Studying philosophy at Hampshire allows students to complete substantial groundwork within the history of Western philosophy, while at the same time engaging in dialogue with other traditions and perspectives.
Through Hampshire’s classes, students become versed in the work of philosophers representing a wide range of cultural and historical backgrounds, and develop abilities to analyze, articulate, construct, and criticize philosophical arguments.
Philosophy courses are also utilized to strengthen an understanding of the law, gender studies, religion, psychology, social justice, and history or to supplement a focus in studio arts or film.
|Student Project Titles
- » Comparisons Between Deleuzean Thought and Philosophical Taoism
- » The Changing Self: Reflections on a Computer-Mediated Existence
- » Free Will, Determinism, and Personal Responsibility
- » The Figuration of the Author in the Text
- » Impossible Recognition, Negotiations of Difference, and the Dissonant Body: A Reflection in Philosophy and Drawing
- » Identifying Agamben’s Conception of the Homo Sacer in Democratic Kampuchea
- » Introspection and Inner States
|Sample First-Year Course
Love, Sex & Death
This class examines conceptions of love, sex, and death, and how they influence both our private and public lives. We will discuss some of the philosophical literature on the natures of love, sex, and death, and contemporary issues such as same-sex marriage, pornography, prostitution, and abortion. Philosophy is more than a subject matter, it is a way of thinking, asking questions and evaluating answers to them. The aims of this course are not political but philosophical: to teach you to examine critically these issues and arguments, and to formulate and defend your own views on these topics. These topics are controversial for a reason: there are no easy answers. Assignments will consist of a series of short papers, and an independent project.
|Sample Courses at Hampshire
- » Alienation
- » Between Husserl & Heidegger
- » Between Levinas & Derrida
- » Ethics, Aesthetic, Politics & the Concept of Address
- » Identity Beyond Identity Politics
- » Introduction to Philosophy
- » Love, Sex & Death
- » On Derrida’s Politics
- » On Time & Being
- » The Philosophy of Ludwig Wittgenstein
- » Philosophy of Mind
- » Philosophy, Relativism & Truth
- » Questioning the Self
- » The Residue, the Detail, the Intimate: or, the Workings of Neoliberal Culture
- » Science & Religion: The History & Philosophy of an Uneasy Relationship
- » Topics in Contemporary Political Philosophy
|Through the Consortium
- » Ancient Philosophy (AC)
- » Buddhist Philosophy (SC)
- » Feminism & Knowledge (MHC)
- » The Greek Period (MHC)
- » Kant (UMass)
- » The Meaning of Life (SC)
- » Metaphysics (UMass)
- » Philosophy for Children (MHC)
- » Plato (AC)
- » Problems in Social Thought (UMass)
|Facilities and Resources
Five College Community
Soap Box is a philosophical society open to all members of the Five College community aimed at creating a supportive and enriching space for philosophic dialogue in the area. A biannual journal of philosophy composed of student work is published and open discussions are held weekly.
Culture, Brain, and Development
The program in Culture, Brain, and Development (CBD) at Hampshire College was founded in 2003 with a grant from the Foundation for Psycho-Cultural Research. It provides an arena in which perspectives from a range of disciplines are brought to bear on questions about what is considered innate, how the social and the biological influence one another, and how experience is integrated into the developing architecture of the human brain. With core and advanced courses, the program sponsors seminars, lecture series, summer institutes, colloquia, and conferences, as well as collaboratively taught, cross-School courses. In addition, it offers stipends to encourage student and faculty work at the intersection of culture, brain, and development.