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New Courses - F’20 & J’21

Fall 2020
PHIL 001G. Introduction to Philosophy: Rationality and Religious Belief

Monday, Wednesday, Friday
10:40 - 11:30
Professor Rosanna Picascia

Can reason demonstrate that God exists? How do we make sense of all the terrible suffering in the world? Is immortality desirable? Is it reasonable to hold religious beliefs in the face of persistent religious disagreement? This course provides a cross-cultural introduction to some of the central questions and arguments in the philosophy of religion, covering both western and non-western traditions, theistic and non-theistic traditions.Students will have the opportunity to reexamine their own views and assumptions about religion in dialogue with great thinkers of the past and present.  

January 2021
PHIL 001H. Intro: Philosophy without Borders: Self, Consciousness, and Personal Identity

Professor Rosanna Picascia

What am I? What makes me the same person from one day to the next? What will happen to me when I die? This course examines a wide range of interrelated questions surrounding our sense of self and personal identity through time. It will cover topics such as the nature and existence of the self, the relationship between personal identity and ethics, how self is related to consciousness, and what dream states, near-death experiences, and neurological case histories might tell us about our sense of self and the relationship between consciousness and the body.

As a “philosophy without borders” course, this course aims to cross borders between philosophical traditions coming from different parts of the world, different time periods, and different disciplinary affiliations. By exploring how great thinkers from diverse cultural and historical backgrounds tackle some of the great questions of philosophy, students will have the opportunity to foster new ways of thinking about perennial philosophical puzzles.