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September 26, 2023


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Introduction to Philosophy (University of Edinburgh). Instructors: Dr. Dave Ward, Prof. Duncan Pritchard, Dr. Suilin Lavelle, Dr. Matthew Chrisman

Dr. Allan Hazlett, Dr. Michela Massimi, and Dr. Alasdair Richmond. This course introduces some of the main areas of research in contemporary philosophy. Different philosophers talks about some of the most important questions and issues in their area of expertise. It begins by trying to understand what philosophy is - what are its characteristic aims and methods, and how does it differ from other subjects? Then the rest of the course gives an introductory overview of several different areas of philosophy. Topics covered in this course include: What is Philosophy? (Dr. Dave Ward); What do you know? (Prof. Duncan Pritchard); Minds, Brains and Computers (Dr. Suilin Lavelle); Morality: Objective, Subjective or Relative? (Dr. Matthew Chrisman); Should you believe what you hear? (Dr. Allan Hazlett); Are scientific theories true? (Dr. Michela Massimi); and Time Travel and Philosophy (Dr. Alasdair Richmond).

Course Curriculum

    • Lecture 1.1 – What is Philosophy? Unlimited
    • Lecture 1.2 – Philosophy: Difficult, Important and Everywhere Unlimited
    • Lecture 1.3 – Philosophy: How do We Do It? Unlimited
    • Lecture 1.4 – Is There a ‘Right Way’ to Think about Things? Unlimited
    • Lecture 2.1 – The Basic Constituents of Knowledge Unlimited
    • Lecture 2.2 – The Classical Account of Knowledge and the Gettier Problem Unlimited
    • Lecture 2.3 – Do We Have Any Knowledge? Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.1 – Descartes Substance Dualism Theory of the Mind Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.2 – Physicalism Identity Theory and Functionalism Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.3 – Functionalism and What Mental States Do Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.4 – Functionalism and Functional Complexity Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.5 – Minds vs. Machines: The Turing Test and the Chinese Room Unlimited
    • Lecture 3.6 – Minds vs. Machines: Problems for the Computational View of the Mind Unlimited
    • Lecture 4.1 – The Status of Morality Unlimited
    • Lecture 4.2 – Objectivism, Relativism and Emotivism Unlimited
    • Lecture 4.3 – Objections to Objectivism, Relativism and Emotivism Unlimited
    • Lecture 5.1 – Introduction: Hume on Testimony and Miracles Unlimited
    • Lecture 5.2 – Reid’s Challenge to Hume Unlimited
    • Lecture 5.3 – Reid’s Argument Unlimited
    • Lecture 5.4 – Kant: The Enlightenment and Intellectual Autonomy Unlimited
    • Lecture 5.5 – The Value of Intellectual Autonomy Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.1 – The Aim of Science: Saving the Phenomena vs. Truth Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.2 – Saving the Phenomena: Ptolemaic Astronomy Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.3 – Truth?: Galileo and Copernican Astronomy Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.4 – Scientific Realism and the No Miracles Argument Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.5 – Scientific Anti-Realism and Constructive Empiricism Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.6 – Realist Rejoinders: Inference to the Best Explanation Unlimited
    • Lecture 6.7 – Concluding Summary Unlimited
    • Lecture 7.1 – What might Time Travel Be Anyway? Unlimited
    • Lecture 7.2 – Grandfather Paradoxes Unlimited
    • Lecture 7.3 – Two Senses of Change Unlimited
    • Lecture 7.4 – Causal Loops Unlimited
    • Lecture 7.5 – Where Next? Unlimited

About the instructor

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