The primary objective for your being in this class is to learn to think philosophically by engaging those concepts and ideas that have shaped the history and culture of the western world for good and bad. To do this, and to do it well, requires that you spend time carefully examining these ideas, turning them over in your mind, struggling with them, trying to talk to and ask questions of those thinkers about these ideas, discussing these ideas with others in and out of class, and by writing about them. You should be able to express that understanding through critical, analytical, and thus, philosophical writing upon completion of this course. Hence, you should recognize that this is a reading and writing intensive course and it presumes college-level competency; your writing will be evaluated not only for content but also for clarity, and this, of course, requires that you be able to read at the college-level.
By being able to do this, by engaging in this activity of philosophy, it is hoped that you will learn to think more rationally and critically about those issues which impede and engage you daily throughout your lives and that you will come to prize knowledge. If you learn to do this, then you will learn to break the bonds of your own ignorance and your enslavement to others.
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