Loyola University Maryland

Philosophy Department

Upcoming Courses

Spring 2023 Course Offerings
Intro

PL201 Foundations of Philosophy
A one semester introduction to philosophy. Three focal points are covered: the emergence and development of rational theories on the nature of reality (metaphysics); questions concerning the grounds for distinguishing between knowledge and opinion (epistemology); and the nature and status of values (ethical, aesthetic, religious, etc.). Special attention is paid to the origins of philosophy and its historical beginnings in the ancient world.

Perspectives

PL202 Project of Modernity
Examines distinctive aspects of the modern philosophical project as it relates to questions of science, politics, society, history, or morals. Philosophical theories ranging from the seventeenth through the twentieth centuries are treated in their historical development and/or their opposition to ancient teachings.

PL210 Politics and Society
Addresses the basis and goals of human society, including issues concerning the structure of the good community as balanced against the interests of the individual.

PL216 Asian Thought
An introduction to the philosophical and spiritual traditions of Asia, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Daoism. Comparisons with Western thought are explored.

PL228 Philosophy and Genocide
Examines the challenges that genocide poses for philosophy and what philosophy and philosophers might do to confront and even prevent genocide.

PL230 Humanity and Divinity
A philosophical investigation of the nature and meaning of the religious life.

PL232 Gender and Nature
Examines the history of Western concepts of nature and science with particular attention to how ideas about hierarchy, gender, and violence have affected our relationship to the natural world. Introductory course for the Gender Studies minor.

PL236 Environmental Philosophy
Explores the place of human beings within the much larger natural world and the fundamental conceptions of nature. Is nature savage, a resource for our use, or a mindless machine? Special topics may include animal consciousness, sustainability, indigenous cultures, global climate change and other ecological crises, and the effects of contemporary technologies.

Ethics

PL305 The Ethics and Politics of Humanitarian Intervention
The language and idea of “human rights,” “the rights of man,” and “natural rights” enter into political and moral discourse in the late eighteenth century. In 2005 the United Nations adopted the Responsibility to Protect, intended to protect all populations from human rights abuses. Ethics demand humanitarian intervention. Yet the ethical demand for intervention is confronted with the complexities of real politics. This course invites students to explore the relationship between ethics and politics with regard to humanitarian intervention. Case studies include the genocide in Rwanda, the ongoing crisis of the Rohingya Muslims in Myanmar, the human rights abuses in Chechnya, and the practice of honor killing in Asia and other locations.

PL306 Ethics of Race and Gender
Examines how relations of race and gender construct ethical subjects and change the way we understand what it means to live a good life. The course begins by offering some historical context for ethics of race and gender. The course then uses contemporary texts to explore how ethical subjects feel, act, and live their lives within the structures of violence, oppression, domination, and privilege. Students also explore possibilities of resistance and ethical/political action under such conditions.

PL310 Business Ethics
A study of the relevance of ethics to business, with special emphasis on the similarities and differences between business and personal life. Case studies and special readings cover such topics as the social responsibilities of business and the notion of the economic common good.

PL311 Bioethics
A study of the moral problems and uncertainties connected with biomedical research. Theoretical questions on the nature of morality and methodological foundations of science lead to a discussion of current topics, such as recombinant DNA, cloning, organ transplants, definitions of death, and death therapy.

Seminars

PL320 Logic
Dr. Witt
A study of the basic principles and types of reasoning as they function in such fields as business, politics, law, and the natural and social sciences. Attention to the various ways in which language, argument, and persuasion can be used/misused.

PL343 Philosophy of Human Rights
Dr. Fuat Gursozlu
Addresses basic questions about the nature, content, and philosophical foundations of human rights, with a specific emphasis on the philosophical-historical development of the idea of human rights. Various contemporary human rights problems are explored, including ethnic cleansing and genocide, poverty, and humanitarian intervention.

PL366 Studies in Plato
Dr. Boothby
An inquiry into the epistemological, moral, and metaphysical writings of Plato’s middle and later periods, with special reference to the relation of anamnesis, participation and the theory of forms in the middle dialogues to koinonia and the theory of the greatest kinds in the later dialogues. Same course as CL 366.

PL377 Philosophy of Nature
Dr. Dale Snow
Examines the changing view of nature from the period of the early modern philosophers of nature, Newton and Bacon, through the Cartesian mechanization of nature adopted and extended by Enlightenment scientists and its rejection by Goethe and Schelling, who defended an organic and holistic view of nature. The basic opposition between the idea of nature as no more than mere natural resources to be exploited for human profit and nature as both alive and the source of all life is shown to be indispensable for understanding contemporary approaches to environmental ethics as well as the looming threat of a global ecological crisis.

PL394 Process Philosophy
Dr. Cunningham
A study of the basic principles of process philosophy through Whitehead’s Process and Reality. Topics include actual entities and their formative principles, the phases of feeling, the concrescence of an actual entity, actual entities, nexus and societies, the theory of perception.

