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131 - 140 of 203 results for: all courses

PHIL 172: History of Modern Moral Philosophy (ETHICSOC 172, PHIL 272)

A critical exploration of some of the main forms of systematic moral theorizing in Western philosophy from Hobbes onward and their roots in ancient ethical thought. Prerequistes are some prior familiarity with utilitarianism and Kantian ethics and a demonstrated interest in philosophy.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Winter 2017 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

PHIL 172B: Recent Ethical Theory: Moral Obligation (PHIL 272B)

Some moral obligations are "relational," "directional," or "bipolar" in structure: in promising you to act in a certain way, for example, I incur an obligation to you to so act and you acquire a corresponding claim or right against me that I so act. This entails that if I violate my obligation to you, I will not merely be doing something that is morally wrong, but will be wronging you in particular. What does explain this? Do all moral obligations have this structure? We will discuss how different moral theories (consequentialist, deontological, contractualist) try to account for such obligations. Readings include Adams, Anscombe, Darwall, Feinberg, Hart, Parfit, Raz, Scanlon, Skorupski, Thompson, Thomson, Wallace, and Wolf.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Autumn 2015 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

PHIL 172N: Prudence and Morality (PHIL 272N)

We sometimes think we should do something just because it will benefit us in the future, even though we don¿t particularly feel like doing it now (e.g. we exercise, go to the dentist for a check-up, or set aside money for retirement). And we sometimes think we should do something for the sake of another person, even when it is inconvenient, costly, or unpleasant (e.g. we stop to help a stranded motorist, donate to charity, or tell someone an embarrassing truth rather than a face-saving lie). When we do the former, we act prudently. When we do the latter, we act morally. This course explores the debate among philosophers about the source of our reasons for acting prudently and morally. Some argue that our reasons to be prudent and moral stem directly from the fact that we are rational ¿ that it is contrary to reason to ignore our own future interests, or the interests of other people. Others disagree, arguing that the source of these reasons must lie elsewhere. Course readings will include work by Thomas Nagel, Bernard Williams, Christine Korsgaard, Derek Parfit, Philippa Foot, and others.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Autumn 2013 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

PHIL 174A: Moral Limits of the Market (ETHICSOC 174A, PHIL 274A, POLISCI 135P)

Morally controversial uses of markets and market reasoning in areas such as organ sales, procreation, education, and child labor. Would a market for organ donation make saving lives more efficient; if it did, would it thereby be justified? Should a nation be permitted to buy the right to pollute? Readings include Walzer, Arrow, Rawls, Sen, Frey, Titmuss, and empirical cases.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Winter 2013 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, GER:EC-EthicReas, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

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

The past three decades have seen the elaboration of a vast body of literature on unconditional basic income a radical policy proposal Philippe Van Parijs referred to as a disarmingly simple idea. It consists of a monthly cash allowance given to all citizens, regardless of personal desert and without means test to provide them with a standard of living above the poverty line. The seminar will seek to engage students in normative debates in political theory (feminism, liberalism, republicanism, communism, libertarianism, etc.) by appealing to the concrete example of basic income. It will allow students to learn a great deal about a policy that is gaining tremendous currency in academic and public debates, while discussing and learning about prominent political theorists - many of whom have written against or for basic income at one point in their career.nnnThe seminar is open to undergraduate and graduate students in all departments. There are no pre-requisites. We will ask questions suc more »
The past three decades have seen the elaboration of a vast body of literature on unconditional basic income a radical policy proposal Philippe Van Parijs referred to as a disarmingly simple idea. It consists of a monthly cash allowance given to all citizens, regardless of personal desert and without means test to provide them with a standard of living above the poverty line. The seminar will seek to engage students in normative debates in political theory (feminism, liberalism, republicanism, communism, libertarianism, etc.) by appealing to the concrete example of basic income. It will allow students to learn a great deal about a policy that is gaining tremendous currency in academic and public debates, while discussing and learning about prominent political theorists - many of whom have written against or for basic income at one point in their career.nnnThe seminar is open to undergraduate and graduate students in all departments. There are no pre-requisites. We will ask questions such as: is giving people cash no strings attached desirable and just? Would basic income promote a more gender equal society through the remuneration of care-work, or would it risks further entrenching the position of women as care-givers? Would alternative policies be more successful (such as the job guarantees, stakeholder grants or a negative income tax)? How can we test out basic income? What makes for a reliable and ethical basic income pilot? Students in Politics, Philosophy, Public Policy, Social Work, and Sociology should find most of those questions relevant to their interests. Some discussions on how to fund basic income, on the macro-economic implications of basic income and on the existing pilots projects (in Finland, Namibia, India, Canada and the US) may be of interest to Economists; while our readings on the impact of new technologies and artificial intelligence on the future of work and whether a basic income could be a solution, are likely to be on interest to computer scientists and engineers. By the end of the class, students will have an in depth knowledge of the policy and will have developed skills in the normative analysis of public policy. They will be able to deploy those critical and analytical skills to assess a broad range of other policies.
Terms: Spr | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Repeatable for credit | Grading: Letter or Credit/No 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.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Spring 2018 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

