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Patterns- Salon Project: Step Two: Selecting Questions to Answer

Step Two: Questions to Research

Now that you understand more about your philosopher and their life and works, it is time to begin selecting TWO of the questions that you need to address in order to write your letters and participate in the class discussion. Not only must you understand your own philosopher's point of view, but you also must understand the opposing argument, in order to properly defend the position against other philosopher's ideals.

Question Options:

  • The Best Type of Government
    • What is the best way to guarantee the rights of the people?
    • What is the ultimate purpose of government?
  • How Do We Learn?
    • When born, is the human mind a blank slate (“tabula rasa”) or does it already possess innate ideas?
  • Religion vs. Rationality
    • What role should religion play in society?
    • Can religious beliefs be rational?
  • Human Nature
    • Are human beings naturally good or wicked?
    • Is human nature shaped more by innate ideas or by outside experiences?
  • Law and Punishment
    • How do we establish a just and humanitarian society?

You are required to select two of these questions to research. To answer the questions, you will need to read works by your philosopher, read secondary analysis of your philosopher's works, and develop clear, thoughtful responses to these questions to share with your fellow philosophers at the salon. 

Use the resources linked on the Step Three page to begin your in-depth research.