Calderwood Seminar in Public Writing: Philosophy in the First Person

Philosophical writing is often thought to be impersonal and abstract, focused on rigorous argument and high theory to the exclusion of personal narrative, voice, humor, and literary style. But not all philosophy takes that form. This seminar explores the alternative mode of more personal philosophical writing, as it appears in contemporary personal essays on philosophical themes and pieces of public philosophy with a personal slant philosophy (in, e.g., The New York Times, The Point, Aeon, and The New Yorker.) The course is structured as a writing workshop, and centrally aims to develop students’ confidence and skill in writing their own pieces of autobiographical philosophy. Students will create a portfolio of writing and workshop it closely with their peers and professor throughout the semester.

Units: 1

Max Enrollment: 12

Prerequisites: Permission of the instructor required. Intended for Philosophy majors and minors, but students with at least two courses in Philosophy will be considered.

Instructor: de Bres

Distribution Requirements: LL - Language and Literature; REP - Religion, Ethics, and Moral Philosophy

Other Categories: CSPW - Calderwood Seminar in Public Writing

Typical Periods Offered: Every other year

Semesters Offered this Academic Year: Not Offered