Winter 2007 Courses

Listed below are the courses the Department offered in the Winter 2007 quarter.

The Registrar's office has up to date scheduling information for all University of Chicago graduate and undergraduate courses.

College students may only enroll in courses whose first number is 2. Graduate students may only enroll in courses whose first number is 3 or higher.

Winter Courses

21001/31001. Aristotelian Ethics Open to college and grad students.
A careful study of Aristotle's Nicomachean Ethics with particular emphasis on those aspects that have been most influential in contemporary virtue ethics. (A) Gabriel Richardson Lear. Winter 2007. (IV)

21210. Philosophy and Literature Open to college students.
A variety of contemporary authors will be read, dealing with the question of whether, and how, fiction and philosophy are related to one another. (A) Ted Cohen. Winter 2007.

21501. Ethics and Political Philosophy Open to college students.
Staff TBD. Winter 2007.

22100/32100. Space and Time Open to college and grad students.
This course is an introduction to some traditional philosophical problems about space and time. The course will begin with a discussion of Zeno's paradoxes. We will then look at the debate between Newton and Leibniz concerning the ontological status of space and time, and will examine reactions to this debate by thinkers such as Mach and Poincare. Finally, we will discuss the question of what sense is to be made of the claim that space is curved, looking at the writings of Poincare, Eddington, Einstein, Grunbaum, and others. Students will be introduced to the basics of the special and general theories of relativity, at a qualitative level. (B) Kevin Davey. Winter 2007. (II)

22601/33600. Autonomy and Medical Paternalism Open to college and grad students.
Daniel Brudney. Winter 2007.

*Special note: This course is co-taught with Alison Winter and John D. Lantos

23000. Introduction to Metaphysics and Epistemology Open to college students.
This will be a general introduction to contemporary metaphysics in the Anglo-American tradition. The course is intended (primarily, anyway) for undergraduate Philosophy majors. (B) John Haugeland. Winter 2007.

23600/33600. Medieval Philosophy Open to college and grad students.
Prerequisites: Phil 25000.. This course involves a study of the development of philosophy in the West in the first thirteen centuries of the common era with focus on Neoplatonism. Early Christian philosophy, Islamic Kalam, Jewish philosophy, and Christian philosophical theology. Readings include works of Plotinus, Augustine, Al-Farabi, Avicenna, Maimonides, Averroes, and Thomas Aquinas. Josef Stern. Winter 2007. (IV)

24300/34300. Evolution of Mind and Morality: 19th to 21st Centuries Open to college and grad students.
Prerequisites: PQ: Third- or fourth-year standing.. This lecture-discussion course will focus on theories of the evolution of mind and moral behavior. We will begin with Spencer's and Darwin's conception of mental and moral evolution, examine the psychological status of these ideas during the last part of the century in the work of William James, then jump to the last part of the 20th century, examining the development of sociobiology. The second part of the course will concentrate on the central features of evolutionary psychology, as that new discipline has come to be known, and on contemporary theories of the evolution of ethical behavior and rational cognition. Robert Richards. Winter 2007. (III)

26000. History of Philosophy - II: Medieval and Early Modern Philos Open to college students.
The course is an introduction to the metaphysical thought of the 17th and 18th centuries. Among the primary topics to be discussed are: the concept of substance; the mind-body problem; the part-whole relation; the principle of sufficient reason; causation; time; skepticism; the nature and existence of God; free will. Readings will include texts by Ibn-Sina, Maimonides, Aquinas, Suarez, Descartes, Spinoza, Locke, Leibniz, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. Yitzhak Melamed, Yitzhak Melamed. Winter 2007.

27500/37500. Kant's Critique of Pure Reason Open to college and grad students.
This course begins with a general investigation of the nature of Kant's critical enterprise as revealed in the Critique of Pure Reason and other texts. We then examine selected parts of the Critique of Pure Reason with a view to achieving a fuller understanding of the work. (B)Michael Forster. Winter 2007.

*Special note: This course fulfills a field (V) requirement for graduate students.