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 simply trying to equalize basic rights and liberties, or also resources, opportunities, positions, status, respect, welfare, or capabilities? Is equality really what we should try to achieve in a just society? An alternative would be to make sure everyone has enough or to promote individual freedom instead of equality. Why do egalitarians think that such society would still be unjust? 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, e 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 simply trying to equalize basic rights and liberties, or also resources, opportunities, positions, status, respect, welfare, or capabilities? Is equality really what we should try to achieve in a just society? An alternative would be to make sure everyone has enough or to promote individual freedom instead of equality. Why do egalitarians think that such society would still be unjust? 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.nnThere are no prerequisites for this course. The class will enable you to develop your own interests and expertise as you work towards understanding egalitarian thinking. If you have prior experience in ethics, political philosophy or political theory, it will allow you to deepen your knowledge and to learn new theories of justice. If you do not have any such knowledge, this class will introduce you to the normative approach to politics (that is the approach that consists in asking what a just society requires) and will help you develop some understanding of how one proceeds when arguing for justice.nnA substantial part of the 3 hours we have each week will be devoted to discussions and presentations, since this is the best way to `practice normative thinking¿. The class will also include mini-lectures lead by the primary instructor.
Terms: not given this year | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Grading: Letter (ABCD/NP)

PHIL 175: Philosophy of Law

This course will explore foundational questions about the nature of law, including questions about the relationship between law and morality. Topics to be discussed include the following: a) the foundations of legal authority, b) legal reasoning and argument, and c) the nature of persistent legal disputes (e.g., disputes about how to best interpret the US constitution). We will focus on contemporary work on these topics, including work by Scott Shapiro, Joseph Raz, Ronald Dworkin, David Enoch, Connie Rosati, and Mark Greenberg. Prerequisite: PHIL 80.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Autumn 2016 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-Hum, WAY-A-II, WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

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.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Spring 2018 | Units: 3-5 | UG Reqs: GER:DB-SocSci, WAY-ED, WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit

PHIL 175B: Philosophy of Public Policy (ETHICSOC 75X, PHIL 275B)

From healthcare to parliamentary reforms to educational policies, social and public policies are underpinned by normative justifications - that is by different conceptions of what is right, wrong or required by justice. By analyzing these assumptions and justifications, we can in turn challenge the policies in question - asking: Is workfare ever justified? What is wrong with racial profiling? When (if ever) is compulsory voting justified? Should children have the right to vote? Does affirmative action promote equality? Should freedom of expression ever be restricted? What are the duties of citizens of affluent countries toward asylum seekers and economic migrants? Do we have a right to privacy?nnThe course aims to train students in the normative analysis of public policies. At the end of this class, students should be able to critically examine diverse policy proposals from the perspective of ethics, moral and political philosophy. Students will be introduced to a broad range of normat more »
From healthcare to parliamentary reforms to educational policies, social and public policies are underpinned by normative justifications - that is by different conceptions of what is right, wrong or required by justice. By analyzing these assumptions and justifications, we can in turn challenge the policies in question - asking: Is workfare ever justified? What is wrong with racial profiling? When (if ever) is compulsory voting justified? Should children have the right to vote? Does affirmative action promote equality? Should freedom of expression ever be restricted? What are the duties of citizens of affluent countries toward asylum seekers and economic migrants? Do we have a right to privacy?nnThe course aims to train students in the normative analysis of public policies. At the end of this class, students should be able to critically examine diverse policy proposals from the perspective of ethics, moral and political philosophy. Students will be introduced to a broad range of normative approaches to politics, and the seminars will be organized around debates and small-group exercises to train students in the concrete ways in which one argues normatively. Through concrete and important policy examples each week, students will be introduced to the main debates in moral and political theory.nnThere are no prerequisites. Undergraduates and graduates from all departments are welcome to attend. After taking this class, students will be prepared to take more advanced classes in ethics, political theory, as well as moral and political philosophy. They will have developed competences in the normative analysis of public policy and they will be able to deploy those competences in other ethics classes.
Terms: not given this year, last offered Winter 2018 | Units: 4 | UG Reqs: WAY-ER | Grading: Letter or Credit/No Credit
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