Philosophy & Religious Studies
PHIL 105 Course
#6573 (3 credits)
9:30 a.m. – 10:45 a.m., Tuesday and Thursday
An introduction to the characteristic beliefs and practices of selected religions that developed in Asia: Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism,Daoism and Shinto. We will devote special attention to scriptures and other classic literature of the traditions. Students will gain an appreciation of the vitality and enduring significance of each of the religions as a way of life for large numbers of people.
PHIL 130 Course
16143 (3 credits)
4:00 p.m. – 6:30 p.m., Tuesday
Don’t you wish there was a way to talk about politics without fighting about Democrats or Republicans? Shouldn’t there be a way to settle issues by appealing to something more than just people’s opinions? Well, there is! Political philosophy is a way of talking politics while focusing on the big questions instead of the policies that make everyone so angry. We ask about the nature of justice, whether government is good or bad (and whether it should be big or small), whether we can morally take away people’s rights, and whether we need authorities to tell us what to do. Ultimately, we have to ask whether people in a democracy really can make decisions for themselves. Introduction to Political Philosophy is a fun, discussion-oriented class with minimal homework. It is technology heavy and focuses on peer-to-peer interaction while minimizing lecture time. It’s a great face-to-face class but also ideal if we shift online. It even provides social interaction during social distancing! Join this class. It will make politics enjoyable even as everyone around us is going crazy.
PHIL 227 Course
#6587 (3 credits)
11:00 a.m. – 12:15 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday
This course introduces mysticism and spirituality and their place in world religions.
After examining the history of the concepts, we will study mystical and spiritual
experience and practice, in both Western and Asian religious
traditions. Questions to be considered include methods for studying mysticism and spirituality, whether there is a common core in different
religions, the spiritual-rather-than-religious movement, and relations to ethics.
PHIL 282 Course
#6591 (3 credits)
2:00 p.m. – 3:15 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday
This class introduces selected examples of Asian
philosophy and interprets their contemporary
relevance. Topics to be considered include
theories of consciousness and embodiment,
knowledge, language and reality.
PHIL 300 Course
#6576 (3 credits)
3:30 p.m. – 4:45 p.m., Tuesday and Thursday
In 1641, Rene Descartes published a short work of philosophy that changed the way
the world thought about everything. This publication occurred at a time when Western
Europe was seeing major advancements in science,
economics, and political structures. In this crucible of change, the modern era of philosophy was born. This was an exciting era of philosophical questioning. It was also one of the most prolific eras of major ideas. This course will explore this 200-year period. We will be examining epistemic, metaphysic, and ethical issues. Where does knowledge come from?
Should I trust my sensory experiences? Can we use science or reason to prove that God exists? How do the mind and the body interact? Is there
such a thing as causation? Does the world that we experience have independent existence, or are we only able to experience events as they are
represented in the mind? How do emotions affect our reasoning? What is the basis for ethical behavior? These are some of the most challenging questions asked in philosophy. The sophistication of the philosophers’ answers
might amaze you.
The department offers a wide range of classes for all experience levels. Whether you are a curious student who has never taken a philosophy course or someone who is finishing their major, we have the right course for you. No prerequisites are required.
Congratulations To Our 2020 Graduates!
We are proud to celebrate another wonderful group of philosophy majors and minors. We are, however, heartbroken that the pandemic has prevented us from celebrating their accomplishments in person.
Please enjoy this two-minute commencement address given by Dr. Weinstein as he received his Chester Fritz Distinguished Professorship in 2016.
Both philosophy and religion are concerned with the fundamental human questions, as well as the traditions to which they are attached. Areas of investigation include but are not limited to questions regarding the meaning of life, the ability to live ethically, and the human quest for the sacred. These concerns form the core of liberal arts education.
Learn more about program information, requirements, costs and aid, and how to apply.
Accelerated Undergraduate and Graduate Degree
Complete a B.A. in philosophy and get a J.D. in just six years.