29200/29300. Junior/Senior Tutorial Open to college and grad students.
Prerequisites: Open only to philosophy majors. Title: "The Concept of Marriage" One hot topic in popular political discourse today is gay marriage. Those of us with an opinion about gay marriage surely should be able to answer the question: What is marriage? Is it primarily a commitment between two people? Does it require societal recognition? Is it a legal relationship about who signs which forms and who pays what taxes? Must marriage involve a religious dimension? This course will explore these and other questions concerning marriage and romantic love from a philosophical standpoint. For example, if we fall in and out of love without having much control, how can we take a vow that commits us to a lifetime of loving one person? Is the question 'Should I marry this person?' one that can admit of doubt? Readings will include texts by philosophers such as Bertrand Russell, Simone de Beauvoir, Soren Kierkegaard, Kant, Pope John Paul II, and Stanley Cavell, as well as plays, short stories, film, and an episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer.Staff TBD. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Taught by Jennifer Stith. Seniors should register for this course as PHIL 29300

29200/29300. Junior/Senior Tutorial Open to college and grad students.
Prerequisites: Open only to philosophy majors. Title: "Moral Disagreement" When two people disagree about what kind of ice cream tastes better, we don't think there's anything to argue about. Instead, we say that they have different tastes and there's no sense in which one person is right and the other wrong. On the other hand, if someone thinks that the earth is flat and we think it's round, we do think that there is something to argue about - there's an objective fact of the matter here and one of the parties is wrong. What about moral disputes? Are they like disagreements about ice cream or the shape of the earth? This course will explore these questions by examining what various philosophers, including Bernard Williams, G.E. Moore, A.J. Ayer, J.L. Mackie, Simon Blackburn and John McDowell (as well as others) have to say about the nature of moral disagreement. Staff TBD. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Taught by Daniel Groll. Seniors should register for this course as PHIL 29300

29200/29300. Junior/Senior Tutorial Open to college and grad students.
Prerequisites: Open only to philosophy majors. Title: "Truth, Existence, and Science in Twentieth Century Analytic Philosophy" This course focuses on a crucial debate between Rudolph Carnap and W. V. O. Quine - two of the most influential philosophers in the twentieth century analytic tradition - over truth, existence, and science. In particular, the debate concerns the distinction between analytic and synthetic truths, the legitimacy of ontology, which is a branch of traditional metaphysics, and the relationship between philosophy and science. Time permitting, we will discuss the impact of the Carnap-Quine debate on contemporary analytic philosophy. Readings for the course will come primarily from the major works of Carnap and Quine, supplemented with recent commentary on the debate. Staff TBD. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Taught by Joshua Schwartz. Seniors should register for this course as PHIL 29300

29400/39600. Intermediate Logic - I Open to college and grad students.
This is a course in the science of logic. It presupposes a knowledge of the use of truth-functions and quantifiers as tools: such as the art of logic. Our principal task is to study these tools in a systematic way. We cover the central theorems about first-order logic with identity: completeness, compactness, and Löwenheim-Skolem theorems. We introduce set theoretic and mathematical apparatus as required. We also study the topic of definition in more detail than is customary in such courses, culminating with a proof of Beth's theorem on implicit and explicit definitions. (B) Michael Kremer. Winter 2007. (II)

29700. Reading Course: Philosophy Open to college students.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor and Director of Undergraduate Studies. Students are required to submit the College Reading and Research course form. . Staff TBD. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Offered each quarter.

29901. Senior Seminar I Open to college students.
Prerequisites: PQ: Consent of director of undergraduate studies. . All students writing a B.A. Essay in the Philosophy Department must register for Philosophy 29901 ("Senior Seminar I") and Philosophy 29902 ("Senior Seminar II"). Philosophy 29901 is offered in both Autumn and Winter, and Philosophy 29902 is offered in both Winter and Spring. However: B.A. writers must EITHER register for Phil 29901 in the Autumn and Philosophy 29902 in the Winter, OR register for Phil 29901 in the Autumn and Philosophy 29902 in the Spring OR OR register for Phil 29901 in the Winter and Philosophy 29902 in the Spring. Students may not register for both courses in the Winter. Michael Kremer. Winter 2007.

*Special note: B.A. writers must attend all meetings of the work-in-progress workshop, which meets periodically over all three quarters. Contact the director of undergraduate studies for details.

29902. Senior Seminar II Open to college students.
Prerequisites: PQ: Consent of director of undergraduate studies. . All students writing a B.A. Essay in the Philosophy Department must register for Philosophy 29901 ("Senior Seminar I") and Philosophy 29902 ("Senior Seminar II"). Philosophy 29901 is offered in both Autumn and Winter, and Philosophy 29902 is offered in both Winter and Spring. However: B.A. writers must EITHER register for Phil 29901 in the Autumn and Philosophy 29902 in the Winter, OR register for Phil 29901 in the Autumn and Philosophy 29902 in the Spring OR OR register for Phil 29901 in the Winter and Philosophy 29902 in the Spring. Students may not register for both courses in the Winter. Michael Kremer. Winter 2007.

