Weekly Journal Entry: Each unit of the course (roughly a week’s worth of content and work) can be completed at your own pace and will include a short journal assignment (roughly 500 words). Specific prompts and instructions are found on each week’s entry page in the portfolio template you will use to create your portfolio. These assignments are graded on whether you answered the entire question and filled the length requirement. Points will be deducted for missing components or incorrect information, but you should get full credit if you follow directions. These are meant to get you thinking about philosophy and applying philosophy to the show but are not meant to be overly demanding.
VID=VIDEO ON MOODLE
THE GOOD PLACE S#E#= SEASON AND EPISODE NUMBER OF THE GOOD PLACE. Note the double episode premieres for Seasons 2-4 are counted as Episode 1 of that season in this schedule. Episode number should match numbers in streaming services.
TFT= THE FORKING TROLLEY
ENGELS= THE GOOD PLACE AND PHILOSOPHY (BLACKWELL)
BENKO= THE GOOD PLACE AND PHILOSOPHY (OPEN COURT)
WOLFF= READINGS IN MORAL PHILOSOPHY
Recommended Topics Course Content Timeline Date
Introduction to the Course
Overview of Ethical Philosophy
What is Ethics?
What is it to be a good person, and can you work at being a better person?
Aristotle (Virtue Ethics) Kant (Kantian/Deontological)
Vid: What is Philosophy?
Vids: How to Argue 1 & 2
V id: Metaethics
The Good Place S1 E1-4
TFT: “Everything is Fine!”
Vid: Get Away With Anything?
Wolff: Plato “Value of Justice”
Vid: Aristotle and Virtue Ethics
Wolff: Aristotle “Nicomachean
Vid: Kant and Categorical
Wolff: Kant “Categorical
Journal Entry 1
Main Ethical Theories
What is the value of honesty? Is it moral to act in self-interest if it serves a greater purpose?
Deonotology (Kantianism) Utilitarianism/Consequentialism Contractarianism
The Good Place Season 1 ep. 5- 7
TFT: Somewhere Else Calculating the Consequences
Vid: Kant (Review)
Wolff: Nagel (Kantian) “Right
Wolff: Bentham (Utilitarian)
“An Introduction to the
Wolff: Hobbes (Contractarian):
The State of Nature
11. Journal Entry 2
Catch Up/Get Ahead Week
Use this week to get ahead on the show and assignments
The Good Place S1, E8-11
Engels Ch. 4
Journal Entry 3
How We Affect Each Other’sExperience and Ethics
Is Hell other people?
The Good Place S1 E12-S2 E1
Vid: Sartre and Bad Faith
Vid: Sartre “Hell is Other People” Explained
Benko Ch. 16 & 17
Engels Ch. 13 (optional, has big
Wolff: Sartre “Existentialism”
Journal Entry 4
Identity, the Self, and Ethics
This week is also intended to allow you to get ahead on the show
What are existential crises?
1ST PORTFOLIO FEEDBACK OPPORTUNITY
The Good Place S2 E2-4
Vid: What is an Existential
Benko Ch. 16 & 17
Engels Ch 13 (optional, big
TFT “Existential Crisis”
Journal Entry 5
Using Philosophy to Improve Ourselves and Trust Others The Trolley Problem
Leap (in)to Faith
How can we use philosophy to improve our own ethical lives?
Philippa Foot (Utilitarian) Kierkegaard (Existentialist)
The Good Place S2 E5-8
Vid: The Trolley Problem
TFT: The Trolley Problem
Benko Ch. 14
Engels: Ch. 6 & 9
TFT: The Leap to Faith
Journal Entry 6
Using Philosophy to Make Ethical Decisions
How do we make decisions to be “the best version of ourselves”?
Why do we become anxious?
Can moral particularism help us escape this problem?
Johnathan Dancy (particularist) Kierkegaard (existentialist) MIDTERM PORTFOLIO FEEDBACK OPPORTUNITY
The Good Place S2 E9-12
Vid: Kierkegaard: The
Benko Ch. 10-12 & 21
TFT: My Best Self
Journal Entry 7
Angels, Demons, and… Bureaucrats
What does intervention by supreme beings do for our ethics?
Aquinas (Catholic, Natural Law)
The Good Place S3 E1-E3 (S3 E1 is actually a two-part 44- minute episode)
Benko 4, 13, 18-19
Engels 14 (recommended)
Wolff: Aquinas “The Natural
Wolff: Plato “God and
Journal Entry 8
Do our ties to each other require us to help each other be more good?
Philosophies: Feminist Care Ethics
The Good Place S3 E4-6
Vid: Care Ethics
Benko Ch. 15
Engels: Ch. 7
Wolff: Baier “The Need for More than Justice”
Wolff: Held “The Caring Person”
Journal Entry 9
Free Will vs. Determinism
Do we have free will in our ethical choices?
3RD PORTFOLIO FEEDBACK OPPORTUNITY
The Good Place S3 E7-9
Vids: Determinism and Free
Benko Ch. 3
Engels Ch. 2, 23
Wolff: Frankfurt “Alternative
Possibilities and Moral
Journal Entry 10
What if all of this ethics stuff is just a product of history and people?
What if the system produces ideas of “goodness” based on who has the political power to determine what is good? What if that system is unjust?
Philosophies: Nietzsche Foucault
The Good Place S3 E10-12
Benko Ch. 5
Vid: Nietzsche and Morality
Wolff: Nietzsche, “Beyond
Good and Evil”
Vid: Introduction to Foucault
Foucault “Technology of the
Self” (PDF On Moodle)
Journal Entry 11
When is it ethical to resist the system?
How much resistance (specifically violence) is ethical in resisting and changing an unjust system?
The Good Place S4 E1-4
Benko Ch. 1, 6
TFT: What we Owe to Each
Journal Entry 12
Death and Ethics
What does it mean to have been good after we die?
4TH PORTFOLIO FEEDBACK OPPORTUNITY
The Good Place S4 E5-8
Vid: Perspectives on Death
Vid: A Good life
TGP&P Ch. 2, 10, 20
Journal Entry 13
Using Popular Art to Teach High Art?
What can we learn from ethicalphilosophy and how does “low art” help us learn?
The Good Place S4 E9-13
Engels: Ch. 21, 25
Journal Entry 14
Wed Final Essay and Self- 1. Course Portfolio Due 11:59PM 5/5 Assessment Due
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