Spring 2014 (Graduate)

PHI 7710 - 001 Kant's 1st Critique  CRN: 33341

Days: R from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm Location: TBA
Instructors: Julie Klein

An intensive study of Kant's Critique of Pure Reason in light of contextual sources and contemporary commentaries.

PHI 8230 - 001 Sartre  CRN: 33342

Days: T from 2:30 pm to 5:00 pm Location: TBA
Instructors: Thomas Busch

This course will deal with the development of Sartre’s philosophy from its beginning in his appropriation of Husserl’s phenomenology in his earliest works, through the ontology of Being and Nothingness and his commitment to ethical and political issues in What Is Literature?, to the development of his dialectical method in Search for a Method. There will be samples and brief discussion of his later works. We will consider his relation to and with contemporaries such as Beauvoir, Merleau-Ponty, Heidegger, Camus and in general the transition from phenomenology to ethics and politics.

Books:
Cumming, The Philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre (Vintage)
Sartre, Being and Nothingness (Washington Square Press)
Sartre, What Is Literature? (Harvard University Press)
Sartre, Search for a Method (Vintage)
Requirements: class presentation, paper.
Outline of Material: 
Early work: discussion of The Transcendence of the Ego, The Emotions, The Psychology of Imagination. Excerpts from Cumming, The Philosophy of Jean-Paul Sartre.

  1. Being and Nothingness. Read as much as you can. We will stress the overall plan and strategy of the work. We will do Part One, “The Origin of Nothingness,” and “Bad Faith,” Part Two, Immediate Structures of the For-Itself” and “Temporality”; Part Three “The Existence of Others,” “The Body,” “Concrete Relations with Others”; in Part Four we will emphasis the section on “My Fellowman” in “Freedom and Facticity: the Situation” and “Existential Psychoanalyis.”
  2. We will read What Is Literature?, the first three chapters and then discuss Sartre’s book on Jean Genet (excerpts in Cumming).
  3. We will read Search for a Method  and briefly discuss excerpts from the Critique of Dialectical Reason and The Family Idiot.

There are, in my estimation, a number of books on Sartre that are unreliable. Among the reliable I recommend the following. (Should you have any questions about secondary sources, I would be happy to speak with you.)

Anderson, Thomas. Sartre’s Two Ethics.
Aronson, Ronald. Jean-Paul Sartre- Philosophy in the World.
Busch, Thomas. The Power of Consciousness and the Force of Circumstances in Sartre’s
   Philosophy
Cannon, Betty. Sartre and Psychoanalysis.
Caws, Peter. Sartre
Cohen-Solal, Annie. Sartre: A Life
Detmer, David. Freedom as a Value
Flynn, Thomas.  Sartre and Marxist Existentialism (anything by Flynn)
Hendley, Steve. Reason and Relativism: A Sartrean Investigation.
Jeanson, Francis. Sartre and the Problem of Morality.
McBride, William. Sartre’s Political Theory.
Santoni, Ronald. Bad Faith, Good Faith and Authenticity in Sartre’s Early Philosophy

PHI 8710 - 001 SEM: The Future Community  CRN: 33343

Days: R from 5:30 pm to 8:00 pm Location: TBA
Instructors: Walter Brogan

Beginning with Carl Schmitt’s book, “Political Theology,” the issue of sovereignty has emerged in contemporary political theory not only as the essential issue regarding the State, but also as the crux of any analysis that imagines the possibility of thinking beyond the State and the end of politics towards what might be described as a postmodern community.

The central theme of the course will be the exploration of the meaning and role of the concepts of sovereignty and singularity in the critique of the contemporary political situation and in the formulation of various views of postmodern community. In the background of this concern will be the rethinking of traditional notions of identity and difference and an attempt to suggest a post-Enlightenment notion of community that is not founded on the model of undifferentiated sameness and normalized normativity.  The thematic focus on the question of sovereignty will allow us to return to a consideration of basic political and ethical questions surrounding individuality, self-identity, and freedom. We will assess the thesis that postmodern political philosophy offers us the opportunity to imagine a community not based on relationships of power and domination, and a community that can espouse a political notion of the human subject that affirms diversity and difference. A pervasive, underlying issue will be the understanding of transcendence and immanence as they relate to our topic.

