PHIL 89.002 – FYS: Special Topics (Philosophy of Childhood)
Instructor: Steven Swartzer. This course meets TR 3:30 – 4:45 p.m. in CW 103.
This experiential education course provides a unique perspective on philosophical inquiry. Participants will examine the philosophy of childhood and participate in off-campus philosophy sessions with local youth about a range of topics, with an emphasis on ethics and values. We will use children’s literature, play, and other activities to generate guided conversations about important values—perhaps, including friendship, respect, fairness, gratitude, and justice. We will also discuss big and interesting questions, such as: What makes us who we are? and How can we know that we are not in a dream, right now? By helping train local youth how to engage in philosophical exploration, participants will take an active role in their own philosophical learning, thereby deepening their own understanding of philosophical issues, and gaining insights into the extent to which young people are capable of philosophical reflection and moral reasoning.