First Paper

Instructions: Read carefully!

Answer one of the following questions in 500-800(+) words.

Your paper should be in 12pt font, in a legible serif font (Times New Roman, Garamond, Book

Antiqua, etc.), with 1” margins. You are required to use at least two sources, one of which are

the texts used in class. Make sure to credit each of your sources, and cite any sources with page

numbers when quoting, paraphrasing, or when relevant. MLA, Chicago Tribune, or APA citation

formats are acceptable. Papers must be turned in on Canvas, and cannot be accepted via email.

Additional instructions and info:

Make sure that you explain any and all terms that are ambiguous or not clear. Consider your reader (and grader!) as a person who has no idea about these topics but is interested and wants to know more. Think of how you might explain your topic to a random person at a bar. You will be graded on structure, comprehension, and clarity, so being as clear, concise, and succinct as possible is necessary to get a solid grade. In addition, avoid misrepresenting a position . This makes for terrible papers and shows the lack of integrity for a scholar. Try to give the best account and defense of a thinker and theory and then give your thoughts on it. Saying a thinker or theory is dumb or giving a hyper simplified version says more about you than it does about the thinker or theory. Likewise, give yourself the best defense possible as well. When giving your own thoughts and perspective, give reasons and evidence for believing you. Merely asserting that you agree or disagree with a thinker is cheap—you have to show why you agree with them (and the why question is what’s most juicy in a paper: this is where the real philosophy and science comes from). The goodies: There is an extra credit opportunity available here. For every source beyond the two, you’ll get an extra point (maximum of 3). In order to receive these glorious extra credit points, you have to engage with a source in a significant and meaningful way (for example, by citing a relevant passage or paraphrasing a point). Don’t just drop a quote in for no reason— make sure that it’s relevant and important to your paper, either in elucidating a point or providing support for your own argument. Similarly, not all sources count for the extra credit points. Only academic sources count, which are usually not accessible through Google (but are available through the library). Newspaper articles, [most] news websites, and Wikipedia are not academic sources.


1) What is Hume’s problem of induction? How might one respond to Hume to solve the


2) What is metaphysics for Carnap, and why does he want to overcome it? Do you agree

with his position?

3) What is the raven paradox? Do you agree that it is a problem with the Niccod criterion, or

is there a solution to the paradox?

4) What does ethics mean for Stevenson? Do you agree?

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