*Special note: B.A. writers must attend all meetings of the work-in-progress workshop, which meets periodically over all three quarters. Contact the director of undergraduate studies for details.

31310. Aesthetics and Theory of Criticism Open to grad students and college students with consent of instructor.
Prerequisites: Undergraduates with consent of instructor.. This course is an introduction to problems in the philosophy of art with both traditional and contemporary texts. Topics include the definition of art, representation, expression, metaphor, and taste. (A) Ted Cohen. Winter 2007. (I)

43920. Action and Perception Open to grad students.
The course will be devoted to exploring and assessing John McDowell's treatment of problems in the philosophy of perception (especially as set forth in his already classic work Mind and World) and the possibility of a parallel treatment of problems in the philosophy of action. In addition to some texts by McDowell and some selections from Aristotle, Kant, Hegel, and Wittgenstein, the seminar will focus mostly on writings on perception and/or action by Elizabeth Anscombe, Robert Brandom, Donald Davidson, Jennifer Hornsby, Brian O'Shaughnessy, John Searle, Michael Thompson, and Wilfrid Sellars. In the Winter Quarter, the course will be conducted by James Conant and Robert Pippin; in the Spring Quarter, the course will consist mostly of presentations of recent work on the philosophy of action by John McDowell and discussion of those presentations. Although the course meetings will be distributed over two quarters, it will count for only one quarter of credit. Students who wish to take the course for credit must attend the entire two-quarter sequence of the course Robert Pippin and James Conant . Winter 2007. (III)

*Special note: The course will be co-taught by John McDowell.

50100. First-year Seminar Open to grad students.
Prerequisites: Enrollment limited to first-year graduate students. David Finkelstein. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Meets in Autumn and Winter quarters.

50500. Non-Discursive Representation from Goethe to Wittgenstein Open to grad students.
The seminar will be on the topic of non-discursive representation in the history of German thought from Kant to Wittgenstein. The topic emerged as a central issue on the intellectual agenda of post-Kantian philosophy, aesthetics, and scientific theory in response to considerations put forward by Kant in two notoriously difficult paragraphs, 76 and 77, of his Critique of Judgment (1790). In this series of dense reflections, Kant tries to refine and clarify his earlier distinction between discursive understanding and what he, again, alternately refers to as an "intuitive understanding" or an "intellectual intuition" ,-- types of cognition which, although thinkable (and perhaps attributable to a divine intellect), are not available to human intellect. These pages of Kant's, intended to establish the inevitability of his earlier distinction between two mutually exclusive forms of representation, had the opposite effect: his characterization of a kind of thinking not supposed to be possible for humans, instead proved immensely suggestive to subsequent generations of philosophers, poets, and scientists, starting with Goethe, who sought to characterize the fundamental sort of insight to which their own endeavors aspired. This pivotal Kantian demarcation -- between discursive representation and intuition -- is vigorously contested in the work of the major idealist philosophers who endeavored to think beyond Kant's strictures on human cognition. The seminar will run for two quarters, Fall and Winter. James Conant. Winter 2007.

*Special note: Sawyer seminar co-taught with David Wellbery. Students who wish to enroll most do so for both quarters. There will be presentations by outside visitors every other week, including Michael Fried, Andrea Kern, John McDowell, and Sebastian Roedl -- to name only a few. Field V.

51200. Seminar: Law & Philosophy Open to grad students.
This is a seminar/workshop most of whose participants are faculty from seven area institutions. It admits approximately ten students by permission of the instructors. Its aim is to study, each year, a topic that arises in both philosophy and the law and to ask how bringing the two fields together may yield mutual illumination. There are ten to twelve meetings throughout the year, always on Mondays from 4 to 6 PM. Half of the sessions are led by local faculty, half by visiting speakers. The leader assigns readings for the session (which may be by that person, by other contemporaries, or by major historical figures), and the session consists of a brief introduction by the leader, followed by structured questioning by the two faculty coordinators, followed by general discussion. Students write either two 4-6 page papers per quarter, or a 20-25 page seminar paper at the end of the year. The course satisfies the Law School Writing Requirement. The schedule of meetings will be announced by mid-September, and prospective students should submit their credentials to both instructors by September 20. Past themes have included: practical reason; equality; privacy; autonomy; global justice; pluralism and toleration; war. The theme for 2003-4 will be Sexuality and Family. Likely speakers to be invited include: Emily Buss, Mary Anne Case, William Eskridge, Martha Fineman, David Halperin, Andrew Koppelman, Martha Minow, David Novak, Susan Moller Okin, Fran Olsen, Kenji Yoshino. Martha Nussbaum. Winter 2007. (I)

*Special note: This course is co-taught by Cass Sunstein. It meets over three quarters.

