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Instructor Class Description

Time Schedule:

Carole J Lee
PHIL 566
Seattle Campus

Seminar in Philosophy of the Social Sciences

Class description

Social scientific explanations are distinctive from explanations in the natural sciences, in part, because they are couched in narratives invoking actors’ reasons for action. As such, theorists in the social sciences face epistemic and metaphysical questions about: how we can infer actors’ reasons; how their reasons can also serve as causes; the degree to which such causal explanations are “scientific”; and, whether attributed beliefs and desires really exist or merely serve as instrumental posits employed to achieve empirically adequate theories. In the first half of this course, we will evaluate these classic questions as they arise, more specifically, in the philosophy of psychology. In the second half of the course, we will explore contemporary debates that arise from the attempt to connect our lay folk psychological theories to scientific ones. TEXT: Philosophy of Psychology: Contemporary Readings, Bermúdez

Student learning goals

General method of instruction

Recommended preparation

Class assignments and grading


The information above is intended to be helpful in choosing courses. Because the instructor may further develop his/her plans for this course, its characteristics are subject to change without notice. In most cases, the official course syllabus will be distributed on the first day of class.
Last Update by Sara L. Caka
Date: 11/10/2008