Content: This essay aims to get you reflecting on the course material in relatio

Content: This essay aims to get you reflecting on the course material in relation to current events. A few notes: • Research. No research is expected – you can simply use your understanding of these events that you have gained from the news, etc. – though of course you may do research if you wish. If you do any research, however, be sure to cite it appropriately (using any standard method of citation, e.g., Chicago Manual of Style, MLA, or other formats). • Method. Your essay should employ philosophical method: i.e., it should build an argument, identify premises and conclusions explicitly and evaluate chains of reasoning for soundness, identify assumptions in or implications of the views it examines. All things being equal, essays that employ a philosophical methodology will score higher than those that do not. • Focus. As with the discussion posts, a good paper will have a single point of focus. If your paper says “Here are the 4 arguments for believing x”, then you’ve made sure you’ll never have space enough to treat any one of them in any depth. Focus on making just 1 argument and defend its premises, so that way you are going deep into the material instead of just skimming the surface. 3. Style: Papers will also be graded on their writing style. Avoid ornate language and instead strive to write clear, compact prose. Philosophical writing is lean, so edit carefully to trim away any unnecessary words and phrases so you express yourself as directly as possible. Above all, avoid repetition and inflated language meant to impress – a good philosopher will see right through such attempts to pad the paper. 4. Format: Papers should have 2” spacing with 1” margins, and font should be set in 12” Times New Roman Font. Papers can be anywhere from 2-4 pages long. Please do not write more than 4 pages. Writing less than 2 (i.e., 1 full page and half of the next) is very likely too little to do well. 5. References: Please use footnotes for references to sources for quotations or for paraphrased material.

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