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PHL 606 Feb 28 & March 3.doc

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PHL 606
Kym Mac Laren

Tips for the next assignment 28 February, 2014 • it takes a while for people to understand what it means to explain the reasoning for a philosophical statement • it means to explain the beliefs of the philosopher in a compelling way, that would help the reader understand and think deeply about that theory • the introduction should not start too broadly (don’t make a claim about what all philosophers have been doing since the beginning of time) • the last sentence of the introduction should be the most precise thesis statement. The rest of it should give the full idea and lay out the context • it could take three sentences to fully lay out the thesis – it doesn’t need to be just one • you need to orient the reader so they don’t get confused about where the essay is headed • in order to explain and elaborate on the thesis, “unfold” it throughout the rest of the paper. • explain it step-by-step. Start with basic definitions and work outwards. Then, the essay will be focused on the thesis instead of being too general. • real-life examples can be extremely helpful. You can set up your own example to help the reader understand the application of the idea • break something down into its MOST BASIC steps • create an outline of those basic steps. Each step should be one or more paragraph in the final essay figure out the most basic claims, and “dwell” with them. Try to make even the most • basic claim a vivid thought to the reader. • sometimes you have to spell out things the philosopher didn’t bother to spell out. • teach your reader the basic concepts So, for the next assignment: • Kym isn’t a stickler for page length – if it takes 2.5 pages to articulate the thought, that is okay. (she didn’t say anything about if it was shorter than the 2 pages. My guess is that that’s a no-go.) • basic things to do in these papers make a point, or raise a question about something in the text • •half of the paper should be focused on explaining the basic ideas of the philosopher) • raise your point or a question – your concerns or worries •a bad way to do this is by comparing it to science, or by assuming that anything is an accepted truth • you could look for a gap or contradiction, and then explain how the philosopher would respond to that allegation • you could point out an assumption that a philosopher makes (i.e. Bataille’s assumption that everybody is afraid of death) – ask if the assumption is true you could point out how your personal experience of the world is at odds with the • philosopher’s views Sartre: “The Look” 3 March, 2014 • before looking at Sartre’s view of “others,” we will look at the traditional view, and then contrast the two. The traditional view of the world (A Cartesian View [i.e. Descartes’ view]) • what I know is my own mind (“I think therefore I am”) • I have a consciousness of another person – I encounter only my representation of the Other • we’re stuck within our own minds (this philosophical belief is called solipsism) • we can only infer that the other is a consciousness – you never encounter another person’s consciousness • but when somebody talks to you and makes you see something in a different way, that isn’t already within you, aren’t you encountering another consciousness? (Descartes would say no, that we are only expanding on that wh
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