Course Descriptions

  • HNRS 1100 01 Honors Philosophical Inquiry MW 3:40 5:20 Baehr, Jason

    This course will provide an introduction to philosophy. It will focus on two main topics: reality and knowledge. It will address questions like: What ultimately exists? Only matter? Or do some non-physical things also exist? Are human persons purely physical? Or do they have a non-physical dimension? Is knowledge possible? If so, how? What does it look like to be a “good knower” in the 21st century? In our exploration of these and related questions, we’ll read work by both ancient and contemporary philosophers. In addition to providing you with an understanding of several classic philosophical problems and how these problems have been addressed across time, the course is also aimed at helping you develop the skills and dispositions necessary for thinking and learning well. Grades will be based on a combination of exams, papers, quizzes, and other short assignments.

    HNRS 1100 02 Honors Philosophical Inquiry TR 11:50 1:30 Wang, Robin

    This course is designed to introduce students to the various modes of philosophical inquiry and to the great philosophical questions that are relevant to a humanistic education in the Catholic intellectual tradition. More specifically, the aim of this course is to help students to acquire an understanding of fundamental metaphysical (the study of the nature of what is) and epistemological (the study of the nature and scope of human knowledge) questions in ancient philosophical texts from Greek and Daoist traditions. We will read classic texts such as Plato's Dialogues, Epictetus, Lucretius, Daodejing and Zhuangzi.  This course will assist students in acquiring the interpretive and evaluative skills necessary for assessing various answers to these fundamental questions, and to encourage them to develop a lifelong habit of philosophical self-reflection. 

    HNRS 1100 03 Honors Philosophical Inquiry MW 1:45 3:25 Kramer, Sina

    At the risk of parroting the understatement of the year, these are not normal times. We will tackle big questions, some of which speak to our current moment, such as: what is racism? What is race? How and why  do we define the boundaries of the human through the concept of race? What is the meaning of a plague – if indeed, a plague can have meaning? How do we make meaning in the face of mortality? We will also tackle big questions that seem take some distance from our current moment, questions such as: is the soul immortal? What is knowledge, and how is it possible? What is freedom? What is history, and what is it for? What is philosophy? Given the nature of philosophy as a practice, however, we may well find that these questions also speak to our current moment, or help to frame that space from which we can more clearly see our own times. Philosophy is, after all, a practice of sense making: its methods, its concepts, and the discipline it teaches, while born of the tumult of the world, help us to chart a space beyond the world from which to examine and understand it. The urgency of our own moment is met paradoxically with the urgency of philosophy. Now more than ever, we need the tools and the values of philosophy: to read and to write; to listen carefully and generously; to examine closely and to ask deeply; to distinguish sound argument from simple opinion; to imagine, to wonder, to think and to ponder; and to develop a passionate love for the truth and for wisdom.

    HNRS 1200 01 Honors Theological Inquiry MW 1:45 3:25 Swanson, Eric

    The Diverse Voices of American Buddhism 

    This course will have students critically examine the development of American Buddhism by focusing on how members of marginalized groups are responding to contemporary issues of race, representation, suffering, and liberation through the lens of the Buddhist teachings. By doing so, students are encouraged to reflect on how the Buddhist teachings continue to be reshaped by its communities of faith while also recognizing and celebrating the diversity of voices that constitute American Buddhism.  

    HNRS 1200 02 Honors Theological Inquiry TR 11:20 12:50 Hussain, Amir

    Comparative Theology

    The realities of religious diversity cannot be ignored. Increasingly, people live, work, and pray alongside persons of many faith traditions (including no faith tradition). It is therefore essential to learn how to negotiate this reality: theologically, ethically, and spiritually. This course will introduce honours students to the study of comparative theology. The first part of the course will be an introduction to comparative theology through the Christian tradition. The second part of the course will focus on the Muslim tradition, but will also include examples from the Jewish tradition.

    HNRS 2000-01, HNRS Colloq: Research & Exhibition, M 10:50 - 11:50 AM, Hawley Almstedt
    HNRS 2000-02, HNRS Colloq: Research & Exhibition, M 12:15 - 01:15 PM, Hawley Almstedt
    HNRS 2000-03, HNRS Colloq: Research & Exhibition, W 12:15 - 01:15 PM, Hawley Almstedt

    This course, required for all students of the University Honors Program, is an orientation to the practice of research and creative activity from a scholarly point of view. It introduces developing scholars and creative people to the methods, habits, assumptions, and culture of pursuing knowledge. This includes 1) the formulation by the student of a problem worthy of in-depth study, 2) the articulation of how that problem can be addressed, and 3) the public exhibition of the student's work. In short, the course introduces students to formal, mentored academic research and creative work.

