PHIL 401 A: Advanced Topics in Philosophy

Topic: Meaning in Life and Meaning in Death

Meeting Time: 
MW 10:30am - 12:20pm
* *
Professor Michael Blake
Michael Blake

Additional Details:

Many of us are in the habit of thinking that some lives are more meaningful than others.  Does the concept of a meaningful life play any important role – or might that concept be abandoned?  Does the meaning of a life describe how aspects of that life apparent to the one who leads it – or could its meaning only become apparent at its end, or even after that end?  And is there any relationship between the meaning of life and the badness of death?  If death is a bad thing, that is, does its badness emerge from a consideration of the meaning given to life – or is death’s badness to be found quite apart from abstract considerations such as meaningfulness?  These questions are discussed with reference to several contemporary philosophical authors – including, most prominently, Susan Wolf, Cheshire Calhoun, John Martin Fischer, R. Jay Wallace, Samuel Scheffler, and Galen Strawson. 

Phil honors students only! 

TEXT: Course materials will be made available on Canvas. 

Catalog Description: 
A study of philosophical topics at the advanced level. Topics vary.
GE Requirements: 
Individuals and Societies (I&S)
Last updated: 
October 23, 2020 - 9:15pm