Experience and Reality (PHIL 230.001)

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Instructor: Christian Loew. This course meets on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays from 11:00 – 11:50 a.m. in Peabody 216.

In this class, we will discuss the nature of reality and our place in it. We will examine topics such as the nature of space and time, possibility and necessity, laws of nature and the structure of ordinary objects. These issues matter to how we should think of our lives and who we are. Getting clear about them will help us answer question such as: What kinds of things are we? What makes us the same person over time? Are we able to make free and meaningful choices, or are our actions dictated by the laws of nature? Is time travel possible? Is the present more real than the past and the future?

The goals of the class are (i) to introduce contemporary debates in metaphysics such as time, free will, personal identity, constitution and modality; (ii) improve writing, reading and general argumentation skills; (iii) enrich our understanding of the world and our place in it.

Required Text: “Riddles of Existence: A Guided Tour of Metaphysics” by Earl Conee and Theodore Sider

Christian Loew’s webpage