• 23 AUG 18
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    While the prospect of living forever may seem enticing, Bernard Williams argues that immortality would, in fact, be bad for us. Explain his argument, illustrating the concepts of conditional and categorical desires with your own examples. Is Williams right?

    Psychology homework help

    Discussion Board for Weeks 13 + 14

    Please consider the following questions for this week’s discussion forum:

    1. While the prospect of living forever may seem enticing, Bernard Williams argues that immortality would, in fact, be bad for us. Explain his argument, illustrating the concepts of conditional and categorical desires with your own examples. Is Williams right? Why or why not?

    2. The final chapter of The Myth of Sisyphus can be read here: http://dbanach.com/sisyphus.htm (Links to an external site.)Links to an external site.  What do you take Camus to be arguing in this chapter? Do you find his argument to be convincing?

    Discussion Board for Week 12

    Rawls’ principle of fair equality of opportunity says that inequalities in the distribution of basic social goods, such as wealth and income, are justified only if equally talented and motivated people have roughly equal prospects of achieving the jobs and offices that are associated with those inequalities, regardless of their starting social circumstances (such as their race, gender, or starting social class).

    Discussion questions:

    1. Identify a policy, not already identified by another student, that you think would bring American society closer to satisfying the principle of fair equality of opportunity. Explain why you think that policy would help us satisfy the principle.

    2. Explain one reason for thinking that we should not implement a policy that another student has identified in response to (1). You might draw on material from the lecture here, or you might offer a reason of your own.

    3. Respond to an objection another student raised in response to (2) by defending the policy.

    Discussion Board for Week 11

    1. One of our tasks is to try to translate insights from Just War Theory, which is framed around nation-states, to questions about superheroes. What conditions do you think must hold for a nation-state to justly go to war? Can those same conditions apply for a superhero who goes to war? In particular, address carefully what it takes to have legitimacy.

    2. Is there a moral difference between killing versus letting die? Why or why not?

    Discussion Board for Week 10

    (1) Explain one of the arguments from the lecture that tries to show that we are not morally responsible for our actions.

    (2) Briefly develop an objection to that argument, or to an argument presented by another student.

    (3) Briefly develop a response to that objection, or to an objection presented by another student.

    Discussion Board for Week 9

    What are the reasons why we might think that moral objectivism is correct? For someone who suspects that moral objectivism is wrong, what would you recommend as their best alternative account (of the ones discussed in the lectures) and why?

    Why might we want to be moral relativists? Do you think that there is a way for a moral relativist to be able to convincingly respond to our intuitions that some actions are wrong (e.g. slavery)irrespective of the cultural views about that action?

    Discussion Board for Week 8

    1. Can we know anything about the external world? Describe the skeptical challenge to the claim that we have knowledge of the external world. How would you respond to the skeptic?

    2. What sorts of ethical concerns should govern our scientific pursuits? Use specific examples of current scientific or technological research programs to discuss your answer

    Discussion Board for Week 7

    1.     We have been given several arguments for why we might believe that God exists. Which do you think is the strongest argument available to us? Why is it the strongest argument? What might be the best way for someone who disagrees with the argument to respond?

    2.     The problem of evil is intended to show a conflict between our conception of God as all-good, all-knowing, and all-powerful and the existence of evil in the world. Which might be the best strategy to resolve this tension? Is there a way to reconcile the kinds of evil in the world and God as originally conceived? Should we ‘weaken’ our conception of God, and think of God as perhaps less powerful, or less knowledgeable, or ‘good’ in a different sense?

    Discussion Board for Week 6

    1. Are possible worlds abstract or concrete objects? What reasons hold in favor of each view and which one do you believe to be the strongest?

    2. Is it possible for you to travel back in time and kill your grandfather? What sense of “possibility” are you using in thinking about and answering this question?

    This is the discussion forum for week 6. In order to contribute to your participation grade in the course, posts must directly engage the philosophical material from the week’s lecture. The discussion board for each week will be closed to new posts Sunday at 11:59 PM; no late posts will be accepted.

    Please be respectful of other students and their views and ideas, and please contact Sean at sean_gray@hks.harvard.edu if you have concerns of any kind about the discussion board.

    Here are some questions to get things rolling:

    Discussion Board for Week 5

    This is the discussion forum for week 5. In order to contribute to your participation grade in the course, posts must directly engage the philosophical material from the week’s lecture. The discussion board for each week will be closed to new posts Sunday at 11:59 PM; no late posts will be accepted.

