Intro Level Core Courses

HON 1000, 1001, 1003 Interdisc I

JACK DOODY (Philosophy)
HEIDI ROSE (Literature/Fine Arts)
PAUL DANOVE (Theology)

MWF 9:30-11:20, 12:30-1:20

HON 1000- Doody

“Philosophia” is a Greek word meaning “love of wisdom.”  What is wisdom, and how can human beings attain it?  Is that even possible?  What are the things we really want to know?  What things do we need to know about before we can understand anything else?  What questions have we never thought to ask but really need to raise?  Above all, what is the best way to live a fully human and satisfying life?  These are the kinds of questions we will explore in this course, with the help and guidance of the philosophers of ancient Greece and Rome who wrote about their own explorations as a guide for other seekers of wisdom.  By examining texts of Plato, Aristotle, Lucretius, Epictetus, Plotinus and Augustine, students will learn attentive and inquisitive reading, the scope and depth of philosophical inquiry, and careful articulation of their own thoughts and questions in discussion and writing.

 

HON 1001- Rose

The literature strand of Interdisc I focuses on the relations between text and performance, literature and speech, literacy and orality, culture and myth, the stories we tell and why/how we tell them. We explore the place of performance in ancient Greece from the time of Homer through the height of theatre in 5th century BCE Athens. The texts are experienced from page to stage to uncover what makes them inherently theatrical and how they spoke to their particular audiences

 

HON 1003-Danove

As an integral part of the Arts and Sciences Core Curriculum, this foundational course on the Gospels of Mark, Luke, and John introduces students to the rich living tradition of Christianity: its New Testament sources, traditions, practices, and major thinkers that have shaped Christianity’s response to the fundamental human questions that underlie all religions and shape the human search for meaning. With a particular focus on Roman Catholicism, students engage Christianity as a living tradition of beliefs and practices that have developed over time in local and global cultural and religious contexts and that, loyal to the living God to which they point, are ready to be transformed again. Students also engage Christian truth-claims, themes, values, and witness as resources for analyzing and critically evaluating 1st Century Greco-Roman and contemporary cultural challenges. In this course, students are equipped to appreciate the ongoing quest of Christian faith seeking understanding as it enters into conversation with all human knowledge and experience, including other faith traditions.

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ACS 1000-H01 Ancients (Society and Human Behavior)

GREGORY D. HOSKINS
MW 1:3O-2:45

Restricted to Honors students in the Society and Human Behavior Cohort

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ACS 1000-H02 Ancients (Good)

THOMAS W. SMITH
MW 1:30-2:45

The question of the good is implied in the questions “How should I live?” and “How should my society be ordered?”  Thus “The Good” course revolves around questions in Political Philosophy and Ethics.  Since it addresses foundational questions, “The Good” course is a fitting introduction to the learning cohort sequence on transcendental grounding principles.  Readings include selections from Aristotle, Plutarch, Augustine, Aquinas, Thomas Hobbes and Leo Tolstoy.  Co-curricular activities such as trips and combined learning cohort lectures are also a part of this course.

Restricted to Honors students in the Good, True, Beautiful Cohort. 

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ACS 1000-H03 Ancients (Good)

ANNA BONTA MORELAND
MW 1:30-2:45

The question of the good is implied in the questions “How should I live?” and “How should my society be ordered?”  Thus “The Good” course revolves around questions in Political Philosophy and Ethics.  Since it addresses foundational questions, “The Good” course is a fitting introduction to the learning cohort sequence on transcendental grounding principles.  Readings include selections from Aristotle, Plutarch, Augustine, Aquinas, Thomas Hobbes and Leo Tolstoy.  Co-curricular activities such as trips and combined learning cohort lectures are also a part of this course.

Restricted to Honors students in the Good, True, Beautiful Cohort. 

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ACS 1000-H04 Ancients (Good)

JOHN-PAUL SPIRO
MW 1:30-2:45

The question of the good is implied in the questions “How should I live?” and “How should my society be ordered?”  Thus “The Good” course revolves around questions in Political Philosophy and Ethics.  Since it addresses foundational questions, “The Good” course is a fitting introduction to the learning cohort sequence on transcendental grounding principles.  Readings include selections from Aristotle, Plutarch, Augustine, Aquinas, Thomas Hobbes and Leo Tolstoy.  Co-curricular activities such as trips and combined learning cohort lectures are also a part of this course.

