Friday, October 23, 2015

Spring 2016 Classes!

A scientist and an English professor walk into a bar.
The philosopher following them was careful to duck

Check out these great Spring 2016 courses!

Phil 314: 19th Century History of Philosophy
Dr. William Vaughan [M 6:30--9:15 pm]
The 19th century remains one of the most volatile episodes in the history of philosophy, with revolutionary movements of thinking emerging in rapid succession. The first half of the century is marked by philosophical system-building, embodied by the efforts of German Idealism. We will look at Kant and Hegel as representatives of this endeavor. The second half is marked by system-destroying, that any philosophical ‘system’ of thought necessarily suffocates and suppresses human being. We will look at Schopenhauer, Kierkegaard, Marx, and Nietzsche as representatives of this task. After their explosive efforts, some have concluded that any efforts to construct a comprehensive philosophical system are fruitless. We will explore whether or not this is the case. Note: This course does NOT satisfy a core Humanities requirement, but non-majors can still get a lot out of this class.

Phil 317: Philosophy of Religion
Dr. Louis Mancha [TTh 12:15--1:30 pm]

Traditionally, it is claimed that the God of Western monotheism has certain distinct properties. God is said to be all-powerful (omnipotent), all-knowing (omniscient), and all-good (omnibenevolent), for example. The significant worry is this: Are those properties consistent? In other words, is God really a possible being? If God is not a possible being, then is it even rational to believe in God? Many philosophers and theologians have developed problems and paradoxes that appear to result from a deeper analysis of these properties. The purpose of this class is to address and respond to these issues. We will study what it means to say that God has certain perfections or properties, and what is implied by them. We will also analyze some of the paradoxes and apparent inconsistencies that philosophers have observed in connection with these properties, and attend to some possible solutions to those paradoxes. Satisfies a Humanities core requirement.

Phil 330: Readings in Philosophy (C.S. Lewis)
Dr. Mark Hamilton [MWF 10--10:50 am]

Is Christianity reasonable?  What are the best arguments to confirm Christianity’s truth claims?  Do you know anything about the author of The Chronicles of Narnia?  This is a course on the most vital and most important Christian writer of the Twentieth Century, C.S. Lewis.  Lewis, an Oxford scholar, wrote marvelous works of fiction on unseen worlds and challenging books defending issues like the validity of miracles and the problem of suffering, along with popular essays probing life’s great mysteries.  Lewis has boundless insight to the historical and philosophical issues emerging in the Twentieth Century. Enjoy a course that will be explicitly Christian while addressing questions every non-believer asks concerning God. Satisfies a Humanities core requirement.

  COMPLETE YOUR CORE with these other Spring offerings!

Math/Logic:     Phil 220: Practical Thinking, Dr. Mancha
Humanities:     Phil 210: Phil. of Human Nature, Dr. Tiel
Phil 215: Ethics, Dr. Hamilton, and Dr. Mancha
Phil 280A: Sports Ethics, Dr. Hamilton
Phil 280B: Environmental Ethics, Dr. Vaughan

Bring your ‘A’ game to all your classes, whatever your major!
Learn to think philosophically.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

10 Amazing Illusions

When thinking about the ancient problem of scepticism, what kinds of issues would have weighed heavily on the mind of the sceptic?  As Cicero conjectures, there's the problem of the bent oar, or the pigeon's neck, or judging the size of the moon using its visual dimensions.  No doubt the senses deliver to us conflicting information, they claim, so there's no reason to believe that we can have certitude about any impression or phantasia they deliver.

So let's enjoy these moments...

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

A Unique Scholarship/Study Abroad Program

The Davies-Jackson Scholarship provides a unique opportunity for graduating seniors with exceptional academic records who will graduate with a 3.7 or higher overall grade point average. To be eligible for the Davies-Jackson Scholarship applicants must be graduating seniors enrolled in one of the private liberal arts colleges and universities on the list of eligible institutions (Ashland is on the list!). The applicant should be among the first generation in their family to graduate from college, that is, the applicant’s parents should not have graduated from a four year college or university, or the applicant should not have benefitted from their parent’s academic achievements.

The Davies-Jackson Scholar will be admitted to Cambridge as an Affiliated Student.  An Affiliated Student is a graduate holding an approved degree from another university who is admitted to work for the Cambridge BA degree.  As this is essentially a second BA, Affiliated Students take the more advanced parts of a Cambridge degree course and qualify for the degree in two years instead of the usual three.  As a result of its academic rigor, the international travel opportunities that are available, and the overall preparation that the course of study provides towards a career, the “Cantab” degree is usually considered to be the equivalent of a Master’s degree in the United States.

For all the details and forms for this unique program, go to the main website HERE.

Details for this program are also on Facebook.

Undergraduate Publishing Opportunities

Many of our philosophy students do great research and write wonderful papers for our classes.  However, many students are not aware of the vast opportunities they have to show off their work and gain the recognition they deserve.

For anyone who has written a philosophy paper and is looking to try and get some recognition for it, be aware that there are undergraduate journals to which you can submit your work! Here are a few:

1. Phi Sigma Tau has an undergraduate journal, and you do not have to be a member to submit work!  It's called Dialogue:

2. Another regional journal called Episteme is run out of Denison University:

3. Lastly, there's Stance, out of Ball State:

For a list of even more journals and publishing opportunities for undergraduates, you can peruse the following site (courtesy of Luther College):

List of undergraduate philosophy journals