The Philosophy and Critical Thought program offers students an intensive engagement with the history of philosophy, ancient and modern, Western and non-Western.

Special attention is given to key 20th- and 21st-century developments in Anglo-American and Continental thought. Courses addressing the arts, gender and sexuality, and social and cultural change and conflict are also among the program’s core offerings. Students may pursue topics of special interest through tutorials and directed independent studies. Coursework in philosophy frequently includes small seminars and intensive writing, and special seminars for juniors and seniors help students develop their senior projects.

The Philosophy and Critical Thought major is ideal for students who:

  • seek rigorous preparation for careers that demand articulate, intellectual flexibility and discipline (e.g., law, medicine, government, business, education, and journalism).
  • wish to pursue a professional career in philosophy and plan to do postgraduate work in the field.
  • want, regardless of career objective, a liberal arts experience that affords a deep unifying perspective on the complexities of human knowledge and experience.
  • want an intellectually comprehensive complement to intensive work in another major.

Because of the art- and media-related nature of many programs at Purchase College, the philosophy program also offers courses for arts students and others who wish to investigate the foundation of the fine arts and related cultural media.