030114 “I, Me, and Mine”: The Self from Kant to Freud, Wittgenstein, and Sartre (Vernazzani)

What is selfconsciousness, and in what ways does it relate to our use, in language and in thought, of the first person pronoun ‘I’? This question, first raised by Kant in his first Critique, is at the core of Béatrice Longuenesse’s last book I, Me and Mine: Back to Kant and Back Again (OUP, 2017). In this ambitious work, Longuenesse explores recent developments in the philosophy of selfconsciousness, starting from Wittgenstein’s famous distinction between ‘I’ as an object and ‘I’ as a subject, which has largely dominated analytical philosophy in the last decades, to Gareth Evans’s and JeanPaul Sartre’s accounts of bodily selfconsciousness. Longuenesse argues for a reassessment of Kant’s distinction between consciousness of one’s own body and consciousness of mental unity, i.e. a specific organization of mental events. Focusing on the latter, Longuenesse argues that the most promising account of mental unity preserving the Kantian insights can be found in Freud’s theory of the “ego,” an internal organization of mental events according to the “reality principle” and governed by elementary logical rules that allow us to acquire a reliable representation of the world.
000000 Knowledge Across Cultures and Languages (Wimmer)

Words for knowledge exist, and are widely used, in all known natural languages. But do people across the world think of knowledge the same way or are there important differences? The aim of this course is to look at how diverse cultural and linguistic communities think of knowledge. This will allow us to appreciate how different in some ways, but also similar in others, their conceptions are. The seminar will begin by covering work in experimental philosophy that highlights cultural similarities and differences in when humans intuitively say of others that they know. We then draw on anthropological work to learn about knowledge in the Ifa religious system (in West Africa) and amongst speakers of Ende (in Eastern Indonesia). Turning to differences in how words for knowledge are realized in the world's languages, we will compare English and German to a number of other languages, including, among others, Turkish and Korean. This part of the course will also involve a guest lecture by a linguist from Sweden, who is a worldleading expert on how human languages represent knowledge.
The seminar will be held in English. However, exams and questions may also be in German. In addition to the contentrelated learning goals, the seminar will also be about practising reading and discussing in English. Students who find their English to be somewhat ‘rusty’ are very welcome. The course will be based on individual articles and book chapters by a number of authors. All texts will be accessible via moodle.
030094 Gödel: The Unprovability of the Consistency of Arithmetic (Kürbis, Skurt)

Gödel’s first incompleteness theorem proved that if arithmetic is (omega) consistent, then it is not negation complete, that is, there is a sentence such that neither it nor its negation is provable in arithmetic. Gödel established this result by exhibiting a sentence of arithmetic, the socalled Gödel sentence, that is equivalent to the statement of its own unprovability in arithmetic. The second incompleteness theorem showed that if arithmetic is consistent, then it cannot prove the statement that expresses the consistency of arithmetic.
This course is an introduction to all formal aspects of Gödel’s incompleteness theorems. We will begin with a recapitulation of fundamental results about first order logic, such as its completeness and the Löwenheim Skolem Theorem, and proceed to first order theories, in particular a fragment of number theory. Gödel’s method of the arithmetisation of syntax and its application to the formalisation of proofs in arithmetic will be presented in detail. We will then be ready to prove Gödel’s first incompleteness theorem. Afterwards we will consider the resources needed to prove the second incompleteness theorem. There will also be time to discuss the philosophical importance of Gödel’s results.
  
Literature:
George Boolos: The Logic of Provability (Cambridge University Press 1993)
Herbert B. Enderton: A Mathematical Introduction to Logic, 2nd edition (San Diego: Harcourt 2001)
Eliot Mendelson: An Introduction to Mathematical Logic, 6th edition (Boca Raton: CRC Press 2015)
030111 Philosophy of Artificial Intelligence: Concepts, Computation, & Connectionism (Werning)

This seminar delves into the philosophical questions surrounding Artificial Intelligence (AI), with a focus on the fundamental concepts it employs, the computational nature of intelligence, and the role of connectionism in AI development.
Key questions explored:
What is intelligence? Can it be replicated in machines?
What is the nature of computation? How is it related to thought and reasoning?
Do AI systems possess concepts. Do they have cognition?
What are the philosophical implications of symbolic and connectionist approaches to AI?
Can AI achieve consciousness, free will, and true understanding?
What are the ethical and societal implications of advanced AI?
Through critical discussions, readings, and presentations, you will engage with:
Classical philosophers like Turing, Fodor, Searle
Contemporary thinkers in AI and cognitive science
Symbolic AI: Knowledge representation, reasoning systems, and compositionality
Connectionist AI: Artificial neural networks, deep learning, and large language models
Philosophical debates on consciousness, intentionality, and the mindbody problem
Aside from active participation, participants will be expected to give a presentation in English. Assistance regarding the English language will be provided.
030086 Gentzen: The Provability of the Consistency of Arithmetic (Seminar) (Kürbis, Kurt)

