We are so proud of our alumni!
Check out our latest alumni spotlight: Ted Preston (MA, class of 2000)
German Idealism in Fall 2018, taught by Kourosh Alizadeh. Check out this course description:
Few philosophers in history can claim to have had as much influence on their contemporaries as Immanuel Kant. When he released is groundbreaking book The Critique of Pure Reason in 1781, it was not long before the entire German-speaking philosophical world was abuzz with activity. Other philosophers aimed to build on his ideas or resolve what they saw as weaknesses in his position, a...nd the result was an entire philosophical tradition: German Idealism. In this class we will first look at Kant as the founder of this tradition, and then study the works of Fichte, Schelling, and Hegel, looking at how they developed on Kant's ideas to produce radically new ways of thinking about the world. Their work is some of the most difficult but also most philosophically rich in the discipline, full of interesting insights at the intersection of epistemology and metaphysics, logic and ethics. In this class we will achieve a solid working knowledge of this fascinating period in the History of Philosophy. No previous study of Kant is required.
Check it out: The new Philosophical Gourmet Report section on MA programs recognizes CSU Long Beach among the top departments worth considering. We are proud of this recognition!
Hey grad students ~ have you signed up for Fall 2018 yet? Here is the course description for PHIL 610 taught by Max Rosenkrantz. If you have already taken PHIL 610 for credit, contact Prof. Rosenkrantz if you want to see about taking it again.
Course Description: We will study the three great hinge figures in the history of philosophy: Plato, who introduces the picture that controls subsequent philosophical reflection; Descartes, who makes the first significant revision to that picture; and Frege, who tweaks the picture yet again.
Enrollment for Fall 2018 has begun! Check out this course description for PHIL 403: Medical Ethics taught by Patrick Dieveney:
In this course, we will be exploring a wide range of issues in contemporary biomedical ethics. Topics discussed in the course include ethical issues concerning the professional-patient relationship, human and animal research, physician-assisted suicide, abortion and embryonic stem-cell research, and social justice and health-care policy. The primary ...goal in the course is to introduce students to various ethical issues in the bio-medical sciences, and equip them with the analytical tools necessary to appreciate the various positions and arguments. In the process, students will also gain an understanding of some of the historically prominent theories in normative ethics, e.g., Virtue Ethics, Kantian Ethics, Utilitarianism. The course should prove beneficial to those for whom this may be their only philosophy course, and it will provide a good background for those who wish to pursue further studies in philosophy.
Our Spring 2018 Commencement Awards have been announced: http://www.cla.csulb.edu/departments/philosophy/2046-2/
Congrats to all of this year's students!
Applied Ethics Forum coming up: Eden Lin (Ohio State), "Should We Respect the Past Desires of People With Dementia?"
4/26, 3:30-5:00, LA1 300
Abstract: Consider a person with dementia who has a medical condition that requires a certain kind of treatment. Suppose that, although she now has no objection to undergoing such treatment, before she had dementia, she desired not to undergo such treatment were she ever to have dementia. Should we respect this person’s past desire not ...to undergo the treatment? The answer to this question will likely depend in part on the answer to a further question: would our respecting this past desire benefit this person (i.e., increase her well-being)? I will explore how different theories of well-being might answer this question, with an emphasis on the implications of desire-satisfaction theories of well-being.
Enrollment for Fall 2018 has already started! If you are a current student, check out this description of PHIL 416: Pragmatism taught by Alexander Klein and sign up for the course!
In 1898, William James ignited a philosophical bomb by publishing a talk he had delivered at UC Berkeley earlier that summer. “Philosophical Conceptions and Practical Results” introduced the world to pragmatism, a philosophical doctrine that had at its heart a curious account of meaning. James cre...dited his old friend Charles S. Peirce with the original formulation of this account. “Consider what effects, which might conceivably have practical bearings, we conceive the object of our conception to have,” Peirce had written. “Then, our conception of these effects is the whole of our conception of the object.” This seemingly arcane pronouncement sparked outrage that is hard to overstate. One commentator warned of pragmatism’s dark “moral consequences,” calling the view “a degrading sophistry.” Others derided it as American capitalism run amok. Why all the hellfire?
One source of ire is that pragmatists often deployed their account of meaning to offer radical analyses of familiar concepts like truth, goodness, god, and beauty. For instance the pragmatic meaning of “truth,” according to a standard analysis, is just whatever consensus scientific inquiry would produce were it to be pursued as far as possible. This sort of account rejects any notion of Truth that transcends real human inquiry, a rejection that was (and remains) a source of the scorn to which pragmatism has long been subject.
In this class we will seek charitably to unpack the philosophical dimensions of golden-era pragmatism, focusing on the works of Peirce, James, and Dewey. Both Peirce and James were trained scientists, and they saw pragmatism as an application of good scientific methodology to philosophy. As such, we will pay special attention to the pragmatists’ philosophy of science, and to the general scientific milieu out of which their philosophy grew. For instance, James was a pioneer of experimental psychology, and we will see how some of his work on perception informs his mature pragmatism. We will also study some of the pragmatists’ ground-breaking and heretical writings on ethics and religion, both issues of crucial importance for this movement as well. Finally, we may also consider some works by related figures like Ernst Mach, William Clifford, Herbert Spencer, W. E. B. DuBois, Jane Addams, and others.
Philosophers! We will be having our first meeting THIS WEDNESDAY at 2 in LA4 Room 204 (this meeting location may change, so keep your eyes peeled for any announ...cements)
I hope to use this time to get to know everyone
Richard Link will also be running through his presentation for the CSULB Student Research Competition!
Hope to see you all there, and for those that cannot make it to Wednesday, let me know in the comments or on discord what afternoons/evenings you would be free for informal Nugget meetups
Some great advice from Professor Lascano!
Here's some public philosophy by CSULB's Alex Klein: https://qz.com/…/donald-trump-roy-moore-sexual-misconduct-…/
Check it out!
We've got some great stuff happening this week. On Friday, Dec. 1, in AS 122 we will have events all day:
12:00-1:00, Matt McCormick (CSU Sacramento), "From Machine Consciousness to the Singularity"
2:00-2:30, Jacee Cantler (CSULB Philosophy Honors Student), "The Narrative View of the Self and the History of Women in Philosophy"
2:30-3:00, Monica Casares (CSULB Philosophy Honors Student), "Deliberation and Normativity"...
3:20, Nicholas Jolley (UC Irvine), "Malebranche and Descartes on the Existence of Bodies"
5:00, Matt McCormick (CSU Sacramento), "Proving the Negative: Justifying Atheism"
Good philosophy and snacks throughout the day. Dinner for participants. Please join us and bring a friend!
Here are links with abstracts for all the talks:
Great news for our friends at Orange Coast College!
Don't miss our first Philosophy speaker of the year! Eric Schliesser from University of Amsterdam on Sophie de Grouchy, Oct. 25, 3:30pm, CBA 122.