Senior Philosophy Essays

A student majoring in philosophy is expected to take a minimum of ten courses in philosophy. In addition, it is required that students take the Junior Tutorial.  All entering majors are required to propose a concentration in the major. A concentration will normally consist of three courses at the 300- and 400-levels that are organized around some specific theme. In addition, each senior is required to write a senior essay in a course in his or her concentration. Qualified students may satisfy this latter requirement by writing an honors essay. The essays presented here are the work of senior philosophy majors.


Class of 2011

Jesse Ayers
"Let's talk about feelings" and Other Things Philosophers Don't Want to Hear

Nathan Bourne
Teleology as Evolutionary Etiology:
An analysis of teleological explanations of biological phenomena

Anthony Clairmont
Indecent Disclosures:
Whistleblower Ethics, Consequentialism, and Wikileaks

John C. Cochran
Albert Borgmann as Critical Theorist: Rethinking the Problem of Modern Technology Under the "Device Paradigm"

Colin McWhirt
A review of: Peter French, The Virtues of Vengeance

Jesse Schupack
The Best Of Both Worlds? Counterpart Theory and Modal Abstractionism in the Philosophy of G.W. Leibniz


Class of 2010

Will Bostwick (honors)
A Life-Affirming Method for Truth: Nietzsche and Wittgenstein on Truth, Dogmatism, and Relativism

Michael Ebling (honors)
Philosophical Therapy: The Method of Wittgenstein's Tractatus

Ian M. Hill
Against The Utilitarian Argument for Animal Liberation: A Criticism of Peter Singer

Benjamin Z. Huelskamp
Review of The History of Sexuality: The Use of Pleasure by Michel Foucault

Ann D. Nabers
The Community, Individual, and Wendell Berry

Andrew Parker
A Critical Analysis of Rosalind Hursthouse's Virtue Ethics Approach to the Issue of Abortion

Jw Sillay
Do we really live in A Secular Age?


Class of 2009

Mat Nelson (honors)
Mulhall, Film, and the Importance of Self-Reflexivity

Mayson Pearson
Susan Neiman, Moral Clarity: A Guide for Grown- Up Idealist, Harcourt Inc, 2008, 467pp, $ 27.00, ISBN 9780151011971

Molly Waldron
Robert Audi, Moral Value and Human Diversity, 2007, 160 pages, ISBN13: 9780195312942

Class of 2007

Jenna Ingersoll
The Failure of Socrates: Limitation or Defect?

Joseph Plaxco
The World Famine Crisis: Two Utilitarian Viewpoints

Naythaniel Williams
Battle Royale: Kripke vs. Luntley on Wittgenstein's
Account of Practice & Rules

Class of 2006

Caitlin Mary McCollister (honors)
Richard Rorty's Ironic Liberalism, The Charge of Relativism, and the Priority of Pragmatism

Isabel Witherspoon Foster
A Defense of Confucianism and Non-Theoretical Ethical Systems

Bill Frazier
Finding Truth with Tradition: Why MacIntyre Defeates the Charge of Relativism

Hunter McDonald Groves
An Inquiry into the Problem of Becoming Present in Alfred North Whitehead's Process and Reality

Joseph Alan Jackson
Democracy, Tradition, and the Local Community

Campbell McKee Wright
Finding a Middle Ground Between an Inclusive and Intellectualist Interpretation of Happiness in the Nicomachean Ethics


Class of 2005

Nicole Bermel (honors)
Nietzsche: Christianity and Truth

Brad Cherry (honors)
On the Coherence of Sartre's Defense of Existentialism Against the Essentialist Charge of Ethical Relativism in His
"Existentialism and Humanism"

Chris Guptill (honors)
"The Same Truly God and Truly Man": Aquinas, Reduplication and the Problems of the Incarnation

