PHIL 342 Philosophy of Biology
This course is an introduction to the main issues in philosophy of biology. It begins by briefly explaining some of the fundamental matters in philosophy of science such as: scientific inquiry, the problem of demarcation, science and values, biology’s place in sciences and following these it opens up an examination of what life is. It then continues with introductions to major philosophical topics in biology such as: evolution, units of selection, genotype and phenotype, environment, innateness, epigenetics, developmental biology, genomics and phenomics, reductionism, complexity, biological laws, sociobiology and its controversies, biology and ethics. The course aims include encouraging students to discuss these topics as well as helping them to understand the main features of biology as a scientific discipline and also to familiarize themselves with philosophical problems related to methodologies of biology and its close connections with social issues.