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Department Chair

James Snyder, Ph.D. FACULTY Associate Professors: Thomas Donahue, Ph.D.; James Snyder, Ph.D.; Kevin Sullivan, Ph.D. Co-Director of the Evelyn Lincoln Institute for Ethics and Society; Assistant Professor: Liz Swan, Ph.D.

(39 Credits) PHIL 100 Philosophical Inquiry PHIL 101 Introduction to Logic PHIL 260 History of Philosophy to the Renaissance PHIL 261 History of Philosophy Since the Renaissance PHIL 401 Applied Ethics PHIL 460 Senior Thesis

3 credits 3 credits 3 credits 3 credits 3 credits

(7) Electives in Philosophy


(18 Credits) PHIL 100 Philosophical Inquiry PHIL 101 Introduction to Logic PHIL 260 History of Philosophy to the Renaissance OR PHIL 261 History of Philosophy Since the Renaissance PHIL 401 Applied Ethics

PHIL 102. Philosophy of Human Nature An examination of issues involving the nature of persons and human existence. Topics include freedom of action, the relationship of human nature to social reality, the extent to which humans are selfish, the nature of genuine self-interest, the basic problem of human existence, the meaning of life and the good life. Lecture and discussion. 3 credits. PHIL 105. Practical Reasoning A practical study of thinking skills with emphasis on critical thinking, critical reading and the correct use of logical techniques in ordinary life. Satisfies the logic elective requirement for Philosophy majors and minors. Lecture/ discussion. 3 credits.

PHIL 150. Philosophical Studies Invites students to explore a philosophical problem, theme, movement, school of thought, genre or 3 credits interdisciplinary topic in depth, using a variety of sources, including both philosophical and non-philosophical literature as well as other forms of INTRODUCTION media, such as film, music, theater and art, as a means 3 credits The Philosophy Department plays a crucial role in the of philosophical interpretation, comprehension, 3 credits fulfillment of the University’s mission. Philosophy, the analysis and criticism. Possible course titles might search for truth and wisdom, explores foundational include “Freedom” or “Theodicy”; themes might include (2) Electives human questions with critical and constructive “Revolutions” or “Evil”; genres might include “Science methodologies. Students learn to think critically and Fiction” or “Children’s Films”; movements might include In addition to the department’s regularly offered courses clearly, honing their reasoning skills as they tackle “Existential Theater” or “Romanticism”. Lecture and for majors and minors listed in the course descriptions, multifaceted problems in logic, epistemology, discussion. 3 credits. students can elect to take independent study courses at metaphysics, ethics, aesthetics, language, religion, the 200, 300 and 400 levels in order to meet their major public policy and the law. PHIL 200. Philosophy and Literature or minor requirements. An independent study is an Provides students the opportunity to explore important The Philosophy Department offers a major and a minor unique opportunity for a student to work closely with a works of literature with rich philosophical content as faculty member in a field or on a topic of their interest. and it contributes several courses to the Core well as works of philosophy that are written in various Recent independent studies have included: curriculum. The philosophy major is designed to prepare literary styles, examining literature from a philosophical students for professional and graduate study in perspective and philosophy as a form of literature. PHIL 315 -Philosophy of Mind philosophy or some allied field, such as law or political Lecture and discussion. 3 credits. PHIL 315 -Philosophy of Climate Change science. Many of our students are double majors and PHIL 315 -Environmental Philosophy see philosophy as their secondary major, which we PHIL 210. Existentialism strongly encourage and support. The philosophy minor PHIL 320 -Philosophy of Science A study of existentialist thinkers, literature, and film. The PHIL 340 -Metaphysics is a very attractive complement to most of the characteristics of existential philosophy are examined University’s majors and is perfect for anyone who loves PHIL 350 -Analytic Philosophy and the ideas of such figures as Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, PHIL 370 -Phenomenology the life of the mind. The Philosophy Department Heidegger, and Sartre are explored. Existential themes PHIL 410 -Social and Political Philosophy regularly offers upper level elective courses that cater to are then used to interpret works by writers such as interests in other majors, such as Religious Studies, Dostoyevsky, Kafka, Camus, and Hesse and to discuss Political Science, Psychology, and Art and Graphic some selected recent films. 3 credits. COURSE DESCRIPTIONS Design, and the department’s faculty members are often involved in various interdisciplinary courses. PHIL 230. Aesthetics and Criticism An investigation into the nature of art and the aesthetic The department works closely with students to help PHIL 100. Philosophical Inquiry experience. The ground and function of aesthetic tailor their education to meet their interests and goals. judgments is explored, issues surrounding the evolution An introduction to philosophy through a study of the All majors are required to complete a senior capstone of art are examined, and the role of aesthetic experience principles of sound argument, the nature of project, usually taking the form of a directed senior in the larger phenomenon of human experience is philosophical perplexity, and selected topics in the thesis based on independent study. The Philosophy discussed. Lecture and discussion. 3 credits. theory of knowledge, ethics, metaphysics, and the Department co-sponsors the Evelyn Lincoln Institute for philosophy of religion. Lecture and discussion. 3 credits. Ethics and Society and it houses the Charlene M. Tanner PHIL 260. History of Philosophy to Speaker Series. The department has student-run Phithe Renaissance PHIL 101. Introduction to Logic losophy Club, houses a chapter of Sigma Tau Delta (the A study of the history of Western philosophical thought An introduction to the rules and processes of rational national honor society for philosophy), and encourages and culture from its advent in ancient Greece to the thinking, argumentation, analysis and criticism. majors and minors to participate in undergraduate Renaissance, emphasizing the great minds and ideas Students will learn the elements of logic, become skilled philosophy conferences and to publish in national of Western civilization and how these have helped to at constructing rationally compelling deductive and student journals. shape our cultural landscape, focusing on the most inductive arguments, and learn how to effectively analyze and criticize arguments through a study of for- significant ideological continuities and ruptures that mal and informal fallacies. Lecture/discussion. 3 credits. constitute the historical changes of the Western world. Lecturer: Stephanie Barnhizer, M.A.

3 credits 3 credits

2013-2014 Mercyhurst University Course Catalog •