Midterm Takehome Exam (Week 7, Oct.17-21, due Oct. 21, Friday, 12 noon)
Note: Word limits for your answers are strict.
Read very slowly and carefully, perhaps twice or more, the quotes in this exam. Be faithful to the text in your interpretation and engagement, do not read into things (ideas) that are not in the original text, make reasonable inferences or draw reasonable implications from the text. If you have a guess on the text or if you want to change the context or scenario depicted in the text, make sure you indicate that (â€œmy guess isâ€¦â€, or â€œif I change the scenario like thisâ€¦thenâ€¦.â€).
1. In the following two passages, one philosophy discourse and the other religious (and philosophical) discourse, the authors stand orÂ imagine to stand onÂ a special position (unlike one specific position one takes in everyday life or one taken by a specific scientist in a particular discipline).Â Explain how these ambitious discourses are different from those in natural sciences (physics, chemistry, or biology). Explain whether these ambitious discourses contradict with discourses in natural sciences.Â (It is raining and it is not raining in Richmond today. This is a contradiction). [Â 300 words limit; every sentence count]
â€œI am a physical object sitting in a physical world. Some of the forces of this physical world impinge on my surface. Light rays strike my retinas; molecules bombard my eardrums and fingertips. I strike back emanating concentric airwaves. These waves take the form of a torrent of discourse about tables, people, molecules, retinas, air waves, prime numbers, infinite classes, joy and sorrow, good and evil.â€
(W. V. Quine, 1908-2000)
Genesis [in the Bible]: 1Â In the beginningÂ God createdÂ the heavensÂ and the earth.Â 2Â Now the earth was formlessÂ and empty,Â darkness was over the surface of the deep,Â and the Spirit of GodÂ was hoveringÂ over the waters. 3Â And God said,Â â€œLet there be light,â€ and there was light.Â 4Â God saw that the light was good,Â and he separated the light from the darkness.Â 5Â God calledÂ the light â€œday,â€ and the darkness he called â€œnight.â€Â And there was evening, and there was morningâ€”the first day.
2. To demonstrate your carefulness and skills in reading and understanding a philosophy text, read the following passage by German philosopher Immanuel Kant (1724-1804):
[What is the most important thing in ethics?]
Nothing can possibly be conceived in the world, or even out of it, which can be called good, without qualification, except a good will. Intelligence, wit, judgement, and the other talents of the mind, however they may be named, or courage, resolution, perseverance, as qualities of temperament, are undoubtedly good and desirable in many respects; but these gifts of nature may also become extremely bad and mischievous if the will which is to make use of them, and which, therefore, constitutes what is called character, is not good. It is the same with the gifts of fortune. Power, riches, honour, even health, and the general well-being and contentment with one’s condition which is called happiness, inspire pride, and often presumption, if there is not a good will to correct the influence of these on the mind, and with this also to rectify the whole principle of acting and adapt it to its end. The sight of a being who is not adorned with a single feature of a pure and good will, enjoying unbroken prosperity, can never give pleasure to an impartial rational spectator. Thus a good will appears to constitute the indispensable condition even of being worthy of happiness.
There are even some qualities which are of service to this good will itself and may facilitate its action, yet which have no intrinsic unconditional value, but always presuppose a good will, and this qualifies the esteem that we justly have for them and does not permit us to regard them as absolutely good. Moderation in the affections and passions, self-control, and calm deliberation are not only good in many respects, but even seem to constitute part of the intrinsic worth of the person; but they are far from deserving to be called good without qualification, although they have been so unconditionally praised by the ancients. For without the principles of a good will, they may become extremely bad, and the coolness of a villain not only makes him far more dangerous, but also directly makes him more abominable in our eyes than he would have been without it. (Kant,Â Fundamental Principles of the Metaphysic of Morals, trans. Thomas Kingsmill Abbott)
(1) Use your own words to summary the gist of the above passageÂ [50 words limit].Â You need to really digest the passage above before trying to compressed it into 50 words.
