BEGINNERS PHILOSOPHY WITH ALEKS: POLITICS, BODY, AND EMOTION



ENROL



COURSE OUTLINE


WEEK 1: WORK AND DUTY

society revoles around work, commitment, obligation, and duty

however, philosophers often imagine worlds where we are more free, more creative, more self-directed than we currently are

we will ask whether work is an essential component of a human life, and what an ideal society would look like

︎

WEEK 2: HOW TO LIVE A GOOD LIFE

our lives are filled with commitments to political and social structures and instituions

we can often use our commitments to do good—but, what does doing good actually look like?

also, people are constantly talking about capitalism—but, what actually is capitalism?

we will learn about the structure of capitalism, how it operates, and we will ask whether or not it is a good political/economic structure

we will also consider alternate political/economic structures, and identify which are the most effective at producing fair and good lives

︎

WEEK 3: CONSCIOUSNESS AND BODY

consciousness refers to our lived experience

however, is consciousness limited to our lived experience? do others experience the world the same way i do? do non-living things experience consciousness?

we will try to locate consciousness (mind or body or other), and we will ask whether consciousness can be copied, transported, uploaded, or changed

︎

WEEK 4: FREE WILL

free will often describes the capacity to choose how we act

however, we are impacted by our environment and biology—bias, prejudice, norms, stereotypes, hormones, etc

so, what does it mean to have free will, and do we actually have any?

︎

WEEK 5: RESPONSIBILITY AND BLAME

philosophers often argue that we have a responsibility towards others

certain acts are good and other acts are not good

we should do certain things and we shouldn’t do others

what does it mean to be responsible (especially in the context of free will), and how/should we blame people for not doing the “right thing?”

︎

WEEK 6: EMOTION, GRIEF, AND DEPRESSION

emotions are a central part of consciousness: they help us learn, get closer to ourselves, engage with our environment

however, are emotions actually good? do we really need to be so impacted by the world? and what is the relationship between emotion, rational/logical thinking, and mental health?