Matching Items (218)

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Supplementing Traditional Symbolic Logic Instruction with Historical Background and Real-World Applications

Description

A thorough understanding of the key concepts of logic is critical for student success. Logic is often not explicitly taught as its own subject in modern curriculums, which results in

A thorough understanding of the key concepts of logic is critical for student success. Logic is often not explicitly taught as its own subject in modern curriculums, which results in misconceptions among students as to what comprises logical reasoning. In addition, current standardized testing schemes often promote teaching styles which emphasize students' abilities to memorize set problem-solving methods over their capacities to reason abstractly and creatively. These phenomena, in tandem with halting progress in United States education compared to other developed nations, suggest that implementing logic courses into public schools and universities can better prepare students for professional careers and beyond. In particular, logic is essential for mathematics students as they transition from calculation-based courses to theoretical, proof-based classes. Many students find this adjustment difficult, and existing university-level courses which emphasize the technical aspects of symbolic logic do not fully bridge the gap between these two different approaches to mathematics. As a step towards resolving this problem, this project proposes a logic course which integrates historical, technical, and interdisciplinary investigations to present logic as a robust and meaningful subject warranting independent study. This course is designed with mathematics students in mind, with particular stresses on different formulations of deductively valid proof schemes. Additionally, this class can either be taught before existing logic classes in an effort to gradually expose students to logic over an extended period of time, or it can replace current logic courses as a more holistic introduction to the subject. The first section of the course investigates historical developments in studies of argumentation and logic throughout different civilizations; specifically, the works of ancient China, ancient India, ancient Greece, medieval Europe, and modernity are investigated. Along the way, several important themes are highlighted within appropriate historical contexts; these are often presented in an ad hoc way in courses emphasizing technical features of symbolic logic. After the motivations for modern symbolic logic are established, the key technical features of symbolic logic are presented, including: logical connectives, truth tables, logical equivalence, derivations, predicates, and quantifiers. Potential obstacles in students' understandings of these ideas are anticipated, and resolution methods are proposed. Finally, examples of how ideas of symbolic logic are manifested in many modern disciplines are presented. In particular, key concepts in game theory, computer science, biology, grammar, and mathematics are reformulated in the context of symbolic logic. By combining the three perspectives of historical context, technical aspects, and practical applications of symbolic logic, this course will ideally make logic a more meaningful and accessible subject for students.

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Date Created
  • 2018-05

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The War on Terror Must Not Be Won: Heretical Hypotheses on the Suicide Engine

Description

It is imperative for the West that the War on Terror not be won, yet it is also certain that the War on Terror will be won, a victory for

It is imperative for the West that the War on Terror not be won, yet it is also certain that the War on Terror will be won, a victory for the West which simultaneously signifies its defeat. This state of affairs is not paradoxical, but catastrophic, and as is argued in the course of this essay, the War on Terror is the logical and necessary terminus of the Western project and its attendant metaphysic. Beginning with Marx's analysis of the commodity in Das Kapital, it has become increasingly clear that the West (and for that matter, the rest of the world) is succumbing to a regime of simulation, in which reality is liquidated in favor of increased inertia of circulating signs. Using Jean Baudrillard's infamous critiques of the postmodern society as a guide, the following essay examines the emerging forms of terrorism and their relation to Western social structures, ultimately concluding that the West is on the brink of an abyss which is marked by the advent of the anonymous act of terrorism.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Do Not Fear The Fictions

Description

The Paradox of Fiction can be understood as the acceptance of three plausible but inconsistent claims: Claim 1. We are genuinely moved by fiction Claim 2. We know that what

