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PHIL 182H: Truth (PHIL 282H)

Philosophical debates about the place in human lives and the value to human beings of truth and its pursuit. The nature and significance of truth-involving virtues such as accuracy, sincerity, and candor. Prerequisite Phil 80 or permission of the instructor.
Terms: Win | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER
Instructors: Hills, D. (PI)

PHIL 184: Formal and Informal Epistemology (PHIL 284)

What makes a belief reasonable? Should we even have beliefs, or would it be better to replace them with some other attitude? What is good reasoning, and what is the relation between justification and truth? Formal and traditional (or informal) epistemology use different concepts and methods to address questions like these. In this course, we compare formal and informal epistemology, assess their relative merits, and try to determine whether they are compatible.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II

PHIL 184C: Epistemology of Testimony (PHIL 284C)

Many of our beliefs come from others, and not from direct experience. Is testimony a source of fundamental reasons¿reasons that do not have to be supported or validated by other sources like perception or inference? What sort of responsibility does one have to one¿s hearers, when one gives testimony?
Last offered: Winter 2012 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum

PHIL 184P: Probability and Epistemology

Confirmation theory and various ways of trying to understand the concept of evidence. Discuss a series of issues in epistemology including probabilism (the view that you should assign degrees of belief to various propositions), conditionalization, confirmational holism, reliabilism and justification, and disagreement.
Last offered: Spring 2010 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum

PHIL 185: Special Topics in Epistemology: Testimony in science and everyday life (PHIL 285)

Much of what we know, we know by relying on the testimony of other individuals, groups, traditional news media or social media. The course explores varieties of testimonial knowledge which arise from relaxed everyday testimony ('the coffee machine is broken') and from scientific expert testimony ('Venus is larger than Mars'). The course also touches on issues concerning testimonial injustice ¿ the type of injustice that occurs when someone is wronged in their capacity as a testifier ¿ for example, when their testimony is unjustly devaluated. Finally, we will consider whether philosophical theorizing about testimony may shed light on obstacles for science communication about divisive issues such as vaccines, climate science etc.nnThus, the course is organized around three interrelated themes. 1: Foundational questions, 2: Testimonial injustice and 3: Scientific testimony. Overall, then, the course connects foundational work in epistemology and philosophy of science to some pertinent ethical and political problems.
Terms: Win | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II | Repeatable for credit
Instructors: Gerken, M. (PI)

PHIL 185B: Philosophy of Perception (PHIL 285B)

The nature of perceptual experience and the role it plays in securing empirical knowledge. Focus will be on what is sometimes called "the problem of perception": the question of how perception could provide us with direct awareness of the surrounding environment given the possibility of illusions or hallucinations. Topics, include the relationship between perception and belief, the nature of perceptual phenomenology, whether or not perceptual experiences are representational states, and the philosophical relevance of empirical research on perception.
Last offered: Winter 2012 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum

PHIL 186: Philosophy of Mind (PHIL 286)

(Graduate students register for 286.) This is an advanced introduction to core topics in the philosophy of mind. Prerequisite: PHIL 80
Terms: Aut | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II

PHIL 186B: Inner Sense

Often the label "inner" is used to describe aspects of ourselves we believe are not immediately observable to another. Thoughts, feelings, sensations; these all happen on the "inside," whereas speech, mannerisms, and actions are "outward" expressions. But how useful is this way of thinking? And what does it assume about what is "inner" versus what is "outer"? How reliable are the various internal mechanisms that allow us to know ourselves? Do we have a special kind of direct access to our own inner lives? And what can we know about the inner lives of others? Readings from philosophy of mind and cognitive science.
Last offered: Autumn 2012 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum

PHIL 187: Philosophy of Action (PHIL 287)

This course will explore foundational issues about individual agency, explanation of action, reasons and causes, agency in the natural world, practical rationality, interpretation, teleological explanation, intention and intentional action, agency and time, intention and belief, knowledge of one¿s own actions, identification and hierarchy, and shared agency. Prerequisite: graduate student standing in philosophy or, for others, prior course work in philosophy that includes Philosophy 80.
Terms: Win | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum

PHIL 188: Personal Identity (PHIL 288)

Do you persist through time the way that a skyscraper persists through space, by having different parts at different locations? Or are you ¿wholly present¿ at every moment of your life, in something more like the way that an elevator is present in each place as it travels up to the top floor? What criteria determine whether you now are the very same person as some unique person located at some time in the past? Is the continuity of your memories or other mental states sufficient for your survival? Can you survive the loss or destruction of your body? Do you really exist for more than just the present moment? How do different answers to these questions bear on your moral, personal, and professional obligations? What kinds of considerations could possibly help us to answer these questions? This course explores these and related issues. Readings include a mix of introductory survey, historical, and contemporary material.
Last offered: Winter 2011 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum
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