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151 - 160 of 227 results for: all courses

PHIL 174B: Universal Basic Income: the philosophy behind the proposal (ETHICSOC 174B, ETHICSOC 274B, PHIL 274B, POLISCI 134E, POLISCI 338)

Universal basic income (or UBI) is a regular cash allowance given to all members of a community without means test, regardless of personal desert, and with no strings attached. Once a utopian proposal, the policy is now discussed and piloted throughout the world. The growth of income and wealth inequalities, the precariousness of labor, and the persistence of abject poverty have all been important drivers of renewed interest in UBI in the United States. But it is without a doubt the fear that automation may displace workers from the labor market at unprecedented rates that explains the revival of the policy in recent years, including by many in or around Silicon Valley. Among the various objections to the proposal, one concerns its moral adequacy: Isn't it fundamentally unjust to give cash to all indiscriminately rather than to those who need it and deserve it? Over the years, a variety of scholars have defended the policy on moral grounds, arguing that UBI is a tool of equality, liber more »
Universal basic income (or UBI) is a regular cash allowance given to all members of a community without means test, regardless of personal desert, and with no strings attached. Once a utopian proposal, the policy is now discussed and piloted throughout the world. The growth of income and wealth inequalities, the precariousness of labor, and the persistence of abject poverty have all been important drivers of renewed interest in UBI in the United States. But it is without a doubt the fear that automation may displace workers from the labor market at unprecedented rates that explains the revival of the policy in recent years, including by many in or around Silicon Valley. Among the various objections to the proposal, one concerns its moral adequacy: Isn't it fundamentally unjust to give cash to all indiscriminately rather than to those who need it and deserve it? Over the years, a variety of scholars have defended the policy on moral grounds, arguing that UBI is a tool of equality, liberal freedom, republican freedom, gender equity, or racial equity. Many others have attacked UBI on those very same grounds, making the case that alternative policy proposals like the job guarantee, means-tested benefits, conditional benefits, or reparations should be preferred. Students will learn a great deal about political theory and ethics in general but always through the specific angle of the policy proposal, and they will become experts on the philosophy, politics and economics of UBI. The seminar is open to undergraduate and graduate students in all departments. There are no pre-requisites.
Terms: Win | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Repeatable for credit

PHIL 174C: On What Is Intolerable (PHIL 274C)

Moral and political philosophy often focuses on ideals we should aspire to and principles we should follow. Yet individuals and societies almost invariably fall short of these ideals and principles. Unless you are a fundamentalist or a relentless perfectionist, you tolerate these failures. That is, you tolerate them to a point. This point will be the topic of our course: how badly may we fail? How far short of the ideal is too far? We will be concerned with that which is not merely bad, unjustified, wrong, or unjust, but which is intolerably so. Examples include: intolerable injustice, rotten compromises, unconscionable contracts, dirty hands, unjust wars, personal failures, grief, desperation, betrayal, and humiliation. Just as important, we will ask: how should we respond to the intolerable? Should intolerably unjust political institutions be met with disobedience, or perhaps rebellion? When we emerge from grief to continue with our lives, do we thereby accept our loss as tolerable? more »
Moral and political philosophy often focuses on ideals we should aspire to and principles we should follow. Yet individuals and societies almost invariably fall short of these ideals and principles. Unless you are a fundamentalist or a relentless perfectionist, you tolerate these failures. That is, you tolerate them to a point. This point will be the topic of our course: how badly may we fail? How far short of the ideal is too far? We will be concerned with that which is not merely bad, unjustified, wrong, or unjust, but which is intolerably so. Examples include: intolerable injustice, rotten compromises, unconscionable contracts, dirty hands, unjust wars, personal failures, grief, desperation, betrayal, and humiliation. Just as important, we will ask: how should we respond to the intolerable? Should intolerably unjust political institutions be met with disobedience, or perhaps rebellion? When we emerge from grief to continue with our lives, do we thereby accept our loss as tolerable? Can we ever forgive without forgetting the severity of the wrong done to us and the harm we suffered? We will draw on thinkers such as Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Du Bois, and Baldwin, as well as contemporary moral and political philosophers, such as John Rawls, Thomas Nagel, Bernard Williams, Alexander Nehamas, Jonathan Lear, and others.
Last offered: Spring 2018 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER

PHIL 174E: Egalitarianism: A course on the history and theory of egalitarianism and anti-egalitarianism (ETHICSOC 174E, PHIL 274E, POLISCI 138E)

Egalitarianism is a conception of justice that takes the value of equality to be of primary political and moral importance. There are many different ways to be an egalitarian - it all depends on what we take to be the currency of egalitarian justice. Are we trying to equalize basic rights and liberties, or resources, opportunities, positions, status, respect, welfare, or capabilities? Is equality really what we should try to achieve in a just society? Or should we just make sure everyone has enough? Why do egalitarians think that such society would still be unjust; and how do they proceed to argue for equality?nnThis class will introduce students to egalitarian and anti-egalitarian thought by looking both at the history of egalitarian thinking and at contemporary accounts in defense of equality. It will provide an in depth introduction to the concepts that are used when inequalities are discussed by philosophers, economists, scientists and politicians. The class will attest of the vari more »
Egalitarianism is a conception of justice that takes the value of equality to be of primary political and moral importance. There are many different ways to be an egalitarian - it all depends on what we take to be the currency of egalitarian justice. Are we trying to equalize basic rights and liberties, or resources, opportunities, positions, status, respect, welfare, or capabilities? Is equality really what we should try to achieve in a just society? Or should we just make sure everyone has enough? Why do egalitarians think that such society would still be unjust; and how do they proceed to argue for equality?nnThis class will introduce students to egalitarian and anti-egalitarian thought by looking both at the history of egalitarian thinking and at contemporary accounts in defense of equality. It will provide an in depth introduction to the concepts that are used when inequalities are discussed by philosophers, economists, scientists and politicians. The class will attest of the varieties of approaches and perspectives to equality. For instance, we will learn from the 19th century debate on racial inequalities to understand how anti-egalitarian discourses are constructed; we will look into Rousseau's conception of social equality in the Second Discourse and the Social Contract; and we will engage with contemporary egalitarian theories by studying Rawlsian and post-Rawlsian forms of egalitarianism.
| UG Reqs: WAY-ER

