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Courses in LSA Philosophy
Philosophy is the systematic study of questions any thoughtful human being faces concerning the nature of knowledge, reality, thought, and value. What is valuable and what is value? What gives thought and language meaning? What is truth, and how can we know it? The main value of philosophy lies in its contribution to a liberal arts education. It can, however, also provide excellent preparation for a wide variety of professions (notably, law), because of the training it provides in rigorous thinking and incisive and clear writing. Philosophy cuts across other academic disciplines by examining their concepts, methods, and presuppositions.
Philosophy (PHIL)
PHIL 151. Philosophical Dimensions of Personal Decisions
Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions.

PHIL 152. Philosophy of Human Nature
Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions.

A study of philosophical conceptions of human nature and its uniqueness, and of their implications for morality and human knowledge.

PHIL 153. Philosophy and the Arts
Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions.

PHIL 154. Science Fiction and Philosophy
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course explores a variety of philosophical topics through appeal to thought experiments from important works of science fiction.

PHIL 155. The Nature of Science
Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 158. Philosophy and Narrative
Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. Students are strongly advised not to take more than two Philosophy Introductions.

PHIL 160. Moral Principles and Problems
(4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course introduces students to moral philosophy and its application to the real world. Lectures introduce the fundamental concepts of morality, as well as the methods of philosophical inquiry and the major historical and contemporary moral theories. Sections are designed to enable students to apply moral philosophy to concrete ethical problems in specific areas of current interest.

PHIL 162. The University of Michigan: A Moral Institution?
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course examines moral dimensions of the University and its faculty, students, and staff in their roles as citizens of an academic community by applying classic moral theories to ethical issues arising in higher education, such as academic freedom, plagiarism, divestment, and affirmative action.

PHIL 180. Introductory Logic
(3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit. Credit is granted for only one of PHIL 180 or 201. F, W, Su.

This is a combination of formal and "informal" logic. It covers diagramming argument structures, fallacy theory, Mill's methods, intensional vs. extensional definitions, syllogistic logic, and propositional logic.

PHIL 181. Philosophical Issues: An Introduction
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 182, 202, 231, 232, 234, or 297. F, W, Sp, Su.

PHIL 196. First Year Seminar
Enrollment restricted to first-year students, including those with sophomore standing. (3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 202. Introduction to Philosophy
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 231, 232, 234, or 297.

PHIL 224. Global Justice
(4; 2 in the half-term). (ID). May not be repeated for credit.

This interdisciplinary course on global justice integrates approaches from political philosophy and political economy. Foundations of development economics and theories of global justice are introduced and applied to specific issues such as immigration, free trade, and sweatshops.

PHIL 230 / ASIAN 230 / RELIGION 230. Introduction to Buddhism
(4). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 232. Problems of Philosophy
(4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 234, or 297.

PHIL 234. Introduction to Philosophy: Types of Philosophy
(4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 232, or 297.

PHIL 240 / ENVIRON 240. Environmental Ethics: Philosophical Underpinnings
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course introduces students to environmental ethics, which concerns the value and moral status of the environment and its nonhuman elements. Topics may include theories about which parts of nature have intrinsic value, duties to future generations, the significance of wilderness, sustainability, and environmental policy and economics.

PHIL 262 / RELIGION 262. Introduction to the Philosophy of Religion
(4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course covers, among other topics: traditional arguments for the existence of the God of the world's major monotheistic religions; the problem of evil; the relation of religion and morality; and the question of religious tolerance.

PHIL 286. Second Year Seminar in Philosophy
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

An intensive introduction to philosophy in small group format for second year students. Topics will vary from term to term.

PHIL 296. Honors Introduction to Logic
Honors students or permission of instructor. (3; 2 in the half-term). (MSA). (BS). (QR/1). May not be repeated for credit. Credit is granted for only one of PHIL 296 or 303.

An introduction to the study of modern formal logic, with attention to its mathematical development and to its philosophical foundations and applications.

PHIL 297. Honors Introduction to Philosophy
Honors students or permission of instructor. (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 181, 182, 202, 231, 232, or 234.

PHIL 303. Introduction to Symbolic Logic
(4; 3 - 4 in the half-term). (MSA). (BS). (QR/1). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 296 or 414. F, W, Sp.

An introduction to formal logic with emphasis on truth-functional languages and monadic predicate logic with identity. The course will cover the metatheory of truth-functional logic in detail, and also basic concepts of the proof theory and model theory for first-order languages.