Restricted to Honors students in the Good, True, Beautiful Cohort.

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ACS 1000-H05 Ancients (PPE)

MARY LEE HIRSCHFIELD
MW 1:30-2:45

Restricted to Honors students in the PPE Cohort. 

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ACS 1000-H06 Ancients (Business)

TBD
MWF 11:30-12:20

This ACS seminar is designed for Honors students in the Villanova School of Business. The guiding question of our semester is Augustine’s own: “Who am I, and what am I?” We will investigate together what it means to be human, not merely as an academic exercise, but in order to understand ourselves better as people and as members of our communities, whether familial, social, or religious. Together, we will read Homer’s Iliad, sections of the Holy Bible (Genesis, Exodus, and the Gospel of Luke), Saint Augustine’s Confessions, and Dante’s Inferno, along with excerpts from Plutarch’s Lives, Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, and the Qur’an. Each of these texts has something important to teach us about our own search for self-understanding, and about what makes life meaningful. You may be surprised to find yourself transformed in the process—and, in turn, your ideas about work and leisure, friendship and solitude, humanity and God, your present and your future. Vibrant seminar discussions will also prepare you to think critically, to read closely and carefully, and to write and speak persuasively.  

Restricted to students in the Business & Society Cohort

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ACS 1000-H07 Ancients (Business)

MARY LEE HIRSCHFIELD
MWF 1:30-2:45

This ACS seminar is designed for Honors students in the Villanova School of Business. The guiding question of our semester is Augustine’s own: “Who am I, and what am I?” We will investigate together what it means to be human, not merely as an academic exercise, but in order to understand ourselves better as people and as members of our communities, whether familial, social, or religious. Together, we will read Homer’s Iliad, sections of the Holy Bible (Genesis, Exodus, and the Gospel of Luke), Saint Augustine’s Confessions, and Dante’s Inferno, along with excerpts from Plutarch’s Lives, Aristotle’s Nicomachean Ethics, and the Qur’an. Each of these texts has something important to teach us about our own search for self-understanding, and about what makes life meaningful. You may be surprised to find yourself transformed in the process—and, in turn, your ideas about work and leisure, friendship and solitude, humanity and God, your present and your future. Vibrant seminar discussions will also prepare you to think critically, to read closely and carefully, and to write and speak persuasively.  

Restricted to Honors students in the Business & Society Cohort   

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ACS 1000-H08 Ancients (Good Course)

MARY CATHERINE CALELLO STAPLES 
TR 8:30-9:45

Close reading and discussion of selected texts from the time of Homer through the English Renaissance. In this seminar, you will learn to read closely and with care. Weekly journals, free-writing, and “mark-ups” of the texts will help you to find and refine your own critical, and often creative, responses to the reading. Writing will be intensive, with emphasis on revision and on the discovery of a process which works best for you as an individual writer. As many of the works we study have oral origins, we’ll begin with a close look at a tale that’s come down to us through purely oral channels, weighing memory, imagination, and cultural intention. Our readings will be close and full good inquiries. Whether we are contemplating Achilles rage, the spiritual journeys of Augustine and Dante, or the “unstable fictions of gender” in Shakespeare—we will explore the impact of narrative choices, imagery, word choice, and tone. Plan on lively discussion and active daily participation. Course texts will include Homer’s Iliad or Odyssey, Augustine’s Confessions, Dante’s Inferno, Pizan’s Book of the City of Ladies, and Shakespeare’s As You Like It, as well as poetry by Sappho, Erinna, Alkaios, and Simonides. The class will include a trip to the Philadelphia Museum of Art as well as a movie night. 

