 2008, very nearly led to a global economic collapse. Arguably, elements of the Crisis endure; arguably, the specter of an encore crisis looms on the horizon. In the first portion of this course, we will perform a Vivisection of the Crisis--from the 'bubble' in the markets for housing, to the bubble in the market for bonds and various exotic financial instruments ('derivatives'), and the actions of government institutions to prevent a collapse. In the second portion of the course, we will consider the issues of justice in a liberal democracy, guided by John Rawls, Justice as Fairness. Special attention will be focused on issues of economic justice: distributive justice generally, and taxation in particular. And we will investigate the threats to democracy posed by economic inequalities. The third portion of the course will be devoted to reforms: resolving problems discovered in the Vivisection through the application of principles of Justice. Corequisites: Ethics. Fulfills Core Requirement(s): IDS.

PHL 366 (PSC 320). The Self, Society and Justice (3).

The self is one of the most familiar and yet most mysterious of concepts. We take for granted the idea that we have or are a self, and we regularly and comfortably refer to selves. But what is the self? And what are the moral and political implications for how we understand justice and the self? This course explores the nature of the self through philosophical and social scientific lenses. We will consider classic philosophical and social scientific discussions of the self, as well as the ways in which these disciplines can challenge, enrich, and play off of each other. Prerequisites: PHL 110.

PHL 368 . Time, the Universe and You (3).

Astronomer Carl Sagan wrote, "Who are we? We find that we live on an insignificant planet of a humdrum star lost in a galaxy tucked away in some forgotten corner of a universe in which there are far more galaxies than people." And the evolutionary biologist Richard Dawkins has written that "We are survival machines - robot vehicles blindly programmed to preserve the selfish molecules known as genes." How well does this scientifically informed picture of who we are fit with our everyday conception of our lives as filled with significant (as well as insignificant) events in time? Does our sense of "living in time" survive scientific scrutiny? This course will survey historical and present-day understandings of the physical and chronological universe, explore the place of humanity in its immensity, and ask whether the scientific conceptions that emerge are compatible with our everyday experience of time.

PHL 369 . The Experience of Time (3).

Is time something "out there" - a part of nature and the universe - or is it something felt, so that we cannot imagine time passing without someone or something (a god) to experience it? The ancient physicists pictured time as a measure of motion or change. That picture raised for early Christian theologians the question whether time was created with the universe, and if so, whether God could do anything before there was time in which to do it. In our era, some philosophers have argued that time, properly understood, is unreal. But we might wonder whether such arguments can touch our experience of time. We speak of time as tyrannical, always moving forward, and finitie for each of us. But it also moves fast or slowly, is full or empty. We travel through time thanks to the gift or curse of memory. And music can shape time beyond what physics can account for. This seminar will explore, through discussion of classical and contemporary readings in philosophy and literature, music and film, a range of attempts to understand our concept and experience of time. Prerequisites: PHL 101 or 11, PHL 201 or 210.

PHL 376 . Philosophy Colloquium (1).

The colloquium will meet every other week for two hours to consider a specific topic or directed research in philosophy or the history of philosophy. Faculty and students will decide upon a unifying theme for the course each semester, but course topics will depend upon the interests of the student or guest speaker presenting for the day. The colloquium will take advantage of public lectures, both at Le Moyne and in the region. Students will actively assess their progress toward meeting departmental objectives for the Philosophy major/minor. Eligible students may develop ideas for departmental Honors projects and, as they progress on their projects, present their research to their peers.

PHL 377 . Philosophy Colloquium (1).

The colloquium will meet every other week for two hours to consider a specific topic or directed research in philosophy or the history of philosophy. Faculty and students will decide upon a unifying theme for the course each semester, but course topics will depend upon the interests of the student or guest speaker presenting for the day. The colloquium will take advantage of public lectures, both at Le Moyne and in the region. Students will actively assess their progress toward meeting departmental objectives for the Philosophy major/minor. Eligible students may develop ideas for departmental Honors projects and, as they progress on their projects, present their research to their peers.

PHL 378 . Philosophy Colloquium (1).

The colloquium will meet every other week for two hours to consider a specific topic or directed research in philosophy or the history of philosophy. Faculty and students will decide upon a unifying theme for the course each semester, but course topics will depend upon the interests of the student or guest speaker presenting for the day. The colloquium will take advantage of public lectures, both at Le Moyne and in the region. Students will actively assess their progress toward meeting departmental objectives for the Philosophy major/minor. Eligible students may develop ideas for departmental Honors projects and, as they progress on their projects, present their research to their peers.

PHL 379 . Philosophy Colloquium (1).

