Philosophy

Derek A. Leben, Bioethics, Fall 2015

Course Description:

We often face moral decisions, but perhaps nowhere are moral decisions more difficult and complex than in the field of medicine. This course will address some of the major ethical issues within the medical field and potential approaches to navigating these difficult problems. The readings are divided into four units: (I) the physician-patient relationship, (II) policies of medical institutions, (III) end of life issues, and (IV) reproductive issues. Students will be responsible for at least two presentations throughout the semester that will discuss the readings and promote class discussion. While there are midterm and final exams, the course will be run as a seminar with a focus on class debate.

Required Texts:

• Ethical Issues in Modern Medicine

Syllabus: 

Derek A. Leben, Bioethics, Spring 2014

Course Description:

We often face moral decisions, but perhaps nowhere are moral decisions more difficult and complex than in the field of medicine. This course will address some of the major ethical issues within the medical field and potential approaches to navigating these difficult problems. The readings are divided into four units: (I) the physician-patient relationship, (II) policies of medical institutions, (III) end of life issues, and (IV) reproductive issues. Students will be responsible for at least two presentations throughout the semester that will discuss the readings and promote class discussion. While there are midterm and final exams, the course will be run as a seminar with a focus on class debate.

Required Texts:

• Ethical Issues in Modern Medicine

Syllabus: 

Derek A. Leben, Concepts Of Human Nature, Spring 2014

Course Description:

An introduction to some ways in which ethical and social thought has been influenced by different views of human nature. Readings are from such authors as Plato, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx, and Freud.

Required Texts:

Walden Two by B.F. Skinner
The Mismeasure of Man by Stephen Jay Gould
The Better Angels of Our Natures by Steven Pinker
Beyond Good and Evil by Friedrich Nietzsche

Derek A. Leben, Concepts Of Human Nature, Spring 2015

Course Description:

An introduction to some ways in which ethical and social thought has been influenced by different views of human nature. Readings are from such authors as Plato, Hobbes, Rousseau, Marx, and Freud.

Required Texts:

-The Study of Human Nature edited by Leslie Stevenson
-Walden Two by B.F. Skinner
-The Mismeasure of Man by Stephen Jay Gould
-The Better Angels of Our Natures by Steven Pinker

Derek A. Leben, Environmental Ethics, Fall 2014

Course Description:

This course deals with moral and philosophical issues having to do with humanity's relationship to the environment and humanity's duties toward future generations and perhaps to nature itself. It will deal both with theory and with practice.

Required Texts:

-Environmental Ethics Pojman and Pojman

Derek A. Leben, Environmental Ethics, Spring 2013

Course Description:

This course deals with moral and philosophical issues having to do with humanity's relationship to the environment and humanity's duties toward future generations and perhaps to nature itself. It will deal both with theory and with practice.

Required Texts:

Syllabus: 

Derek A. Leben, Environmental Ethics, Spring 2014

Course Description:

This course deals with moral and philosophical issues having to do with humanity's relationship to the environment and humanity's duties toward future generations and perhaps to nature itself. It will deal both with theory and with practice.

Required Texts:

Environmental Ethics Pojman and Pojman

Derek A. Leben, History of 20th Century Analytic Philosophy, Fall 2014

Course Description

This course will examine the history of analytic philosophy in the 20th century, from its beginnings with Frege and Russell, through the rise and fall of Logical Positivism, and into its current state today. Topics include metaphysical issues like the nature of numbers, scientific laws, causation, possibility, and moral properties.

Required Texts:

-A Brief History of Analytic Philosophy, Stephen Schwartz

Syllabus: 

Derek A. Leben, History of Ancient Philosophy, Fall 2015

Course Description

The aim of this course is to introduce students to some of the main achievements and leading ideas of ancient Greek philosophy up to classical times. Emphasis will be on understanding and evaluating the arguments and ideas of the Greek philosophical tradition.

Required Texts:

Readings in Ancient Greek Philosophy: From Thales to Aristotle

Syllabus: 

Derek A. Leben, History Of Modern Philosophy, Spring 2014

Course Description:

An introduction to the philosophical period from Descartes through Kant. Special attention is given to at least one rationalist, one empiricist, and Kant.

Required Texts:

Modern Philosophy: A Reader

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