PHIL 114
Freedom and Society Fall 2021
Division II Writing Skills

Class Details

Freedom is widely held as one of our fundamental values. But how often do we ask: What is freedom? and Why do we value it? In the first unit of this course, we will consider the relationship between freedom and social order. Do our society’s laws limit our freedom in order to make us safe? Or do our laws somehow enhance or enable our freedom? We will read Thomas Hobbes, John Locke, and Jean-Jacques Rousseau in seeking answers to these questions. We will then turn to some specific social forms in the second unit, and ask whether they promote or preclude our freedom. We will read Adam Smith and Karl Marx on capitalism, Simone de Beauvoir on gender, and Charles Mills on race.
The Class: Format: seminar
Limit: 19
Expected: 19
Class#: 1594
Grading: yes pass/fail option, yes fifth course option
Requirements/Evaluation: short weekly essays; longer midterm and final papers
Prerequisites: none
Enrollment Preferences: first-years and sophomores
Unit Notes: meets 100-level PHIL major requirement
Distributions: Division II Writing Skills
WS Notes: Students will complete weekly 2-page essays, and receive regular feedback on their ability to formulate a thesis and adduce an argument in defending their thesis. In addition, students will write two 6-page essays -- each of which will build on their previous short essays -- as their midterm and final projects.
Attributes: JLST Interdepartmental Electives

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