CCNY PHIL 102 00 Section L : Introduction to Philosophy Fall 201 6

Professor: Damion K. Scott Classroom: NAC 1/203
Office: NAC 5/144 Class Hours: Tu/Thu 9:30 - 10:45am
Phone: (347)   581 4653 Office Hours: By Appointment
Email: [email protected]

Required Texts :
Plato The Trial and Death of Socrates. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing, 2000.

Descartes, Rene Meditations on First Philosophy. Indianapolis: Hackett Publishing, 1993.

Kant, Immanuel Prolegomena to Any Future Metaphysics 1783

King, Martin Luther Letter from a Birmingham Jail 1962

McGary, Howard Race and Social Justice Blackwell 1999

Nagel, Thomas What Does It All Mean: A Very Short Introduction to Philosophy Oxford University Press 1987

Recommended Supplemental Texts (Not required) :

Critchley, Simon A Very Short Introduction to Continental Philosophy Oxford 2001
Dilworth, David Philosophy in World Perspective: A Comparative Hermeneutic of the Major Theories Yale University Press 1989
Nagel, Thomas Mortal Questions Cambridge University Press 1979
Fanon, Franz The Wretched of the Earth. New York: Grove Press, 1963. Blocker, Gene H. Japanese philosophy State University of New York Press 2001
Kim, Jaegwon, Sosa, Ernest and Rosenkrantz, Gary S. (editors) A Companion to Metaphysics 2 nd . Edition 2009 OUP

Course Description
The City College Undergraduate Bulletin describes this course as follows: " An introduction to some of the central questions of philosophy, concerning our knowledge of the external world, causation, God, mind and body, freedom, justice and moral judgment, via analysis of classical and contemporary philosophers such as Plato, Aristotle, Descartes, Locke, Hume, Mill, Kant, Russell, Wittgenstein and Rawls. "
The purpose of this course is to be a general introduction to some of the major topics in the history of Western philosophy and to engage students in philosophical thinking. The course will cover four major areas of study within the discipline, each of which is indicated by one of the four questions mentioned above. The question "Does God exist?" is indicative of an inquiry into
Metaphysics —the study of the fundamental nature of being and reality. Epistemology —the study of knowledge and the acquisition of rational justification—is the area of philosophy designated by the question "What can I know for certain?". "How should I act towards others?" refers to the area of philosophy known as Ethics —the study of morality as it pertains to human beings. Finally, the area of philosophy which studies human social and political associations, institutions, and relationships— Social and Political philosophy —, is demarcated by the question "What is justice?" amongst other related questions.
Throughout this course each student will become familiar with the nature of philosophical inquiry, representative philosophical texts, issues and schools, and develop the ability to analyze philosophical texts and arguments, as well as to engage in clear, insightful and charitable debate about the merits of philosophical theses. My foremost concern in this course is to introduce students to philosophical thinking and methodology. More than endowing the student with any particular content, I want to assist the student in developing the critical reasoning skills that are requisite for thinking philosophically.
More than this, I intend for this class to be a sustained philosophical conversation about philosophical issues and questions. Each of us should view ourselves as equal participants in this conversation. To be sure, I will lead the conversation most often, but at times the conversation will be led by one of you. I want for this course to be an honest attempt by each of us to take seriously the material we read, the issues we discuss, and the problems which arise, both in the text that we read and in our own consideration and discussion of the material. We should all approach the class, and the particular content of the class with a serious consideration of both the texts and the relevance of the texts in helping each of us negotiate our way through the philosophical challenges inherent in our own lived experiences.

Course Requirements for PHIL 10200:

Students successfully completing PHIL 10200 will:

Demonstrate familiarity with the basic issues and elementary concepts, and some positions and arguments, in epistemology, metaphysics, ethics, and theories of justice;
Demonstrate familiarity with some example(s) of ancient Greek philosophical writing
and with Modern and Contemporary Philosophy
c. Identify arguments and their premise(s) and conclusion(s), implicit assumptions,