First-Year Seminar: Topics in Interdisciplinary Inquiry


What is a good life, and how can we live one? Is a happy life synonymous with a good life? If so, what is happiness? In this seminar, we will examine these questions with a variety of methods. We will begin with the ancient Greeks, exploring the philosophical perspectives they offer on questions of happiness and virtue. From there, we look at findings from psychology, economics, and anthropology to try to understand what makes people happy from a scientific perspective. Finally, we will look to various literary and cross-cultural perspectives on what a good life consists of. The aim of this course is threefold. First, this course aims to increase your knowledge of the various answers that have been proposed to the questions listed above. Second, it aims to help you develop your own ability to think and engage by deepening your skills in close reading, especially with respect to how we can approach philosophical, scientific, and literary texts differently-in particular, you'll learn how to diagram philosophical arguments and scientific studies. Third, this course aims to help you develop your skills in communicating your ideas, both extemporaneously (in discussion with peers) and in writing.
Course Attributes: EN H; FYS; BU Hum; BU IS; AS HUM; FA HUM; AR HUM

Section 01

First-Year Seminar: Topics in Interdisciplinary Inquiry
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