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Philosophy 1010 Class #7 Title:Introduction to Philosophy Instructor:Paul Dickey TodayTurn In Video.

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Presentation on theme: "Philosophy 1010 Class #7 Title:Introduction to Philosophy Instructor:Paul Dickey TodayTurn In Video."— Presentation transcript:

1 Philosophy 1010 Class #7 Title:Introduction to Philosophy Instructor:Paul Dickey TodayTurn In Video Quiz Discuss Class Essay Finish Chapter 3 Discussion Midterm Exam, Chapters 1-3 and Critical Thinking Chapters 1-3 and Critical Thinking 4/28/13 4/28/13 Read Velasquez, Philosophy: A Text With Readings, Chapter 4, Sections 4.1 – 4.4 (to page 275) Get started on your class essays!!! A one to two paragraph “brief” on you essay is due on your essay next week.

2 Discuss Class Essay Due: 5/19

3 You are writing a short 3-5-page essay (computer-printed or typed, double-spaced, 1” margins, Times Romans 12-point font). 1)The paper must demonstrate your understanding of a topic we discussed -- for example, the mind/body problem. 2)You will need to identify two philosophers to discuss in your essay in regard to your topic. 3)Your paper will show specific and detailed understanding of the two points of view on the issue by the two philosophers which raises an apparent conflict. 4)The student will discuss this conflict and propose in his or her paper an argument to resolve the conflict. In doing this, you will rely on your own independent thinking. 5)You will need to explicitly identify a narrow sub-topic on the issue that you choose that appropriately allows you to make an interesting claim of your own where the philosophers disagree on the issue. Requirements for Class Essay

4 5)You are free to select from a broad availability of sources (but not Wikipedia). If you have a question about the appropriateness of a source you wish to use, please discuss this with instructor before you turn in your essay. 6)You must use at least three sources, but not more than five (otherwise your research could get unwieldy). 7)Topic to be selected with instructor approval by next week. By then, you should have a good idea what your general argument will be. 8)Essay are due when you come to final exam on the last day of class. No essays will be accepted after that time!!! 9)The essay will be 20% of your course grade. Any questions? Requirements for Class Essay

5 Choosing a Topic: 1. Hopefully, something we have talked about in class has interested you. For example, when you read Chapter four, perhaps you will be intrigued, by the third “proof” for the existence of God: the Argument from Design. 2. Pick two philosophers who addressed the question, say William Paley and David Hume. 3. Focus your attention on one point where they disagreed. For example, Paley and Hume disagreed about the strength of the watchmaker analogy. 4. Decide what you think about this particular disagreement and make a statement (a claim!) that summarizes your own view on it. For example, a claim might be: Paley based the watchmaker analogy on strong scientific evidence that David Hume did not recognize. Notice that simply saying “Paley was right and Hume was wrong” is not a good claim because it is excessively vague. Now, have fun and let’s hear your argument for that conclusion !!!

6 Your essay will be graded as an sum of five scores: a)How correctly do you represent the view of the 1 st philosopher? NO STRAW MEN ALLOWED! b)How correctly do you represent the view of the 2 st philosopher? NO STRAW MEN ALLOWED! c)Is your claim reasonable and clearly stated? d)Do you give a good argument for your claim?, and e)Technical areas such as grammar, spelling. Did you follow the specified requirements?, did you provide a bibliography of your sources, etc. Requirements for Class Essay

7 Online Philosophy Sources that you might wish to use in your term paper:

8 The major pragmatist philosophers are Charles S. Pierce ( ) and William James ( ). To the American Pragmatists, the debate between materialism and idealism had become a pointless philosophical exercise. They wanted philosophy to “get real” (as we might say today.) The Pragmatists argued that philosophy loses its way when it loses sight of the social problems of its day. Thus, the Pragmatists focused on issues of practical consequence. For them, asking even what is real in the complete sense is not an abstract matter. Pragmatism

9 In terms of Metaphysics, James argued against both sense observation and scientific method and reason as the determinants of reality. Reality is determined by its relation to our “emotional and active life.” In that sense, a man determines his own reality. What is real is what “works” for us. Pragmatism was refreshing and offered new insights to various disciplines, particularly psychology as a developing science. Ultimately to most philosophers, pragmatism failed to give a systematic response to the traditional philosophical issues that Materialism and Idealism were struggling with. Pragmatism

10 Anti-realism rejects the notion that there is a single reality. Rather, there is multiple realities that are dependent upon how they are described, perceived, or thought about. Notice that whereas Berkeley emphasized consciousness as the basis of the world, the modern anti-realists focus on the pervasiveness of language. Is “Realism” a condition of sanity? Can it be challenged? How can you even know about “reality” without language? Thus, what sense does it make to say reality exists “beyond” language? Is reality dependent on our “contextualization” of things. Does this mean “reality” is just whatever you think it is? Is this different than “subjectivity?” Or is it an objective, shareable cultural phenomena? Anti-Realism

11 Similar somewhat to the American Pragmatists, the Logical Positivists also viewed the debate between materialism and idealism as a pointless philosophical exercise. Unlike the Pragmatists however, they identified the problem with the metaphysical debate as a problem in understanding language and meaning. The Logical Positivists proclaimed that Metaphysics was meaningless and both Materialists and Idealists were making claims that amounted to nonsense. They might be proposing theories that seemed to be different but had no consequences to our understanding of the world. A.J. Ayer (1910 – 1989) proposed a criterion by which it could be determined what was a meaningful statement to make about reality. Logical Positivism

12 Metaphysical statements such as “God exists” or “Man has a mind and body” or ethical statements such as “Lying is wrong” are meaningless for Ayer. Such statements do not make assertions about the world, but in fact only express emotions and feelings like poetry. A statement can only be meaningful if it is verifiable by means of shared experience. The Logical Positivist Criteria of Meaning

13 Midterm Exam Good Luck!!!

14 Midterm Exam Good Luck!!!


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