The Paradox of Fiction can be understood as the acceptance of three plausible but inconsistent claims: Claim 1. We are genuinely moved by fiction Claim 2. We know that what is portrayed by fiction is not actual Claim 3. We are only genuinely moved by what we believe is actual. Taken individually, we intuitively accept each of the claims, however, they form a contradiction when taken together. The issue at hand is although we observe many instances of fiction moving a spectator/reader to tears, we know that the grief we observe does not reference an existent entity. How can we grieve at the death of Mercutio in "Romeo and Juliet" when Mercutio never existed let alone died? How can we fear a monster we know exists only in the world of a film? Many theories have been proposed to dissolve this paradox, and I focus on the ones that approach the puzzle by rejecting one of the above three claims. I examine some of these theories and explain why they fail to solve the paradox, and in doing so I demonstrate that the Make-Believe Theory succeeds where the others failed. Make-Believe Theory rejects Claim 1 and I shall prove that although unintuitive, we are completely justified in claiming that we are not genuinely moved by fiction. Instead, when we are moved by fictions, we are moved in a similar way to how a child is moved in a game of make-believe.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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White and Beautiful: An Examination of Skin Whitening Practices and the Construction of the Female Identity in China

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This thesis investigates the role of colorism and the practice of skin whitening for women in China. By analyzing the historical evolution of ideal skin beauty in China, this project

This thesis investigates the role of colorism and the practice of skin whitening for women in China. By analyzing the historical evolution of ideal skin beauty in China, this project found that the cultural fixation with women's skin tone was used as a sociopolitical tool to regulate women's agency. Furthermore, this thesis also examines current skin whitening advertisements to understand modern impacts of Westernization and consumerism on contemporary discourses of femininity and beauty. Finally, it concludes with a discussion on skin whitening's ability to empower but also subjugate women within the confines of patriarchal expectations.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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An Analysis of Salafi Radicalism

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The unprecedented rise of terrorist network ISIL has brought the revolutionary Salafi agenda to the forefront of global politics. This thesis provides an analysis of the ideology and an overview

The unprecedented rise of terrorist network ISIL has brought the revolutionary Salafi agenda to the forefront of global politics. This thesis provides an analysis of the ideology and an overview of ISIL. The research is comprised of reports on the organization from prominent think-tanks, books analyzing the tenets and thinkers of Salafi radicalism and original source material confiscated from ISIL's predecessor al-Qaeda in Iraq (AQI). An international coalition is posited as a solution to the threat as well as the Middle Eastern terrorist threat more broadly. However, the likelihood of such international cooperation is minimal, and the commitment it would require may make it unfeasible.

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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Pakistan and Arizona: An Examination of Government's Influence on Education to Construct an Ideal Citizenry

Description

Nations have a vital interest in creating a citizenry with certain attributes and beliefs and, since education contributes to the formation of children's national identity, government authorities can influence educational

Nations have a vital interest in creating a citizenry with certain attributes and beliefs and, since education contributes to the formation of children's national identity, government authorities can influence educational curricula to construct their ideal citizen. In this thesis, I study the educational systems of Pakistan and Arizona and explore the historical and conceptual origins of these entities' manipulation of curricula to construct a particular kind of citizen. I argue that an examination of the ethnic studies debate in Tucson, Arizona, in conjunction with Pakistan's history education policy, will illustrate that the educational systems in both these sites are developed to advance the interests of governing authorities. Resource material demonstrates that both educational systems endorse specific accounts of history, omitting information, perspectives, and beliefs. Eliminating or reimagining certain narratives of history alienates some students from identifying as citizens of the state, particularly when contributions of their ethnic, cultural, or religious groups are not included in the country's textbooks.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2014-12

Memory Wipe

Description

Memory Wipe is a 22 minute, video art piece that utilizes home movie footage filmed on VHS and 8mm, as well as television and cartoon ephemera, to explore the way

Memory Wipe is a 22 minute, video art piece that utilizes home movie footage filmed on VHS and 8mm, as well as television and cartoon ephemera, to explore the way in which personal memory is constructed and altered through the process of recording and viewing. Three recent events in my life inspired work: the discovery of a box containing my favorite childhood media, the revelation that I am the last male of my family, and the impending sale of my family's farmland. My mother never used a video camera, insisting that her childhood was lost in footage filmed but never watched. It should also be noted that not once do I appear in this piece; therefore, I decided to extract myself from the narrative. Rather than simply guide the audience along with anecdotes from my life, I instead invite viewers to draw their own meanings and create their own nostalgias from the piece. Originally, Memory Wipe was to be accompanied by live narration, but all things considered, I thought I would let it speak for itself. Video link: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-E42a6Koma4