    HNRS 2100 01 Honors Hist Analysis & Perspec MW 9:55 11:35 Drummond, Elizabeth
    HNRS 2100 02 Honors Hist Analysis & Perspec MW 1:45 3:25 Drummond, Elizabeth

    Complicating Race in European History

    The discipline of history has long been intertwined with European nation- and empire-building projects. Too often European history courses have rested on an assumption that Europe is a white and Christian space, thus marginalizing or even excluding altogether the experiences of Black, Asian, and Middle Eastern people in Europe, as well as of Jews, Muslims, and other Europeans who have been racialized as non-white at various points in history. In recent years, however, there has been much discussion of “decolonizing” the discipline, in particular of decentering whiteness and of integrating decolonial and anti-racist approaches to history. In Complicating Race in European History, we will take up this challenge. We will use an intersectional analytical framework to examine how white Europeans imagined and deployed race in the modern period, including how those uses changed over time and in different situations. We will also center the experiences of people who have often been excluded from dominant narratives of European history because of race (people of African, Asian, and Middle Eastern descent in Europe, both migrants and their European-born descents) or because they have often been racialized as non-white by white and Christian Europeans (Jews, Muslims, Romani, Eastern Europeans, Irish), as well as the dynamics between and among those populations. How does our understanding of European history change when we don’t take whiteness as a given, as the norm, and when we center those groups that have traditionally been pushed to the margins? We will look at Europe through a transnational lens, examining historical dynamics such as race, migration, citizenship, national identity, colonialism, Blackness, Jewishness, etc. throughout Europe, including both comparative analyses and discussions of how some of these dynamics transcend the borders of the nation-state (e.g., experiences of anti-Black racism or antisemitism).

    HNRS 2200 01 Hnrs Nature of Sci, Tech, Math TR 3:40 5:20 Hardy, David

    Brain, Mind, and Metrics

    This course can be summarized as brain, mind, and metrics. We will: (1) examine various techniques in the assessment of brain structure and function, with an emphasis on functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI), a technique that has transformed the field of cognitive neuroscience; (2) consider different conceptualizations of mind, historical and current; and (3) analyze, qualitatively and sometimes quantitatively (no background in statistics is required), associations between brain and mind, including the numerous attempts at bridging the seemingly categorical divide here. Along the way, we will discuss mind reading, decision making and free will, criminal behavior, responsibility, mental illness, and other meaty topics.

    HNRS 3000 01 HNRS Colloq: Edge What We Know F 2:00 4:00 Honors Leadership Team

    This course seeks to introduce you to the boundaries of knowledge and art within the fields of selected LMU professors…and how they crossed them. The course builds upon the prior Honors Colloquia (HNRS 1000 and 2000) and leads directly to the Honors Thesis (HNRS 5100). This colloquia is built around a series of curated public talks from LMU faculty. Each professor will talk about how and why an area captured their curiosity and interest, building on themes of purpose from Intro to Honors. As you did in Research & Exhibition, the speakers will then proceed to talk about how they identified the “edge” of that area and determined a way to move it forward. In so doing, they contributed to their field and took this “edge” further out for future scholars and creatives—something which we hope that you, too, will accomplish with your Honors Thesis. Your engagement with these professors will be captured in a class-produced podcast season with one episode devoted to each speaker.

    HNRS 3200 01, Honors Literary Analysis, TR 8:00 9:40 Younger, Kelly
    HNRS 3200 02, Honors Literary Analysis, TR 9:55 11:35 Younger, Kelly

    Fairy Tales carry widespread cultural messages about survival, growing up, fears and anxieties, morality and mortality, and about how humans attempt to make meaning in an uncertain world. This course examines fairy tales both vertically (how they originated and evolved) and horizontally (how they spread and keep spreading and to what extent they have roots in our unconscious minds). We will look closely at the constructions of both types of evaluation in HNRS 3200, using fairy tales as the focus for our literary analysis and critical writing. We will read modern adaptations of old stories, asking why, in this historical time when so many more realistic stories demand our attention, would a cultural obsession with fairy tales arise? 

