Philosophy of Sex Winter 2022

This is not the current course catalog

Class Details

What is sex? Are the current biological explanations of human sexuality sufficient to explain the meaning that sex has in our lives? Is human sexuality subject to ethical evaluations? Should it be regulated by social customs and sanctions, by law, or should sexual choices and practices be left to individuals? In thinking about these broad questions, we will also consider some more specific ones: What is sexual orientation, and does it constitute a person’s sexual identity? Are there pathological sexual desires and practices, and if so, how should we distinguish them from normal and healthy sexuality? Is anything wrong with adultery, promiscuity, polyamory, pornography, or with exchanging sex for money? What counts as consensual sex, and are all consensual sexual relationships ethically acceptable? The course will place special emphasis on developing the following skills: close, analytical reading; recognizing, reconstructing and evaluating claims, and reasons that support them; producing original ideas and arguments; participating in vigorous discussions in a respectful and reasonable manner; speaking and listening skills; and writing clear, polished, well-argued papers, generated through several revisions.
The Class: Format: seminar; The course will meet approximately 20 hours per week, Monday through Thursday, between 11am and 4pm; there will be an hour long lunch break. The course will consist of short lectures, substantive class discussions, one-on-one writing workshops, and tutorial-style meetings. There will be daily reading and writing assignments.
Limit: 18
Expected: 18
Class#: 1352
Grading: pass/fail only
Requirements/Evaluation: Class preparedness and participation in discussions; frequent short writing assignments; a longer (4-5 pages) tutorial-style paper, developed through several revisions; a response to the tutorial partner's paper.
Prerequisites: Permission of a Dean.
Enrollment Preferences: Students who need to make up a deficiency. To be determined in consultation with the Dean's office.
Unit Notes: This course is designed to count for both full semester, Winter Study, and Writing Skills credit. Once a dean approves enrollment, the Registrar's Office will register students in both PHIL 100 and PHIL 42.

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