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PSC 1100-H01 American Government

BRIAN THOMAS SATTERFIELD
MWF 8:30-9:20

This foundational political science course explores the structures and functions of American government so that we might understand the relationship between politics and policy, and how the theoretical basis of the American political system matches up against the way the process works in practice.  Our overarching question will be whether and why we should care about American democracy and invest in making it work.  We will begin our exploration by examining the Constitution, federalism, and other defining "ground rules" of the American political system, and consider how we become political creatures, how our opinions may or may not resonate in the political process, and how we are connected to that process through such institutions as the mass media, political parties, elections, and interest groups.  We will then consider the primary institutions of American government — Congress, the presidency, the executive branch, and the Courts — and how effectively they produce domestic and foreign policy while protecting our rights and liberties.  We will read a mix of primary and secondary source materials, popular items from newspapers, blogs and social media, and an interactive textbook published by the instructor.  Coursework will include a mix of objective assessments and original writing.

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PHI 1000-H01 Knowledge Reality Self

FARSHID BAGHAI 
MW 1:30-2:45

What is knowledge? What is reality? What is a self?  No matter what we do and how we live, we are bound to answer these questions, often unconsciously. Without an idea of what counts as knowledge, we could neither understand nor evaluate the simplest of claims. Similarly, our beliefs about what things exist and what those things are like rest on assumptions about the nature of reality. And without a conception of selfhood, we could not perceive, let alone explain, our own and others’ qualities or behaviors. In short, all of us constantly and ineluctably respond to the questions about the nature of knowledge, reality, and selfhood. The key issue then is not whether but how we respond to them. In this course, we explore a number of major philosophical approaches to the question of knowledge, reality, and self. The goal is to facilitate a philosophical understanding of the assumptions that we make about ourselves, reality, and knowledge, and thus to enable a more informed engagement with how these assumptions are at work in our lives.  

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PHI 1000-H02 Knowledge Reality Self

JACK DOODY
MWF 11:30-12:20

Philosophical responses to the questions of how we can know, what is real, and what is the nature of human existence that explore the dialogue between Catholic, Christian, secular and skeptical perspectives on these questions.

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PHI 1000-H03 Knowledge Reality Self

JAMES R. WETZEL
MW 4:30-5:45

In our section of PHI 1000, we will be taking up the question of knowledge primarily as a question of self-knowledge. Assuming that it is possible to know things (an assumption we may well want to test), is the ‘self’ among that those things that I can know? And, if so, what would it cost me not to know this self? And, were I to seek such knowledge, would my way of knowing my own self be radically different from how I know you or anyone else? In short, this course speaks to the pain and the promise of nascent self-awareness. What does living have to do with coming to know? On the inside of this most basic and most persistent of questions, we take up philosophy.

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PHI 1000-H04 Knowledge Reality Self

ANNIKA K. THIEM
TR 1:00-2:15

Drawing on texts from the history of philosophy, this course will introduce the discipline of philosophy through some of its traditional questions about knowledge and reality and the relationship of these issues to how we orient ourselves in the world. Some of the questions that will guide us in this course are: Where does knowledge come from? By what criteria can we distinguish knowledge from, for example, opinion? What roles do logic and reasoning play in forming knowledge? How do our ways of knowing bear on our sense of reality and our experience of ourselves? We will not try to settle what the “correct answers” to these questions are. Rather, our goal in this course will be to understand how different thinkers have tarried with these questions and we will examine the consequences of different ways of approaching these questions. As we attend to ancient, Christian, Enlightenment, and modern philosophical approaches, we will see how different ways of thinking about knowledge and reality delineate different ways of relating to the world, others, ourselves, and God.

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PHI 1000-H05 Knowledge Reality Self

GABRIEL ROCKHILL
TR 10:00-11:15

Drawing on an array of texts that surpass the standard ‘Western’ canon, this course will grapple with some of the most expansive and intimidating philosophic questions: What is the meaning of life? What is the nature of reality? Who are we? What—if anything—can we know? What is philosophy itself, and how might it help to elucidate some of these questions? In each case, we will approach these issues from multiple and diverse perspectives, often reframing or displacing them in order to reveal hidden philosophic assumptions.