PHIL 305. Introduction to Formal Philosophical Methods
(4; 3 in the half-term). (MSA). (BS). (QR/1). May not be repeated for credit.

This course introduces formal techniques widely used across subfields of analytic philosophy. Philosophical applications of these techniques are discussed.

PHIL 320. The World-View of Modern Science
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 322. The Methods of Science
(3; 2 in the half-term). (ID). May not be repeated for credit.

This course is an introduction to the philosophy of science intended for sophomores and juniors. It will focus on "epistemological" issues that arise in science: the nature of the experimental method, the limits of observation, inductive inference, and statistical reasoning. Points will be illustrated using examples from the history of science, particularly astronomy and astrophysics.

PHIL 331 / ASIAN 331 / RELIGION 331. Introduction to Indian Philosophy
One introductory course on Hinduism or Buddhism. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

This course will cover major transitions in philosophical thinking in ancient and classical India. It will cover the traditions represented by the Upanishads, Jainism and Buddhism, the Bhagavad-Gita, and the various schools of classical Hindu Darshanas.

PHIL 334. Post-Biblical Jewish Philosophy
(3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 340. Minds and Machines
(4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course explores theories of the human mind and their relation to models of computation. As an introduction to the foundations of cognitive science, it draws material from Philosophy, Psychology, and Computer Science, especially Artificial Intelligence.

PHIL 345. Language and Mind
One philosophy course with at least a C-. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course studies the structure of language, the psychological mechanisms underlying language, the nature of meaning, and the relations among language, thought, and the world.

PHIL 355. Contemporary Moral Problems
(4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). (R&E). May not be repeated for credit. No credit granted to those who have completed or are enrolled in PHIL 455.

The purpose of this course is to explore the moral issues confronting us in our daily lives and in our special disciplines. The topics discussed may include abortion, sex and sexual perversion, drugs, death and suicide, civil disobedience, punishment, pacifism, war, problems in medical ethics (eugenics, euthanasia, sanctity of life, organ transplants, defining death), environmental ethics, and the ethics of scientific research.

PHIL 356. Issues in Bioethics
No prerequisites; one philosophy introduction is recommended. (4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

An examination of various ethical issues having to do with biology, medicine, and human and animal life in general, such as abortion, euthanasia, the idea of the rights of animals, medical care and the rights and obligations involved in it.

PHIL 359. Law and Philosophy
(4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). (R&E). May not be repeated for credit.

A philosophical analysis of legal institutions. Topics include: the nature of law, the source of legal authority, legal interpretation, equality and discrimination, democracy and voting rights, property rights and distributive justice, social control and liberty, the justification of punishment, and criminal responsibility.

PHIL 361. Ethics
One philosophy course with at least a C-. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. F.

An introduction to fundamental issues in moral philosophy.

PHIL 366. Introduction to Political Philosophy
One philosophy course with at least C-. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This is a historical introduction to political philosophy, which will concentrate on classic texts in the period from the Renaissance to the Enlightenment.

PHIL 371. Phenomenology and Existential Philosophy
PHIL 181, 196, 202, 232, 234, or 297 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better). (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

Survey of post-1800 continental philosophy, with an emphasis on existentialism and phenomenology. Readings from Kierkegaard, Dostoyevsky, Nietzsche, Kafka, Hussert, Heidegger, Jaspers, Sartre, Merleu-Poney. Most reading will be taken from philosophical texts rather than literary ones.

PHIL 375. Nietzsche's Philosophical Thought
(3; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

An in-depth critical study of the philosophical writings of Friedrich Nietzsche and their impact on subsequent philosophical thinking.

PHIL 376 / ENVIRON 376. Environmental Ethics-Living Well with Nature
(3). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course explores what we do and why we do what we do to the world around us. Without ignoring the theoretical, this course will focus on ethics as it bears on practical, everyday things: using energy, eating food, building houses, flying to far-away destinations, hiking in wild places, watching birds.... Our effects are far reaching: climate change, industrial agriculture and CAFOs, pollution and ecological restoration, biodiversity and species extinctions, wilderness, genetic engineering of plants and animals. We will ask "what is a good way to live in nature?"

PHIL 381. Science and Objectivity
One Philosophy course completed with a minimum grade of C- or better. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

This course explores central philosophical questions concerning knowledge and reality as they arise in philosophy of science. Topics may include: causation, explanation, conceptual change and scientific revolutions, knowledge of the unobservable, the objectivity of scientific knowledge.

