Course Abstract Details

PHIL-220, Ideas on Drugs

Credits: 3

Course Description

PHIL-220, Ideas on Drugs, emphasizes the use of critical analysis and honest scholarship to examine how the use of currently demonized and illegal drugs have influenced the history of ideas. What would the world look like without these drugs or the people who used them? Are there "good" drugs and "evil" drugs? Are drug-induced thoughts and ideas always suspect, or do they sometimes allow us to view the world through different or better lenses? Drugs declared dangerous and deadly by contemporary society have influenced many of the world's greatest thinkers and their ideas, and rejecting them would mean the rejection of world history. The Bible, Sigmund Freud, and the Declaration of Independence might not have our interest without the drugs we call dangerous. We know that drugs have played various roles in our world because they work, but exactly what work do we expect them to do? Prerequisite: exemption or completion of ENG-097 and READ-099. Three hours lecture each week. Three credits. Three billable hours. DIVERSITY/WORLD VIEW. Offered Spring term.

Course Objectives and Grading Information


1. The primary objective of this course is to force us all to think, specifically about drugs in our culture. Philosophical thinking requires that one be willing to explore (not necessarily accept) any and all ideas put forth by oneself or others, however ridiculous, offensive, or dangerous they might appear to be. We will do exactly that in this course. The others mentioned will be our peers, as well as other philosophers. (G20-1, 2, 6) (H21-1, 2, 3, 4) 

2. Demonstrate an understanding of select ideas and theories, such as those by notable philosophers, thinkers, and writers. (G-1) (H-1, 2) 

3. Evaluate strengths and weaknesses of various ideas and theories. (G-2) (H-2, 4) 

4. Formulate one's own ideas and theories in response to the readings and discussions. (G-2, 5, 7) (H-4, 5)

Learning Goals

The abbreviations in parentheses represent Learning Goals which have been identified for this course and program of study:

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