Catalog 2014–2015

Philosophy (PHIL) Courses

College of Arts and Sciences

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PHIL 100  Intro to Philosophy (3) Major philosophers, methods, and issues in Western and non-Western philosophy. Discussion of such problems as our knowledge of reality, the freedom of the will, the relations between the mind and body, morality, the meaning of life and the existence of God.

PHIL 180  Love and Sex (3) Survey of classical and contemporary perspectives of the philosophy of love, marriage, relationships, sex, sexual identity, representations of sex and sexuality.

PHIL 209  Reasoning (3) Informal logic: Study of practical reasoning, argument, and the use and misuse of language. Emphasis on development of critical thinking skills.

PHIL 211  History of Ancient Philosophy (3) Philosophy of the Pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle and Roman thinkers.

PHIL 213  History of Modern Philosophy (3) From the Renaissance to the 19th century. Recommended: PHIL 211.

PHIL 220  Social Ethics (3) Contemporary ethical issues, such as abortion, euthanasia, the death penalty, sexual equality, sexual integrity, discrimination and reverse discrimination, violence, pornography, ethnic injustice, and environmental and population control.

PHIL 230  Belief, Knowledge & Truth (3) The sources and limits of human knowledge. Classical and contemporary epistemological theories, and their application to the everyday search for knowledge.

PHIL 300  History of Indian Philosophy (3) The historic Indian schools of thought, Brahmanism, Jain, Carvaka, Buddhist, Samkyha, Yoga, Nayaya, Vaisheskika, Mimamsa, and Vedanta. The main philosophers and thinkers of India including Gandhi, Radhakrishnan, and Tagore. Recommended: previous work in philosophy or religious studies. (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 301  Hist Of Chinese Philosophy (3) History of the Confucian, Taoist, and Buddhist philosophies and their interaction in China. The pivotal thinkers including Mao. Recommended: previous work in philosophy or religious studies. (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 302  Hist Of Buddhist Philosophy (3) History of Buddhist philosophy and its cultural influence and intellectual development in Asia and Hawaiʻi. Recommended: previous work in philosophy or religious studies. (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 304  Phil and Cultural Diversity (3) Philosophical examination of the meaning of cultural diversity and pluralism for questions concerning community and knowledge from a variety of American and non-western cultures as well as their interactions with categories of identity, based upon nation, race, class, gender and sexuality. Addresses the interactions of the social experience of individuals based upon categories of identity and the emergence of forms of community and knowledge. A global or transnational section will be one component of the course.

PHIL 316  Science, Technology & Society (3) Impact of science and technology on various philosophical issues. Through a variety of readings that exemplify the field's content, students will examine the social, political, aesthetic, ethical, economic, and environmental constructs that shape modern institutions in science and technology.

PHIL 327  Bioethics (3) An examination of controversial topics related to life and health, such as euthanasia, treatment of animals, genetic engineering, individual autonomy, and the health care system. Pre: Previous course work in philosophy.

PHIL 329  Environmental Ethics (3) Central ethical questions concerning the natural world, including environmental justice, responding to climate change and environmental devastation, and the relationship between human beings and the environment.

PHIL 375  Feminist Philosophy (3) Exploration of the feminist contributions to traditional philosophical questions in metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics as swell as examining the philosophical implications of the intersections of race, class, gender and sexuality. (Same as WS 375)

PHIL 310  Metaphysics (3) Puzzling problems in Western thought, such as the nature of personal identity, the freedom of the will, time, and the relation between mind and body. Pre: previous work in philosophy.

PHIL 315  Ethical Theory (3) Classical and contemporary theories of right and good. Pre: previous work in philosophy.

PHIL 320  Social & Political Phil (3) Good and right applied to economic, political, and religious establishments; obligation, freedom of dissent, capital punishment, violence, rights, revolution, and war. Pre: previous work in philosophy. Recommended: PHIL 220.

PHIL 323  Professional Ethics (3) Professional conduct is being questioned as never before-- lawyers, physicians, engineers, accountants, etc., are criticized for disregarding the rights of clients and the public interest. The course addresses the ethical problems of "the professions" in general and will focus on professions in business, law, and health care. Pre: previous course work in philosophy.

PHIL 325  Philosophy Of Law (3) Problems and controversies in the nature of law and its bearing on human conduct. Topics: legal and moral obligation, obedience and respect, enforcement of morality, punishment and responsibility, justification of practices such as plea bargaining, bail, prosecutorial discretion, etc. Pre: previous work in philosophy.

