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Graduate Course Schedule

For a full list of graduate-level philosophy courses, please see the Graduate School Course Catalog. Listed below are the course offerings for the current and upcoming semesters.

Graduate Course Schedule, Fall 2017

PHIL 5301: Seminar in Contemporary Philosophy

Thursdays from 9:30 AM – 12:00 PM

Instructor: Susan Schneider

Description of course forthcoming


PHIL 5305: Seminar in Aesthetics

Tuesdays from 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Instructor: William Lycan

Description: What is the difference between something that’s funny and something that isn’t funny?  Why is anything funny?  What moral considerations apply to humor?  What is the relation between humor and comedy?  What is theater, and how is it related to other performing arts?  What exactly is acting?  What is or should be the relation of a written play to performance?  Can and should theater instruct?  Finally, what is the relation between theater and philosophy?  Texts may include Ted Cohen, JOKES; D,C, Dennett et al, INSIDE JOKES; Tom Stern, PHILOSOPHY AND THEATRE.


PHIL 5307: Logic

Wednesdays from 1:30 – 4:00 PM

Instructor: Jc Beall

Description of course TBA


*Course may not be offered*  PHIL 5315: Seminar in Moral Philosophy

Thursdays from 2:30 – 5:00 PM

Instructor: Suzy Killmister

Description: This course will be focused on the philosophy of human rights. The first unit will offer a survey of foundationalist /orthodox theories of human rights, which seek to explain why we have human rights through reference to some inherent feature of human beings. The second unit will introduce students to the contemporary debate between foundationalists and those who propose a political theory of human rights, whereby human rights are understood as a historico-political phenomenon, rather than as pre-institutional moral claims. The final unit will consider objections to the human rights project.


PHIL 5316: Seminar in the Philosophy of Social Science

Tuesdays from 1:00 – 3:30 PM

Instructor: Lewis Gordon

Description: Our aim in this seminar will be to explore and interrogate philosophical problems posed by the idea of social science. We will first examine the conditions of possibility for a social science, its relationship with formal and natural sciences, the status of “logic” in social science, problems of “justification” in social science, and whether social science must be a human science. We will then consider: Do different kinds of social science pose unique problems for philosophy? Is philosophy ultimately a social science despite its location in the humanities? What impact do solutions to problems in the social sciences have on philosophical problems ranging from mind to epistemology to the philosopher’s understanding of reality? We will discuss responses to these questions from a variety of philosophical approaches such as analytical philosophy, phenomenology, pragmatism, hermeneutics, critical theory, Marxism, structuralism, and what have become known as philosophies from the global south (e.g., Africana philosophy, creolization theory, and decolonial thought) and feminist philosophy.


PHIL 5320: Seminar in the History of Philosophy

Mondays from 1:30 – 4:00 PM

Instructor: Lionel Shapiro

Description: We will undertake a close study of much of Locke’s Essay Concerning Human Understanding, while keeping in mind Locke’s aims and dialectical context.  Among the topics I expect we will discuss: Locke’s theory of ideas and their role in knowledge, his distinction between primary and secondary qualities, his position on substance, the role of mechanism in his philosophy, his account of kinds and their essences, his view of the functioning and philosophical significance of language, and his accounts of personal identity and moral agency.  In recent decades, each of these topics has generated controversy, often informed by different views of Locke’s aims and continuing relevance.  As time allows, we will explore some of this literature.


PHIL 5397: Logic and Theology

Wednesdays from 10:00 AM – 12:30 PM

Instructor: J.C. Beall

Description of course TBA


Upcoming Graduate Courses (Tentative)

Spring 2018

  • PHIL 5300: Independent Study (ECOM) with Professor Dorit Bar-On (offered simultaneously with PHIL 3299)
  • PHIL 5312: Philosophy of Science with Professor Thomas Bontly
  • PHIL 5315: Seminar in Moral Philosophy with Professor Paul Bloomfield
  • PHIL 5320: History of Philosophy (Frege) with Professor Marcus Rossberg
  • PHIL 5331: Seminar in Philosophy of Mind with Professor Dorit Bar-On
  • PHIL 5342: Seminar in Philosophy of Language with Visiting Professor Stewart Shapiro
  • PHIL 5344: Seminar in Philosophical Logic with Professor Keith Simmons
  • PHIL 5397: Seminar in Social Epistemology with Visiting Professor William Lycan