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Upcoming Courses

Courses of Interest for Winter 2018

Important Note: Did you know that in the normal course of study at University of Detroit Mercy most students will take two to three philosophy courses? This makes most Detroit Mercy students prime candidates for an 18-credit philosophy minor or a strong second 30-hour major that complements any course of study.

PHL 2400 Asian Religions (Hu)

A survey of those religious traditions usually labeled "Eastern," namely, Hinduism, Jainism, Sikhism, Chinese and Japanese religions, and the various forms of Buddhism. A brief history, the major scriptures, and the beliefs and rituals of each religious tradition are covered. Current developments, especially the presence of some of these religions in the Western world are also explored.

PHL 2500 Symbolic Logic (Oljar)

An introduction to the artificial language of sentential and predicate logic, which is designed to facilitate the symbolic representation of natural language (English) arguments. In addition to learning how to construct formal proofs for valid arguments, students learn the different logical properties that statements and sets of statements may have. The concepts of truth-functionality, validity, consistency, implication, and equivalence will be explored. Students will have a heightened appreciation of the logical functions of language.

PHL 3081 Philosophy of Feminism (Presbey)

The course presents some key feminist critiques of the male philosophical canon, and then explores contributions of feminist philosophers to clarify key concepts such as the conceptions of gender, the body, sexual orientation, justice and care. Feminist philosophical approaches will be applied to current problems such as racism, environmental destruction, war and violence, and human rights violations. Debates within feminist scholarship will be followed, with students learning to articulate their own positions on a range of issues. The course surveys feminist challenges in North America, Asia, Islamic societies, Latin America and Africa.

PHL 3410 Philosophy of the Human Person (Flores)

A study of the nature of the human person based on writings of such philosophers as Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Aquinas, Descartes, Hume, Kierkegaard, Weil, Stein, and Wojtyla. The focus of the course is on the human as a being who, from the beginning of his/her life, is oriented to self-possession in consciousness and freedom, and who moves toward the perfection of human existence only by seeking wisdom and by loving response to others. The chief questions include these: Are human beings spiritual as well as material? Do human beings have the power to make genuinely free choices? What is a person? What is the self? Does the human self survive bodily death? Does human fulfillment entail a living relation to God? What is the point of human life? Special emphasis is given to the intrinsic dignity of the human as a being who is open to ultimate questions of being, meaning, purpose, order, and value and who can choose to live for the sake of the true and the good.

PHL 4060 Metaphysics (Flores)

Metaphysics is that branch of philosophy which investigates the nature of reality in general. It studies being precisely as being. For some philosophers, this means that metaphysics seeks to understand the fundamental explanatory principles of being as well as the most general categories of being and the relations that hold among them. Other philosophers see metaphysics as concerned with the characterization of the fundamental conceptual scheme by which we understand the universe. In either case, metaphysics considers such topics as the nature of universals and of concrete particulars; necessity and possibility; time and change; causality and truth; and finite and infinite being. This course considers the contributions of both classical and contemporary philosophers to the investigation of such topics.

PHL 4400 Contemporary Philosophy (Presbey)

An investigation of some of the major 19th and 20th century developments within American, Continental and Analytic philosophy. Particular movements studied may include Hegel and Marx, phenomenology, existentialism, postmodernism, and deconstruction within the Continental tradition; pragmatism, naturalism, transcendentalism, and African American philosophies as they developed in America; process philosophy; and analytic philosophy as developed by G.E. Moore, Bertrand Russell (Britain) and Wittgenstein and the Logical Positivists (Austria/Vienna Circle) currently dominant in Great Britain, North America, Australia, and Scandinavia.

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