Topics in Metaphysics|
This year we will focus on the notions of possibility and necessity and their role in contemporary analytic metaphysics, possibly including one or more of the following areas: logic, mathematics, time, and causation. Our approach will be historical; we will consider the origins of the metaphysics of necessity in the attempts, in early analytic philosophy, to attain a conception of logic adequate to overthrow 19th century idealism and psychologism. Here in particular we will discuss Bertrand Russell's logic and C. I. Lewis's critique of it. We will see how, subsequent to Lewis, the technical development of the logic of modality eventually became, through Rudolf Carnap's project of reconstructing scientific rationality, an instrument for the revival of Leibniz's traditional metaphysics of possible worlds. If time permits we will discuss how this metaphysics functions in contemporary analytic philosophy.
||Gen Ed Area Dept:
|Course Format: Seminar||Grading Mode: Student Option|
||Prerequisites: [PHIL201 or COL359 or CCIV217] OR PHIL202
||Fulfills a Major Requirement for: (PHIL)(PHIL-Philosophy)(PHIL-Social Jus)
||Past Enrollment Probability: Not Available
|Major Readings: Wesleyan RJ Julia Bookstore
Classic and contemporary sources.
|Examination and Assignments: |
One seminar paper, and possibly also other assignments.
|Additional Requirements and/or Comments: |
This is an advanced seminar in philosophy, and so students will need to have a general background in the history of philosophy, which is why Phil 201 or 202 is required. Some knowledge of logic, such as acquired from Phil 231, Phil 290, or Math 243, would also be useful. Also some knowledge of philosophy of mind, language or science would be useful. This course will address some issues in the conceptual development of modal or intensional logic, so some knowledge of the content of Phil 291 is useful. I will advise students interested in the course but lacking the background in logic described above on some additional readings.
|Instructor(s): Shieh,Sanford Times: ...W... 07:00PM-09:50PM; Location: TBA|
|Total Enrollment Limit: 15||SR major: 5||JR major: 4|| || |
|Seats Available: 8||GRAD: 0||SR non-major: 4||JR non-major: 1||SO: 1||FR: X|
|Drop/Add Enrollment Requests|
|Total Submitted Requests: 0||1st Ranked: 0||2nd Ranked: 0||3rd Ranked: 0||4th Ranked: 0||Unranked: 0|