PHIL 383. Knowledge and Reality
One Philosophy course (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better). (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 3 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit.

An introduction to contemporary epistemology and metaphysics through an examination of such central topics as skepticism and the possibility of knowledge, the structure of epistemic justification, perceptions as a source of knowledge of the world, a prior knowledge, the persistence of persons and objects, the nature of causality, and the modes of existence.

PHIL 388 / CLCIV 388. History of Philosophy: Ancient
One philosophy course with a grade of at least a C-. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) Knowledge of Greek or Latin is not required. (4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. Taught in English. F.

Western philosophy from its historical beginning through the Hellenistic period and including the pre-Socratics, Plato, Aristotle, Epicurus, Stoicism, and Scepticism.

PHIL 389. History of Philosophy: Seventeenth and Eighteenth Centuries
One philosophy course with at least a C-. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (4; 2 in the half-term). (HU). May not be repeated for credit. W.

The 17th and 18th centuries are together an important formative period in modern Western philosophy. Writings of most or all of the following are studied: Descartes, Spinoza, Leibniz, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, and Kant. The course is planned with the needs of philosophy majors in mind and focuses on metaphysical and epistemological issues. There may be some attention to the moral philosophy of the period.

PHIL 399. Independent Study
Consent of instructor required. One philosophy introduction and permission of instructor. (1 - 4). (INDEPENDENT). May be elected twice for credit. F, W, Sp.

PHIL 401. Undergraduate Honors Seminar
Open to Honors concentrators in Philosophy and others by permission of instructor. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit. Continuing Course. Y grade can be reported at end of the first-term to indicate work in progress. At the end of the second term, the final grade is posted for both term's elections. F.

This seminar is designed to prepare students for writing an Honors thesis in Winter term. Students will choose a thesis topic and select the texts they plan to read. These form the basis of their written assignments and related class presentations, culminating in a thesis prospectus and chapter as the foundation for PHIL 499, the thesis-writing course.

PHIL 402. Undergraduate Seminar in Philosophy
Two 300-level Philosophy courses. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

A discussion of selected topics of contemporary philosophical interest within a seminar format. Students write papers for presentation and discussion in class.

PHIL 405. Philosophy of Plato
One philosophy course (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better). (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

A systematic study of Plato's philosophy.

PHIL 408 / ECON 408. Philosophy and Economics
ECON 401 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better). (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3). May not be repeated for credit. Rackham credit requires additional work.

This course explores several conceptually challenging philosophical issues in and about economics including questions about the scientific status of economics, puzzles arising within economic theory (especially concerning the notion of rationality), and matters concerning the relation between economic theories and fundamentals normative questions of economic policy.

PHIL 409. Philosophy of Language
PHIL 296, 303, or 414. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

A consideration of basic concepts used by philosophers and linguists in analyzing language, and of fundamental problems concerning language and its place in human activity. Among the topics to be considered in one or another year will be some of the following: meaning, reference, synonymy, analyticity, speech sets, ambiguity, metaphor, truth and logical truth, and the relation of language, thought, and culture.

PHIL 413. Formal Philosophical Methods
Satisfaction of QR/1 with either 2nd semester calculus, an advanced course in logic, a course in statistics above STATS 265, or a course in economics. (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

This course surveys the formal tools used in contemporary philosophy. It covers elements of propositional and quantified modal logic, formal semantics, counterfactuals, probability theory, and decision theory. Each class begins with an introduction to formal material and ends with a contemporary philosophical paper that presupposes that material.

PHIL 414. Mathematical Logic
One PHIL or MATH course. (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). (QR/1). May not be repeated for credit. F.

This course is an advanced introduction to symbolic logic, intended to provide a foundation for understanding current research in philosophical logic and related areas of cognitive science.

PHIL 416. Modal Logic
PHIL 414 or permission of instructor. (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 420. Philosophy of Science
One course in Philosophy or Science at the 300 level or higher with a grade of C- or better; or graduate standing. (3). (BS). May not be repeated for credit. W.

The nature of science, scientific explanation, scientific laws and theories, theoretical concepts, and reductionism - all with special reference to the natural sciences.

PHIL 422. Philosophy of Physics
PHIL 180, 181, 196, 201, 202, 232, 234, 296, or 297 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); or graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

A philosophical examination of the foundation problems of some areas of physical theory such as the concepts of statistical mechanics, the nature of basic laws of dynamics or the problem of measurement in quantum mechanics.

