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Assignment 2: The Mind/Body Problem

The Mind/Body Problem

Assignment 2: The Mind/Body Problem

After completing the readings for this week, draft a 6-8 page paper. This assignment will be completed in three parts, so you may want to use section headers to organize your paper. Remember to explain the theories you reference with supporting citations to the textbook and online lectures before contrasting them in correct APA format. You may want to use examples to illustrate your understanding of key ideas in each theory. Here is a guide to help you with APA-style citations. Use this APA Citation Helper as a convenient reference for properly citing resources.

1.      Explain Cartesian rationalism and the resulting mind/body problem (3-4 pages).  You may draw upon your analysis of the Cartesian Method from this week’s discussion assignment.

2.      Compare/contrast Cartesian rationalism and at least one version of empiricism. Be specific as to which version of empiricism is the focus of your analysis. Discuss how empiricists approach the relationship between mind and body.

3.      Responses to the Mind/Body Problem: Compare/contrast at least one alternative to Cartesian rationalism and empiricism and explain how each attempts to respond to/resolve the mind/body problem. (2-3 pages). For example, you might explain phenomenology, Kantian idealism, Baruch Spinoza, and/or Anne Finch.

4.      Evaluate and Respond: Once you have explained the relevant theories and the philosophical challenges of the mind/body dualism, present your own philosophical response to the mind/body problem. In your response, consider how/whether your own views are similar to the theories you discussed in parts one and two (1-2 pages.)

5.      Submit your assignment in the W3: Assignment 2 Dropbox by Week 3, Day 6.

Assignment 2 Grading Criteria

Maximum Points

Explained Cartesian rationalism and the mind/body problem with supporting citations to the textbook and online lectures.


Explained at least one version of empiricism with supporting citations to the textbook and online lectures.


Compared/contrasted rationalism and empiricism.


Explained at least one additional response to the mind/body problem with supporting citations to the textbook and online lectures.


Presented your own response to the mind/body problem and compared your response to the theories discussed.


Used correct spelling, grammar, and concise language.


Conformed to APA citation and page length guidelines (6-8 pages).




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