300-Level Courses (2022-23)

PHL 300H5F  Topics in Ancient Philosophy: TBA
Instructor: J. Allen     T 1-2/R 11-1  
TBA
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL200H5 or PHL200Y5 or PHL202H5 or PHL210Y5

PHL301H5S – The Philosophy of Plato
Instructor: J. Allen     T 1-3/R 1-2  
This course explores major themes in Plato’s philosophy through a selective reading of his dialogues. Among the areas tackled are the human good, the nature of the soul, knowledge, and the ultimate constitution of reality. Readings may include, though will not necessarily be confined to, the Euthyphro, Protagoras, Euthydemus, Meno, Gorgias, Republic, Phaedo, Phaedrus and Theaetetus.
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL200H5 or PHL200Y5 or PHL202H5 or PHL210Y5

PHL 314H5F Kant
Instructor: O. Ware    T 3-6
In this course we will study Kant’s Critique of Pure Reason and related material. Among other topics, we will discuss the nature of space and time, the relation between mind and world, the existence of God, and the prospects of using reason to arrive at philosophical truth. [36L]
Exclusion: PHL312H5, PHLC37H3
Prerequisites: PHL210Y5; 1.5 additional credits in PHL
                                        Recommended Prep: PHL245H5/309H5

PHL 327H5S Later Analytic Philosophy
Instructor: B. Yi    M 11-1/11-12  
An examination of the later analytic tradition from logical positivism to Kripke. The course will cover some of the following topics: meaning and verifiability; the relation between science and philosophy; ordinary language and philosophy; the nature and status of the analytic-synthetic distinction; meaning and theories of meaning; theories of truth; the nature of necessity; and reference and identity. [36L]
Exclusion: PHLC43H3
Prerequisites: PHL245H5 and 1.5 additional credits in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL210Y5

PHL 332H5F    Metaphysics
Instructor: B. Yi     M 9-11/W 9-10  
Typical problems: ontological categories; ontological commitment; the objectivity of space and time: causality and determinism; mind and body.
Exclusion: PHL330Y1, PHL331H1, PHLC60H3
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL

PHL 333H5F    Epistemology
Instructor: N. Das     M 3-5/W 3-4 
Typical problems: knowledge and belief, perception, the analytic-synthetic distinction, theories of truth, necessity, and the a priori.
Exclusion: PHL330Y1, PHL332H1
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL

PHL 343H5F    Freedom and Determinism
Instructor: L. Fletcher    M 2-3/W 1-3 
This course will examine the question of whether determinism is true, and to which extent and whether, determinism is compatible with the possibility that our will is free as well as the relation between freedom and responsibility. In particular, we will look at the plausibility of views such as compatibilism, hard determinism and libertarianism.
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL

PHL 345H5S    Intermediate Logic
Instructor:   N. Charlow   M 3-5/W 3-4
A sequel to PHL245H5, developing skills in quantificational logic and treating of definite descriptions. The system developed will be used to study a selection of the following topics: philosophical uses of logic, formal systems, set theory, non-classical logics and metalogic. [36L]
Exclusion: PHLC51H3
Prerequisites: PHL245H5 and 1.0 credit in PHL/MAT/CSC

PHL 346H5F Choice and Chance
Instructor:   J. Weisberg   M 12-1/ W 11-1 
An intermediate level look at reasoning and decision making in the face of uncertainty. Topics may include: decision theory, game theory, social choice theory, confirmation theory, foundations of probability and statistics, puzzles of infinity and self-location, and the relationship between knowledge and uncertainty. [36L]
Recommended Prep: PHL246H5 or any first course in probability/statistics/decision-making

