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Philosophy

Minors

Philosophy is the study of the fundamental nature of knowledge, reality and existence. Its own content and logic express the reason implicit in the actual worlds of history, religion, art, science and politics. Philosophy courses at Grenfell Campus treat philosophy as a way of thinking that tells us truths about humanity and the universe we live in, looking to the history of philosophy to reveal the rational principles of western civilization. 

Requirements

Students completing a minor in philosophy must complete 24 credit hours in the following courses:​

  • 1002 Introduction to Philosophy (same as the former PHIL 1200) is a general introduction to the study of Philosophy both as a contemporary intellectual discipline and as a body of knowledge. It introduces philosophy's forms of enquiry, the nature of its concepts, and its fields (epistemology, logic, metaphysics, aesthetics, ethics, and political philosophy) by way of the critical study of primary works by major philosophers. Authors may include Plato, Aristotle, Aquinas, Descartes, Hume, Kant, Nietzsche, de Beauvoir, Arendt. CR: the former PHIL 1200
  • 1005 Philosophy of Human Nature (same as the former PHIL 1000 and the former PHIL 1600) is an approach to philosophical thinking by way of analysis and critique of theories of human nature, classical and modern, and the world views associated with them. This course is of particular value to students interested in the Social Sciences and Humanities. CR: the former PHIL 1000, the former PHIL 1600
  • 2030 Logic (same as the former PHIL 2210) aims to improve the student's ability to formulate and evaluate arguments. At the end of the course, the student will have a thorough understanding of the essentials of argument, the rules of valid inference, and ways of proving the validity of good arguments and the invalidity of bad arguments. Open in any year to all students desiring acquaintance with basic logical skills. All sections of this course follow both Writing Course and Quantitative Reasoning Course Guidelines available at www.mun.ca/hss/qr. CR: the former PHIL 2210
  • 2100 Health Ethics (same as the former PHIL 2551) examines concepts of health and illness and their ethical implications. CR: the former PHIL 2551
  • 2130 Environmental Ethics (same as the former PHIL 2561, the former PHIL 2809) is a philosophical approach to issues in ecology. Topics may include historical and contemporary concepts of nature, technology, the ethical status of animals and the non-human, the application of traditional ethical paradigms to environmental issues, and the future of humanity in an age of climate change, ballooning human population, disappearing wilderness, and dwindling resources.

Nine additional credit hours in philosophy, of which at least three credit hours must be at the 3000- or 4000-level. Here are some regularly offered courses for the philosophy minor:

  • 2050 Social and Political Philosophy is concerned with the social and political institutions and practices by which human life is organized. Historical and/or contemporary texts will be engaged to explore some of the following issues: What is the nature of political authority? What is the nature of freedom? What material and social conditions must be met in order for societies to be just? How are existing societies unjust, and how should that injustice be addressed? CR: the former PHIL 3400
  • 2070 Philosophy of Religion (same as Religious Studies 2070) examines the philosophical aspects of religious belief, religious language, and theology. Topics may include: the distinction and relation between reason and faith, the existence of God, the meaning of human existence, the problem of evil, and the religious foundations of moral action. CR: the former PHIL 3500, Religious Studies 2070, the former Religious Studies 3500
  • 2201 History of Ancient Philosophy (same as Classics 2701, the former PHIL 2701) introduces students to the origins of philosophy in the West. Topics include cosmology, metaphysics, physics, ethics, God, and the ancient ideal of philosophy as a 'way of life.' We will examine the texts and fragments of the most influential and foundational philosophers of the ancient world, focusing primarily on the thought of Plato and Aristotle.
  • 2215 History of Modern Philosophy (same as the former PHIL 2702) is a survey of the development of Western philosophy since the 17th century until the late 18th century. Topics may include the existence of God, whether nature is determined and if there is free will, the rise of early modern science, and the debates over rationalism and empiricism. CR: the former PHIL 2702
  • 2310 Philosophy and Literature engages philosophically with different literary forms such as poetry, drama, and fiction. Possible topics include the use of literary works to express philosophical ideas, the nature of literary expression, and different traditions of literary criticism and interpretation. Course readings will comprise both literature and philosophy. CR: the former PHIL 3610
  • 2340 Philosophy of Film (same as the former PHIL 2581) introduces some of the central philosophers, topics, and themes in the philosophy of film. Topics and themes include: the nature of film image, the relationship between film and "reality", the social/ political role and function of film, and the nature and value of the documentary. The course will also consider the representation of broader philosophical ideas in film. A film or films will accompany each section. CR: the former PHIL 2581
  • 3010 Plato (same as the former PHIL 3730) examines Plato's philosophy from selections representing the Socratic, transitional, eidetic, and stoichiological dialogues, as well as Plato's philosophy of the concrete. Plato's thought will be examined as a development of ideas and problems raised in Pre-Socratic philosophy, and the development of his own philosophy will be traced throughout a selection of his writings.CR: the former PHIL 3730. PR: 6 credit hours in Philosophy courses at the 1000 or 2000 level
  • 3430 Existentialism (same as the former PHIL 3940) is a philosophical tradition dedicated to thinking through the experience of human freedom and to casting doubt on conventional answers to the question of how we should live. Human beings are free to define themselves, according to existentialism, but with that freedom comes a forbidding challenge: the responsibility to define themselves, without any easy answers to the question of how. This course will address some of the central figures associated with existentialism. Authors may include Nietzsche, Kierkegaard, Sartre, de Beauvoir, and Camus. CR: the former PHIL 3940, the former PHIL 3980. PR: 6 credit hours in Philosophy courses at the 1000 or 2000 level

Office of Student Recruitment

Grenfell Campus, Memorial University of Newfoundland
20 University Drive, Corner Brook, NL
A2H 5G4, Canada

Office:
Phone: (709) 637-6269
Email: study@grenfell.mun.ca