12 x 2-hour seminars per semester
9 units of second year PHIL or PSYC topics
Assumed knowledge
Familiarity with the kind of knowledge, conceptual understanding and skill such as can be obtained by completion of at least 9 units of second year undergraduate level topics from the Philosophy major.
Topic description

This topic draws on the latest theories in psychology and philosophy to explore the nature of emotions, and the role emotions play in ethical and religious experience. In the first few weeks we will look at different theories of what emotions are exactly. We will then move on to issues like emotional expression and empathy, before turning to moral emotions like sympathy and disgust. Finally we will examine the role of emotions in religious experience by looking at hope, forgiveness, and the sense of the sublime.

Educational aims

This topic aims are to:

  • Discuss contemporary theories of the evolution of religious faith
  • Discuss contemporary theories of emotions
  • Explore contemporary research on ethics in the cognitive and behavioural sciences
  • Explore the significance of these issues for contemporary life
Expected learning outcomes
On completion of this topic you will be expected to be able to:

  1. Articulate recent empirical research on emotions, ethics and religion
  2. Apply their knowledge of emotions, ethics and religion to key global issues such as terrorism
  3. Write clearly and lucidly about the issues discussed in the topic