PHIL 330  Philosophy of Art (3) The aesthetic object, form in art, representation, meaning in art, and claims of knowledge in art. Pre: previous work in philosophy and in art or music.

PHIL 340  Philosophy Of Religion (3) Philosophical problems in religious beliefs and religious knowledge. The existence of God, immorality, the problem of evil. Pre: previous work in philosophy or religious studies.

PHIL 345  Symbolic Logic (3) Techniques of symbolic logic, including propositional logic, predicate logic and the logic of relations.

PHIL 360  Existentialism (3) The themes which recur in the works of existential philosophers from the 19th century to the present. Pre: junior standing or instructor's consent.

PHIL 370  American Philosophy (3) The American philosophical tradition, spanning the disciplines of epistemology, ethics and political theory with emphasis on pragmatism and its relation to contemporary philosophy. Pre: previous work in philosophy or instructor's consent.

PHIL 381  Philosophy Of Wittgenstein (3) Topics in the philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein, such as: meaning, understanding, pain, private language, "family resemblance," language-games, knowledge and certainty, other minds, forms of life and the purpose of philosophy. Pre: previous work in philosophy.

PHIL 385  Philosophy of Marxism (3) History and philosophy of Marxism from the early Marx through recent times, including such topics as: dialectical materialism, alienation, exploitation, surplus value, class struggle, revolution, socialism, communism, and the Marxian critique of capitalism, imperialism, fascism, terrorism, and capitalist cultural hegemony. Pre: Previous work in philosophy or instructor's consent.

PHIL 390  History & Phil of Science (3) Natural science as a knowledge-seeking activity. Major episodes in the history of the physical and biological sciences; philosophical understanding of scientific observation, theory, and revolutionary change. Pre: previous work in philosophy or instructor’s consent.

PHIL 392  Biology & Philosophy (3) Philosophical examination of the implications of modern biology for how we understand ourselves and our relations to the natural world. Evolutionary, genetic, developmental, and ecological topics will be discussed. Pre: previous work in philosophy and biology, or instructor’s consent. (Same as BIOL 392)

PHIL 393  Normality, Abnormality & Soc (3) Philosophical study of how human diversity interacts with social norms. Topics include health and illness, disability, gender, and sexual orientation. Perspectives from biology and the social sciences are included in a study of how beliefs about normality vary between cultures, change through time, and affect human relations. Pre: Previous work in philosophy or instructor's consent. (Same as WS 393).

PHIL 410  Philosophy of Language (3) Modern and historical theories of meaning, reference and the relationship between language and knowledge. Discussion of ordinary language, ideal languages and current developments in linguistics. Pre: previous work in philosophy or instructor's consent.

PHIL 412  Philosophy of Nature (3) Examination of the philosophical theories of nature from classical to contemporary texts, and their interaction with questions of metaphysics, identity, the environment, and human freedom.

PHIL 430  Philosophy of Zen (3) Chief philosophical teachings of Zen, its methods and cultural influences. Comparative study of Zen and Western thought. Pre: previous work in philosophy or religious studies, or instructor’s consent. Recommended: PHIL 302. (Same as JPST 430). (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 435  Philosophy Of Tao (3) Philosophical ideas of Lao Tzu, Chuang Tzu, and the Neo-Taoists, and their influences upon the lives of the Chinese and Japanese peoples. Comparative study of Taoist and Western philosophy. Pre: previous work in philosophy or religious studies, or instructor's consent. Recommended: PHIL 301. (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 450  Mahayana Buddhist Phil (3) Important tenets and major schools of Mahayana Buddhist philosophy in India, China, Japan, Tibet, and Hawaiʻi. Comparative study of Mahayana and Western philosophy. Pre: previous work in philosophy, religious studies, or instructor's consent. Recommended: PHIL 302. (Same as JPST 450). (GenEd/IntReq: H/A/P, HPP)

PHIL 496  Seminar in Philosophy (3) For serious students of philosophy. The topics vary and the course may thus be repeated for credit.


PHIL x94 Special Topics in Subject Matter (Arr.) (IO) Special topics chosen by the instructor. Course content will vary. May be repeated for credit, provided that a different topic is studied. Additional requirements may apply depending on subject and topic.

PHIL x99 Directed Studies (Arr.) (IO) Statement of planned reading or research required. Pre: instructor’s consent.

Undergraduate Courses