Teaching

I teach courses in ethics, philosophy of art, and moral psychology.

In Spring 2015 I’m teaching APHI 114 Morals and Society and APHI 525 Contemporary Ethical Theory (a graduate seminar).  Below are the course descriptions from the course catalogue.

 

APHPI 114 | Morals and Society

In this course we will study a number of problems at the intersection of ethics and psychology. In the first unit we ask what the phenomenology of doxastic deliberation (deliberation about what to believe) can tell us about the nature of belief and about the relationship between practical and theoretical deliberation. In Unit two we shift to the topic of virtue and character. We will ask such questions as: What does it mean to have or lack a character? What role does a capacity for consistency play in having a character? Does empirical psychology show that we do not have a capacity for consistency? In unit three we will look at competing theories of trust, and ask whether it a person must have character in order to be worthy of trust. Pertaining to moral responsibility, we will ask such questions as: When is it appropriate to praise or blame people or to hold them responsible for what they have done? Is one responsible for an action even if one couldn’t have done anything else? Can one be praised or blamed for doing something that resulted largely from luck? What is it to do something of one’s own free will? What is it to have a will that isn’t free?   In the final unit we will discuss new work by Jesse Prinz and Joshua Greene on the relationship between emotional gut responses and moral evaluation.

 

APHPI 652 | Moral Psychology

In this course we will study a number of problems at the intersection of ethics and psychology. In the first unit we ask what the phenomenology of doxastic deliberation (deliberation about what to believe) can tell us about the nature of belief and about the relationship between practical and theoretical deliberation. In Unit two we shift to the topic of virtue and character. We will ask such questions as: What does it mean to have or lack a character? What role does a capacity for consistency play in having a character? Does empirical psychology show that we do not have a capacity for consistency? In unit three we will look at competing theories of trust, and ask whether it a person must have character in order to be worthy of trust. Pertaining to moral responsibility, we will ask such questions as: When is it appropriate to praise or blame people or to hold them responsible for what they have done? Is one responsible for an action even if one couldn’t have done anything else? Can one be praised or blamed for doing something that resulted largely from luck? What is it to do something of one’s own free will? What is it to have a will that isn’t free?   In the final unit we will discuss new work by Jesse Prinz and Joshua Greene on the relationship between emotional gut responses and moral evaluation.

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