Lutz Wingert: Catalogue data in Spring Semester 2017

Name Prof. em. Dr. Lutz Wingert
FieldPhilosophy, Practical Philosophy in particular
Professur für Philosophie
ETH Zürich, RZ F 2
Clausiusstrasse 59
8092 Zürich
DepartmentHumanities, Social and Political Sciences
RelationshipProfessor emeritus

851-0101-01LIntroduction to Practical Philosophy
Particularly suitable for students of D-MAVT, D-MATL
3 credits2GL. Wingert
AbstractPractical philosophy deals in a descriptive and evaluative way with the realm of the practical, that is, with action, practices, norms of action, and values held by people and societies. Ethics and political philosophy are branches of practical philosophy. This introductory course will treat some of the main questions and introduce students to the thinking of central figures in the field.
ObjectiveAt the end of the course, students (1) will be familiar with still highly influential answers to some of the main questions (see below, section "contents") in practical philosophy. (2) They will be able to better evaluate how convincing these answers are. (3) Students' own thinking concerning normative, e.g., ethical issues, will be more precise, due to a more sophisticated use of key concepts such as good, right, morality, law, freedom, etc.
ContentEthics is an account and instruction of the good, that could be reached by conscious, intentional behaviour (=action). Ethics is an essential part of practical philosophy. Therefore one of those central questions, which will be discussed in the course, is:

1. What is the meaning of words like "good" and "bad", used in ethical language? What is meant by "good", if one says: "Working as a volunteer for the <Red Cross> is good"? Does one mean, that doing so is useful, or that it is altruistic, or that is fair?

Further questions, to be discussed in the course, are:

2. Are moral judgements apt to be justified, e.g. judgments like "Lower taxes for rich foreigners in the <Kanton Zug> are unjust" or "Every person ought to be entitled to leave any religious community"? If so, how far a moral judgment's justification can reach? Is one right in arguing: "It is possible to show the truth of the proposition (a):The emissions of nitrogen dioxide in Zurich is far beyond the permissible limit (80 mg/m3). But it is not possible to verify the proposition (b): In our times, the inequal global distribution of wealth is far beyond the permissible limit. Proposition (a) states an objective fact, whereas (b) expresses a mere subjective evaluation, though that evaluation might be widely spread.

3. What are just laws, and what is the relationship between law and morality?

4. Is freedom of a person, though presupposed by criminal law and morality, nevertheless an illusion?

These questions will be partly discussed with reference to seminal authors within the western philosophical tradition (among else Plato, Aristotle, Thomas Hobbes, David Hume, Immanuel Kant). Contemporary philosophers like Jürgen Habermas, Thomas Nagel, Ernst Tugendhat or Bernard Williams will be included, too.
LiteraturePreparatory Literature:

-Dieter Birnbacher, Analytische Einführung in die Ethik, 2. Aufl. Berlin: de Gruyter Verlag 2006.
- Simon Blackburn, Think. A Compelling Introduction to Philosophy, Oxford: University Press (=UP) 1999, chapters 3 und 8.
- Philippa Foot, <Virtues and Vices> in: diess., Virtues and Vices and Other Essays in Moral Philosophy, Oxford: UP 2002, and <Morality, Action and Outcome>, in: dies., Moral Dilemmas and Other Topics in Moral Philosophy, Oxford: UP 2002.
- H.L.A. Hart, <Positivism and the Separation of Law and Morals, in: Harvard Law Review 71 (1958), pp. 593-629.
- Detlef Horster, Rechtsphilosophie zur Einführung, Hamburg: Junius Verlag 2002.
- Robert Kane, <Introduction: The Contours of the Contemporary Free Will Debates>, in: ders., (Hg.), The Oxford Handbook of Free Will, Oxford 2002.
– Thomas Nagel, The Limits of Objectivity, in: The Tanner Lectures on Human Values 1980, Vol I., ed. Sterling McMurrin , Cambridge et al.: UP 1980, pp. 75-139.
- Ulrich Pothast, <Einleitung> in: ders., (Hg.), Seminar: Freies Handeln und Determinismus, Frankfurt/M.: suhrkamp taschenbuch wissenschaft 1978, pp. 7-31.
- Bernard Williams, Morality. An Introduction to Ethics, Cambridge: UP (=Canto Series) 1976.
- Peter Winch, The Idea of a Social Science, 4.Aufl. London 1965, ch. II.
Prerequisites / NoticeThe course will be a mixture of lecture and seminar. For getting credit points, essays on given or freely chosen subjects have to be written.
851-0125-03LResearch Colloquium for Ph.D.-Students and Members of Staff Restricted registration - show details
For master students only with a personal invitation.
0 credits1KL. Wingert, M. Hampe, R. Wagner
AbstractPh.D. students, post docs, members of staff, and senior colleagues from other philosophy departments will report on their research. Furthermore, promissing new philosophical articles and parts of books will be studied.
ObjectivePhilosophical ideas and arguments dealing with systematic problems especially in epistemology, ethics, political philosophy, and the philosophy of mind will be scrutinized and elaborated.
851-0125-52LCentral Questions in Bioethics
Particularly suitable for students of D-BIOL, D-CHAB, D-HEST, D-MATL, D-MAVT
3 credits2SL. Wingert
AbstractBioethics deals with the evaluation and regulation of technology based interventions into life. What are valid principles guiding bioethical decision, principles like "Protect the dignity of the living being!", or "Respect a person's self-determination!"? Besides answering such questions, the social, scientific and political processes linked with biotechnologies should be taken into account.
ObjectiveDürfen Embryonen unter dem Aspekt selektiert werden, ob sie als Rettungsgeschwister geeignet sind, deren Zellgewebe einem schon geborenen anderen Kind durch Implantation das Leben retten kann? Soll die Forschung an Pillen erlaubt sein, die das menschliche Gedächtnis teilweise auslöschen und damit zum Beispiel traumatische Erlebnisse beseitigen können? Spricht wirklich mehr gegen Hirndoping als gegen Kaffeekonsum? Darf es Patente auf menschliche Stammzellen geben? Das sind Fragen der Bioethik.
Der Kurs hat das Ziel, einige der wichtigsten bioethischen Fragen zu erforschen.
Es sollen normative Prinzipien identifiziert werden, die oft faktisch bioethischen Entscheidungen zu Grunde liegen.
Und es sollen überzeugende Prinzipien ermittelt werden.
Zugleich sollen die Teilnehmer Kenntnisse erwerben über die Entwicklungen in zeitgenössischen Gesellschaften westlichen Typs (mit individuellen Grundrechten, kapitalistischer Marktwirtschaft und systematische wissenschaftlicher Forschung), die mit der Dynamik von Biotechniken zusammenhängen.

