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Morris Courses

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PHILOSOPHY (PHIL)
Division of Humanities
Division of Humanities - Adm
 
PHIL 1004 - Introduction to Western Philosophy
(1.0 cr; fall, spring, every year)
What is the good life for human beings? What happens after we die? What is the relation between our minds and bodies? Does God exist? In this course, we will examine classic works in philosophy that address these big questions. Authors include: Plato, Aristotle, Epictetus, and Lucretius.



PHIL 1101 - Introduction to Philosophy (HUM)
(4.0 cr; =[PHIL 1801]; fall, spring, offered periodically)
An introduction to fundamental philosophical problems in areas such as metaphysics (what exists?), epistemology (what can we know? and how can we know it?), and ethics (what actions are moral and immoral? and what is the good life?), with an emphasis on developing the reading, writing, and analytical skills required for philosophical investigation.



PHIL 1801 - THINK: An Introduction to Philosophy (IC)
(4.0 cr; =[PHIL 1101]; Prereq-new college student in their first semester of enrollment at UMM; fall, offered periodically)
How should we live our lives? What happens after death? What is the relationship between the mind and body? Does God exist? Why do bad things happen to good people? Examine classical works in philosophy that address these big questions about human nature and its place in the universe. Authors include: Plato, Aristotle, Epictetus, Lucretius, Sextus Empiricus, Descartes, and Hume. Work on the development of philosophical writing, reading, and speaking skills.



PHIL 1802 - Philosophy and Pop Culture (IC)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-new college student in their first semester of enrollment at UMM; fall, offered periodically)
An introduction to traditional issues in philosophy through the lens of characters presented in various pop cultural media.



PHIL 1803 - How To Think About Weird Things (IC)
(2.0 cr; Prereq-new college student in their first semester of enrollment at UMM; fall, offered periodically)
A course designed to build basic critical thinking skills. Answer questions like: What makes a method of inquiry rational? What, if anything, distinguishes "scientific reasoning" from other sorts of reasoning? More generally, what distinguishes good from bad reasoning? What is truth--is it relative?



PHIL 1993 - Directed Study
(1.0 - 5.0 cr [max 10.0 cr]; fall, spring, every year)
An on- or off-campus learning experience individually arranged between a student and a faculty member for academic credit in areas not covered in the regular curriculum. Prereq-Approved directed study form.



PHIL 2101 - Introduction to Symbolic Logic (M/SR)
(4.0 cr; fall, every year)
An introduction to formal or deductive logic, including basic concepts of logical argumentation; Aristotelian logic; and symbolic translations, truth tables, and theory of deduction. Samples from political speeches, philosophical essays as well as original LSAT questions are analyzed.



PHIL 2111 - Introductory Ethics (HUM)
(4.0 cr; spring, every year)
An introduction to philosophical accounts of what makes right acts right and wrong acts wrong, issues involving the concept of goodness, and arguments or debates about moral responsibility.



PHIL 2112 - Professional Ethics (E/CR)
(4.0 cr; fall, every year)
A critical examination of moral issues that arise in a person's professional life. Possible topics include affirmative action, autonomy in the workplace, ethical issues in advertising, corporate responsibility, coercive wage offers, distributive justice, and sexual harassment. Issues concerning race, gender, and women are included in selected modules.



PHIL 2113 - International and Biomedical Ethics (HUM)
(4.0 cr; spring, offered periodically)
A general survey of topics in international and biomedical ethics. Topics may include: nuclear deterrence, humanitarian intervention, just war theory, famine relief, global justice, abortion, euthanasia, doctor-patient relationships, clinical trials, animal experimentation, and genetic engineering.



PHIL 2114 - Environmental Ethics (ENVT)
(4.0 cr; spring, odd academic years)
Survey of fundamental theoretical debates in environmental ethics. General moral approaches are canvassed, as are the major positions in environmental ethics: anthropocentrism, sentientism, biocentric individualism, holism. Specific topics include: speciesism, the environmentalism-animal liberation debate, and the predation problem.



PHIL 2121 - Philosophy of Religion (HUM)
(4.0 cr; spring, offered periodically)
A selection of main philosophical issues concerning religion such as the notion of a divinity, the attempts to prove or refute the existence of a divine being, the relationship between faith and reason, the link between religion and morality, the knowledge of a divinity.



PHIL 2141 - Analytic Feminism (HUM)
(4.0 cr; spring, offered periodically)
Applies an analytical approach to issues discussed in feminist writings. A mixture of lecture and discussion. Requirements include essay exams, papers, attendance, service-learning projects with related reflective journals, and class participation.



PHIL 2151 - Philosophy of Mind (HUM)
(4.0 cr; fall, spring, offered periodically)
An introduction to several problems in the philosophy of mind, such as the mind/body problem, consciousness, and psychological explanation.



PHIL 2161 - Philosophy and Film (HUM)
(4.0 cr; spring, every year)
Addresses some traditional aesthetic questions about the status of film as well as examining film to be a form of philosophy. Also, the role of film as social commentary is discussed.



PHIL 2162 - Ethics of Love and Sex (HUM)
(4.0 cr; summer, offered periodically)
Survey of fundamental theoretical debates in the ethics of love and sex. Topics include Plato's account of erotic love and the "trading up" dilemma; the ethics of promiscuity, homosexuality, polyamory, and pornography; and the moral questions raised by "mediated" sex: sex tapes, sexting, "outing" on Facebook, and tell-all memoirs.



PHIL 2993 - Directed Study
(1.0 - 5.0 cr [max 10.0 cr]; fall, spring, every year)
An on- or off-campus learning experience individually arranged between a student and a faculty member for academic credit in areas not covered in the regular curriculum. Prereq-Approved directed study form.



