The attachment is the guideline of how to write philosophy essay
paper 1 (1050 words )
Please select a question from the list below, and make sure to clearly state the question you are answering at the start of your essay.
1. Does one need to appeal to God and religion in order to make sense of an objective morality?
2. What is the Euthyphro dilemma, and what problem does it pose for divine command ethical theory?
3. Describe, and critically evaluate, at least one version of the social contract theory of morality.
4. What is the prisoners’ dilemma, and what, if anything, does it tell us about the relationship between pursuing our own self-interest and engaging in social cooperation?
5. What is moral expressivism, and how does it differ from a moral error theory? In what sense are these views forms of moral anti-realism?
6. What is moral relativism, and what kinds of considerations motivate such a view? Are any of these considerations persuasive?
paper 2 (Each paper is 1050 words)
Please select one question from the list below, and make sure to clearly state the question you are answering at the start of your essay.
(1) What is the ‘Mary’ problem against physicalism, and how effective is it?
(2) What are philosophical zombies, and what problem are they meant to pose for physicalism? How plausible is the zombie argument?
(3) What is the argument from illusion, and how is it used to motivate indirect realism over direct realism? Is it effective?
(4) What is the problem of fiction, and how do you think one should respond to it?
(5) Can the B-series capture everything there is about the nature of time? If not, what does it leave out?
(6) What are abstract objects? Are there any?
(7) What is the most persuasive mereological account of the relationship between parts and wholes? Defend your answer.
(8) What is an indispensability argument? What problems do such arguments face?
(9) How should we demarcate genuine science from pseudo-science?
(10) Critically evaluate the merits of scientific realism by focusing on what you take to be either the strongest argument in its defense or the strongest argument against it.
(11) Why is there something rather than nothing?
(12) What is the problem of evil, and how compelling is it as an argument for God’s non-existence?
(13) Is it ever rational to have faith in God?
(14) Does immortality have any essential role to play in an account of the meaning of life?
(15) Is death necessary for one’s life to be meaningful?
(16) If all that exists is the natural world, then can life ever be meaningful?
Each paper is 1050 words
SOME TIPS ON ESSAY WRITING
q Carefully read the question in hand, and make sure you answer it (i.e., and don’t just write down everything you know about that general topic).
q Write clearly and stick to the point. Avoid giving unnecessary details. q Remember that you get marked on the knowledge that you demonstrate, so
make sure that you properly explain your points, and that you always define terms/position/principles (etc) that you introduce.
q Always argue for your points. Do not simply state opinions. Relatedly, remember that philosophy is not journalism, in that you are not bound to be even-handed (it is more akin to law).
q That said, you should always be careful to describe the opposing view as charitably as possible. Avoid ‘straw men’.
SOME TIPS ON ESSAY WRITING
q Use examples to illustrate your points (ideally your own), as this demonstrates that you’ve understood the points that you’re making.
q Aim to structure your essay. For example, don’t discuss a view for several pages and only then explain what the view involves. With this in mind, it’s a good idea to sketch an essay plan before writing (particularly in an exam situation).
q You don’t have to cover everything. In general, it’s better to cover less ground and cover it in style than to cover lots of ground superficially. Note that you can still demonstrate that you are aware of other aspects of the debate by mentioning them and then setting them to one side (e.g., describe three objections to X in outline, but then state that you will in what follows be focussing on just one of them).
q Don’t plagiarise!
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