Philosophy Journal Topics

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Philosophy Journal Topics
1. Bertrand Russell’s Commandments of Philosophy – Choose three commandments and explain which three you believe are the most important.
2. Socrates – The Apology – Reflect on The apology. Who is he apologizing to? What are his major arguments?

Other option: Assume the role of and Athenian citizen who has the power to decide if Socrates lives or dies. Respond to his “Apology”. Decide whether he lives or dies and make sure to reference specific aspects of his Apology.

3. After watching one of the two videos on Socrates reflect on how each video gave you a greater understanding of Socrates importance. How did it add to your knowledge of the historical context regarding the execution of and trial of Socrates?
4. Reflect on Plato’s Allegory of the Cave
5. What is the “theory of the forms”? How is this theory central to understanding Plato’s philosophy? Compare the “Allegory of the Cave” to Plato’s Theory of the forms?
6. Evaluate the positive and negative aspects of Plato’s Utopia. Why does Plato believe that this form of government will achieve “justice”? To what extent does US Society represent Plato’s Utopia?
7. Watch Stanford Professor Ken Taylor’s 10 min TEDx Talk on “Democracy an Plato’s Utopia”

Reflect on Taylor’s ideas and how they are relevant to our in-class discussion on Plato’s Utopia.

8. In Between: Choose 2

  1. Which concepts or ideas did you find most intriguing?

  2. Who is the most relevant to modern America?

  3. Who should be left off the list? Who would you vote off the island?

  4. Why is your philosopher important to study?

  5. Which philosopher is the most important to the study of philosophy?

9. Machiavelli

Why is he still relevant?

Did Machiavelli get “it” right?

8 bit philosophy
10. Descartes

- The Process

- Reflect on the Cogito

- Do we exist?

- Are the mind and the body separate?
11. Reflect on one of the following videos –

- 3 - Criticisms of Descartes

- Collin McGinn – “Descartes and Innate Ideas”

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