1.Dieter Sturma/Bert Heinrichs (Hg.), Handbuch Bioethik, Stuttgart: Metzler 2015.

2. Bettina Schöne-Siefert, Grundlagen der Medizinethik: Stuttgart: Kröner 2007.

3. Tom L. Beauchamp/James Childress, Principles of Biomedical Ethics, 7th ed. Oxford: University Press 2013.

4. Oliver Müller, Formen der Technisierung des Gehirns, in: O.Müller, Zwischen Mensch und Maschine. Vom Glück und Unglück des Homo faber, Berlin: Suhrkamp 2010.

5. Helmut Dubiel, Tief im Gehirn, München: Kunstmann 2006.

6. Jürgen Habermas, The Future of Human Nature. Cambridge: Polity Press 2003.

7. Norman Daniels, When are health inequalities unjust?, in N.Daniels, Just Health: Meeting Health Needs Fairly, Cambridge 2008.
862-0002-17LResearch Colloquium History of Knowledge (FS 2017) Restricted registration - show details
Only for MAGPW students, D-GESS PHD and D-ARCH PHD students.

This colloquium is highly recommended for first and second semester MAGPW students.
2 credits1K + 1AK. M. Espahangizi, M. Hagner, H. Fischer-Tiné, D. Gugerli, A. Kilcher, P. Sarasin, P. Ursprung, L. Wingert
AbstractThe colloquium of the ZGW focuses on present developments, debates and perspectives in the field of history of knowledge.
ObjectiveThe colloquium deals with the general problems, questions and methods of the interdisciplinary research field "The history of knowledge". Knowledge has become one of the existential conditions of modern societies and it increasingly determines their dynamics. Therefore, it is getting more and more relevant to develop a differentiated analysis of the epistemic, social and cultural constraints of the production, circulation and the decay of knowledge. In addition, the colloquium asks after the cultural and ethical resonances of knowledge not only within science but also in relation to art, literature, technology, everyday life, and so on.
Prerequisites / NoticeKurzfristige Veranstaltungshinweise und Programmänderungen werden über den ZGW Newsletter kommuniziert, daher bitte auf eintragen!

Kreditpunkte können durch regelmässige Teilnahme und die Abfassung eines Essays (o.ä.m., Umfang: 5-7 Seiten) über das Thema eines der Vorträge erworben werden. Zusätzlich zu den Kolloquiumsterminen muss an einem weiteren Termin (nach Absprache anfangs Semester) ein vertiefendes Begleitseminar besucht werden (Dozent: Kijan Espahangizi).

Es besteht die Möglichkeit zur parallelen kostenlosen Kinderbetreuung vor Ort.
862-0004-04LPhilosophical Colloquium (FS 2017) Restricted registration - show details
Registrations with Prof. L. Wingert.
2 credits1KL. Wingert
AbstractPh.D. students, post docs, members of staff, and senior colleagues from other philosophy departments will report on their work in progress. Furthermore, promissing new philosophical articles and parts of new philosophical books will be studied.
ObjectiveIdeas and arguments dealing with systematic problems especially in epistemology, ethics, political philosophy, and the philosophy of mind will be scrutinized and elaborated.
862-0075-00LMaster-Colloquium: Research Colloquium for Ph.D.-Students and Members of Staff Restricted registration - show details
Only for History and Philosophy of Knowledge MSc.

Personal registration with Prof. L. Wingert.
2 credits1K + 4AL. Wingert, M. Hampe, R. Wagner
AbstractPh.D. students and members of staff report on their research.
ObjectiveKey problems of research projects will be discussed. Participants will learn to know arguments and ideas dealing with systematic problems in philosophy.