Texts:
We will study and discuss some of the important works that have taken up these questions in our times.
Carl Schmitt: Political Theology, Chicago, 1985 (0226-73889-2)
Jacques Derrida, Rogues: Stanford, 2005 (0-8047-4951-5)
Giorgio Agamben, Homo Sacer: Sovereign Power and Bare Life, Stanford, 1998 (0-8047-3218-3)
Giorgio Agamben, The Coming Community, Minnesota, 1993 (0-8166-2235-3)
Jean-Luc Nancy The Inoperative Community, Minnesota, 1991, (0-8166-1924-7)
Jean-Luc Nancy, Being Singular Plural, Stanford, 2000 (0-8047-3975-7)
Jean-Luc Nancy, Creation of the World of Globalization, SUNY, 2007 (0-7914-70226-1)
Roberto Esposito, Bios: Biopolitics and Philosophy (University of Minnesota Press).
Luce Irigaray i love to you (Routledge)
Bataille, "Sovereignty," in The Accursed Share, Vol. 3, 197-235
Maurice Blanchot, The Unavowable Community
Recommended Reading
--Bataille "The Absence of Myth" from text The Absence of Myth, p. 48.
            "Part One of Inner Experience, pages 3-29.
            "Nonknowledge, Laughter, Tears" in The Unfinished System of      Nonknowledge, 133-150.
            "Sanctity, Eroticism and Solitude," in Eroticism, Death & Sensuality, 252-264.
            Michel Surya's biography Georges Bataille contains two good short chapters on Bataille and the issues of community. The one entitled "The community of friends" pages, 311-315, and "From the community of the impossible to the impossible community" 316-17.
Alphonso Lingis The Community of Those Who Have Nothing in Common (Indiana)
Maurice Blanchot  The Writing of the Disaster; The Unavowable Community;
Friendship; The Step Not Beyond (SUNY)
Jacques Derrida  The Gift of Death; Given Time I: Counterfeit Money; Politics of Friendship; The Other Heading; On Touching: Jean-Luc Nancy
Agamben Language and Death: The Place of Negativity (Minnesota)
Gilles Deleuze  Difference and Repetition (Columbia) and The Logic of Sense (Columbia)
Giorgio Agamben, Means Without End, Minnesota, 2000 (0-8166-3035-6)

Requirements
Giorgio Agamben, The State of Exception, Chicago, 2005 (0-226-00925-4)

I will be conducting the course as a seminar.  Much of the material in the course will require intense, careful discussion. If we are successful, then perhaps we ourselves, in an academic environment, will become a model of the postmodern community!  Through e-mail, I will try to provide some guidelines for discussion and encourage hitting the reply all button to participate in an ongoing threaded discussion online.  I will try to limit my initial presentation to 45 minutes.  Each class will feature a presentation by one of the seminar participants intended to highlight the participant’s insights and focus the ensuing discussion.  Each student will be required to do at least one presentations and one précis in the course of the semester.

I also want to assign two papers for the course, one due at midpoint after the break and the other at the end of the course.  Each of these papers will be 10 pages in length.  One criterion for grading will be the potential of the paper for expansion into a full length paper.  Therefore I request that the two papers be separate projects and that the second paper not be a direct expansion of the first (for example that it be on a different author or theme). I will not accept incompletes for this course beyond the 30 day grace period without a grade penalty unless there are special circumstances such as a health crisis.

