Environmental Ethics (Honors) [CRN 83348]

Discipline: Philosophy and Religious Studies
Instructor: Shockley
Credits: 3
Day: A
Start: 1410
End: 1530
Field Work: Day 1 | November 10, 2019 | Brazil
Prerequisites: This is an honors only course. To be eligible students must be of sophomore standing or higher AND must be studying within an honors program at their home institution or have no less than a 3.5 GPA. Download Syllabus

How should we treat or even think about the nonhuman world? What value is there in the environment, and why? In this course we will consider the nature of our complicated relationship with our natural environment, humankind’s responsibilities to and regarding that environment, the kinds of actions prescribed by those responsibilities, and possible justifications for those responsibilities. To engage in this examination adequately we will need to consider both theoretical issues underlying various approaches to the environment and the various ways those approaches have been put into practice. In this Semester at Sea Honors course, we will explore a range of local, culturally informed viewpoints associated with our ports of call as we work through the traditional syllabus.

Field Work

Country: Brazil
Day: 1
Date: November 10, 2019

This class will visit environmental NGOs while considering the value of endangered and threatened species. Such species are often thought to represent the importance of biodiversity. However, the value of biodiversity, and therefore the value of species, is difficult to characterize precisely. Through a brief study of sea turtles, this experience will allow us to consider several iconic species, the value of biodiversity, and the role of species in that value.

Learning Objectives:

  1. Develop an appreciation of the challenges faced by endangered species, and the values compromised by the loss of species.
  2. Critique competing conceptions of species and biodiversity
  3. Analyze the values underpinning biodiversity