You are at a café with a friend. They ask you why Socrates was executed and why his ideas were so threatening. Explain why to your friend. Delve into two famous broader philosophical claims of Socrates and kick around with your friend what they mean and some possible examples and counter-examples. Explain where you stand in reaction to Socrates’ ideas.
You are at a café with a friend. Your friend asks you what your philosophy textbook says about the meaning of life. Delve into three different views—and continue the conversation with your friend about their possible strengths and weaknesses. Do you side with any of them? Why or why not?
You are in a café with a friend. Your friend asks you about whether philosophers can prove God’s existence. Delve into any two different arguments (or just one if you do it in some depth—i.e argument by intelligent design, Pascal’s Wager, First Mover). (make sure to explain the key elements of the claims being made). Kick around with your friend the possible weaknesses and strengths of such arguments.
You are in a café with a friend. They ask you about whether God and evil can co-exist. You then delve into what you learned from your philosophy class (make sure to define evil, theodicy and delve into two arguments defending God). How might your friend still raise challenges against God. Do you find your friend’s objections convincing or failed theodicy?
You are in a café with a friend. Your friend asks you what you learned about Nietzsche and why he hates Christianity so much. Cover what you take to be the heart of his objections. Would you and your friend agree with Nietzsche or disagree? Explain why.
You are in a café with a friend. She asks you about what you are learning about Marx. Delve into Marx’s theory of alienation and why he objects to capitalism through and through. What would be the sorts of strengths and weaknesses of his ideas you and your friend would raise?
You and your friend are in a café discussing Plato’s famous allegory of the cave. Recount the plot and key symbols from Plato’s vantage point and then have a conversation about where you could take this story in 2020 U.S.A.
In a café, you and your friend start discussing Descartes’ trip down skepticism lane. Explain to your friend the different ways Descartes began to doubt whether he really knew anything, along with how he got out of his drowning skeptism. Discuss whether Descartes’ doubts have any relevance to our own struggles for trying to find knowledge.
You are in a café with your friend. And you start discussing whether we can know anything through our powers of human reasoning or through our senses. You decide to start explaining to your friend some of the theories you are learning about in your philosophy class. Picking two (ie. Empiricism, rationalism, Kant’s constructivism), explore with your friend what can be the strengths and weaknesses of such vantage points.
You are in a café with a friend and you bring a painting of a blank white canvas, asking your friend what they think. They see a blank white canvas. You say it is art. This opens on to a conversation about ‘what counts as art.’ You then start explaining the divide between Plato and Aristotle that you are learning about in your philosophy class. Be sure to use your own examples for fleshing out some of their points. Do you and your friend side with either thinker? Why or why not?