PHIL 6310:  Memory

Course Description:  This seminar explores the ethical, legal, philosophical, and scientific dimensions of memory.  The first set of unit surveys these dimensions, as well as the related topics of remembering, forgetting, and false memories.  The second set of units looks at more purely philosophical topics, including personal identity and external memory.  We then explore amnesia, before turning to collective and historical memories.  What does it mean for “us” to remember the Holocaust—or the Civil War?  Should atrocities be remembered or forgotten?  Does forgiveness require forgetting?  The last series of units looks at applications, including memory dampening as a prospective treatment for post-traumatic stress disorder or rape, the fallibility of eyewitness memory, and Europe’s so-called right to be forgotten.

Course Syllabus (2018)