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Fall 2014: Philosophy of Language and Contemporary Moral Issues

Posted in Teaching

This Fall, I’ll be teaching Philosophy of Language at McDaniel College, using Gary Kemp‘s What Is This Thing Called Philosophy of Language and Daniel Chandler‘s Semiotics: The Basics.

When we say, “philosophy of language,” we typically mean “Analytic philosophy of language.” In fact, I’ve been able to find exactly zero textbooks that claim to present philosophy of language from the Continental point of view. (There’s a lacuna in the literature here, philosophy textbook writers!) Chandler’s Semiotics, however, covers almost everything I wanted (though it never even mentions Heidegger, and deals with Husserl much more briefly than I would like), so I’m very much looking forward to using it.

Kemp’s WITTCPL is a fantastic book, taking exactly the approach needed for undergraduates. Rather than listing every possible iteration and critique of every possible theory–which is of no help to students (especially non-majors)–it tells a coherent narrative about the development of Analytic philosophy of language. I’m very excited.

I’ll also be teaching Contemporary Moral Issues at University of Maryland as part of their Freshman Connection program. It’s an honor to be asked to teach at UMD again, and I’m very excited (I’m very excited about everything in this post) to get to introduce philosophy to my students, and be one of their first professors at college. I haven’t picked a textbook for this course yet (I don’t even have a contract), but I’ve narrowed my choices down to a short list.

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