(2) Use an example (you experienced, can think of, or you have read somewhere else) to show why Kantâ€™s view is important.Â [100 words limit]
(3) Do we always judge a personâ€™s behavior based on his/her goodwill (or lack thereof)? Are there cases in which we donâ€™t know or donâ€™t particularly about oneâ€™s real (deep) moral motive?Â [200 words limit]
3.Â Brainwash, Indoctrination, and Blind faith
Watch the film â€œThe Lotteryâ€ at
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pIm93Xuij7kÂ (Part I)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PMhV3fwx5SgÂ (Part II)
(1) Explain how indoctrination or brainwash is conducted in this film. You need to refer to details in the film. Do NOT write a plot summary of the film. Just list the details that show indoctrination or brainwash. [Â 150 words limit]
(2) Based on what youâ€™ve learned from Lecture 5, what possible strategies or approaches (please be specific) can be used to break the brainwash and the blind faith of the village people depicted in the film. Explain.Â [150 words limit]
Note: you may have to watch twice of the film to get all the details.
4. Analysis and evaluation of a text (part of a studentâ€™s term paper)
Title: Research Funding and Diseases:
First paragraph: â€œHuman, since the childhood, was threatened by different diseases. This kind of intimidation will be after us until we die. Many diseases are curable, but others are fatal illnesses which have been investigated. Such explorations required enthusiastic researchers and funding. Practically, there have been quite a number of researchers who devoted their time for this search. However, funding is still a problemâ€¦â€
Give what you have learned in Lecture 4 about language:
(1) Identify some of the problems in the above passage (including the title). [100 words limit]
(2) What does this passage show (betray) about the authorâ€™sÂ possibleÂ lack of a writerâ€™s virtue(s). [100 words limit]
5.Â Engaging with an idea
One day, having been robbed, the Bible commentator Matthew Henry (1662-1714) wrote: â€œI thank Thee [God] first because I was never robbed before; second, because although they took my purse they did not take my life; third, because although they took my all, it was not much; and fourth because it was I who was robbed, and not I who robbed.â€
1. Is there a difference between Henryâ€™s thanking God and Henryâ€™s (letâ€™s imagine) thanking of the robber? [100 words limit]
2. In the above quote, did Henry agree with what the robber did to him? Did Henry condemn the robber? [Just say, YES or NO]
3. Do you agree with the following comments on Henryâ€™s dairy? Why or why not?
Imagine someone writes
Henry writes: â€œI thank Thee… because it was I who was robbed, not I who robbedâ€, therefore implying that because he is morally just and follows the law,Â he is better than the one who robbed him.Â Perhaps this implies that seemingly having goodness in oneâ€™s heart makes one better in the eyes of religion, the law, and society. Being morally just, in turn, is highly regarded by society, and will get us further in life. However, if this is how Henry thinks,Â how do we know that the robber did not commit this act for a larger purpose?Â Perhaps the robber needed the money to feed his family or to take care of a sick family member.Â Without knowing the circumstance of the robber, it is unfair to say Henry is morally just and the robber is not.Â An ethical question then emergesÂ : is it moral to disobey the law if it is for a higher purpose? Is it moral to take from another person for the benefit of oneâ€™s own self/community/family?â€ [200 words limit]
Are you busy and do not have time to handle your assignment? Are you scared that your paper will not make the grade? Do you have responsibilities that may hinder you from turning in your assignment on time? Are you tired and can barely handle your assignment? Are your grades inconsistent?
Whichever your reason is, it is valid! You can get professional academic help from our service at affordable rates. We have a team of professional academic writers who can handle all your assignments.
Students barely have time to read. We got you! Have your literature essay or book review written without having the hassle of reading the book. You can get your literature paper custom-written for you by our literature specialists.
Do you struggle with finance? No need to torture yourself if finance is not your cup of tea. You can order your finance paper from our academic writing service and get 100% original work from competent finance experts.
While psychology may be an interesting subject, you may lack sufficient time to handle your assignments. Don’t despair; by using our academic writing service, you can be assured of perfect grades. Moreover, your grades will be consistent.
Engineering is quite a demanding subject. Students face a lot of pressure and barely have enough time to do what they love to do. Our academic writing service got you covered! Our engineering specialists follow the paper instructions and ensure timely delivery of the paper.
In the nursing course, you may have difficulties with literature reviews, annotated bibliographies, critical essays, and other assignments. Our nursing assignment writers will offer you professional nursing paper help at low prices.
Truth be told, sociology papers can be quite exhausting. Our academic writing service relieves you of fatigue, pressure, and stress. You can relax and have peace of mind as our academic writers handle your sociology assignment.