    Please be respectful of other students and their views and ideas, and please contact Sean at sean_gray@hks.harvard.edu if you have concerns of any kind about the discussion board.

    Here are some questions to get things rolling:

    1. The “functionalist” view suggests that a computer could have a mind just like ours. It could believe that Cambridge is in Massachusetts, want to live near the beach in LA, and experience pains and pleasures of various kinds. Does this consequence of functionalism seem plausible to you? Why or why not?

    2. Is it possible for two people to “switch bodies”—that is, for the mind of one person to come to control the body of another, and vice versa? Could you switch bodies with LeBron James, for instance? Why or why not? Set aside whether it would be possible for us to develop the necessary technology.

    Discussion Board for Week 4

    This is the discussion forum for week 3. Unless you have been cleared for the alternative participation assignment, you are not required to post to the discussion board. However, it is one great way to contribute to your participation grade for the course. (The other being attending and participating in section.)

    In order to contribute to your participation grade in the course, posts must directly engage the philosophical material from the week’s lecture. (E.g., a post about the Batgirl motion comic that did not engage the philosophical material from last week’s lecture would not count.) The discussion board for each week will be closed to new posts Sunday at 11:59 PM; no late posts will be accepted.

    Below you will find posts to get the discussion going; feel free to respond to these if you like. Responding to them is not necessary for receiving participation credit from your post. You can also post your own questions or engage with the posts of other students.

    Please be respectful of other students and their views and ideas, and please contact Sean at sean_gray@hks.harvard.edu if you have concerns of any kind about the discussion board.

    Here are some questions to get things rolling:

    (1)  We’ve been presented with reasons to deny that lying is necessarily worse than truthful misleading. In your opinion, is lying worse than truthful misleading in some cases? All cases? Why or why not?

    (2)  Describe why transparency and oversight are important democratic norms. Is there ever good reason to think that these norms should not hold under certain circumstances, even for a democracy? What kind of circumstances would those be?

    Discussion Board for Week 3

    This is the discussion forum for week 3. Unless you have been cleared for the alternative participation assignment, you are not required to post to the discussion board. However, it is one great way to contribute to your participation grade for the course. (The other being attending and participating in section.)

    In order to contribute to your participation grade in the course, posts must directly engage the philosophical material from the week’s lecture. (E.g., a post about the Batgirl motion comic that did not engage the philosophical material from last week’s lecture would not count.) The discussion board for each week will be closed to new posts Sunday at 11:59 PM; no late posts will be accepted.

    Below you will find posts to get the discussion going; feel free to respond to these if you like. Responding to them is not necessary for receiving participation credit from your post. You can also post your own questions or engage with the posts of other students.

    Please be respectful of other students and their views and ideas, and please contact Sean at sean_gray@hks.harvard.edu if you have concerns of any kind about the discussion board.

    Here are some questions to get things rolling:

    (1) What, in your opinion, is heroism? Which ethical theory reviewed in the module best captures heroism as you understand it?

    (2) Describe one ethical theory addressed in the module and explain a key objection to this theory. Do you think the objection is a good one? Why or why not?

    Discussion Board for Weeks 1 and 2

    Weeks 1 & 2: The Philosophy of Art

    This is the discussion forum for weeks 1 & 2, though it will focus on the lecture material from week 1.

    A discussion forum for each week will be opened at the same time that the module for the week is released. Unless you have been cleared for the alternative participation assignment, you are not required to post to the discussion board. However, it is one great way to contribute to your participation grade for the course. (The other being attending and participating in section.)

    In order to contribute to your participation grade in the course, posts must directly engage the philosophical material from the week’s lecture. (E.g., a post about the Batgirl motion comic that did not engage the philosophical material from last week’s lecture would not count.) The discussion board for each week will be closed to new posts each Sunday at 11:59 PM; no late posts will be accepted.

    We will be posting questions each to get the discussion going; feel free to respond to these if you like. Responding to them is not necessary for receiving participation credit from your post. You can also post your own questions or engage with the posts of other students.

    The discussion board for this week is devoted from the lecture material from last week’s lecture on aesthetics, rather than this week’s lecture on the history of superheroes. Here are some questions to get things rolling:

    (1) What is art? Walk through an example that your definition seems to get right.

    (2) Describe or link to an article about a borderline case of art — something that isn’t clearly art, but also isn’t clearly not art. For example, is a piece of driftwood that a famous artist picks up on the beach and then provides to a museum for display under her name art? It’s not immediately clear. (All examples should be “safe for work,” thanks!)

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