Herbert Marcuse: One-Dimensional Man

Herbert Marcuse (1898-1979) Socialist philosopher and German-Jew that fled World War II Germany and immigrated to the USA Wrote One-Dimensional Man to explain why widespread communist revolution had not happened One-Dimensional Man (1964) Capitalism uses advertising, consumerism, mass media, entertainment industry as a means of social control- produces conformity in what people desire, think Created…

The Communist Manifesto (1848): Karl Marx & Friedrich Engels

The history of all hitherto existing society is the history of class struggles. Freeman and slave, patrician and plebeian, lord and serf, guild master and journeyman, in a word, oppressor and oppressed, stood in constant opposition to one another, carried on…a fight that each time ended either in a revolutionary reconstruction of society at large…

What is Conservatism?

Conservatism is a preference for the historically inherited rather than the abstract and ideal. Believes society should be rooted in long-standing traditions and its institutions should reflect those traditions Why conservatives believe this: Movement began as a response to the French Revolution (1789)- people of France replaced monarchy with new forms of gov’t, resulting in…

Definitions of Philosophy

Philosophy is… …Seeking after wisdom or knowledge, esp. that which deals with  ultimate reality, or with the most general causes or principles of things and ideas and human perception and knowledge of them, physical phenomena (natural philosophy) and ethics (moral philosophy)- Concise Oxford Dictionary …An activity- the attempt to understand the general principles and ideas…

Existentialism & Jean-Paul Sartre: Sartre and Kant on Ethics

Existentialism: a philosophical movement that focuses on individual autonomy and the necessity of making reasoned decisions for oneself. Jean-Paul Sartre, (1905-1980) French author and philosopher Best-known proponent of humanistic existentialism A Marxist advocate of political causes French resistance fighter of WWII Winner of the Nobel Prize for literature Sartre was an atheist who believed that…

Friedrich Nietzsche: Beyond Good and Evil

Nietzsche attacked traditional ethical theories, especially those rooted in religion. He rejected the view that people are ultimately accountable only to God. He did so because he believed that human life had no moral purpose except for the meaning that human beings gave it. Nietzsche was extremely critical of most traditional ethics. He called Utilitarianism…

Ethical Relativism: Ethics that Depend on Culture

Ethical Relativism: there are no common, universal, or objective values. Moral values are developed by individual peoples, groups, or cultures to fit their unique conditions. Relativists say that all moral rules are equally acceptable, because there is no way of judging between them. They do believe in moral right and wrong, but they do not…

Modern Theories of Truth: Correspondence Theory, Coherence Theory, Pragmatism

Correspondence Theory Best known, most widely used conception of truth Maintains there is a relationship (correspondence) between people’s internal beliefs and realities in the external world (truth means agreement between thought and reality) Belief is true if it agrees with fact or coincides with the physical world or objective reality Truth claims should be checked…

The Three Major Forms of Inductive Reasoning

Inductive Generalization uses specific examples to draw general conclusions. People use inductive generalizations to observe situational patterns which they project on new cases. What pattern do you see in the following premises? Premise: In the 1950s, one out of five households in North Bay had a television set. Premise: In the 1970s, four out of…

Thomas Kuhn: Science and Progress

He does not believe that science proceeds from one advancement to another, in an even and unbroken process. Kuhn’s view is that scientists work within an unquestioned theory or set of beliefs: Mental Paradigm This mental paradigm (accepted view) shapes scientists’ thinking as they work. Within this set of beliefs, scientists search for information and…

Socrates, Plato and Aristotle

Socrates 470-399 B.C,- NEVER wrote anything Gave philosophy its preeminent method- Socratic method or questioning (form of inquiry and debate between individuals with opposing viewpoints based on asking and answering questions to stimulate rational thinking and to illuminate ideas) Believed knowledge does not come from memorizing facts & repeating them True wisdom comes from being…