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Date Created
  • 2015-05

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A Political Critique of the Objectification of Science and Religion

Description

This essay explores the role of religion, science, and the secular in contemporary society by showing their connection to social and political legitimacy as a result of historical processes. In

This essay explores the role of religion, science, and the secular in contemporary society by showing their connection to social and political legitimacy as a result of historical processes. In Chapter One, the essay presents historical arguments, particularly linguistic, which confirm science and religion as historically created categories without timeless or essential differences. Additionally, the current institutional separation of science and religion was politically motivated by the changing power structures following the Protestant Reformation. In Chapter Two, the essay employs the concept of the modern social imaginary to show how our modern concept of the political and the secular subtly reproduce the objectified territories of science and religion and thus the boundary maintenance dialectic which dominates science-religion discourse. Chapter Three argues that ‘religious’ worldviews contain genuine metaphysical claims which do not recognizably fit into these modern social categories. Given the destabilizing forces of globalization and information technology upon the political authority of the nation-state, the way many conceptualize of these objects religion, science, and the secular will change as well.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2018-05

Rethinking the Management of Restaurant Kitchen Waste: Solutions in Solid and Water Waste

Description

Food waste is a growing global issue that exemplifies an unsustainable system of resource loss in landfills which eventually breaks down into the greenhouse gas of methane. Approaching landfill diversion

Food waste is a growing global issue that exemplifies an unsustainable system of resource loss in landfills which eventually breaks down into the greenhouse gas of methane. Approaching landfill diversion of food waste on the local level requires innovative solutions based on public and private partnerships. This thesis project explored how the City of Tempe's Grease Cooperative could provide a model of restaurant partnership and third-party service to tackle not just restaurant grease waste in water, but food waste in the solid waste stream. This used other city-run food waste collection systems as examples, and it relied on the input and support of multiple municipal stakeholders in its design. Using an existing food waste collection service in the Phoenix metropolitan area, the research was collected during a month-long observational pilot study of four Tempe restaurants, where data ranged from trash bin differences to kitchen staff sizes. The results of the pilot were compiled for the benefit of the collection service, the City of Tempe, and the involved restaurants to demonstrate potential obstacles to a currently small, but scalable, collection service, and potential solutions that will make the service more efficient and attractive to new customers. Future research goals include expanding the pilot's reach and information through stronger partnerships and collaborative data collection in Tempe, providing a guide to a food waste collection cooperative within Tempe, and promoting large scale diversion of food waste from restaurants both through prevention and nutrient recycling. The final paper was submitted for publication to the Solutions journal, as an example of "On the Ground" implementation of solutions.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05

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From Ink and Paper to the Internet Revolution: the History of the Book and its Impact on Society

Description

Books are constantly changing. For this project I looked at books and how they have changed over time. Starting with just before the Gutenberg Printing Press was invented and ending

Books are constantly changing. For this project I looked at books and how they have changed over time. Starting with just before the Gutenberg Printing Press was invented and ending with the introduction of the Internet this project tracked those changes over time and looked at how they changed how people read, who read, and what this said about the people at the time. First, I looked at how books changed physically. At the time of the Gutenberg Printing Press vellum and parchment were being used for the pages of books and illuminated manuscripts made some volumes works of art. Now with the Internet greatly influencing books, that format is radically different. Different materials allowed for books to be made more cheaply and when this happened more people were able to afford them. I also looked at aspects of books like publishing and where the books were sold and how that made a difference in how and why people read. Through all of my research I kept a blog and this allowed me to be almost part of the history and research I was doing. This blog will eventually become an eBook. Books have not only shaped history and people but have been shaped by history. Books are a vital part of helping to spread information and while they will keep changing especially with the Internet, books will never disappear.

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Created

Date Created
  • 2017-05