     

     

    HNRS 4200 01, Beyond Good and Evil, TR 9:55 11:35 Mason, Joshua
    HNRS 4200 02, Beyond Good and Evil, TR 11:50 1:30 Mason, Joshua

    This course approaches three main issues: 1) the foundations and reality of moral values, 2) decision making about right and wrong, and 3) what to do about the world’s various problems. The first focus is on meta-ethics and the arguments among skeptics, relativists, and objectivists about the grounds of our ethical beliefs. Together, we will inquire into the nature and existence of values like “good” and “evil.” The second explores normative ethics and the arguments between virtue theory, deontology, utilitarianism, liberalism, care ethics, and others, over how to find out what is the right thing to do. These traditional methods help us inquire into how to make responsible moral judgments. The third will have you look at the news and the world we live in, and apply the theories we learn in class. 

     

  • HNRS 1100 01 Honors Philosophical Inquiry TR 9:40 11:10 Stackle, Erin
    HNRS 1100 02 Honors Philosophical Inquiry TR 1:00 2:30 Stackle, Erin

    While we all have implicit criteria for what counts as real and what counts as knowledge, we often do not sufficiently consider these criteria. This course investigates what is most real and how we can know.  We will consider these questions in conversation with thinkers like Plato, St. Thomas Aquinas, Descartes, etc.

    HNRS 1200 01 Honors Theological Inquiry MW 2:20 3:50 Swanson, Eric

    The Diverse Voices of American Buddhism 
     This course will have students critically examine the development of American Buddhism by focusing on how members of marginalized groups are responding to contemporary issues of race, representation, suffering, and liberation through the lens of the Buddhist teachings. By doing so, students are encouraged to reflect on how the Buddhist teachings continue to be reshaped by its communities of faith while also recognizing and celebrating the diversity of voices that constitute American Buddhism.  

    HNRS 1200 02 Honors Theological Inquiry TR 11:20 12:50 Radler, Charlotte

    This course introduces students to the meaning and significance of spiritual beliefs and practices in its distinctively Christian expressions and—to a more limited extent—to expressions associated with other religious traditions. The course adopts a comparative and interdisciplinary approach, teaching across different cultural contexts (e.g., Europe, the Middle East, North Africa, North, Central, and South America), religious traditions (Christianity, Judaism, and Islam), and disciplines (e.g., theology, history, philosophy, and women’s studies). The focus of the course is on “lived religion”—the embodied, eclectic and often improvisational character of spiritual experience, both collective and individual. The course will discuss such ultimate questions as: Who am I and what is my place in the whole scheme of things? What is of ultimate value? What makes for a meaningful life? How can I best make sense of love, suffering, loss, and death?

    HNRS 2100 01 Honors Hist Analysis & Perspec TR 4:20 5:45 Carla, Bittel
    HNRS 2100 02 Honors Hist Analysis & Perspec TR 5:55 7:20 Carla, Bittel

    Science, Nature, and Society
    This course examines the history of European and North American societies and cultures through the lens of science and nature from the sixteenth century to the present. It traces the history of ideas about science and nature in relation to broader social, economic and political changes, demonstrating the inseparability of science and social context. It also follows the cross-cultural and trans-oceanic proliferation and exchange of ideas, natural objects, and disease via exploration, colonialism, and imperialism; it explores European contact with indigenous peoples, animals, and other cultures. In the process, it examines nature as a historical locus of knowledge, power, and politics. Ultimately, students will understand the history of nature to become active and critical consumers of science, medicine, and technology today.

    HNRS 2200 01 Hnrs Nature of Sci, Tech, Math TR 9:40 11:10 Strauss, Eric

    Imagining the Resilient City: How Urban Ecology Helps to Shape Just, Verdant and Sustainable Urban Communities
    The study of human-dominated landscapes, such as cities, is being transformed by a new theory called Ecological Resilience. The key features of this  approach include the recognition that healthy ecosystems are dynamic, profoundly interconnected and closer to nature that you might expect. Using this lens, our course will explore the integrated nature of urbanized landscapes and the communities of people who live there.

    HNRS 2200 02 Hnrs Nature of Sci, Tech, Math W 6:00pm 9:00pm Plecnik, James

    Business and Tax Technology
    The purpose of this course is to train students in the technologies and research methods used by ever-transforming modern businesses. Leveraging these various technologies and research databases, students will demonstrate the ability to solve real-world problems and conduct research on novel business/tax questions.

