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    Why Philosophy?

    Philosophy tackles questions that we all face as creatures alive to the world. The first question, perhaps, is how we should live our life. That question gives way to related questions about the nature of the world, what we can know, how words do things, our political arrangements, our belief in God, and our interest in the things we value (each other, the natural environment, works of art, music, movies,...). Many people think about these questions late in their life and anxiously, wondering about the life they’ve led. Those who study philosophy believe that the solutions to these questions are urgent and central to their happiness, and so they give their thinking over to them early and often.

    Why Philosophy at Le Moyne?

    At most colleges – and indeed at most graduate universities – philosophy departments are loyal to one of the two Western philosophical traditions of the past two hundred years: either continental philosophy (from the continent of Europe – chiefly Germany and France) or analytic philosophy (the dominant philosophical tradition in Great Britain and the U.S.). Le Moyne’s department of philosophy is unusual in being strongly represented in both traditions, so our students gain exposure to the full range of philosophical approaches practiced today.

    We are a large philosophy department for a small college with a small number of majors: the ratio of majors to full-time faculty is less than two to one. This means, for majors, a dozen full-time faculty from whom you can choose several to work with closely and get to know well. The department’s areas of strength include social and political philosophy, aesthetics (i.e., philosophy of art), ethics, and the history of philosophy (particularly ancient and medieval philosophy).

    Our majors have a fairly open course of study compared to other majors. Thus, as a philosophy major, you have time to pursue interdisciplinary interests, enhancing your philosophy degree with a minor or second major. Many of our majors have taken extensive courses in religious studies, political science, literature, foreign languages, theater arts, and music. It is also possible to be certified in Elementary/Special Education with a philosophy major.

    There are several funded enrichment opportunities for philosophy majors at Le Moyne. These include travel to undergraduate conferences across the country, study abroad, internships, and post-graduate fellowships.  Participation in Symposium, the student philosophy club, enriches your experience of the philosophy major.

    Philosophy Courses and Requirements

    If you would like to learn more about courses, requirements, and opportunities for the Philosophy major, please see the Le Moyne College catalog.

    Philosophy’s Learning Goals

    In the philosophy department, we have five goals for ourselves and for our students:

    1. Developing a philosophical understanding of the world through the eyes of others.
    2. Developing a philosophical understanding of the historicity of philosophical thought and of specific histories of philosophy.
    3. Developing the capacity to reason critically, question philosophically, and reflect intelligently on human situations, germinal philosophical texts, and philosophical arguments.
    4. Developing a mature discernment of philosophically significant issues in our own life-experiences.
    5. Preparing students for success in graduate school or professional post-graduate education, or other legitimate venues of learning and experience.

    Meet the Faculty

    Tabor Fisher

    Tabor Fisher

    Associate Professor View Bio
    William Day

    William Day

    Associate Professor View Bio
    Cavin Robinson

    Cavin Robinson

    Assistant Professor View Bio

    News and Events
    Scholarship Winner

    Robert McCall '15 (Philosophy, Psychology, and History) has been awarded a Barnes and Noble Bookstore Scholarship for Spring 2015. The award, given to several deserving juniors and seniors, is based on the number of credits completed at Le Moyne and cumulative grade point average.

    Philosophy Majors Intern at the Dalai Lama Center
    Alexander Marji ’17 and Robert McCall ’15 were selected as interns for summer 2014 at the Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values at MIT in Cambridge, MA. This six-week internship exposes students to the innovative ethics and leadership initiatives at MIT’s Dalai Lama Center for Ethics and Transformative Values and provides hands on training in becoming ethical leaders for the 21st century.  Following a guided introduction to the Center’s mission and activities, Alex and Rob went on to develop, implement and test a project that aligns with both their own interests and the Center’s programs. They also prepared and presented a final report detailing lessons learned and ideas for the future.

    Get in Touch

    Contact the Department Chair:

    Dr. Irene Liu


    (315) 445-4491


    Contact the Department:

    Reilly Hall 339A
    Department of Philosophy
    Le Moyne College
    1419 Salt Springs Road
    Syracuse, NY 13214


    (315) 445-4256


    Why Study the Liberal Arts? Le Moyne graduates leave here with a strong intellectual capacity, a tolerance of ambiguity and the ethical foundation to succeed professionally and to thrive personally–all of which is our mission, and our privilege. Learn more about the liberal arts

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