Fall 2011 Schedule of Courses

PHILOSOPHY 231: CONTEMPORARY MORAL ISSUES

MONDAY, WEDNESDAY, FRIDAY
SECTION 1, 9:00 – 9:50 A.M.
SECTION 2, 10:00 – 10:50 A.M.
SECTION 3, 12:00 – 12:50 P.M.
SECTION 4, 1:00 – 1:50 P.M.

INSTRUCTOR ROBERT FARLEY

REQUIRED TEXTS
Russ Shafer-Landau, The Fundamentals of Ethics, 2nd edition
Russ Shafer-Landau, The Ethical Life, 2nd edition
Cohen & Wellman, Contemporary Debates in Applied Ethics, 1st edition

COURSE CONTENT
We will spend the first half of the course working through the most prominent first-order ethical theories in the history of Western Philosophy. We will cover the following views: Divine Command Theory, Natural Law, Ethical Egoism, Utilitarianism, Kantian Deontology, Rossian Deontology, and Social Contract Theory. During this portion we will also briefly consider several key issues in meta-ethics. We will spend the next half of the course introducing and discussing topics in applied ethics. Each week will be devoted to a new topic. We will cover abortion, pornography, torture, capital punishment, animal rights, and topics related to cloning and human enhancement.

COURSE FORMAT
Students will be evaluated by means of weekly quizzes, two essays, and an exam. Each element of evaluation will count for 1/4th of the final grade.