The colloquium will meet every other week for two hours to consider a specific topic or directed research in philosophy or the history of philosophy. Faculty and students will decide upon a unifying theme for the course each semester, but course topics will depend upon the interests of the student or guest speaker presenting for the day. The colloquium will take advantage of public lectures, both at Le Moyne and in the region. Students will actively assess their progress toward meeting departmental objectives for the Philosophy major/minor. Eligible students may develop ideas for departmental Honors projects and, as they progress on their projects, present their research to their peers.

PHL 381 . The Experience of Time (3).

Special Topics: Is time something "out there" - a part of nature and the universe - or is it something felt, so that we cannot imagine time passing without someone or something (a god) to experience it? The ancient physicists pictured time as a measure of motion or change. That picture raised for early Christian theologians the question whether time was created with the universe, and if so, whether God could do anything before there was time in which to do it. In our era, some philosophers have argued that time, properly understood, is unreal. But we might wonder whether such arguments can touch our experience of time. We speak of time as tyrannical, always moving foward, and finite for each of us. But it also moves fast or slowly, is full or empty. We travel through time thanks to the gift or curse of memory. And music can shape time beyond what physics can account for. This seminar will explore, through discussion of classical and contemporary readings in philosophy and literature, music and film, a range of attempts to understand our concept and experience of time.

PHL 390 . Independent Study (3-6).

Independent Study is intended for any student wanting a program of study in philosophy for which there is no existing couse in the department. A student who wishes to pursue an independent study project for academic credit must submit, prior to registration, a proposed plan of study that includes the topic to be studied and goal to be achieved, the methodology to be followed, schedule of supervision, end product, evaluation procedure and number of credits sought. The proposal must be approved by the supervising faculty member, the department chair and the academic vice president and dean. It will be kept on file in the dean of arts and science's office.

PHL 400 (PGS 409). Self Knowledge, Cosmopolis & Transcendence (3).

This course pays close attention to our own historicity. Each participant will make a conscious attempt to be authentic in responding to the question, who am I, and to engage the question of the meaning of their own identity and exsistence in relation to the cosmos, transcendence, and society. The selected readings and pedagogy employed will serve as a maieutic- midwife- in the Socratic sense; inspiring the student to articulate who he or she is, and how she ought to live with others, care for the earth, and collaborate in originating creative healing social and environmental structures. In this connection we will engage the significance and implications of the following phenomenon:"to equip an animal with intelligence constitutes not only the possibility of culture and of science but also the possibility of every abomination that has occurred in the course of human history."

PHL 400-419 . Seminars in Philosophy (3).

A selection of integrative seminars designed to investigate the presuppositions, structures and images that underlie the human attempt to understand and participate in the world. Each seminar will focus on a theme of general scope and significance and, in so doing, will enable students to come to a reflective understanding of their own assumptions and values in the context of what they have encountered in their previous years of study. Emphasis will be placed on student discussion and active integration of material through written work and class presentations.

PHL 401 (PGS 422). Senior Sem: Phil & Politics, East & West (3).

What is the relation between free thought and the society where it originates and is expressed? Is that relation necessarily hostile? Is this hostility a Western phenomena, or is it found in the Eastern traditions as well? Can philosophy and politics ever get along? This seminar is a cross-cultural, comparative study of the relation between philosophy and the political. It is aimed in two directions: "horizontally" - that is, we will read comparatively the founding thinkers in Chinese philosophy (Confucius and his disciples) and their U.S. "disciples" (Emerson, Thoreau) - and "vertically" - that is we will compare the use of Emerson's thought in contemporary U.S. culture with the use of Confucian teaching in contemporary Chinese culture. The seminar will help you decide whether East and West are incommensurable culturally, or whether they share the quarrel between free thought and society - that is, whether it is free thought and society that are fundamentally incommensurable.

PHL 402 . Romance, Myth and Logos (3).

Whether through a poem, a philosophical reflection, a piece of music or work of art, whether through falling in love, the power and challenge of one's life's vocation or a meandering boat ride up the Merrimac River, each of us has experienced the sublime state of meaningfulness. Some may have also experienced, in the evaporation of such meaning, the specter of meaninglessness. This course brings the tools of philosophical analysis to bear upon the phenomenon of meaning or meaningfulness. Through careful phenomenological study of the richly variated "family" of meaning-structures, each participant is provided with an opportunity for a critical understanding of the nature of humankind's engagement with meaningfulness. The course is predicated upon a presumed intimacy between our concern with meaning and the phenomenon romance. Thus, the distinctive but intertwined roles of mythos and logos in the creation of romance will serve as thematic threads into the investigation of meaning. The purpose of this experience is to afford each participant a greater appreciation of the birth and death of meaning, the manner in which it sustains us and the full-blown range of its opportunity.

