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Teaching Philosophy

Volume 41, Issue 1, March 2018

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1. Teaching Philosophy: Volume > 41 > Issue: 1
C. D. Brewer Strategies for Teaching Kant’s Metaphysics and Hume’s Skepticism in Survey Courses
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Teaching Kant’s metaphysics to undergraduates in a survey course can be quite challenging. Specifically, it can be daunting to motivate interest in Kant’s project and present his system in an accessible way in a short amount of time. Furthermore, comprehending some of the important features of his requires some understanding of Hume’s skepticism. Unfortunately, students often misunderstand the extent and relevance of Hume’s skepticism. Here, I offer three strategies for presenting Kant’s metaphysics as a response to Hume. First, I describe an exercise for presenting the problem of induction in a way that resonates with many students. Next, I provide a way of generating interest in Kant’s project so students are motivated to understand his position. Finally, I explain a game I use to bolster interest in Kant’s project and explain some of the more challenging aspects of the First Analogy.
2. Teaching Philosophy: Volume > 41 > Issue: 1
Luis Cordeiro-Rodrigues Integrating African Philosophy into the Western Philosophy Curriculum
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In the last three years, there has been a worldwide increase in integrating African philosophy into the philosophy curricula. Nevertheless, given that African philosophy has been largely neglected by Western academia, many philosophers in the West who do wish to integrate it are unaware of how to do it. This article aims at addressing this issue by offering some recommendations on how to integrate African philosophy into the curricula. Particularly, it offers recommendations based on how the history of ancient philosophy, metaphilosophy, ethics and political philosophy have become integrated. Additionally, there is a recommendation for how to make an entirely new module based on African political philosophy.
3. Teaching Philosophy: Volume > 41 > Issue: 1
James Lee Socratic Dialogue Outside the Classroom
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Socratic dialogue is widely recognized as an effective teaching tool inside of the classroom. In this paper I will argue that Socratic dialogue is also a highly effective teaching tool outside of the classroom. I will argue that Socratic dialogue is highly effective outside of the classroom because it is a form of learning based assessment. I will also show how instructors can use technology like email to implement Socratic dialogue as a form of teaching and assessment, and thus offer a viable alternative to traditional assessments like exams and papers.
4. Teaching Philosophy: Volume > 41 > Issue: 1
Mark R. Reiff Twenty-One Statements about Political Philosophy: An Introduction and Commentary on the State of the Profession
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While the volume of material inspired by Rawls’s reinvigoration of the discipline back in 1971 has still not begun to subside, its significance has been in serious decline for quite some time. New and important work is appearing less and less frequently, while the scope of the work that is appearing is getting smaller and more internal and its practical applications more difficult to discern. The discipline has reached a point of intellectual stagnation, even as real-world events suggest that the need for what political philosophy can provide could not be more critical. What follows then is a set of statements about how I believe that we, as political philosophers, should approach what we do. It contains my view as to what political philosophy should be about, how political philosophy should be done, and how courses in political philosophy should be taught, interlaced with commentary on the current state of the profession.