PHIL 112 Fall 2012 Philosophy and Human Nature (W)

What, if anything, makes us human? Are we fundamentally rational or spiritual? Natural or social? Free or determined? Can we change what and how we are? Or is our nature fixed? Are we basically self-interested or other directed? What relevance does knowing our nature have to how we understand and arrange our ethical and political life? Do men and women share one nature? Is there a fundamental purpose to human life? Can philosophers help us answer any of these questions today? Or have philosophical accounts of nature been surpassed by those found in the natural and social sciences? In this course we critically examine influential philosophical accounts of human nature found in the works of figures such as Plato, Aristotle, Confucius, Aquinas, Hume, Marx, Nietzsche, Freud, Sartre, Beauvoir, and Foucault. Readings from the natural and social sciences may also be included.
Class Format: discussion
Requirements/Evaluation: frequent short papers (some graded, some p/f), class participation
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Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preference: first-years and sophomores
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Divisional Attributes: Division II,Writing Intensive
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Enrollment Limit: 19
Expected Enrollment: 19
Class Number: 1473
PHIL112-01(F) SEM Philosophy and Human Nature (W) Division 2: Social StudiesWriting Intensive Jana Sawicki
TR 08:30 AM-09:45 AM Hopkins Roger Room 1473
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