Learn Philosophy Through Face to Face Conversations With Dr. Daniel Fincke This Fall

I am offering online classes again this fall. There is no college matriculation necessary (and no college credit offered). There is no more homework than you’re interested in doing. This is just about pure philosophical learning, discussion, and debate tailored to your interests and needs, from the comfort and convenience of your home computer.

Here is the course schedule I’m offering for this fall, starting next week. Below the schedule are course descriptions. Each course is $16/hour for a 40 hour commitment. E-mail me at camelswithhammers@gmail.com to inquire about more details or to register.

Ethics. This class will meet once weekly for approximately 13 weeks, on Tuesday nights from 8pm-11pm Eastern Time, starting Tuesday September 17, 2013 and ending December 10. (Even though the first session of this course has run there is still time to join late and have a special make up session to catch you up for no extra cost!)

Ethics. This class will meet twice weekly for approximately 10 weeks, on Tuesday and Thursday mornings, from 9am-11am Eastern Time, running from October 8-December 19.

Nietzsche. This class will meet once weekly for approximately 13 weeks, onThursday nights from 8pm-11pm Eastern Time, starting Thursday September 26, 2013 and ending January 3, 2014 (skipping Thanksgiving Thursday and likely the day after Christmas, unless all participants want to meet that day).

Philosophy for Atheists. This class will meet once weekly for approximately 13 weeks, on Friday nights from 9pm-12am Eastern Time, starting Friday September 20, 2013 and ending December 13 or 20 (depending on whether or not students vote to skip the day after Thanksgiving).

From The Enlightenment to Contemporary Philosophy. This class will meet once weekly for approximately 20 weeks, on Tuesday mornings from 11am-1pm Eastern Time or Sunday mornings noon-2pm Eastern Time, starting Tuesday October 1, 2013.

And in October I am looking to start once weekly 3 hour long weekend classes that will run into January. I am very flexible on when to hold them on Sundays (preferably) or Saturdays. But I need your input! Write me at camelswithhammers@gmail.com to let me know what you want to take and when you want to take it and I’ll announce something (or a couple things) in a week or two! The full descriptions of the available courses are below.


This is a flexible course, responsive to student interests, which has three primary objectives it meets. (1) It introduces major topics in philosophy in a way accessible to philosophical novices. (2) It overviews important areas of historical philosophy with which generally educated people should be familiar. (3) It analyzes major issues in theology and philosophy of religion from an openminded but generally skeptical, atheistic perspective and trains students hoping to engage with theists in counter-apologetic ideas and strategies. No prior knowledge of philosophy is required or will be assumed. There is no college credit whatsoever given for taking this course. There is no college credit whatsoever given for taking this course.


This course, which draws heavily on my years working on Nietzsche in preparation of my doctoral dissertation, begins with an overview lecture on Nietzsche’s philosophy that integrates his thoughts on numerous topics into a coherent overall picture. From there students are assigned portions of various key books Nietzsche wrote and then during class periods we read sections aloud together and as a group we discuss them, and whatever broader themes they raise, in an open-ended way. Students are encouraged (though not required) to select for themselves some of the sections for discussion based on what they find most stimulating in the readings. No prior knowledge of philosophy or Nietzsche is required or will be assumed. There is no college credit whatsoever given for taking this course.



Tuesdays 8pm-11pm Eastern Time from September 17-December 10. (13 week course).

This course will explore major ethical traditions in the history of (primarily) Western thought and raise many lively topics in applied ethics for open-ended discussion. The topics, both preplanned and spontaneously discussed, will often vary with both the stated and manifested interests of the course participants. Expected topics will likely include

(a) what it means to live a good life

(b) how we should understand the natures of various virtues and vices

(c) how we should determine what legitimately binding moral rules are

(d) what makes for a good person and/or a good action

(e) how we should deal with the problems that cultural relativism poses to moral legitimacy

(f) what the proper roles are for the emotions, pleasure, autonomy, social relationships, consequences, and other moral factors in our best moral reasoning

(g) the interactions between religion, atheism, death, meaning, and ethics

(h) whether, or in what ways, we might say morality is real or unreal, objective or subjective, a matter of transcendent truth or of cultural or individual construction, etc.

(i) whether there can be such a thing as moral knowledge and, if so, how it might prove itself.

(j) the nature of moral language and whether it even intends to refer to facts or whether it aims at something wholly different.

(k) the meaning and ethical value or disvalue of power

(l) how we should go about resolving difficult moral dilemma cases

(m) how we should make moral sense of findings in contemporary moral psychology

(n) how we should understand the relevance of nature (including the fact that we are products of evolution) to our understanding of who we are and what our ethics should be

(o) how we might answer difficult contemporary “applied ethics” problems that arise in modern society that concern gender, sexuality, technology, medicine, social change, criminal justice, animal rights, political economy, etc.

No prior knowledge of philosophy or moral philosophy is required or will be assumed. There is no college credit whatsoever given for taking this course. To inquire for more information or to sign up write me at camelswithhammers@gmail.com

To express interest in these classes for the future, even if you can’t take one this fall,  please fill out this survey.

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