PL409 Creating the World: Theories of Imagination
Dr. Biss
Imagination has been variously conceived as a necessary aid to cognition (Aristotle), an “inferior kind of perceiving” (Berkeley), a “blind but indispensable function of the soul” (Kant), and “reason in its most exalted form” (Wordsworth). In this seminar, students investigate the history of the concept of imagination, with particular attention given to the philosophical significance of shifts in its characterization and its role in our contemporary self-understanding. Which kinds of human cognition are imaginative and in exactly what sense? How have our imaginative capacities been theorized in relation to reason and emotion? And, what roles do these capacities play in cognition, poetic practices, and moral agency? The very pursuit of answers to these questions requires intellectual imagination, as no single framework or method provides all of the resources needed to think expansively about the nature of the mind and its relationship to the world.

Fall 2022 Upcoming Philosophy Courses

PL201 Foundations of Philosophy
A one semester introduction to philosophy. Three focal points are covered: the emergence and development of rational theories on the nature of reality (metaphysics); questions concerning the grounds for distinguishing between knowledge and opinion (epistemology); and the nature and status of values (ethical, aesthetic, religious, etc.). Special attention is paid to the origins of philosophy and its historical beginnings in the ancient world.

Perspectives

PL202 Project of Modernity
Examines distinctive aspects of the modern philosophical project as it relates to questions of science, politics, society, history, or morals. Philosophical theories ranging from the seventeenth through the twentieth centuries are treated in their historical development and/or their opposition to ancient teachings.

PL210 Politics and Society
Addresses the basis and goals of human society, including issues concerning the structure of the good community as balanced against the interests of the individual.

PL216 Asian Thought
An introduction to the philosophical and spiritual traditions of Asia, such as Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Daoism. Comparisons with Western thought are explored.

PL228 Philosophy and Genocide
Examines the challenges that genocide poses for philosophy and what philosophy and philosophers might do to confront and even prevent genocide.
PL236 Environmental Philosophy
Explores the place of human beings within the much larger natural world and the fundamental conceptions of nature. Is nature savage, a resource for our use, or a mindless machine? Special topics may include animal consciousness, sustainability, indigenous cultures, global climate change and other ecological crises, and the effects of contemporary technologies.

Ethics

PL302 Ethics
Explores, both historically and topically, the basic questions about values and obligation, the social and individual influences on moral judgement, the application of general guidelines to particular situations, and the search for a personal moral life.

PL311 Bioethics
A study of the moral problems and uncertainties connected with biomedical research. Theoretical questions on the nature of morality and methodological foundations of science lead to a discussion of current topics, such as recombinant DNA, cloning, organ transplants, definitions of death, and death therapy.

PL314 Environmental Ethics
An investigation of the relationship between human beings and the natural world, with attention to the ethical dimensions of our life-style and environmental policies. Students explore their obligations to the nonhuman world and to future generations.

PL315 Ethics after Auschwitz
When philosopher Theodor Adorno wrote that “to write a poem after Auschwitz is barbaric,” it was a profound recognition that the Holocaust changed everything. This course explores ways in which philosophy might be implicated in the Holocaust and other genocides. It then turns to the failures of traditional philosophical ethics that we are forced to confront in the wake of the Holocaust. Finally, the course raises questions about the possibility of hope after Auschwitz.

Seminars

PL321 Cross-Cultural Philosophy
In today’s multicultural societies, with increasingly frequent cross-cultural interaction taking place on a global scale, there is greater need than ever for philosophical reflection on how cultures have interacted and should interact. This course examines major theories and debates regarding the ethics and politics of cross-cultural relations and the hermeneutics of cross-cultural dialogue.

PL333 Philosophy of Law
History is a central theme of philosophical inquiry. The study of the philosophy of history raises the question as to whether there is meaning in events over time and space, granting regularity and human freedom. Some key authors are Cicero, Augustine, Vico, Kent, Herder, Hegel, Marx, Dilthey, Ricoeur, and Danto, each of whom contributed to shaping the understanding of history.

PL352 Philosophy of Freedom
A philosophical and historical analysis of the multiple meanings and uses of the concept of freedom through text, literature, and film, including some cross-cultural exploration. What does the mythic land of freedom look like? Topics include emancipation and incarceration, political liberty and fascism, individual and collective rights, existential freedom, and Gaia.

PL355 Philosophy of History
History is a central theme of philosophical inquiry. The study of the philosophy of history raises the question as to whether there is meaning in events over time and space, granting regularity and human freedom. Some key authors are Cicero, Augustine, Vico, Kent, Herder, Hegel, Marx, Dilthey, Ricoeur, and Danto, each of whom contributed to shaping the understanding of history.

PL357 Philosophy of Literature
Literature gives concrete expression to our sense of reality and in its history “re-presents” the status of man and human events as each age presupposes it. Herein resides the intimate relationship which has always existed between literature and philosophy. The history of this relationship explains both the continuity and the discontinuity which is present in Western literature. Focuses on one (or more) special topics, such as tragedy, modernism, aesthetic theories of literature, and existentialism. Same as EN 357.

PL389 Nietzsche
Nietzsche is the first major figure in the history of philosophy to repudiate the tradition of Western thought that began with Plato. The nature of this repudiation and Nietzsche’s attempt to inaugurate a new mode of philosophical thinking are examined.

 

Jonathan Prozzi
Alumni

Jonathan Prozzi

His experience at Loyola helped Jonathan realize his passion for teaching technology, which led him to a fulfilling career

Philosophy, History