PHI 8710 - 002 SEM: Embodied Epistemologies CRN: 33344

Days: W from 3:00 pm to 5:30 pm Location: TBA
Instructors: Sally J. Scholz, Chaone Mallory

Embodied Epistemologies will explore some of the many epistemological approaches emerging from or responding to various forms of oppression. One of our primary foci will be on the link between embodiment and subjectivity; gendered, raced, sexualized, dis/abled and specied embodiedment; the exclusions and effacements in theory and in life occurring based on such “marked” embodiment; ecologically-situated embodiment; and the politics of embodiment. The course will address the way identities (whether chosen or ascriptive) and embodied experience affect ways of knowing.  We’ll scrutinize various feminist accounts of objectivity, truth, and knowledge with an eye toward the political.   In addition to feminist standpoint epistemology, we’ll look at epistemologies of ignorance, and epistemologies of resistance. Students interested in the politics of embodiment and embodied epistemologies as developed in feminism, phenomenology, queer theory, critical race theory, animality studies and posthumanism, and environmental theory will find much to appreciate in this course.

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

PHI 8710 - 004 Rethinking Revolution CRN: 33346

Days: W from 6:00 to 8:30 Location: TBA
Instructors: Gabriel Rockhill

This course explores the modern and contemporary transformations in our political culture, understood as the practical mode of intelligibility that structures the very natureof politics by determining who qualifies as a political subject, what is visible as a political action, and how the spatio-temporal framework of politics is organized. After a brief methodological and historiographical introduction, we will study the historicalemergence of the modern concept of revolution and the transformations in the temporal horizons of the political due to the opening up of the future as an unknown field ofutopian possibility. We will examine, in this light, historical writings on various revolutions as well as theoretical attempts to conceptualize the specificity of revolutionary movements.  Against this historical backdrop, we will then explore what it means for a revolution to change social structure by discussing the reconfiguration of class relations as well as the role of gender and race in modern revolutions. This will allow us, more specifically, to examine the various accounts of agency used to explain revolutionary change, and we will be particularly interested in developing a non-reductive, multi-agential theory of social transformation. This methodologicalorientation will go hand in hand with a re-conceptualization of social norms as immanent, multi-tiered, dynamic, and therefore malleable. Finally, after developingtools for a radically historicist and multi-agential approach to revolutions, we will conclude by examining the claim that there has been a shift in political culture from the grand era of revolutionary politics (roughly 1789 to 1968) to a purportedly post-revolutionary epoch (approximately 1968-present). More specifically, we will investigate the contemporary historical imaginary by asking whether or not the belief in an unprecedented future is a thing of the past. Is such a future, in fact, a future past or a future afar (in the sense that revolutions, if they happen, occur far from the hegemonic centers of the Euro-American world)? If so, what are we to make of the recent revolutionary activity around the world, from Latin America to the entire Mediterranean region, the Occupy movement and beyond? What is the status of revolutionary activity in the present, and does it require a reworking of the verycategory of revolution?


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 8710 - 005 SEM: Metaphysics of Persons CRN: 33347

Days: T  5:30 to 8:00 Location: TBA
Instructors: Stephen Napier

What are we? What grounds our identity through time? What is ‘it’ that persists through time and change?  Getting straight on the question of what we are can go some way towards understanding other related issues such as: the distinction (if any) between humans and other animals, the phenomenon of blindsight and split-brain consciousness, and the nature of mind and body. We will concentrate our attention on two main traditions of thought: psychological (e.g., Locke), and hylomorphic (i.e., both Leibnizian and Aristotelian). Furthermore, since our question concerns what persons are essentially, we will be discussing the nature of essential properties and if “we” have them. Two traditions will be represented in this regard, Leibnizian (and neo-Hegelian) “superessentialists” and neo-Aristotelian essentialists (Plantinga, Lewis, and Kripke).

Restrictions:
May not be enrolled in one of the following Campuses:
University Alliance


PHI 8830 - 001 Independent Study CRN: 33348

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 8835 - 001 Independent Study II CRN: 33349

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 8870 - 001 Consortium I CRN: 33350

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 8875 - 001 Consortium II CRN: 33351

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 9010 - 001 Dissertation CRN: 33352

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: 33353

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