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Changes to Spring Academic Calendar Fordham is modifying its academic calendar in anticipation of a national resurgence of the COVID-19 pandemic this winter. Full Details

Spring 2021 Philosophy Courses

PHIL 5114 Normative Ethical Theory
Day and Time: T 12 - 2 p.m.
Instructor: Michael Baur
Fulfills: Contemporary Analytic

PHIL 7012 Plato's Dialogues
Day and Time: T 2:15 - 4:15 p.m.
Instructor: Dana Miller
Fulfills: Ancient
By most counts, Plato wrote 28 dialogues that are recognized as genuine. These dialogues vary greatly in length, content, and approximate time of composition. Most people, including philosophers, have an acquaintance with only a few of these dialogues, for instance, the Phaedo, Meno, Apology, and Republic, all of which probably belong to one period of Plato’s writing. An accurate understanding of Plato’s philosophy must be based on the study of his entire philosophical corpus. This might be said of any philosopher, but Plato is unique because he never reveals what his own philosophical commitments are. We need all the help we can get to understand him.
It would be impossible to study all 28 dialogues in one semester. The Laws, for instance, are 339 tedious Stephanus pages long. It is assumed that some dialogues are familiar to students. The course will therefore cover as many unfamiliar but nevertheless important dialogues as possible from all periods of Plato’s writing. The general content and purpose of each dialogue will be debated, and then central, especially significant passages will be discussed in some detail with the help of secondary literature. Student involvement with what will be covered and how to interpret it is expected.

PHIL 7069 Medieval Logic and Metaphysics
Day and Time: F 12:00 - 2:00 PM
Instructor: Gyula Klima
Fulfills: Medieval
This seminar is going to approach medieval logic and metaphysics not as a piece of history, but as genuine philosophy, to be taken seriously by a contemporary philosopher. The course is going to present an extended argument to show that if medieval metaphysical notions are reconstructed against their proper theoretical background (supplied by the sophisticated logical theories of the medievals, as opposed to modern analytic theories or vague historical intuitions), then they can provide us with a comprehensive, unified conceptual framework for discussing our genuine concerns which is unmatched in our fragmented “post-modern” culture. Although this course is primarily offered for philosophers, philosophically-minded medievalists and theologians may profit from it as well, especially if they are interested in tackling the logical subtleties of medieval metaphysical and theological discussions, No previous training in modern (or traditional) logic will be assumed. Main topics of discussion include: meaning (signification) and reference (supposition) in medieval logic; universals and common natures; mental language; nominalism, realism and ontological commitment; the concept of being and theories of the copula; the existence and essence of God; the immateriality of the intellective soul and the hylomorphic mereology of human nature; essentialism, nominalism and skepticism in late-medieval philosophy.

PHIL 7156 Husserl and Heidegger
Day and Time: M 3:30 - 5:30 p.m.
Instructor: John Drummond
Fulfills: Contemporary Continental
This course will examine the relation between Husserl and Heidegger at two points of direct contact: (1) Heidegger’s discussion of Husserl’s phenomenology in his 1925 Marburg lectures, and (2) the failed attempt at collaboration in co-authoring an article on phenomenology for Encyclopedia Brittanica.
We shall examine the first by reading the relevant sections of Husserl’s Logical Investigations and the first volume of Ideas for a Pure Phenomenology and Phenomenological Philosophy, volume 1, before turning to the first part of Heidegger’s History of the Concept of Time. We shall examine the latter by reading the various drafts of the article and the relevant correspondence as presented in Psychological and Transcendental Phenomenology and the Confrontation with Heidegger (1927–1931). Where appropriate, we shall also look at relevant selections from Husserl’s “Ideas,” volume 2, his Cartesian Meditations and Crisis as well as Heidegger’s Being and Time.

PHIL 7215 Wittgenstein's Philosophical Investigations
Day and Time: R 5:00 - 7:00 p.m.
Instructor: Brian Davies
Fulfills: Contemporary Analytic
Following an introduction to the life and writings of Ludwig Wittgenstein (1889–1951), this course will consist of a detailed reading and discussion of his Philosophical Investigations. We will work through this text in class while trying to understand what it is saying. We will also aim to reflect on its philosophical value.

PHIL 7580 Biopolitics and Necropolitics
Day and Time: R 1:30 - 3:30 p.m.
Instructor: Selin Islekel
Fulfills: Contemporary Continental
Foucault, in The History of Sexuality, Volume 1, states that the 18th century witnessed the emergence of a new kind of power concerned with the control of life. This description of contemporary politics has given rise to rich debates on the question of the meaning of life and death in relation to political power: What kind of life is at stake in this description, and where is death in this account? What is the impact of race and gender in the analyses of power that Foucault provides? We will start with Foucault’s lecture courses from the Collège de France from 1976 to 1978, where he develops his accounts on biopower and security. We will then bring these in dialogue with other accounts that focus primarily on the role of death, or what has come to be called “necropolitics,” as a kind of power that is concerned with regulation of death in politics. Readings include work from Giorgio Agamben, Achille Mbembe, Jasbir Puar, Judith Butler, and Saidiya Hartman.

PHIL 7675 Moral Genealogies
Day and Time: M 1:00 - 3:00 p.m.
Instructor: Nicholas Smyth
Fulfills: Contemporary Other
In this course, we’ll explore the many ways in which moral ideas, beliefs, responses, practices, and institutions can be analyzed historically. Can such analysis deliver substantive and interesting normative conclusions? We will try to find out by studying such figures as Hobbes, Hume, Rousseau, Feuerbach, Nietzsche, Freud, and Foucault, as well as contemporary analytic "debunking" arguments made by Richard Joyce, Sharon Street, and Peter Singer.

PHIL 8001 - Sem: Phil Education
Day and Time: R 10 a.m.- 12 p.m.
Instructor: Samir Haddad

PHIL 8050 - Proseminar: Phil Rsch/Writing
Day and Time: W 9:45 - 11:45 a.m.
Instructor: Giorgio Pini
A detailed study of methods for successful philosophical reseach and writing.