PHIL 6000: Darwin & Darwinism

Course Description: In 2009, we will celebrate the bicentennial of Darwin’s birth and the sesquicentennial of his On the Origin of Species.  There will undoubtedly be a tremendous amount of discussion regarding his life and works, so this seems an appropriate time to conduct a thoroughgoing discussion therein.  Despite his renown, Darwin remains, at least popularly, far less read than he should be.  Much of contemporary thought ascribes to him views or certainty that he lacked, and his popularity obscures some of his failings (e.g., his theory of heredity); nevertheless, Darwin’s central ideas remain among the greatest successes in intellectual history.  In this seminar, we will read the most important elements of the Darwinian corpus, as well as reflect upon the philosophical themes that it contains.

Course Syllabus (Fall 2007)