Social/Behavioral Science Exploration
This course confronts a core question: What does it really mean to say that we are human beings? By considering key thinkers in the realms of biology, psychology, anthropology, philosophy, spirituality, and literature we can begin to map this hotly contested intellectual terrain. How if at all must we adjust what it means to be human - that oh-so rarified category - to accommodate, say, the complex social patterns of non-human organisms, or perhaps to bring on board machines that can "think" and "learn" and even "feel"? Finally, we will want to consider how people over time and across cultures have connected human experience to cultural expressions of the divine - to God, or gods, or the spirit world - and here we find that religion and ecology often go hand-in-hand.