. Explain the core beliefs of rationalism and empiricism, two major intellectual camps in Modern philosophy.

Term Research Paper

Choose one topic from the following prompts and compose an essay.

Format: approximately 5-7 pages (12pt, double–spaced)

Suggested Topics:

1. Explain the core beliefs of rationalism and empiricism, two major intellectual camps in Modern philosophy.

2. What is the conception of substance crucial to modern philosophers? Explain the different theories of substance in Descartes, Spinoza and Leibniz.

3. Analyze Spinoza’s and Leibniz’s treatment of freedom in light of the idea of mechanical determinism. Present their arguments and critically assess them.

4. Explain Locke’s representational realism and Berkeley’s idealism. Berkeley thinks his idealism is closer to common sense and a better defense against skepticism than Locke’s theory. Do you agree or disagree with this statement?

5. Is it possible to infer that there is a supreme deity behind the universe as its cause? Discuss two or more modern philosopher’s notions of God and critically assess them.

6. Explain what Descartes, Locke and Hume have to say about our knowledge of ourselves. Compare their theories of the nature of personal identity, and evaluate them.*