BC: References | Baggini, J. (2011) Julian baggini: is there a real you? Retrieved from http://www.ted.com/talks/lang/en /julian_baggini_is_there_a_real_you.html BBC. (2005) Dr money and the boy with no penis. Retrieved from http://www.bbc.co.uk/sn/tvradio/pr ogrammes/horizon/dr_money_prog_summary.shtml Bigthink. (2011) Judith Butler: Your Behaviour Creates Your Gender [Video file]. Retrieved from http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Bo7o2LYATDc Gauntlett, D. (1998) Resources: judith butler. Retrieved from http://www.theory.org.uk/ctr-butl.htm Rachel Martin HZT4U Mrs. Purcell June 18, 2012
FC: Philoso | THINK
1: Contents | Personal Philosophy Page 2 Why Study Philosophy? Page 4 Favourite Quotation Page 5 I Think; Therefore, I am Page 6 Philosopher's Corner Page 8 Philosophy in the 21st Century Page 12
2: Personal Philosophy | Firstly, I am a Christian Theist and most of my thoughts and beliefs stem from this view. I believe that God knows what choices we are going to make and where our lives will lead us but I don’t believe that He forces us to make the choices we do or has predestined us in anyway. I believe that we have the freewill to make our own choices in life. I agree with the response to the theological challenge to freewill that foreknowledge is not the same as predestination. In Kohlberg's Theory of Moral Development, I think I am at stage 4 as I don't participate in drinking or excessive speeding as I know it is legal and am fearful of the potential consequences. When it comes to making moral decisions, I believe that virtue ethics is the best principle to follow in an individual context. I believe that morals are metaphysically grounded as I believe that humans are instinctively selfish and would make poor moral choices if left to their own devices.
3: In an ideal society, everyone would follow this principle and would make a conscious effort to have all of these virtues. However, because this is impossible, I believe that utilitarianism is the best way to make decisions for large groups as it pleases the majority of the people. When making my decisions, I am most likely to fall victim to the idols of the theatre as I am a traditionalist and tend to believe and follow the systems without questioning it. I think the ideal society would be run by a benevolent dictator. This leader would be wise and consult the people. The leader would be selfless and rule for the betterment of the society and people but ultimately would have veto power over the decisions being made the in society. I really like John Stewart Mill's theory of society because it allows for individual rights and freedoms but also allows the government to step in in an attempt to improve the individual's situation. | Of everything we talked about this semester, I was surprised to find that aesthetics was the hardest topic to form an opinion on. I believe that art is form of self-expression for artist, but the work does not necessarily have to have a meaning. Art can be created by using any medium and take many forms. It appears that anything could be called art; however, I do not believe that everything can be labeled as 'art' because people would take advantage of it and use it as an excuse for child pornography or inappropriate slander.
4: Why Study Philosophy? | It is important to study philosophy to have a deeper understanding of the human race and the world around us. Philosophy forces us to look deeper into what is real and what is moral. Studying the philosophy of ancient times is important because it has given the modern times a base of knowledge and beliefs to improve upon. Philosophy also exposes the learners to different views and opinions that will help them choose and create their own beliefs that they will be more passionate about than if they only believe something because they were raised that way. Despite what people say, I think grade 12 is the perfect time to start studying philosophy because we are on the verge of entering the real world as our own individuals. However, before this happens, I think it is a good idea to gain a better understanding of the world and have a chance to explore and solidify our beliefs before we are thrown into the mix with people whose views are completely opposite on ours. This magazine takes the reader though my beliefs and my understanding of philosophy.
5: Favourite Quote | It is the mark of an educated mind to be able to entertain a thought without accepting it. - Aristotle | I like this quote by Aristotle because it emphasizes the importance of exploring all sides of an aspect even though you may not agree with the other side. I believe that everyone should strive to climb to the mouth of the metaphorical cave and experience life outside of the sheltered area they were born and raised in. In my opinion, many people judge what is right or wrong based on their upbringing and don't question their beliefs or open their minds' to any other perspective. This can lead to prejudicial thoughts that could potentially lead to poor moral or ethical behaviour. Well rounded people understand different perspectives and can appreciate the opinions of others and sympathize with their situations more easily than others who have had no exposure to the other side. It is important that everyone, not just philosophers, work to be educated minds as very few things in this world are black and white. It is important for everyone to see the shades of grey in between to make the most morally correct decision in the given situation.
6: I Think; Therefore, I Am | At the beginning of this semester, I had a solid idea of what was moral and absolute truths. Although I saw a few shades of grey, I still saw almost everything in black and white. I also thought I had strong proof to back up my reasoning. However, throughout this semester, I have realized that when it comes to ethics and morality, there are very few absolute truths. For example, before this semester, I would have said that murder is always wrong. However, after discussing the trolley problem and other situations, such as self defense, I have come to realize that most of morality is relative to the situation.