Adriana Zimova (honors)
Nietzsche and Truth

W. Andrew McClarty
A Wise man and a Fool: Nietzsche’s Philosophy of Art and Aesthetics

Christopher Miller
On Process and Eternity: An examination of the Divine Nature

Emily Nelson
The Morality of Active Euthanasia


Class of 2004


Austin Cox (honors)
An Ethical Evaluation of the PACE Program

Kate Sullivan (honors)
Medical Futility Within the Realm of End-of-Life Care

Ellie Bostwick
Kierkegaard vs. Nietzsche--Discerning the Nature of True Christian Faith

Wil Oakes
The Function of the Forms:
Examining Plato's Conception of Aitia Against the Criticisms of Aristotle

Andrew Schmidt
Wittgenstein and Fiction: An Abundance of Philosophical Investigation?

Class of 2003


Derek Lemoine (Honors)
The Evaluation of Cognitive Systems

Haley Hardin
Wittgenstein's Critique of Freud and the Confusion between Reasons and Causes

Tappan Heinsohn
Henry David Thoreau's Walden: A Radical Philosophical Charge for Individuality

Sara Staggs
Virtue and After: MacIntyre's Solution to a Modern Dilemma


Class of 2002


David Atkinson (Honors)
Zhuangzi—The non-Post-Nietzschean Perspectivist

Jordan Martins (Honors)
Playing in the World: Comparing Zhuangzi and Early Wittgenstein
Alan Wray (Honors)
Significant Objects & Authentic People
Carl Dull
The Tao Te Ching, Virtue Ethics, and the Foundations of Moral Inquiry
Jessica Farmer
The Use and Above of Dionysus: Testing Nietzsche against His Standards
Pete Greenfield
The Role of Laughter in the Good Life: A Philosophical Examination
Alice Martin
Plato's Feminism: A Discussion of Women in Ancient Philosophy
Elizabeth Vige
Beyond Reason: A Narrative Response to an Enlightenment Interpretation of Morality

Class of 2001


George Wilcox Brown (Honors)
"And the Life of the World to Come:" The Metaphysics of Resurrection

Thomas L. Humphries, Jr. (Honors)
A Modest Defense of Transubstantiation

Cara Sanders
The Virtues and Vices of Deep Ecology

Anne Dorsey
Wendell Berry: Should Environmentalists be Pro-life?

Ben Miles
Can We Know the Nature of the Self?

Carrie Hunsicker
The Aesthetics of Architecture

John Holyer
A Defense of Alvin Plantinga's Attack on Evidentialism

Raymond McAnally
Kierkegaard's Indirect Communication


Class of 2000


John David Spiller, Jr. (Honors)
Nietzsche's Philosophy of Affirmation: A Paradox Avoided

Natascha Berryman (Honors)
Truth and Metaphor

Nathan C. Clendenin (Honors)
Christianity and Liberalism:A Call for Change from Stanley Hauerwas

Michael Hoffman (Honors)
Did Dawkins Reveal a Blind Watchmaker?

Mary Jacklyn Bailey
The Liberal Ironist or the Authentic Self?

Nicki Cavender
Individualism, Commitments, and the Practices that Save Us

Brooks Marks
Environmental Ethics : a Comparative Study of Christian and Buddhist Ideals

Danielle Stevens
Nietzsche's Criticism of the Herd Mentality and Kierkegaard's Individual


Class of 1999


Scott Maule (Honors)
Untangling the Affirmative Action Debate

Hannah Love (Honors)
Objective Truth, Morality, and Confusion:
A New Solution through Narrative and Tradition

William Phillips
A Moral Guideline for Rorty's Concept of Self-Creation:
Liberalism vs. the Hobbesian  Theory of Human Nature

Robert Birdsey
The Ethics of Genetic Engineering:
Questions Concerning Future Genetic Treatment and Enhancement

Mark Hancock
Rudolf Steiner's Spiritual Epistemology


Philosophy Home | Other Departments | Sewanee Home

Last Updated: Wednesday, September 7, 2011 12:03 PM