This course focuses on fundamental questions. How do we know what is real? What makes us who we are? What forces shape our world? What makes us happy? Students will explore these questions through an issues-based approach that addresses concerns relevant to everyday life: Are there different ways of knowing? Is the self - one's identity, character and behaviour - the result of natural forces or cultural conditioning or both? How much control can individuals have in the face of powerful natural and cultural forces? What kinds of fulfilment might we strive for in an imperfect world?
Students will explore these questions through an interdisciplinary approach that introduces them to various fields in the humanities, social sciences and natural sciences. They will be encouraged to search for answers that make sense of their life experiences via various theoretical perspectives introduced in the course through readings and class discussions.