PHL 403 . Heroism and the Human Spirit (3).

This seminar will involve varied readings from world literature, augmented by some extra readings from philosophy and psychology in search of responses to the question, "What makes a person great?" Of central concern will be the issue of the nature of the heroic; we will also be concerned with some other philosophical problems which arise in connection with this question (such as: the problem of evil; personal identity; determinism, free will and fatalism; death; the mind-body problem and the problem of other minds; philosophical anthropology and philosophical psychology as well as some philosophy of psychology; philosophical analysis of religious experience).

PHL 404 . On Education (3).

You may have been in education most of your life, yet what is education? Let's consider the nature of education, especially how to cultivate your humanity, to develop you as a whole, human being. How can education produce wisdom, maturity, or growing throughout life? Joining the history of educational thinking with contemporary questions, the course gives you the opportunity to reflect on your schooling and to find ways to learn throughout life.

PHL 407 . Ethics, Art and Literature (3).

Investigations into questions concerning the relations between philosophical theories of ethics and actual works of art, including novels, paintings, plays, poetry and films, have recently been increasing. This course explores the thesis that philosophical theories of ethics, which state their case at a high level of generality, must be complemented and/or completed by detailed, individual case studies. It challenges students to bring human actions, their own and others, into relief through casting the lights of rival theories of ethics upon them. It works to reveal the differing social consequences of the adoption and/or truth of this or that theory of ethics for everyday life. Selected works of art are studied to determine what is gained and what is sacrificed in particular lives by putting trust in this or that theory. Finally, the course explores various philosophical questions concerning the expression of values in art and in literature. Electives in philosophy may be taken upon completion of PHL 201 unless otherwise noted. Fulfills Core requirement(s): VPA.

PHL 408 . Philosophy and Revolution (3).

This course will examines some of the connections that have been made between philosophical discourse and radical transformative practices in politics, culture, the economy and society. It will consider whether and how philosophical discourse contributes to the enlightenment necessary for revolutionary and liberatory transformations of the established order, or, alternatively, whether and how it becomes an obstacle to those transformations. Some of the ideas studied will include Plato's conception of philosophy as liberation from the imprisonment of the cave, modern and post-modern conceptions of social revolution and its likelihood, desirability, relation to human liberation and, finally, contemporary treatments of the relation between revolution, on the one hand, and neocolonialism, violence, patriarchal society, racial oppression and class exploitation, on the other hand.

PHL 409 . Philosophy, Faith and Mystic Union (3).

This seminar explores the concept of divinity developed in a contemporary project in philosophical theology. It then moves on to a consideration of the notion of religious faith as expressed by various authors in a biblical tradition. Finally, it investigates what it means to directly experience God by analyzing the several states of mystic union articulated by some of the great mystics.

PHL 410 . Health, Society and the Law (3).

The historical development of western ideas of health, disease and illness will be studied from the perspective not only of philosophy, but also of medicine and psychiatry, psychology, religion, sociology, economics and the law. The seminar will explore the development of concepts of mental illness, dementia and mental "retardation", as well as the definition of sexual preferences and "perversions" as diseases, and the role of international groups, such as the World Health Organization, in the social construction of definitions of human health. Prerequisites or corequisites: PHL 101, 201, 302.

PHL 412 . Philosophy and Architecture (3).

This course will examine philosophical issues raised by the practice of architecture-the relationship between space and place, the concept of "home," the boundary between "art" and "science," the demand that art reflect "our time," and the nature of the city. Beginning from some basic background in the history and language of architecture, the seminar will examine how philosophical questions arise from the everyday concerns of the architect. The course is taught concurrently with a seminar in the architecture school at Syracuse University and will involve weekly interaction with architecture students. Fulfills core Visual and Performing Arts requirement. (VPA)

PHL 413 . Movies, Remarriage and Unknownness (4).

This course will explore the familiar human cycle of disappointment and desire for change in oneself through examining a series of classic Hollywood and recent foreign films, in conjunction with readings in philosophy and literature. The films are concerned with marriage - marriage as a possibility to be reinvented with one's spouse, or alternatively as a possibility to be foregone in favor of some other, more private ideal. The work of the course will draw from philosophical and literary texts (chiefly by Stanley Cavell, but including works by Emerson, Locke, Nietzsche, Freud, Henry James, Shakespeare, and others) as well as from classic and recent Hollywood and foreign films (Moonstruck, Philadelphia Story, Now Voyager, Breaking the Waves, and others).