PHIL 175: Philosophy of Law (ETHICSOC 175B, PHIL 275)

This course will explore foundational issues about the nature of law and its relation to morality, and about legal responsibility and criminal punishment. Prerequisite: graduate student standing in philosophy or, for others, prior course work in philosophy that includes Philosophy 80.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER
Instructors: Bratman, M. (PI)

PHIL 175A: Ethics and Politics of Public Service (CSRE 178, ETHICSOC 133, PHIL 275A, POLISCI 133, PUBLPOL 103D, URBANST 122)

Ethical and political questions in public service work, including volunteering, service learning, humanitarian assistance, and public service professions such as medicine and teaching. Motives and outcomes in service work. Connections between service work and justice. Is mandatory service an oxymoron? History of public service in the U.S. Issues in crosscultural service work. Integration with the Haas Center for Public Service to connect service activities and public service aspirations with academic experiences at Stanford.
Last offered: Spring 2018 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-ED, WAY-ER

PHIL 175B: Philosophy of Public Policy (ETHICSOC 175X, PHIL 275B, POLISCI 135E, PUBLPOL 177)

From healthcare to voting reforms, social protection and educational policies, public policies are underpinned by moral values. When we debate those policies, we typically appeal to values like justice, fairness, equality, freedom, privacy, and safety. A proper understanding of those values, what they mean, how they may conflict, and how they can be weighed against each other is essential to developing a competent and critical eye on our complex political world. We will ask questions such as: Is compulsory voting justified? Should children have the right to vote? Is affirmative action just? What is wrong with racial profiling? What are the duties of citizens of affluent countries towards migrants? Do we have a right to privacy? Is giving cash to all unconditionally fair? This class will introduce students to a number of methods and frameworks coming out of ethics and political philosophy and will give students a lot of time to practice ethically informed debates on public policies. At the end of this class, students should have the skills to critically examine a wide range of diverse policy proposals from the perspective of ethics, moral and political philosophy. There are no prerequisites. Undergraduates and graduates from all departments are welcome to attend.
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER

PHIL 176: Political Philosophy: The Social Contract Tradition (ETHICSOC 176, PHIL 276, POLISCI 137A, POLISCI 337A)

(Graduate students register for 276.) Why and under what conditions do human beings need political institutions? What makes them legitimate or illegitimate? What is the nature, source, and extent of the obligation to obey the legitimate ones, and how should people alter or overthrow the others? Study of the answers given to such questions by major political theorists of the early modern period: Hobbes, Locke, Rousseau, and Kant.
Last offered: Winter 2019 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER

PHIL 176A: Classical Seminar: Origins of Political Thought (CLASSICS 181, CLASSICS 381, ETHICSOC 130A, PHIL 276A, POLISCI 230A, POLISCI 330A)

Political philosophy in classical antiquity, centered on reading canonical works of Thucydides, Plato, Aristotle against other texts and against the political and historical background. Topics include: interdependence, legitimacy, justice; political obligation, citizenship, and leadership; origins and development of democracy; law, civic strife, and constitutional change.
Terms: Win | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER
Instructors: Ober, J. (PI)

PHIL 176P: Democratic Theory (ETHICSOC 234, POLISCI 234)

Most people agree that democracy is a good thing, but do we agree on what democracy is? This course will examine the concept of democracy in political philosophy. We will address the following questions: What reason(s), if any, do we have for valuing democracy? What does it mean to treat people as political equals? When does a group of individuals constitute "a people," and how can a people make genuinely collective decisions? Can democracy really be compatible with social inequality? With an entrenched constitution? With representation?
Terms: Spr | Units: 5 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER
Instructors: Coyne, B. (PI)

PHIL 178M: Introduction to Environmental Ethics (ETHICSOC 178M, ETHICSOC 278M, PHIL 278M, POLISCI 134L)

How should human beings relate to the natural world? Do we have moral obligations toward non-human animals and other parts of nature? And what do we owe to other human beings, including future generations, with respect to the environment? The first part of this course will examine such questions in light of some of our current ethical theories: considering what those theories suggest regarding the extent and nature of our environmental obligations; and also whether reflection on such obligations can prove informative about the adequacy of our ethical theories. In the second part of the course, we will use the tools that we have acquired to tackle various ethical questions that confront us in our dealings with the natural world, looking at subjects such as: animal rights; conservation; economic approaches to the environment; access to and control over natural resources; environmental justice and pollution; climate change; technology and the environment; and environmental activism.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4-5 | UG Reqs: GER:EC-EthicReas, WAY-ER
Instructors: Adams, M. (PI)
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