    HNRS 2300 01 Honors Literary Analysis M 4:20 7:20 Clawson, David

    Honors Literary Analysis. Through narratives focused on female, bipoc, and/or lgbtq characters, the class will alternate between prose (mostly fiction) and film/TV analysis, emphasizing the commonalities as well as the differences between the mediums.

    HNRS 2300 02 Honors Literary Analysis MW 12:40 2:10 Neel, Alexandra

    This course introduces students to different ways of interpreting short stories and novels, including works by Jamaica Kincaid, Margaret Atwood, and Emily Saint John Mandel. We’ll explore the formal and technical aspects of fiction: we’ll discuss point of view, setting, character, plot, tone, and talk about how these aspects of literature affect the meaning and power of particular narratives. In other words, you will learn how to read literature closely and will acquire the technical and critical vocabulary necessary to say what is happening in various genres. Here are some questions we will return to over the course of the semester: How do authors use the resources of literature to engage with the social and political issues of their times? What kind of perspective does literature offer?  

    HNRS 2300 03 Honors Literary Analysis TR 2:40 4:10 Peters, Kevin

    Literary analysis is not an attempt to define literature but to understand the immersive record of Being expressed by what is called literature. In this course, we will explore the relationship between literary theory and literary analysis. And, we will learn the analytical competencies that make literary analysis indispensable to literary scholars and casual readers, data miners, preachers, advertisers, and the intelligence community. In short, to know what a text means, we first must be able to say how it means.

    HNRS 3000 01 HNRS Colloq: Post-Bacc Success F 2:00 4:00 Zink, Trevor

    The Edge of What We Know
    This first-ever offering of a reimagined HNRS 3000 Colloquium takes us through a speaker series and accompanying discussions, readings, and videos that explore how faculty in an array of fields find, investigate, and eventually step across the edge of what we know. It is a course designed to explore how thinkers in any field and destined for any occupation can create and share new knowledge, and in so doing, add value to their own lives, their professional prospects, and society at large.

    HNRS 3110 01 Beyond Good and Evil TR 1:00 2:30 Treanor, Brian

    Together we will be thinking through issues related to ethics and the environment, both taken broadly. We will look at both classic issues and problems like climate change, resource depletion, population and consumption, as well as personal and philosophical issues regarding how you, as an individual, related to the elemental non-human environment. Thus, our class will consider theoretical, practical, and ‘poetic’ aspects of our ethical relationship with the more-than-human world. 

    HNRS 3110 01 Beyond Good and Evil MW 12:40 2:10 Mason, Joshua

    The conception of a human being as a rational and autonomous individual has been central to ethical theorizing across the history of western philosophy. We will start this course by examining the ways in which an individual soul, self, or agent has been taken as the target of ethical evaluations, such as “good” and “evil.” Along the way we will consider the basis of ethical concepts such as virtue, rights, and equality. In the second half of the course, we will work through some challenges to the basic assumptions about foundational individualism, particularly those challenges that spring from conceptions of human nature we find in eastern philosophies of Buddhism, Daoism, and Confucianism.  Through the semester we will read classical materials from Plato, Aristotle, Augustine, Hume, Kant, Mill, and Nietzsche. We will also read recent works from Henry Rosemont, Jr. and Hans Georg Moeller—Against Individualism and The Moral Fool, respectively. 

  • FFYS 1000 - First Year Seminar: Black LA

    Prof. Jennifer Williams

    FFYS 1000 - First Year Seminar: Sex, Science, and Society

    Prof. Mairead Sullivan

    FFYS 1000 - First Year Seminar: Brand Activism

    Prof. Brett Marroquín

    FFYS 1000 - First Year Seminar: On the Technological Sublime

    Prof. Susan Scheibler

    HNRS 1000 - Honors Colloquium: Introduction to Honors

    Prof. Trevor Zink

    HNRS 1100 - Honors Philosophical Inquiry

    Prof. Daniel Speak

    This course will be a topical introduction to philosophy by way of seminar discussion of a few core philosophical questions— for example, about the existence God, about the limits of our knowledge, and about the freedom of our wills... or maybe that’s just the cover story I tell

    HNRS 1200 - Honors Theological Inquiry

    Prof. Kim Harris

    Faith Lived: personal, collective, theological, cultural, and artistic responses to religious belief  relationships, morality, worship, and daily living.

    HNRS 1200 - Honors Theological Inquiry

    Prof. Amir Hussain

    The realities of religious diversity cannot be ignored. Increasingly, people live, work, and pray alongside persons of many faith traditions (including no faith tradition). It is therefore essential to learn how to negotiate this reality: theologically, ethically, and spiritually. This course will introduce honours students to the study of comparative theology.