PHL 414 . Existentialism: G. Marcel (3).

This seminar integrates Philosophy and Drama by concentrating on the plays and philosophical essays of French Existential thinker Gabriel Marcel. Marcel inquired into the meaning of life by appeal to the dramatic imagination; and his philosophical reflection clarified questions and themes that his theater first brought to light - e.g. I-Thou, interpersonal relationships, commitment, belonging, being and having, creative fidelity and hope vs. despair.

PHL 415 (REL 415). Theol/Philosoph of Liberation (3).

This seminar will provide the opportunity for students to examine philosophical and religious traditions of social and political liberation in the Americas. Special consideration will be given to reflections on gender, race and class in theology and religion. The convergence of theory and social praxis in ecclesial base communities, as well as the politicization of Latin American philosophical thought in the midtwentieth century as a response to the Cuban Revolution challenge to liberation philosophy and theology will be studied. Prerequisites or corequisites: REL 200, REL 300, PHL 101, PHL 201, PHL 301. This seminar may be taken as either philosophy or religious studies. In either case, it will fulfill the core senior PHL/REL seminar requirement.

PHL 416 . Between Experience and Knowledge (3).

When anyone is questioned about the origin of her knowledge, she must refer to her experience. This course explores more precisely just what the tie is between one's experiences and one's knowledge. For despite the familiarity of this association, the bond between experience and knowledge remains elusive. Through some enjoyable exercises in literary analysis and historical/autobiographical works, we will address three different relationships between experience and knowledge: scientific, social/cultural/historical, and phenomenological.

PHL 417 (GWS 418). Located Knowledges (3).

This course will be an exploration of the ethical and epistemological consequences of social location. Is your understanding of the world and your ability to move responsibly in it impacted by your race, gender, class, or sexuality? As you finish your final year at Le Moyne, we will reflect on how you have been prepared to promote justice in a diverse society.

PHL 419 . Philosophy and the Environment (3).

A selection of integrative seminars designed to investigate the presuppositions, structures and images that underlie the human attempt to understand and participate in the world. Each seminar will focus on a theme of general scope and significance and, in so doing, will enable students to come to a reflective understanding of their own assumptions and values in the context of what they have encountered in their previous years of study. Emphasis will be placed on student discussion and active integration of material through written work and class presentations.

PHL 420 . Advanced Argumentative Writing (3).

The purpose of this seminar is to guide students through the difficult process of bringing a philosophical argument to life. Over the course of the semester, students will work on refining and presenting a piece of philosophical writing [approximately 15-20 pages]. Students will review the rudiments of philosophical prose, and they will be guided through the proces of revising, getting feedback, and revising yet again. They will practice presenting their work to others, as well as giving feedback on the work of others. Thus, students will learn what it means to work independently in a community of other philosophers. Prerequisites: PHL 110 and PHL 210. DOES NOT FULFILL OLD CORE REL/PHL SEMINAR REQUIREMENT.

PHL 421 (COR 400C). Knowledge, Power & the Obscure The Obscure (3).

In this Transformations course, students will consider how they know what they know - in scientific or humanistic fields - by questioning the philosophical relationship between what they see (i.e., observe) and what they say (i.e., articulate or classify) with respect to themselves and their worlds. In relation to this, they will consider their ambitions after college (professional or personal), and how they may be subjected to (or wielding) power because of the demands of discipline (e.g., productivity, skill) and regulation (e.g., health, well-being). Following that critical inquiry, students will reflect on the influence of the obscure in their lives by exploring the way in which the arts (especially cinema and literature) dissociate the capacity to see from the capacity to say, presenting issues as they are felt and perceived, but not as they are known. Film screenings outside of class will be offered. Prerequisite: Senior standing.

PHL 480 . Why Do Humans Write? (3).

Special Topics: This course explores the ways various human needs have shaped the medium of writing and, in turn, been shaped by it. Examining ancient and medieval writing systems and modern multimedia, we will ask how various modes of writing have changed how we understand what it means to be human.

PHL 480-489 . Special Topics for Senior Studies (3).

These courses allow students to fulfill their requirement for a senior seminar in philosophy in new ways. The specific thematic focus and approach of each course, as well as the genre of texts and cultural materials employed will vary.

PHL 490 . Research in Philosophy (3-6).

An upper-class philosophy major who wishes to write a substantial philosophical essay on a topic already studied in a philosophy elective should submit a proposal to this effect prior to registration. The proposal, indicating the topic to be researched, the number of credits sought and the schedule of supervision, must be approved by the research director, the department chair and the academic dean. The proposal will be kept on file in the academic dean's office. (F)

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