Rather than seeking to find definitive closure or unanimous consensus, this seminar will cultivate a process of open-ended collective inquiry in which students will be encouraged to think autonomously and challenge facile solutions. The material covered will include ancient, Christian, modern and contemporary sources, as well as texts from beyond the canonized—and largely white, male, European—history of philosophy. This will allow us to critically reflect on the deep-seated presuppositions of particular cultural traditions, while engaging with radically different practices of philosophic interrogation. Students should come away from the course with an expanded sense of theoretical possibilities, as well as an arsenal of critical tools for developing creative and rigorous thinking.

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PSC 1200-H01 International Relations

LANCE KENNEY
TR 11:30-12:45

This course is an introduction to the study of international relations (IR), a distinct academic discipline that involves elements of political science, history, economics, sociology, and philosophy. The aim is to present the key concepts, theories, and paradigms that shape and influence world politics. Simply reporting on contemporary international events is NOT the goal: evaluating and critically assessing those events IS the goal.

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PSC 1200-H02 International Relations

LANCE KENNEY
TR 11:30-12:45

This course is an introduction to the study of international relations (IR), a distinct academic discipline that involves elements of political science, history, economics, sociology, and philosophy. The aim is to present the key concepts, theories, and paradigms that shape and influence world politics. Simply reporting on contemporary international events is NOT the goal: evaluating and critically assessing those events IS the goal.

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PSY 1000-H01 General Psychology

REBECCA BRAND
TR 8:30-9:45

Introductory examination of the fundamental concepts of psychology, with particular emphasis on the description of normal human behavior and those factors that underlie it.  Students will read and discuss primary source articles in addition to text material.

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THL 1000-H01 Faith Reason and Culture

GREGORY GRIMES
TR 10:00-11:15

Based upon the Christian notion that God became human in Jesus of Nazareth, who intimately interacted with the people of his own time, addressing their needs, this course begins by diagnosing characteristics of contemporary culture. In short, asking: what are the most urgent needs of our time? We will then explore how an understanding of God as Creator and our relationship to God as creatures in a created world provides an ultimate orientation for how we are to live in the world today. Here we will explore a thoroughly Augustinian understanding of the God/human relationship. Then this will be related to Pope Francis’s recent document, “Laudato Si’”, which addresses quite concretely how this understanding of the God/human relationship is of the utmost importance for the ecological, economic, and social challenges we currently face as a society. From here we will delve more deeply into an understanding of Jesus: who he was, how he thought of himself in relationship to God, the central message of his ministry, and the importance of Christians carrying out that ministry today. Having examined more closely both God and Jesus, we will apply this more specifically to the question: how can Christianity improve our ways of thinking of and implementing more just economic systems that encourage sustainable, integral human development?

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THL 1000-H02 Faith Reason and Culture

ANNA BONTA MORELAND
MW 3:00-4:15

Throughout this course students will gain competence in Christian theological language in order to examine critically the theological claims of the Christian tradition.  The course is organized along doctrinal themes that, woven together, make up the vision of Christian living.  This course will also provide a basis for subsequent theological study.

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THL 1000-H03 Faith Reason and Culture

ANTHONY J. GODZIEBA
TR 8:30-9:45

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THL 1000-H04 Faith Reason and Culture

GERALD J. BERYER
TR 2:30-4:15

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THL 1000-H05 Faith Reason and Culture

GREGORY GRIMES
TR 11:30-12:45

Based upon the Christian notion that God became human in Jesus of Nazareth, who intimately interacted with the people of his own time, addressing their needs, this course begins by diagnosing characteristics of contemporary culture. In short, asking: what are the most urgent needs of our time? We will then explore how an understanding of God as Creator and our relationship to God as creatures in a created world provides an ultimate orientation for how we are to live in the world today. Here we will explore a thoroughly Augustinian understanding of the God/human relationship. Then this will be related to Pope Francis’s recent document, “Laudato Si’”, which addresses quite concretely how this understanding of the God/human relationship is of the utmost importance for the ecological, economic, and social challenges we currently face as a society. From here we will delve more deeply into an understanding of Jesus: who he was, how he thought of himself in relationship to God, the central message of his ministry, and the importance of Christians carrying out that ministry today. Having examined more closely both God and Jesus, we will apply this more specifically to the question: how can Christianity improve our ways of thinking of and implementing more just economic systems that encourage sustainable, integral human development?

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