Fall 2014 (Graduate)

Below is a listing of the Graduate classes being offered for Fall 2013. For information on specific times, days and instructors, please check  the Master Class Schedule on NOVASIS.


PHI 8220 - 001 Heidegger's Being/Time: CRN: 22751

Days: T from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions: Must be enrolled in one of the following Levels:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

This course will focus primarily on Martin Heidegger’s most influential and well-known work, Being and Time.  In the context of a reading of this work, we will also consult several of his courses given during the 1920’s that provide a background for understanding the issues raised by this text.  A good secondary source to consult is Theodore Kisiel The Genesis of Being and Time (University of California Press).  Magda King’s commentary published by SUNY Press is, in my view, one of the best.  We will use the translation by Joan Stambaugh as our primary text, though I recommend also purchasing the older Macquarrie and Robinson translation (now in cheap paperback from Harper).  Richard Polt has a good collection of critical essays. 

Course Text

--Martin Heidegger, Being and Time, trans. Joan Stambaugh, SUNY Press, 2010.  ISBN-10: 1438432763.  Please order the most recent revised Stambaugh translation by Dennis Schmidt, which includes the German in parenthesis and also makes an enormous amount of corrections and revisions.

--Martin Heidegger, Sein und Zeit, Max Niemeyer Verlag, 2006.  ISBN-10: 3484701536

 

PHI 8710 - 001 SEM: Autonomy, Nihilism, Ethical Otherness CRN: 23360

Days: MW from 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm
Instructors: William J. Desmond
Comment: course dates: 8/25/14 - 10/8/14

Must be enrolled in one of the folllowing level:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

This seminar will look diversely at the notions of autonomy and ethical otherness, with a concern for the shadow of nihilism accompanying both notions. The issue is whether there is a devaluation of being in modernity and whether the emergence of our sense of freedom as autonomy emerges in reaction to this, or in tandem with it. Special attention with be paid to an ethics of autonomy or sovereignty as developed by Kant, Hegel and Nietzsche.  These views will be outlined also with reference to a sense of freedom beyond autonomy as outlined in Ethics and the Between. We will examine the modern stress on autonomy in tandem with the fact that modernity has tended to make the universe inhospitable to inherent value, with significant repercussions for human existence, as well as a variety of influential ethical theories. How must we think about the ground of the good to deal with this inhospitality and its consequences for human existence? How connect ethical nihilism with ethical grounding or groundless? Is the stress on autonomy inseparable from a depreciation of the other as other? Do we need an ethics beyond servility and sovereignty? What kind of ethics would be called for that tried to respond to this issue? Must we rethink the meaning of the good of the “to be”? Is it possible to rethink the ethos of being as in some important sense good? Must we cease to think of the nature of the ethical in univocal terms and ask about the different ethical potencies exhibited in the practices and reflections of human beings? We will look at questions like these, and how some dominant modern conceptions address them, namely the Kantian, Hegelian and Nietzschean conceptions. How do they guide or hinder us in rethinking the meaning of being good?

Required Texts:

W. Desmond, Ethics and the Between (Albany: SUNY Press, 2001)

Kant, Groundwork of a Metaphysics of Morals (Indianapolis: Hackett, latest edition)

Hegel, Outlines of the Philosophy of Right (Oxford University Press, Oxford World Classics, 2008, translation revised by S. Houlgate)

Nietzsche, On the Genealogy of Morals, trans. W. Kaufman (New York: Vintage Books, 1969)

 
PHI 8710 - 002 Unwordly Itineraries: Philosophical Descent from Virgil to Dante CRN: 22752

Days: R from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm
Instructors: James R. Wetzel

Must be enrolled in one of the folllowing level:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

Philosophical ascents and descents refer to transformations of consciousness that bring either wisdom or mortal confusion. Our emphasis in this seminar is on the imperative of descent, of having to enter or return to a place of unknowing before true seeing can begin. And here the unknowing is less knowledge that is missing than wisdom that is undone. In short, we will be following ancient itineraries of disillusionment. Along the way be especially on the lookout for transfigurations of the body, the soul’s self-image. Although the primary source-material of the seminar is all premodern (Virgil, Ovid, Apuleius, Boethius, Dante), we will add some modern framing to ascents and descents, if only to call the question: has the philosopher no further need for the psychagogue?

 

PHI 8720 - 001 SEM: Rousseau CRN: 22754

Days: M from 6:00 pm to 8:30 pm

Instructors: Sally J. Scholz
Restrictions: Must be enrolled in one of the following Levels:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

Jean-Jacques Rousseau has been credited as the champion of egalitarian democracy and the defender of totalitarianism, the philosopher of the French Revolution and a cynic of his own time.  In this course, we will explore his social and political philosophy: his diagnoses of social problems as well as his carefully detailed two-pronged response in education and politics.  Readings include the Discourse on the Origin and Foundation of Inequality Among Mankind, The Social Contract, and Emile.  


 

PHI 8720 - 002 SEM: Adorno/Benjamin CRN: 22755

Days: R from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm
Instructors: Annika K. Thiem
Restrictions: Must be enrolled in one of the following Levels:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

In this seminar we will examine the thought of early 20th-century critical theorists Theodor W. Adorno and Walter Benjamin. Both thinkers commit themselves to understanding the task of philosophy as a form of Erkenntniskritik, epistemological critique, that takes up questions of experience, history, culture, and politics. Our considerations will be shaped around the following thematics: (1) the transformations of theorizing experience in relation to philosophy of history; (2) the role of theological remnants for a critique of philosophical and political theorizing; (3) the critique of culture and modernity; and (4) the aesthetics of rhetoric and affect and the relationship between aesthetics and social criticism. We will begin by studying Benjamin’s critique of experience and knowledge in his examination of the German mourning play and parts of his unfinished, fragmentary Arcades Project. Benjamin’s influence on Adorno’s thinking bears on the conceptual framing and importance of philosophy of history in Against Epistemology, Negative Dialectics, and Dialectic of Enlightenment. We will attend in particular to Adorno’s reformulations and departures from Benjamin to question the philosophical significance of the conceptual and stylistic differences between them. Finally, we will examine how Benjamin and Adorno join forces, differ, and disagree in their critiques of culture and society by studying their commentaries and correspondences on Charles Baudelaire, Stefan George, and Franz Kafka. 

PHI 8830 - 001 Independent Study I CRN:22756

Days: TBA Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions:
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance


PHI 8835 - 001 Independent Study II CRN:22757

Days: TBA Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions:
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance


PHI 8870 - 001 Consortium I CRN:22758

Days: TBA Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions:
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

PHI 8875 - 001 Consortium II CRN:22759

Days: TBA Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions:
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

 

PHI 9010 - 001 Dissertation  CRN: 22760

Days: TBA Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions: Must be enrolled in one of the following Levels:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

 

PHI 9081 - 001 Dissertation Continuation CRN: 22761

Days: TBA Location: TBA

Instructors: Walter Brogan
Restrictions: Must be enrolled in one of the following Levels:
Graduate Arts and Sciences
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance

Prerequisites:
PHI 9000 or PHI 9010 or PHI 9020