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Simmons PHIL 2010: Getting started

Research process

Books for Biographical and Political Information

The Assignment


  • Presentations should be three to four pages typed, double spaced, in five paragraph essay style. 
  • Presentations must include complete citations (footnotes or endnotes) in Chicago or MLA format. 
  • Presentation must have a clear thesis (first page), a 200 word summary of the book or article, an argument supporting the thesis, and a conclusion.
  • Students must bring two hard copies of the presentation to class on the day presentations are due.
  • Electronic copies of the course must be submitted on-line to TURNITIN, the plagiarism checking software.    

Students should:

  • Read the book or article.  All materials available in the Lane Library.
  • Develop a thesis regarding the book or essay and an argument that supports that thesis. 
  • Find philosophical articles that address the thesis developed.
  • Research must include a minimum of two additional written sources. 

Topics (all materials available at Lane Library):

A.      Show Me a Kindness, by Nancy Brandon

B.      Three Dashes Bitters, by Jack Simmons

C.      Euthanasia and Assisted Suicide:  Global Views on Choosing to End Life, Michael Cholbi

D.     “A Trip with the Strange Woman: Amiri Baraka's "Dutchman" and the Book of Proverbs,” Christopher Baker, South Atlantic Review, Vol. 78, No. 3/4 ([2013]), pp. 110-128

E.      “Sartre and Post-Humanist Humanism,” by Beth Butterfield, appearing in Beyond Humanism: Trans- and Posthumanism series by Peter Lang

Reliable Websites

IEP Logo

The Internet Encyclopedia of Philosophy, maintained by the University of Tennessee (Martin), "was founded in 1995 as a non-profit organization to provide open access to detailed, scholarly information on key topics and philosophers in all areas of philosophy.

The staff of 30 editors and approximately 300 authors hold doctorate degrees and are professors at colleges and universities around the world, most notably from English-speaking countries."

Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy logo

From its inception, the Stanford Encyclopedia of  Philosophy "was designed so that each entry is maintained and kept up to date by an expert or group of experts in the field.

All entries and substantive updates are refereed by the members of a distinguished Editorial Board before they are made public. Consequently, our dynamic reference work maintains academic standards while evolving and adapting in response to new research."

Look it up

Expect to learn some new vocabulary as you do your research.  No need to guess at a meaning...look it up here.  (Galileo password required if you are off campus.)

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