Course Descriptions

Fall 2021

PHIL 2600: INTRODUCTION TO LOGIC                                                           
Dr. Matthew Rellihan
MWF 9:20-10:45

In this elementary introduction to informal and symbolic logic, students will develop their skills for evaluating and constructing arguments. Topics covered include propositional logic (truth-tables and natural deduction), predicate logic, argument analysis, inductive and causal reasoning, and informal fallacies. If you are considering law school, this class is excellent preparation for the LSAT.


PHIL 3010: ANCIENT PHILOSOPHY                                                         
Dr. Daniel Dombrowski
TTh 10:15-12:20

In this course we will study the thousand-year history of ancient philosophy from the Pre-Socratics to Socrates and Plato, to Aristotle, and to the Post-Aristotelian philosophers.  We will pay special attention to Plato and Aristotle.  Specifically, we will be concerned with how to read carefully, think logically, speak persuasively, and write clearly about these two giants in the history of philosophy.  We will take seriously S.T. Coleridge’s claim that each person is born either a Platonist or an Aristotelian, and Alfred North Whitehead’s belief that all of Western [and a significant portion of world] philosophy is a series of footnotes to Plato.  Attention will be paid to some of these “footnotes” as they surface in the thought of John Rawls, Karl Marx, Michel Foucault, Judith Butler, Martin Luther King, Mohandas Gandhi, etc.

 

PHIL 3260: PHILOSOPHY OF LAW
Dr. Maria Carl
TTh 1:30-3:35 Online

A critical examination of classical and contemporary theories of law: natural law, positivism, realism, feminist jurisprudence, and critical race theory.  Topics covered include the connections between law and morality, civil rights, the relationship between law and individual liberty and contemporary legal issues such as privacy, intellectual property, race conscious remedies, hate speech and hate crimes. Recommended for students interested in law, politics, public policy, and criminal justice. (Synchronous)

PHIL 3330: PHILOSOPHY OF SCIENCE     
Dr. Matthew Rellihan
MWF 12:30-1:55
This course will introduce students to different views about the nature and goals of the natural and social sciences and to issues raised by these views, including the status of scientific laws, theory formation and testing, confirmation vs. falsification, realism vs. instrumentalism, indicators of scientific progress, and the social dimensions of science.

PHIL 4850: MAJOR FIGURES: DŌGEN        
Dr. Jason Wirth
TTh 3:45-5:50

Zen Master Dōgen (1200-1253) is perhaps the greatest Zen philosopher in Medieval Japan and remains one of our most provocative and profound Buddhist thinkers. We will read fascicles from his masterpiece, The Treasury of the True Dharma Eye, exploring topics like the nature of Zen practice, the nature of mind, the power and limitations of language, the relationship of time and being, and an early version of what we might now call deep ecology.