In 1936 Gentzen published the first consistency proof of Peano Arithmetic. To be precise, Gentzen proved the consistency of Peano arithmetic formalised in a version of his sequent calculus. Gödel’s second incompleteness theorem shows that the consistency of Peano Arithmetic cannot be proved within Peano arithmetic, if it is consistent. Consequently, Gentzen’s proof must make use of methods that do not form part of Peano arithmetic. Gentzen used transfinite induction over the complexity of proofs up to the ordinal ??0. This raises the philosophical question whether the method of proof can be regarded as finitary, as demanded by Hilbert’s Programme. Besides the proof, Gentzen’s article also contains philosophical considerations concerning this question. We’ll go through the entirety of Gentzen’s article. Time permitting, we also look at Hilbert and Bernays’ assessment of Gentzen’s proof in relation to Hilbert’s Programme.
030095 Andy Clark, “The Experience Machine: How Our Minds Predict and Shape Reality” (Wiese)

About a decade ago, Andy Clark published an influential paper in which he argued for an approach to understanding the mind that he called “predictive processing” (Clark, 2013). According to predictive processing, the brain uses a probabilistic model of its environment to make predictions about sensory signals and their hidden causes. Predictive processing does not constitute a novel approach to studying the mind, but seeks to unify many existing approaches under a single principle: prediction error minimization.
In this seminar, we will read and discuss Clark’s most recent book, The Experience Machine. While Clark’s earlier (2016) book on predictive processing, Surfing Uncertainty, mostly addressed cognition and action, Clark (2023) also considers conscious experience.
If possible, it is recommended that you purchase a copy of the book (Clark, 2023).
030106 Compositionality in Language, Mind, and Brain (Werning)

Compositionality is a key concept in linguistics, the philosophy of mind and language, and throughout the cognitive sciences. Understanding how it works is a central element of syntactic and semantic analysis, and a challenge for models of cognition. In this seminar, we will read papers on the state of the art in all aspects of the subject from every relevant field. They reveal the connections in different lines of research, and highlight its most challenging problems and opportunities. The force and justification of compositionality have long been contentious. First proposed by Frege as the notion that the meaning of an expression is syntaxdependently determined by the meaning of its parts, it has since been deployed as a constraint on the relation between theories of syntax and semantics, as a means of analysis, and, more recently, as underlying the structures of representational systems such as mental concepts, computer programs and neural architectures. This seminar explores these and many other dimensions of one of the most exciting fields in the study of language and cognition.
Aside from active participation, participants will be expected to give a presentation in English. Assistance regarding the English language will be provided.
030094 Gödel: The Unprovability of the Consistency of Arithmetic (Kürbis)

Gödel’s first incompleteness theorem proved that if arithmetic is (omega) consistent, then it is not negation complete, that is, there is a sentence such that neither it nor its negation is provable in arithmetic. Gödel established this result by exhibiting a sentence of arithmetic, the socalled Gödel sentence, that is equivalent to the statement of its own unprovability in arithmetic. The second incompleteness theorem showed that if arithmetic is consistent, then it cannot prove the statement that expresses the consistency of arithmetic.
This course is an introduction to all formal aspects of Gödel’s incompleteness theorems. We will begin with a recapitulation of fundamental results about first order logic, such as its completeness and the Löwenheim Skolem Theorem, and proceed to first order theories, in particular a fragment of number theory. Gödel’s method of the arithmetisation of syntax and its application to the formalisation of proofs in arithmetic will be presented in detail. We will then be ready to prove Gödel’s first incompleteness theorem. Afterwards we will consider the resources needed to prove the second incompleteness theorem. There will also be time to discuss the philosophical importance of Gödel’s results.
030107 Embodied Cognition: Past, Present, and Future (Venter, Wolf)

This seminar provides an indepth exploration of embodied cognition, a cornerstone concept in cognitive science that posits the body as integral to shaping the mind. We will trace its historical roots and evolution, critically examine empirical evidence, and assess the concept's implications across traditional philosophical domains and emerging cognitive sciences. The course includes a review of seminal works by Varela, Thompson and Rosch (1991), and other pioneers, along with a thorough analysis of how sensory and motor systems influence cognitive functions. We'll delve into embodied cognition's application in language processing, problemsolving, and memory, and discuss its potential challenges to conventional cognitive science paradigms. Additionally, we'll explore its impact on psychology, neuroscience, artificial intelligence, and robotics, considering future research trends and the implications of its technological applications.
030093 Explainable Artificial Intelligence (Wiese)

