Philosophy 122

Fall 2014

Number Title Instructor Days/time Room
122 Theory of Knowledge Stroud TuTh 11-12:30 200 Wheeler

An upper-division course in the philosophical theory of knowledge. Not a general survey of the field, but an investigation of three fundamental epistemological questions about perceptual knowledge.

-How does what we have perceived give us knowledge of or reasonable belief in something we are not perceiving to be so at the moment?

-How does what we perceive at a particular time give us knowledge of or reasonable belief in something that is so at that very time?

-How does what each of us perceives give us knowledge of or reasonable belief in the thoughts, feelings, or attitudes of other people?

There are apparently indisputable ways of thinking of human knowledge and perception in philosophy that raise serious challenges to satisfyingly positive answers to these questions. The course will concentrate on the distinctively philosophical character of the epistemological problems and on how, if at all, perception, thought, belief, and knowledge must be understood to overcome the apparent obstacles to our self-understanding.

Two lecture-discussion classes and one mandatory discussion section each week. Students will be expected to write three five-page papers during the semester (one on each of the three topics) as well writing assigned in connection with discussion sections. Lectures and discussions will presuppose close reading of the material contained in a Philosophy 122 reader (available at the beginning of the semester) as well as supplementary reading suggested at different points during the semester.

Previously taught: FL13, SP13, FL11, FL10, FL09, FL07, SP07, FL05, FL04.