Philosophy List of Assignmentsspring 2013

Philosophy List of Assignmentsspring 2013


Unit 1 What is Philosophy?

  1. Course Guide
  2. Definition of Philosophy—write up
  3. What Is Your Philosophy? Exercise
  4. Bertrand Russell—What is the value of Philosophy? Reading and Questions
  5. Philosophical Health Check test + reflective write up
  6. What’s Possible? Exercise (logical vs. causal possibility)
  7. Allegory of the Cave-Reading and Questions
  8. How is Philosophy Organized? Exercise
  9. Socrates video: What is the Socratic Method? What does this say about the nature of being a philosopher?
  10. Kant—What is Philosophy?
  11. Empirical and Logical Necessity—exercise
  12. Notes—Allegory Presentations


Allegory of the Cave Project

Individual paper/write up

Unit 2 What is Virtue?

Book Reading Activities:

Papineau—see attachment, 13-15, and 158-159

Ethics Starter-

  1. How important (1-10 scale) are the following in shaping your moral choices? (self interest, religious faith, society’s laws, virtue ethics, duty or obligation, the greater good, peers, family
  2. Are the following by definition moral, or are they value neutral? Honesty, compassion, beauty, intelligence, loyalty
  3. Plato (Socrates)—the Laches Reading and questions.
  4. Virtue Ethics
  5. Aristotle—on virtue and the mean
  6. Aristotle and the Office
  7. Aristotle—on Friendship
  8. Is Lying Wrong?
  9. Cornell notes—Touching the Void (film) + questions


Elenchus activity—skit (Socratic dialogue skit on a virtue)

Collect Papineau reading

Unit 3: Do We Have Free Will?

Book Reading Activities—now done in Class

Papineau, pp. 20-23, 63-65, and 66-67

Diagnostic Test—How Free Are You?

  1. Free Will Theory notes
  2. Free Will Exercise #1
  3. Tallis—Who Caught That Ball? –reading+ Philosophy pre-discussion sheet
  4. Ted Conference—Malcolm Gladwell—Spaghetti Sauce, Choice, and Happiness
  5. Sartre—discussion sheet
  6. 60 minutes—Haditha and Frank Wuterich—notes and question—To what extent was Sgt. Wuterich responsible?
  7. Taylor—Determinism-discussion sheet
  8. Groundhog Day—video notes and questions


Free Will Debate—TBA—will take place Monday, March 25


Unit 4: What is Knowledge?

  1. 3 Thought Experiments on Knowledge
  2. Knowledge notes—classical definition
  3. Sherlock Holmes notes
  4. Empiricism and Rationalism
  5. On Suspicion, Francis Bacon
  6. Reading Activity—Papineau
  7. The Bounceless Bungee and other cases
  8. The Rashomon Effect
  9. Harry Frankfurt essay

Unit 5: What are Ethics and Morals?

  1. Life Raft
  2. Ethics-Introductory Exercise
  3. Sam Harris-Is Science a Basis for Morality—notes on TED talk
  4. Hippias Major, Hippias Minor—marked up reading and Notes page
  5. Reading Activity—Papineau, Morality
  6. Ethical Reference Sheet chart
  7. Ethics Project Day 1 Activity—notes
  8. Resource Organizer Chart
  9. Copy of Group Proposal
  10. Copy of Activity Template

Unit 6: What is the Good Life?

1.Seneca notes—Video (Botton—Seneca and Anger)

2.Epicurus notes—Video (Botton—Epicurus and Happiness)

3.Reading note sheet—Epicurus—The Manual (selection)

4. TED Talk—Carl Honore-In Praise of Slowness