PHL 347H5S  Modality in Logic and Philosophy
Instructor:  J. Weisberg  T 1-3/ R 10-11  
Study of the concepts of necessity and possibility using extensions of classical logic: modal sentential logic, modal quantification logic, possible-world semantics, the metaphysics of modality. Other possible topics include: counterfactuals, epistemic logic, temporal logic, deontic logic, many-valued logic, and supervaluations.[36L]
Exclusion: PHL347H1
Prerequisites: PHL245H5 and 1.0 credit in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL345H5

PHL350H5F – Philosophy of Language
Instructor: N. Charlow     M 4-5/ W 3-5
Central problems and contemporary issues. Topics may include: scientific inference and method; explanation; under-determination; the pessimistic induction; constructive empiricism; entity realism; structural realism; laws of nature. [36L]
Exclusion: PHL356H1
Prerequisites: 1.5 credit in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL245H5

PHL 355H5S    Issues in Philosophy of Science
Instructor: M. Matthen    T 9-11/R 9-10 
Central problems and contemporary issues. Topics may include: scientific inference and method; explanation; under-determination; the pessimistic induction; constructive empiricism; entity realism; structural realism; laws of nature.
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL

PHL358H5F – Philosophical Issues in Cognitive Science 
Instructor: J. Nagel      M 1-3/ W 2-3  
An examination of philosophical issues that arise in cognitive science, such as: the nature of consciousness, alternative models of computation in theories of cognition, the nature and function of perception and the emotions, the evolution of mind and language, and the relation among various fields of cognitive science such as psychology, linguistics, and neuroscience. [36L]
Exclusion: COG250Y1
Prerequisites: (PHL340H5 or PHL345H5 or PHL350H5) and 1.5 additional credits in PHL

PHL365H5S  Issues in Political Philosophy 
Instructor:   TBA   T 9-10/R 9-11 
A study of some of the best recent work by political philosophers on topics such as justice, rights, welfare and political authority. [36L]
Exclusion: PHL365H1, PHL366H1
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL265H5 or PHL277Y5

PHL 370H5S  Issues in Philosophy of Law 
Instructor:   A. Sepielli   M 11-1/W 11-12 
Major issues in philosophy of law, e.g., responsibility and punishment, the obligation to obey the law, legal positivism, law and morality. [36L]
Prerequisites: 1.5 credits in PHL
Recommended Prep: PHL271H5 or PHL277Y5

PHL 374H5F   Issues in Normative Ethics
Instructor:   S. Yarandi   M 6-7/W 5-9  
Normative Ethics concerns general questions about what makes actions right or wrong. Topics include, among others, the plausibility of various ethical theories such as consequentialism, deontology, and virtue ethics, and questions about the moral significance of distinctions such as doing vs allowing and intending vs foreseeing. [36L]
Exclusion: PHL375H5 or PHL376H1 or PHLC05H3 or PHLC06H3
Prerequisite: 1.5 credits in PHL
Recommended Preparation: PHL275H5 or PHL277Y5

PHL 390H5S Special Topics in Philosophy: The Self in Classical South Asia
Instructor:   N. Das   M 1-3/2-3 
If there is one problem that almost all philosophers in classical South Asia seem to be directly or indirectly concerned with, it has to be the problem of the self (ātman). For these philosophers, the self is the referent of the first-person pronoun “I,” something that serves as the subject of mental states across time, and plays the role of agent with respect to actions. These philosophers thought that discovering whether such a self exists, and what it is like, was practically important: without that knowledge, we couldn’t attain liberation, i.e., complete freedom from suffering. In this course, we will discuss debates between Buddhists and the Brahmanical philosophers about the existence and the nature of the self. Our focus will be on the following questions. Is there a fundamentally existent self? Can the self be reduced to physical and mental states or events? Do psychological phenomena like memory and recognition give us reason to posit the fundamental existence of a self? What are the practical consequences of denying the fundamental existence of the self? To answer these questions, we will study two Buddhist theories of “non-self”: reductionism and eliminativism. And we will consider arguments that Brahminical philosophers–belonging to the Nyāya and Mīmāṃsā traditions–against these Buddhists.