We take pride in having some of the best business writers in the industry. Our business writers have a lot of experience in the field. They are reliable, and you can be assured of a high-grade paper. They are able to handle business papers of any subject, length, deadline, and difficulty!
We boast of having some of the most experienced statistics experts in the industry. Our statistics experts have diverse skills, expertise, and knowledge to handle any kind of assignment. They have access to all kinds of software to get your assignment done.
Writing a law essay may prove to be an insurmountable obstacle, especially when you need to know the peculiarities of the legislative framework. Take advantage of our top-notch law specialists and get superb grades and 100% satisfaction.
We have highlighted some of the most popular subjects we handle above. Those are just a tip of the iceberg. We deal in all academic disciplines since our writers are as diverse. They have been drawn from across all disciplines, and orders are assigned to those writers believed to be the best in the field. In a nutshell, there is no task we cannot handle; all you need to do is place your order with us. As long as your instructions are clear, just trust we shall deliver irrespective of the discipline.
Our essay writers are graduates with bachelor's, masters, Ph.D., and doctorate degrees in various subjects. The minimum requirement to be an essay writer with our essay writing service is to have a college degree. All our academic writers have a minimum of two years of academic writing. We have a stringent recruitment process to ensure that we get only the most competent essay writers in the industry. We also ensure that the writers are handsomely compensated for their value. The majority of our writers are native English speakers. As such, the fluency of language and grammar is impeccable.
There is a very low likelihood that you won’t like the paper.
Not at all. All papers are written from scratch. There is no way your tutor or instructor will realize that you did not write the paper yourself. In fact, we recommend using our assignment help services for consistent results.
We check all papers for plagiarism before we submit them. We use powerful plagiarism checking software such as SafeAssign, LopesWrite, and Turnitin. We also upload the plagiarism report so that you can review it. We understand that plagiarism is academic suicide. We would not take the risk of submitting plagiarized work and jeopardize your academic journey. Furthermore, we do not sell or use prewritten papers, and each paper is written from scratch.
You determine when you get the paper by setting the deadline when placing the order. All papers are delivered within the deadline. We are well aware that we operate in a time-sensitive industry. As such, we have laid out strategies to ensure that the client receives the paper on time and they never miss the deadline. We understand that papers that are submitted late have some points deducted. We do not want you to miss any points due to late submission. We work on beating deadlines by huge margins in order to ensure that you have ample time to review the paper before you submit it.
We have a privacy and confidentiality policy that guides our work. We NEVER share any customer information with third parties. Noone will ever know that you used our assignment help services. It’s only between you and us. We are bound by our policies to protect the customer’s identity and information. All your information, such as your names, phone number, email, order information, and so on, are protected. We have robust security systems that ensure that your data is protected. Hacking our systems is close to impossible, and it has never happened.
You fill all the paper instructions in the order form. Make sure you include all the helpful materials so that our academic writers can deliver the perfect paper. It will also help to eliminate unnecessary revisions.
Proceed to pay for the paper so that it can be assigned to one of our expert academic writers. The paper subject is matched with the writer’s area of specialization.
You communicate with the writer and know about the progress of the paper. The client can ask the writer for drafts of the paper. The client can upload extra material and include additional instructions from the lecturer. Receive a paper.
The paper is sent to your email and uploaded to your personal account. You also get a plagiarism report attached to your paper.
PLACE THIS ORDER OR A SIMILAR ORDER WITH US TODAY AND GET A PERFECT SCORE!!!
Delivering a high-quality product at a reasonable price is not enough anymore.
That’s why we have developed 5 beneficial guarantees that will make your experience with our service enjoyable, easy, and safe.
You have to be 100% sure of the quality of your product to give a money-back guarantee. This describes us perfectly. Make sure that this guarantee is totally transparent.Read more
Each paper is composed from scratch, according to your instructions. It is then checked by our plagiarism-detection software. There is no gap where plagiarism could squeeze in.Read more
Thanks to our free revisions, there is no way for you to be unsatisfied. We will work on your paper until you are completely happy with the result.Read more
Your email is safe, as we store it according to international data protection rules. Your bank details are secure, as we use only reliable payment systems.Read more
By sending us your money, you buy the service we provide. Check out our terms and conditions if you prefer business talks to be laid out in official language.Read more