Philosophical Flims

http://www.philfilms.utm.edu/index.html

This website has a long list of movies with philosophical themes.  In my ethics classes today, we discuss the relationship between morality and happiness.  One of the examples in the text was from the Woody Allen movie, Crimes and Misdemeanors.  I asked but none of the students really knew who Woody Allen was or knew of any of his movies.

Silly Quote from Chomsky on the Innateness of Language

“To say that language is not innate is to say that there is no difference between my granddaughter, a rock and a rabbit. In other words, if you take a rock, a rabbit and my granddaughter and put them in a community where people are talking English, they’ll all learn English. If people believe that, then they believe that language is not innate. If they believe that there is a difference between my granddaughter, a rabbit, and a rock, then they believe that language is innate.” (Chomsky, The Architecture of Language, 2000, p. 50)

We could use the same argument to conclude that riding a bicycle is innate.  After all, rocks and rabbits can’t ride bicycles.  But no one is born with the innate ability to ride a bicycle.  We learn how to ride.  Perhaps, we learn languages largely through external experience as well.

I found this quote in the following article: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4477053/ 

Daniel Everett vs. Noam Chomsky

https://aeon.co/essays/why-language-is-not-everything-that-noam-chomsky-said-it-is?utm_content=bufferaefe3&utm_medium=social&utm_source=facebook.com&utm_campaign=buffer

Daniel Everett argues that Noam Chomsky is wrong about universal grammar and the innateness of language.  If anyone wants to read a great book on the nature/nurture debate in general, with a chapter on language, then I recommend Jesse Prinz, Beyond Human Nature.  This book is available in the CFCC library.

This article, originally from Scientific American, is also worth looking at: http://www.salon.com/2016/09/10/what-will-universal-grammar-evidence-rebuts-chomskys-theory-of-language-learning_partner/

As is this response: https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/guest-blog/chomsky-s-theory-of-language-learning-dead-not-so-fast/

 

Philosophy at CFCC, Spring 2017

The CFCC Humanities Department is now offering 18 sections of philosophy this spring.  This is the most ever at CFCC.  Interest in philosophy is strong and growing.  If you are interested in philosophy, especially in being a philosophy major after transferring, then here is the course of study at CFCC that Dr. Brandon recommends:

PHI 215: Philosophical Issues and PHI 240: Introduction to Ethics (both courses will count toward the Humanities and Fine Arts requirement for the AA degree)

PHI 230: Introduction to Logic and PHI 220: Western Philosophy I (both courses will count toward the Critical Thinking requirement for the AA degree)

REL 111: Eastern Religions (this course will count toward the Global Awareness and Foreign Languages requirement for the AA degree)

In math, I would recommend taking as much as you can, especially if you are good at math.