PHIL 3101 - Metaphysics (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; spring, odd academic years)
Explores fundamental metaphysical issues such as the nature of reality, the notion of personal identity, the relationship between language, thought, minds, and the world. Philosophical works of both classic and contemporary philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle, Quine, Putnam, and Kripke are discussed.



PHIL 3112 - Free Will (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; spring, offered periodically)
Explores ancient and contemporary debates surrounding the nature of free will, its plausibility given prevailing theories of physics and mind, and its value. Possible topics include the relevance of free will to autonomy, moral responsibility, and living meaningfully.



PHIL 3121 - Political Philosophy (SS)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, even academic years)
Explores fundamental issues in political philosophy (e.g., political authority; distributive justice; nature, origin, and justification of the state; natural and civil rights) by, among other things, an examination of the works of philosophers such as Plato, Hobbes, Mill, and Rawls.



PHIL 3131 - Philosophy of Law (SS)
(4.0 cr; spring, odd academic years)
Critical examination of theoretical and practical normative issues in the philosophy of law, especially questions regarding the justification of punishment.



PHIL 3141 - The Theory of Knowledge (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, even academic years)
Explores historical and contemporary views on the limits, justification, and nature of human knowledge. Topics include experiential versus a priori knowledge, the nature of belief, skepticism, and different theories of justification.



PHIL 3151 - History of Ancient Philosophy (HIST)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, even academic years)
Explores the views of philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, and the Stoics. Possible topics include ancient views on the nature and possibility of knowledge, the relationship of the soul to the body, and what the good life is for a human being.



PHIL 3162 - The Scottish Enlightenment: Markets, Minds, and Morals (IP)
(4.0 cr; =[HIST 3162]; Prereq-%; summer, offered periodically)
Same as Hist 3162. Study of the philosophy and history of the Scottish Enlightenment. Focus on its original setting through analysis and discussion of primary texts and scholarly interpretations, guest lectures, and small-group discussions with recognized experts in the study of the Scottish Enlightenment. Includes visits to historically significant cities and sites.



PHIL 3171 - History of Modern Philosophy (HIST)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; spring, odd academic years)
Explores views of philosophers such as Descartes, Leibniz, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. Possible topics include the relationship of the mind to the body, and whether and how it is possible to have knowledge of the external world.



PHIL 3993 - Directed Study
(1.0 - 5.0 cr [max 10.0 cr]; fall, spring, every year)
An on- or off-campus learning experience individually arranged between a student and a faculty member for academic credit in areas not covered in the regular curriculum. Prereq-Approved directed study form.



PHIL 4000 - History of Philosophy Seminar (HIST)
(4.0 cr [max 8.0 cr]; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, every year)
Intensive investigation of a particular philosophical problem, area, or work of a philosopher. Topics vary.



PHIL 4002 - Existentialism (HIST)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-any 1xxx or 2xxx or #; fall, spring, offered periodically)
Examination of some prominent thinkers often classified as "existentialists": Kierkegaard, Dostoevsky, Nietzsche, Sartre, and Camus. Topics include what human freedom is, what makes a life authentic (or inauthentic), what role passion and choice should play in acquiring our beliefs and values, and what difference (if any) God's existence or non-existence makes on the significance of our lives.



PHIL 4100 - Moral Issues and Theories (HUM)
(4.0 cr [max 8.0 cr]; Prereq-2111 or #; fall, even academic years)
Intensive investigation of a particular problem, area, issue, or theory in moral philosophy. Possible topics include moral responsibility, autonomy, weakness of will, and self-deception. Topics vary.



PHIL 4111 - Ethical Theory (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-2111 or #; spring, odd academic years)
This course in metaethics focuses on the nature of moral obligation. Topics include: Can moral obligations change with the passage of time? Are genuine moral dilemmas possible? Does "ought" imply "can"? Is moral obligation overriding? Is there a genuine distinction between "subjective" and "objective" moral obligation?



PHIL 4121 - Philosophy of Language (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-2101 or #; spring, even academic years)
Traditional and contemporary discussions of philosophical problems such as the nature of language, its relationships to the world, to human thought, and to truth; the nature of logical reasoning; metalogical problems. Readings from philosophers such as Frege, Russell, Quine, Putnam, Goodman, Wittgenstein, and Kripke.



PHIL 4130 - Contemporary Issues in Philosophy (HUM)
(4.0 cr [max 8.0 cr]; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, odd academic years)
Exposure to, and critical examination of, philosophical issues of special contemporary interest. Topics may include the nature of analytic philosophy and its relationship to other philosophical traditions such as continental or feminist philosophy, the debate on realism and anti-realism, the notion of objectivity.



PHIL 4131 - Personal Identity, Proper Names, and Essences (HUM)
(4.0 cr; Prereq-1101 or 2101 or 2111 or #; fall, spring, offered periodically)
A seminar primarily devoted to the discussion of readings, i.e., Naming and Necessity by Saul Kripke and Reasons and Persons by Darek Parfit. Questions such as: How do proper names function? Are there essential features of persons or objects? What makes each of us the same particular individual over time?



PHIL 4901 - Senior Philosophical Defense
(2.0 cr; Prereq-phil major; A-F only, fall, spring, every year)
Writing and defending a senior philosophical thesis is the culminating experience for UMM philosophy majors. Majors develop a piece of their philosophical writing, producing multiple drafts in response to comments from a variety of philosophical viewpoints, and then orally defend their thesis.



PHIL 4993 - Directed Study
(1.0 - 5.0 cr [max 10.0 cr]; fall, spring, every year)
An on- or off-campus learning experience individually arranged between a student and a faculty member for academic credit in areas not covered in the regular curriculum. Prereq-Approved directed study form.



 
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