51601. Topics in Ethics: Action-based work in ethics I Open to grad students.
This seminar will be conducted as two courses, focused on recent work in ethics, but grounded in work by Elizabeth Anscombe. In Winter, we will read several of Anscombe's essays and the whole of Intention. We will then turn to more recent work by Philippa Foot, Tom Pink, and Michael Thompson. In Spring, we will consider work by David Velleman, John McDowell, Iris Murdoch, Warren Quinn, Doug Lavin and Rosalind Hursthouse. Throughout, we will be concerned with the fate of one strand of neo-Aristotelian as a foundationalist project in moral philosophy. The Winter term course will serve as a prerequisite for the Spring term course. Candace Vogler. Winter 2007. (I)

53200. Intentional Content Open to grad students.
This seminar will explore two issues concerning intentional content. The first is normativity. In what sense, if any, is content normative? What implications does our answer to this question have for understanding the nature of propositional attitudes and other mental states? The second issue concerns the relationships between three types of intentional content: cognitive, perceptual and semantic. What justificatory and/or constitutive connections obtain among these varieties of content? Readings are drawn from an array of contemporary sources. Jason Bridges. Winter 2007. (III)

53900. Workshop: Wittgenstein Open to grad students.
Prerequisites: Consent of instructor. This Workshop meets over three quarters. James Conant. Winter 2007.

55501. Plato's Republic II Open to grad students.
Prerequisites: his is a graduate seminar designed for Ph.D. students in Philosophy and the Committee on Social Thought. (Others require permission of instructor for enrollment.) . We shall read the Republic carefully over two quarters, along with a plethora of contemporary essays on issues raised in the text. Among the topics we shall consider are: the formulation of human psychology in the Republic and its relation to the metaphysics. The aim of philosophy. The aim of constructing a city in thought and conversation. This is a graduate seminar designed for Ph.D. students in Philosophy and the Committee on Social Thought. (Others require permission of instructor for enrollment.) Jonathan Lear. Winter 2007. (IV)

56000. Workshop: Early Modern Philosophy Open to grad students.
The purpose of the workshop is to provide a space for discussion of early modern philosophy among faculty and advanced graduate students, to bring to campus scholars working on innovative ideas, and to discuss relevant crucial and difficult texts. The workshop meets on alternate Fridays at 10:30 in the philosophy seminar room. For further details email Yitzhak Melamed (ymelamed@uchicago.edu) Yitzhak Melamed. Winter 2007.

58500. French Philosophy Open to grad students.
Prerequisites: Reading knowledge of French required.. A close reading in French of Emmanuel Lévinas's Totalité et Infini. Some supplementary texts will be considered, but primarily as a way of situating Totalité et Infini within the corpus of Lévinas's work and within the history of 20th century European philosophy. Arnold Davidson. Winter 2007. (I)

58600. Workshop: Continental Philosophy Open to grad students.
Meets over three quarters. Arnold Davidson. Winter 2007.

59000. Workshop: Philosophy of Mind Open to grad students.
The aim of this workshop is to serve as a focal point at the university for research and discussion in the philosophy of mind and the philosophy of psychology. We'll pursue this aim in three ways: (1) by reading and discussing recent texts the exemplify central themes in the contemporary literature; (2) by providing a forum in which graduate students can present and receive feedback on their own work; and (3) by hosting a series of presentations by prominent philosophers of mind, psychologists, and specialists in related fields. Likely topics of conversation include: the relation between concepts and perceptual experience, self-knowledge, mental causation, and naturalism. David Finkelstein and Jason Bridges . Winter 2007.

*Special note: This course meets over three quarters.

59900. Workshop: Contemporary Philosophy Open to grad students.
Meets over three quarters. David Finkelstein. Winter 2007.

*Special note: This Workshop meets even weeks over three quarters.