7: Overall, my beliefs have not changed very much over the semester, however; I have learned to view each topic from multiple view points before making a conclusion. This semester I really enjoyed having class discussions because you are exposed to different opinions and it is interesting to see how people's personality and upbringing influences their opinions. I found the discussion we had on the possibility of implementing ropes in prison cells particularly interesting to hear the opinions of my peers. | Another major thing I learned this semester is how to correctly formulate an argument. I thought I was good at this before but when we learned about the different types of fallacies, I realized that I commonly used one or more of the fallacies to prove my points. I also now know to look for these fallacies in other people's arguments so I will not be persuaded by a poor argument.
8: Philosopher's Corner | BIO - Julian Baggini was born in the United Kingdom in 1968. He has written many books on philosophy for the general public and was awarded his PhD in 1996 for his thesis on personal identity. Baggini is currently the editor in chief for Philosopher's Magazine. | RESPONSE - I agree with Baggini's theory of personal identity. When you ask someone how they know they are the same person as ten years ago, they would say it is because remember the events in chronological order that has led up to the current moment. It makes sense to me that one's personal identity is a collection of memories, desires, beliefs and knowledge because if one's physical body was altered in anyway, they would still be the same person as long as the mind was unaltered. For example, if I got into a car accident and lost both my legs, I would still identify as the same person as before the accident because of the continuity of consciousness and because I still have the same beliefs and knowledge that I did before the accident.
9: THEORY - Julian Baggini believes that personal identity is an immaterial object and attributes it to the continuity of consciousness. He said that our identity is a collection of our memories, desires, beliefs and knowledge and that it is our continuity of consciousness throughout life that gives one their sense of identity. This view seems very rational to Baggini because almost every other object on this planet is made of a collect of parts. For example, water is not a core object that has two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen connected to it. Water is two parts hydrogen and one part oxygen. Baggini questions why personal identity should be exempt from this pattern. On account that personal identity is made up of a collection of thoughts and experiences, Baggini points that one’s sense of self is always changing. Baggini’s view of personality has been shaped by previous philosophers including Buddha, Locke and Hume. He also uses modern neuroscience to support this theory. According to the neuroscientist Baggini interviewed in his book, there is no center of the brain where everything comes together and therefore, there cannot be a permanent core of who we are. (Baggini, 2011) | Julian Baggini | I agree with Baggini's theory of personal identity. When you ask someone how they know they are the same person as ten years ago, they would say it is because remember the events in chronological order that has led up to the current moment. It makes sense to me that one's personal identity is a collection of memories, desires, beliefs and knowledge because if one's physical body was altered in anyway, they would still be the same person as long as the mind was unaltered. For example, if I got into a car accident and lost both my legs, I would still identify as the same person as before the accident because of the continuity of consciousness and because I still have the same beliefs and knowledge that I did before the accident.
10: BIO - Judith Butler was born in the United States in 1956. She has written many books and is known for her writings on gender, sexuality and identity. She received her PhD from Yale University in 1984 in philosophy. Today, she works as professor of Comparative Literature and Rhetoric at the University of California, Berkeley. | RESPONSE - I do not agree with her theory. I believe that gender is a biological attribute that one is born with. I do not believe that one's behaviour or environment has anything to do with gender. For example, in 1966 during a routine circumcision, Bruce Reimer's entire penis was burnt off. Brian's parents decided it would be best if he underwent sex reassignment surgery at the age of 22 months. Brian's parents raised him as Brenda but the throughout his life, always identified as male despite attempts to raise a female. (BBC, 2005) This proves that one is born with a gender. Butler also believes that gender is developed but development takes time. I believe gender is a large part of personal identity, so what is one's identity if their gender is still being developed? Is everyone genderless and without an identity for a period of their life? To me, these are large holes in Butler's theory.
11: Judith Butler | THEORY - According to Judith Butler, the human race cannot be broken down into groups as simply as male and female. Butler distinguishes between sex and gender and believes that gender is performative. By this, she means that gender is created and developed through one's actions and behaviour and that one acts in a way that reinforces the impression of being man or woman. Butler does not believe that gender is an internal trait that one is born with and does not always match up with society's views that sex and gender are synonymous. (Bigthink, 2011) Butler criticized the feminist movement as it lumped all women together as a group with common characteristics and interests. She believes that this enforced the binary opposition of males and females and closed up the possibilities for people who are 'gender different' (Gauntlett, 1998)
12: 21st Century | This is a picture that I took of the final moments before kickoff. To me, this picture represents the anticipation and other emotions that everyone experiences leading up to an important task or event. The ball represents the task or event as it is just sitting there, almost taunting the players because it is there but nothing can be done with it. This photo is also composed in a way that produced a high level of aesthetic pleasure. The center line draws your eyes from the players on the left to the ball and then to the player on the right. The players in the picture frame the photo nicely and the morning sun creates a pleasant cast on the shot.
13: This advertisement for Arctic Gardens frozen vegetables is an example of appeal to tradition. The woman depicted the ad is from a time era that is synonymous to working hard and eating hearty, nutritious homegrown food. This advertisement shows her approving this product which gives the viewer the impression that it is of the same standard as the fresh, homegrown vegetables of her era. Today, companies work hard to change and improve upon older products but this ad is saying that it is better to stick to the tried and true, plain old hearty vegetables. This is the way it was traditionally done and this advertisement is questions why anything should change.