PHIL 423. Problems of Space and Time
One logic introduction and either one other philosophy course or 12 credits of science. (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 424. Philosophy of Quantum Mechanics
One course is Philosophy and one in Mathematics or Physics. (3; 2 in the half-term). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

An introduction to the philosophy for quantum mechanics, focusing on quantum non-locality and the measurement problem ("Schrodinger cat paradox"). While some background in physics would be useful for this course, it is not essential. Relevant formalisms are introduced along with the philosophical questions they help to frame.

PHIL 425. Philosophy of Biology
One course in Philosophy or Biology. (3). (BS). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 429. Ethical Analysis
PHIL 361 or 366, (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); OR Graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

This course discusses questions about the nature, object, forms, basis, and justifications of morality and about the relation of morality to the good life.

PHIL 430. Topics in Ethics
PHIL 361 or 366, (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); or Graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May be repeated for a maximum of 6 credits.

PHIL 441. Social Philosophy
PHIL 361 OR 366 (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better), OR Graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

This course analyzes the fundamental problems of social philosophy, with special attention to the way in which theory may function as a guide to specific policies.

PHIL 442. Topics in Political Philosophy
PHIL 361, 366 or 367, (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better); OR Graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

Taking one of the following ideas as a central theme, this course examines fundamental philosophic issues related to human rights, liberty, democracy, justice, or alienation.

PHIL 443. Foundations of Rational Choice Theory
Two courses in Philosophy, Economics, or Psychology (or some combination thereof) and satisfaction of the Quantitative Reasoning requirement; or permission of instructor. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 450. Philosophy of Cognition
Two courses in Philosophy. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 460. Medieval Philosophy
One philosophy introduction. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

A survey of medieval philosophers in the Western tradition, covering figures such as Augustine, Boethius, Anselm, Maimonides, Averroes, Thomas Aquinas, Duns Scotus and William Ockham. The readings may be oriented around a theme, such as the problem of evil, free will, divine foreknowledge, proofs for God's existence, and universals.

PHIL 463. Topics in the History of Philosophy
One Philosophy course (completed with a minimum grade of C- or better). (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) PHIL 388 or 389, or permission of instructor. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

An intensive critical study of selected texts and issues from the history of Western philosophy, dealing with material that is not usually covered in the department's regular basic offerings in the history of philosophy.

PHIL 466. Topics in Continental Philosophy
One of PHIL 371, 375, 385, or 389 or permission of instructor. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 467. The Enlightenment and Skepticism
One Philosophy course or graduate standing. (Prerequisites enforced at registration.) (3). May not be repeated for credit.

An introduction to the philosophy of the Enlightenment, considering its views on reason, skepticism, the critique of religion, theories of human nature, science, and politics. Attention will also be paid to counter-Enlightenment thinkers. Readings will focus on original works but also include contemporary commentaries.

PHIL 477. Theory of Knowledge
PHIL 345 or 383. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

A philosophical examination of problems concerning the nature and possibility of human knowledge. Topics may include the definition of knowledge, skepticism, sense-perception and the external world, memory and knowledge of the past, knowledge of necessary truth, conditions of justified belief, and the objectivity of knowledge.

PHIL 480. Philosophy of Religion
One introduction to Philosophy. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 481. Metaphysics
PHIL 345 or 383. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

An examination of some of the central problems in metaphysics such as appearance and reality, time, universals and particulars, causality and freedom, and the nature of metaphysical systems.

PHIL 482. Philosophy of Mind
PHIL 345 or 383. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

Analysis of mental concepts such as consciousness, perception, thinking, etc. Consideration of philosophical problems concerning the mind such as personal identity, the relation of mind and body, our knowledge of other minds. Attention will be given to the bearing of psychology on these topics.

PHIL 486 / WOMENSTD 486. Topics in Feminist Philosophy
Two courses in either Philosophy or Women's Studies or permission of instructor. (3). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 487. Wittgenstein
One philosophy introduction and another course in Philosophy or permission of instructor. (3; 2 in the half-term). May not be repeated for credit.

PHIL 498. Senior Honors in Philosophy
Consent of instructor required. Permission of department. (3; 2 in the half-term). (INDEPENDENT). May not be repeated for credit. Continuing Course. Y grade can be reported at end of the first-term to indicate work in progress. At the end of the second term of PHIL 499, the final grade is posted for both term's elections. W, Su.

PHIL 499. Senior Honors in Philosophy
Consent of instructor required. Permission of department. (3; 2 in the half-term). (INDEPENDENT). May not be repeated for credit.

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