The Stetson University Philosophy Club

Statue

The Philosophy Club is a monthly meeting of the minds involving faculty, philosophy majors and minors, and students interested in pursuing advanced studies in philosophy. A student convener sets the agenda and distributes texts for discussion. There are usually six meetings a year with a new president elected annually; the president offers guidance to conveners in their selection of discussion topics. Meetings allow students and professors to continue their philosophical dialogue outside of class in a congenial atmosphere. The Stetson University Philosophy Club is officially recognized by the Student Government Association.

If you are interested in joining the Philosophy Club, please e-mail Divina Bungard, the Philosophy Department Secretary at dbungard@stetson.edu and she will put you on the mailing list for upcoming Philosophy Club meetings and announcements.

Philosophy Club

Philosophy club has had a year full of great speakers and engaging discussion. Conversations were created between a variety of studies, including religious studies and psychology, as well with a variety of people, such as professors and students.

The first meeting of the year had our location graciously provided by the department chair Dr. Ronald Hall at his home near campus. We had guest speaker Charlenge Edge discussing her experience leaving The Way International, a known cult. She read a portion of her book and addressed questions about what it was like leaving a cult, for both her and her family. The conversation was fascinating as we addressed concern about the nature of group identity, and the type of emotional state needed to decide to leave an identity defining social group. 

For our next meeting, we had a student, Jason Cruz, presenting his paper, “A Utilitarian Defense of Non-Monogamy,” followed by a planned rebuttal by co-president Joe Beery. The club then had a conversation about how Utilitarianism was being applied to the relationship, including how a scale can be applied to happiness in a relationship. (see picture below)

Our first professor to speak to the club for the year was Dr. Hugh Marlowe, with his presentation titled “East…West…Huh…?” He created a dialogue showing a connection and similarities that he has found in his studies between eastern and western philosophical thought. The goal was to demonstrate that despite the fact that the two areas of thought are separated that he has been studying for a while to illustration the connection between the two styles.

Dr. Rothstein was another professor who we had the enjoyment of getting to host at our March meeting. He presented his speech on The Cognitive Science of Decision Making. The piece had an interdisciplinary edge, between Philosophy and Psychology, and discussed the details of the significance of physiological phenomenon effect on decisions. Connecting these occurrences to the known philosophical dialogues they effect, such as the trolley problem. This was a great meeting with discussion that had significant back and forth between the students and Dr. Rothstein. 

Our last visiting professor was Dr. Peter Rollins, who we were glad to have returned to the philosophy club again this year, to discuss Christ the Atheist: Recovering the Subversive Legacy of Political Subtraction. This meeting had a good number of professors from outside of the philosophy department allowing for a challenging interdepartmental dialogue.

We concluded the year with a poster session by the new class Research in Philosophy, where students presented the ideas within the paper that they had written over the semester in the class. The students worked hard on their topics and, as someone who was in this class, I had fun getting to share and hear about everyone’s research over the semester 

This was an entertaining year for Philosophy club. We got to engage with a variety of speakers in enlightening and thought-provoking discussion. The club is excited to see what conversations we will get to have next year.

By Amanda Hernandez, Philosophy Club Co-President 2015-2016