HUMANITIES 102 - Body and Soul

timer Asked: Nov 14th, 2016

Question description

CHOOSE ONE OF THE FOLLOWING QUESTIONS AND WRITE A 500 OR MORE WORD RESPONSE. Keep your response directly connected with the context of the class and the specific question being asked.Reviewing the assigned materials will be essential, but going on the internet to look something up will not be helpful. Furthermore, it goes directly against the assignment guidelines. Outside research is not permitted. Produce responses that demonstrate your ability to think things through. Also, use your own words. Quotes, if used at all,should be properly cited and used very sparingly -- at most a few words from the assigned text.

1. Roy Porter (Flesh in the Age of Reason) and George Makari (Soul Machine) both draw our attention to the shift in Western thinking that occurred during the 17th and 18th centuries. Makari focuses on exploring the concept of“mind” as it emerged and developed. Porter covers much of the same ground, but emphasizes the ideas of“identity” and “self.” Are there any areas of disagreement between these two theorists, or is their work complementary, helping to provide a more complete picture of our history? Explain. If there are points of divergence in their thinking, describe some of them and their significance. If the authors help each other to promote a common set of ideas, describe some of these ideas and explain why the authors think they are important.

2. Flesh in the Age of Reason spends some time on the topic of death. In particular, the book describes early Modern ideas about what happens when people die, as well as theories about how we ought to confront death and dying. All this occurs in the middle of a book that also dedicates many pages to the topic of individual identity. From the perspective of the book’s author, how are these areas related?

3. Porter’s Flesh in the Age of Reason describes two perspectives on the nature of humanity that apparently wereat odds with one another during the emergence of the Modern era. One involves the idea that we are unique creations of God, set apart in important ways from “inferior animals.” The other line of thought says that human beings are just one more species of animal, with an entirely natural origin. Explain these views in more detail, inline with what Porter says about them, and describe the significance he sees in this philosophical/historical debate.

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