- Philosophy Faculty
- Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Minor Concentration Philosophy (18 credits)
- Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Major Concentration Philosophy (36 credits)
- Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Honours Philosophy (60 credits)
- Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Joint Honours Component Philosophy (36 credits)
- Philosophy (PHIL) Related Programs
- Leacock Building, 9th Floor
- 855 Sherbrooke Street West
- Montreal QC H3A 2T7
- Telephone: 514-398-6060
- Email: info.philosophy [at] mcgill.ca
- Website: mcgill.ca/philosophy
Broadly speaking, the principal aim of philosophy is to increase our understanding of ourselves, the world, and our place in it. Philosophy differs from the empirical and social sciences in important respects. Different areas of philosophy are characterized by the questions they address. For example:
- Epistemology inquires into the nature of knowledge;
- Metaphysics is concerned with the fundamental nature of the world and of the types of things that it contains;
- Ethics investigates the nature of moral judgment and moral reasoning;
- Political Philosophy examines such matters as justice, freedom, rights, democracy, and power;
- Logic is broadly the analysis of the structure of correct reasoning.
In addition, there are the various “Philosophies of...” e.g., Philosophy of Science, Philosophy of Language, Philosophy of Mind, and Philosophy of Religion.
Some of the courses in the Department are explicitly devoted to these specific areas of philosophy, each exploring one or several ways of construing and answering the questions it poses. Other courses explore some period or individual figure in the history of philosophy, approaching philosophical questions through the work of past thinkers, and often exploring connections between the different areas of philosophy.
The discipline of Philosophy, as a particular way of thinking, emphasizes clarity in expression, both written and oral, and rigour in argument. Philosophical questions are intriguing and complex, and so philosophical method stresses thoroughness and intellectual generosity—the willingness and ability to grasp another's arguments and respond to them.
The Department requires that all students in the Honours and Joint Honours programs take a special 3-credit course (PHIL 301), the principal aim of which is to equip students with the distinctively philosophical skills required for advanced work in the field. The course is not available to students in the Major or Minor programs.
The B.A. in Philosophy is not a professional qualification. It prepares students for graduate work in philosophy and for study in other disciplines, e.g., Law. As the interdisciplinary discipline par excellence, philosophy also maintains and encourages ties with other fields, so many students will find that certain classes in philosophy are directly relevant to their major area of study. The Department has a strong commitment to providing an intensive yet broad-based philosophical education. The research interests of members of the Department are wide-ranging.
See also the separate listing for History and Philosophy of Science (HPSC).
|George Di Giovanni; B.A., M.A., S.T.B., Ph.D.(Tor.)|
|Storrs McCall; B.A.(McG.), B.Phil., D.Phil.(Oxf.)|
|James McGilvray; B.A.(Carleton Coll.), Ph.D.(Yale)|
|Calvin Normore; B.A.(McG.), M.A., Ph.D.(Tor.)|
|Charles Taylor; B.A.(McG.), B.A., M.A., D.Phil.(Oxf.), F.R.S.C.|
|David Davies; B.A.(Oxf.), M.A.(Manit.), Ph.D.(UWO)|
|Marguerite Deslauriers; B.A.(McG.), M.A., Ph.D.(Tor.)|
|Carlos Fraenkel; B.A., M.A., Ph.D.(Free Univ., Berlin) (James McGill Professor) (joint appt. with Jewish Studies)|
|Ian Gold; B.A., M.A.(McG.), Ph.D.(Princ.) (joint appt. with Psychiatry)|
|Michael Hallett; B.Sc., Ph.D.(LSE) (John Frothingham Professor of Logic and Metaphysics)|
|Iwao Hirose; B.A., M.A.(Waseda), Ph.D.(St. And.) (joint appt. with Bieler School of Environment) (Canada Research Chair Tier 1)|
|Stephen Menn; M.A.(Chic.), M.A.(Johns Hop.), Ph.D.(Chic.), Ph.D.(Johns Hop.) (James McGill Professor)|
|Alia Al-Saji; B.A.(McM.), M.A.(Louvain), Ph.D.(Emory)|
|Michael Blome-Tillmann; B.Phil., D.Phil.(Oxf.) (William Dawson Scholar)|
|R. Philip Buckley; B.A., M.A.(Tor.), Ph.D.(Louvain)|
|Emily Carson; M.A.(McG.), Ph.D.(Harv.)|
|Gaëlle Fiasse; B.A., M.A., Ph.D.(Louvain) (joint appt. with School of Religious Studies)|
|Alison Laywine; B.A.(Ott.), M.A.(Montr.), Ph.D.(Chic.)|
|Eric Lewis; B.A.(Cornell), Ph.D.(Ill.-Chic.)|
|Dirk Schlimm; M.Sc.(TU Darmstadt), M.Sc., Ph.D.(Carn. Mell)|
|Hasana Sharp; A.B.(Occidental), M.A.(SUNY, Binghamton), Ph.D.(Penn.)|
|Natalie Stoljar; B.A, LL.B.(Syd.), Ph.D.(Princ.) ( joint appt. with Institute for Health and Social Policy)|
|Christopher Howard; B.A.(Wheaton), M.A.(Brandeis), Ph.D.(Ariz.)|
|Stephanie Leary; B.A.(Wash.), Ph.D.(Rutg.)|
|Eran Tal; B.A., M.A.(Tel Aviv), Ph.D.(Tor.) (Canada Research Chair Tier 2)|
|Kristin Voigt; B.A., M.Phil., D.Phil.(Oxf.) (joint appt. with Institute for Health and Social Policy)|
|Susan-Judith Hoffmann; B.A., M.A.(McG.), Ph.D.(Guelph-McM.) (Dawson)|
|Konstantinos Arvanitakis; B.Sc., M.A., M.D.,C.M.(McG.), D.Psy., C.I.P.C., C.C.M.Q., F.R.C.P., R.S.M.A.(U.K.) (Can. Institute of Psychoanalysis)|
|Arash Abizadeh; B.A.(Winn.), M.Phil.(Oxf.), Ph.D.(Harv.) (Political Science)|
|Jacob T. Levy; A.B.(Brown), M.A., Ph.D.(Princ.) ( Tomlinson Chair )|
|Steven Davis; B.A.(Roch.), M.A., Ph.D.(Ill.) (Emeritus Professor of Philosophy, Carleton)|
|Iain Macdonald; B.A.(C'dia), M.A.(Wales), D.E.A.(Nice), Ph.D.(Essex)|
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Minor Concentration Philosophy (18 credits)
For more information, see Minor Concentration Philosophy (18 credits).
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Major Concentration Philosophy (36 credits)
For more information, see Major Concentration Philosophy (36 credits).
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Honours Philosophy (60 credits)
According to Faculty regulations, Honours students must maintain a minimum CGPA of 3.00 and maintain a minimum program GPA of 3.00. Admission to Honours: Students must attain a 3.00 CGPA and have a 3.00 GPA in Philosophy courses.
For more information, see Honours Philosophy (60 credits).
Bachelor of Arts (B.A.) - Joint Honours Component Philosophy (36 credits)
Students who wish to study at the Honours level in two Arts disciplines may apply to combine Joint Honours program components from two Arts disciplines. For a list of available Joint Honours programs, see "Overview of Programs Offered" and "Joint Honours Programs". ...
For more information, see Joint Honours Component Philosophy (36 credits).