Loyola University Maryland

Messina

Self and Other Course Pairing

The Individual in Society (SC101D)

We like to think of ourselves as unique beings, but are we? To what extent are we products of our society, shaped by our social class, race/ethnicity, and gender? The focus of this course is on the relationship between individuals and the social world, particularly the ways in which humans interact, and how this interaction is affected by one’s position in the social structure. The pairing of this course with Writing provides students with the tools to understand patterns in people’s stories that illustrate the relationship between individual and society.

Faculty Biography

Dr. Vann came to Loyola in 1987 after receiving a Ph.D. in Sociology from The University of Arizona.  Included among her activities through the years are co-coordinating the Gender Studies minor, directing Loyola’s Summer Program in Prague, advising many students and serving as co-moderator of SPECTRUM.  Her current research focuses on Czechs’ stories about experiences under communism and post-communism, and what these stories tell us about the impact of communism on identity. 

Foundations of Philosophy: "The Intellectual Adventure of Philosophy" (PL201)

Philosophy, said Aristotle, begins in wonder.  Wonder about the ultimate meaning and purpose of life, the true nature of reality, the mysteries of the soul. Wonder about questions of beauty, justice, freedom, love, good and evil, life and death.  This course will introduce you to the letter and the spirit of philosophical questioning.  We will dig deep into some of the great works of ancient philosophy, both in Europe and in Asia, while bringing them alive by reading them in tandem with selected contemporary texts. 
 We will begin with the birth of philosophy in ancient Greece, first with the pre-Socratic thinkers Thales, Pythagoras, Heraclitus, and Parmenides, and later with Socrates and Plato.  We’ll also trace echoes of those Greek intellectual roots in the Christian tradition with St. Augustine.  We will conclude by comparing and contrasting the beginnings of Western philosophy and Christianity with a key text of the Taoist tradition in China, the Tao Te Ching.

Faculty Biography

Richard Boothby took his B.A. in Philosophy from Yale University, a Masters degree in Counseling and Consulting Psychology from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, and a Ph.D. in Philosophy from Boston University. ¬His research interests focus on contemporary continental philosophy, with special attention to psychoanalytic theory and existential philosophy.  When he’s not reading or writing, he enjoys playing squash and sailing the waters between Chesapeake and Maine.

Mentor Biography

Melissa Lees holds her Bachelor of Arts in Religious Students from Marywood University in Scranton, PA and her Master of Arts in Pastoral Ministry from The University of Dayton. Melissa moved to Baltimore in 2007 to work as a site director for an AmeriCorps program, of which she is an alumn. Melissa then worked for 6 years as Director of Campus Ministry and Service at Notre Dame of Maryland University. She also volunteers at TurnAround, Inc. which is Baltimore’s sexual assault and domestic violence crisis center. Melissa began at Loyola in September 2015 as the Sexual Violence Prevention, Education and Response Coordinator.

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