This course deals with philosophical issues surrounding the transparency and accountability of artificial intelligence (AI) systems. Traditional AI is typically transparent; its algorithms are programmed to follow specific strategies, making their performance understandable to the programmers. In contrast, contemporary AI, often based on machine learning and large datasets, operates in a more opaque manner. The complexity of these systems means that while programmers understand how the algorithms work, they often cannot fully explain how an AI achieves successful outcomes or cannot predict the conditions under which it might fail. Put differently, there is – at least in many contexts – a tradeoff between accuracy and interpretability.
Explainable AI (XAI) aims to alleviate this problem by providing insights into the functioning of current AI systems. This includes understanding successes and failures of AIs, which is crucial to assessing their reliability and trustworthiness. However, the concepts of explainable, interpretable, and trustworthy AI are themselves philosophically complex and ambiguous.
This seminar offers an overview of philosophical challenges related to XAI. It provides some insights into contemporary approaches to enhancing AI transparency, interpretability, and trustworthiness, fostering a critical understanding of these efforts. As a result, students will be able to critically discuss current approaches in AI development, as well as in AI ethics and governance.
030120 Colloquium: Philosophy of Language, Logic, and Information (Liefke, Rami)

This colloquium serves the discussion of current topics at the semantic interface of logic, the philosophy of language, and the philosophy of information. The colloquium will combine talks by international experts with presentations of local researchers and (PhD/MA) students. Students will be given the opportunity to present their (ongoing) work in English. A detailed schedule will be available by endMarch at https://www.ruhrunibochum.de/philinf/colloquium/index.html.en.
030120 Topics in Philosophy of Language, Logic, and Information: Attitudes and their objects (Liefke, Rami)

Assume that Gregor imagines turning into a beetle. Intuitively, this is different both from Gregor imagining a beetle and from Gregor imagining (turning into) a vermin (even if all beetles are vermin). This seminar introduces current philosophical research on mental states like imagination and their metaphysical objects (e.g. possibilities, fictional entities). To facilitate access to this area, the seminar will combine topical introductions (by Kristina Liefke and Dolf Rami) with presentations by wellknown researchers (e.g. Alex Grzankowski, Justin D'Ambrosio, Friederike Moltmann). Students will have the opportunity to earn a ‘kleine Studienleistung’ [3 CPs] (by writing a summary of one of the expert presentations, or by giving an inclass talk) and a ‘große Studienleistung’ [6 CPs] (by additionally writing a research paper).
030114 Introduction to Formal Epistemology (Wang/Straßer)

Formal epistemology aims to address both old and new epistemological problems using mathematical methods. This introductorylevel course will cover selected topics in formal epistemology. The main focus will be on different types of formal representation models of qualitative and quantitative beliefs and their rational relations. Specifically, the course will explore basic epistemic and doxastic logic, AGM belief revision theory, the Dutch book argument, epistemic decision theory, and the Lottery paradox. Moreover, this course aims to balance breadth and depth of understanding. Students will learn how to read formal theorems and proofs and play with mathematical concepts. A familiarity with firstorder logic is a prerequisite. Some knowledge of basic set theory and probability calculus would be beneficial, though these will be taught during class. The course will be conducted in English. In principle, there will be no required readings. I will give lectures on important concepts and theorems with my lecture notes referencing the following literature.
030102 Topics in Philosophy of Language, Logic and Information: Fictional Entities (Liefke, Rami)

030128 EXTRA Research Colloquium “Metaphilosophy, Experimental Philosophy, and Argumentation Theory” (Horvath)

In this colloquium in seminarstyle, we will discuss current topics from argumentation theory, epistemology, experimental philosophy, and metaphilosophy, broadly construed. The colloquium will also host a number of talks by external guests, many of which are leading experts in their field. Students at the advanced bachelor, master, or doctoral level are especially welcome in the colloquium, and they can also acquire the normal range of credit points. Moreover, student participants will have the option of presenting their own work, e.g., related to their thesis, in English.
030128 EXTRA Research Colloquium “Metaphilosophy, Experimental Philosophy, and Argumentation Theory” (Horvath)

In this colloquium in seminarstyle, we will discuss current topics from argumentation theory, epistemology, experimental philosophy, and metaphilosophy, broadly construed. The colloquium will also host a number of talks by external guests, many of which are leading experts in their field. Advanced bachelor students, master students, and doctoral students are especially welcome in the colloquium, in which they can also acquire the normal range of credit points. Moreover, student participants can make suggestions for suitable readings to be discussed in the colloquium, and they will have the option of presenting their work, for example, related to their thesis, in English.
030125 Research Colloquium: Rationality and Cognition (Brössel)

In this seminar, we study research articles (some of which will be workinprogress) from the intersection of normative epistemology and descriptive epistemology (i.e., psychology and cognitive science). We investigate formal models of perception, rational reasoning, and rational action. Students at the master's or doctoral level will be given the opportunity to present their research in English.