    HNRS 1200 - Honors Theological Inquiry

    Prof. Tracy Tiemeier

    This course takes a comparative and decolonial approach to theological inquiry, examining Hindu, Buddhist, and Christian thought and practice as they are embedded in wider systems of power

    HNRS 2000 - Honors Colloquium: Research and Exhibition

    Prof. John David Dionisio

    HNRS 2100 - Honors Historical Analysis and Perspectives

    Prof. Constance Chen

    This Global History of Food course will use interdisciplinary methodologies to examine the ways in which food has the power to both define and reflect cultural, socioeconomic, and political conditions and discourses within transnational context.

    HNRS 2200 - Honors Nature of Science, Technology, and Mathematics

    Prof. Vandana Thadani 

    Social science inquiry will be explored in the context of a single, topical, pressing social issue such as people’s willingness to believe conspiracy theories, or factors that may influence people’s willingness to advocate for equity and advocate against discrimination.

    HNRS 2300 - Honors Literary Analysis

    Prof. Kevin Peters

    Literary analysis is not an attempt to define literature but to understand the immersive record of Being expressed by what we call a litearary text. Along the way, we will learn the competencies that make literary analysis indispensable to literary scholars and casual readers, data miners and preachers, advertisers and the intelligence community.

    HNRS 3000 - Honors Colloquium: Post-Baccalaureate Success

    Prof. Cassidy Alvarado

    An orientation to opportunities that await students beyond LMU (including national and international fellowships, postgrad service, and career opportunities) and preparation for pursuing them effectively

    HNRS 3110 - Beyond Good and Evil

    Prof. Andrew Dilts

    Beyond Good and Evil is a course in critical ethical and moral theory, studying the cultural and ideological formations that have shaped our understandings of ethical, social, political, and economic questions in our contemporary moment.

  • HNRS 1100 - Honors Philosophical Inquiry

    Prof. Catherine Peters

    Philosophical Inquiry is an introductory exploration of central questions and interpretations of human existence, with special emphasis on theories of knowledge and theories of reality, carried on in light of the Catholic intellectual tradition. While there are many ways to go about pursuing this inquiry, this course will be divided according to Ancient (beginning circa 600 BC), Medieval (circa 300-1300AD), and Modern (circa 1500-1800AD) periods, examining some key themes and central figures in each. Our goal is to trace the development of philosophical thought in order to inform and enrich discussions today.

    HNRS 1100 - Honors Philosophical Inquiry

    Prof. Robin Wang

    This course is designed to introduce students to the various modes of philosophical inquiry and to the great philosophical questions that are relevant to a humanistic education in the Catholic intellectual tradition. More specifically, the aim of this course is to help students to acquire an understanding of fundamental metaphysical (the study of the nature of what is) and epistemological (the study of the nature and scope of human knowledge) questions in ancient philosophical texts from Greek and Daoist traditions. We will read classic texts such as Plato’s Dialogues, Epictetus, Daodejing and Zhuangzi so on. This course will assist students in acquiring the interpretive and evaluative skills necessary for assessing various answers to these fundamental questions, and to encourage them to develop a lifelong habit of philosophical self-reflection. A wider range of the course activities will be selected to promote each of these aims. It includes careful reading classical texts, a close analysis of these texts and formulations critical questions from class lectures, research project, course assignments and self-reflection.

    HNRS 1200 - Honors Theological Inquiry

    Prof. Matthew Petrusek

    This course provides a broad survey of foundational ideas and texts that have contributed—and continue to contribute—to the vast, diverse, and living body of moral thinking that constitutes “Christian Ethics.” The course is divided into two interconnected parts. First, we will examine the relationship between God and the good from philosophical, literary, and psychological perspectives. Second, we will leverage the questions and responses gained from our broad consideration of the question to critically examine the uniquely Christian conception of God and the good, especially mindful of its biblical roots. Here, we will also focus on the theology and ethics of two watershed Christian thinkers: St. Augustine and St. Thomas Aquinas. The course’s methodology and content engage the topic primarily from conceptual and theoretical perspectives; however, we will continually highlight the practical, concrete, every-day implications of the ideas throughout the semester. There will also be a unit dedicated solely to studying the principles of good argumentation.

