Syllabus for Moral Issues

Syllabus for Moral Issues - San Jose State University...

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1 San Jose State University College of Humanities and the Arts/Philosophy Philosophy 61: Moral Issues Spring 2010 Instructor: Albert J. Filice Office Location: Faculty Offices 233 E-mail: ajoseph20x@yahoo.com Office Hours: M 10:30-11:30 a.m. Class Days/Time: MW 9:00-10:15 a.m. Classroom: BBC 323 Office hours: Please drop by my office to discuss anything relevant to the course. If you are unable to come to my office during my office hours, we can schedule an appointment. Required Text : John Arthur and Steven Scalet, eds., Morality and Moral Controversies . Eighth Edition. Recommended Text : Anthony Weston. A Rulebook for Arguments . Third edition. Course Description : In this course, after a brief introduction to philosophy and ethics—namely, the role of religion in ethics, and some basic ethical theories—we will critically examine different contemporary moral issues. We shall apply ethical theories and assess the arguments to these issues, which we will examine in the following order: (1) War, (2) The Death Penalty, (3) Vegetarianism and the Environment, (4) Abortion, (5) Euthanasia, (6) Free Speech, (7) Pornography, (8) Drug Laws, (9) Affirmative Action, and (10) Personal Relationships (See Reading List below). Some Learning Objectives : To provide you with an understanding of the basic moral issues and arguments. This course should create an enhanced awareness if not develop and deepen your views on these issues. To provide a general introduction to moral argument and moral theory. The course will help you understand the way in which rational argumentation is used in morality and to realize the scope and limits of such arguments. It should also help you to appreciate what moral theory is and the way in which it is relevant to practical issues. In order to develop your views on these issues, it is important to understand the difference between good and bad arguments, and to have the ability to critically and carefully analyze the arguments of others. Thus, this course will not only help you develop your critical thinking and writing skills but should also help you write clearly organized, focused and effective essays.
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2 This course does not aim to provide simple answers to questions such as, ―Is abortion morally permissible?‖ or ―Is legalizing marijuana good?‖ The course will not preach a set of ―correct‖ views. Instead, what is important is that you attempt to carefully consider and critically examine the arguments with intellectual honesty and to see whether they are compatible with your own convictions. EXPECTATIONS: I expect you to (1) Do the work (e.g., the readings, summaries, and papers) honestly and promptly, (2) Come to class, (3) Be on time, (4) Actively participate, (5) Ask a question whenever something is confusing or unclear, (6) Respect each other, (7) Learn and, (8) Have fun!
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Syllabus for Moral Issues - San Jose State University...

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