Phone: x33208 or x33010
This course explores the fundamental philosophical question: what is
a mind and how does it work? Students will study the important and sometimes
surprising conclusions found in interdisciplinary research on artificial
intelligence, cognitive psychology, linguistics, neurology, biology and
philosophy. Topics will include such questions as these. Can our minds
be the product of evolution? Are minds like computers? Can machines really
understand language? How do we see? Do emotions conflict with reason? What
is the purpose of consciousness? Do animals have consciousness? Do we have
free will? The main text for the course will be Steven Pinker's award winning
national bestseller How the Mind Works. One reviewer writes that this book
is "simply thrilling in its intricacy, subtlety and scope .. along with
more laughs than one would have thought possible in so illuminating a book".
There are no prerequisites.
The course satisfies the following core requirement: Writing Intensive Social Science.