    HNRS 2000 - Honors Colloquium: Research and Exhibition

    Prof. Andrew Dilts

    This course—required for all University Honors Program students—is an orientation to the practice of research and creative activity from a scholarly point of view. It introduces young scholars and creative people into the mechanisms, habits, assumptions, and knowledges of the academy. This includes 1) the formulation by the student of a problem worthy of in-depth study, 2) the articulation of how that problem can be addressed, and 3) the public exhibition of the student's work. In short, the course introduces students to formal, mentored academic research and creative work.

    HNRS 2100 - Honors Historical Analysis and Perspectives

    Prof. Nicolas Rosenthal

    This course examines the history of the United States and its place in the world through the lens of civil rights activism and advocacy, from the late-nineteenth century to the present. It traces the efforts by different groups to achieve and expand the full rights of United States citizenship, focusing on women, African Americans, and LGBTQ persons. Throughout the course we will ask a series of fundamental questions as we trace the experiences of these groups over time: What have been the conditions of these groups and what demands have they made for full citizenship in US society? What have been the different forms of activism and advocacy and how have they changed over time? How have their efforts been received and what changes have they made? What is the nature of these struggles today and how can we better understand them by examining this history? Since this is a survey class we will pay particular attention to how these efforts by different groups are contextualized within the broader changes of American society and culture.

    HNRS 2200 - Honors Nature of Science, Technology, and Mathematics

    Prof. John David Dionisio

    The course aims to introduce you to the theory and practice of computation as a scientific and engineering endeavor. Long after you finish this course, my hope is that you will be able to:

    1. Understand the concept of computation through the lens of computer science, the primary discipline that studies it as a phenomenon in its own right.
    2. Apply this knowledge of computation through rudimentary computer programming in either the JavaScript or Python languages.
    3. Integrate this deeper knowledge of computation with its many uses in the real world, including but not limited to algorithms, networks, artificial intelligence, entertainment/media, and robotics.
    4. Appreciate the abstract meaning of computation as a pure idea, separated from technology, particularly its relationships to infinity, complexity, tractability, and what problems are even “computable.”

    HNRS 3000 - Honors Colloquium: Post-Baccalaureate Success

    Prof. Cassidy Alvarado

    HNRS 3000 is an orientation to opportunities that await students beyond LMU (including national and international fellowships, postgrad service, and career opportunities) and preparation for pursuing them effectively. Early in the course, students will explore a variety of post-baccalaureate opportunities and reflect on their undergraduate experiences. Through peer-led writing workshops, students will learn how to connect their experiences to their future goals. Students will develop a personal statement and statement of purpose, which they can adapt for internship, job, graduate school, or prestigious fellowship applications. By the end of the course, students will submit a mock fellowship application package, and will be able to express their academic and professional goals.

    HNRS 3100 - Honors Ethics and Justice

    Prof. Sue Scheibler

    What does it mean to be a good person? How have philosophers answered this question? How can we use their work as a series of lenses through which to analyze media texts? As we read, think, write, watch, play, and discuss, we will attempt to answer the following questions: What role do media (film, TV, and video games) play in our construction of ourselves as ethical and moral people? Why do so many media texts rely on a simple binary of heroes versus villains, protagonists versus antagonists? In what ways does this overarching assumption about storytelling impact our individual and collective thinking about what it means to be human? Does it contribute to a worldview that sees things in black and white; placing people in categories of self/other; friend/enemy; member/outsider? Why do so many of our movies, TV series and video games stage the struggle between good and evil through the spectacle of violence? What roles do empathy and affect play in our responses to the images we consume and the ethical values we may take away from them? In what ways do technologies such as video games, AR and VR intensify our relationships to the questions we're exploring? Is there such a thing as an ethical gaze?

    HNRS 3110 - Beyond Good and Evil

    Prof. Andrew Dilts

    What does it mean for “morality” to have a history? What about “freedom”? Equality? The Self? The Psyche? The Soul? How are we to orient ourselves toward the task of living if we take seriously Nietzsche’s declaration that it is precisely “we knowers” who are “unknown to ourselves?” Beyond Good and Evil is a course in critical ethical and moral theory, studying the cultural and ideological formations that have shaped our understandings of ethical, social, political, and economic questions in our contemporary moment. In this small and reading-intensive seminar, we will focus on the fraught relationships between three definitive modern terms: the self, society, and freedom. We will ask hard questions about these terms which are meant to disorient ourselves from the certainty we have, so that we may be able to think more ethically, freer, and more honestly about our actions and reactions to the world in which we find ourselves.