Bryan Van Norden, chair professor in the School of Philosophy at Wuhan University, Kwan Im Thong Hood Cho Temple Professor at Yale-NUS College in Singapore, and professor of philosophy at Vassar College, visited Hotchkiss Jan. 9 and 10, where he attended classes and talked with faculty. In a presentation to faculty and staff in the Center for Global Understanding and Independent Thinking, he addressed what he perceives as a resistance among college philosophy departments to non-Western philosophy.
"I think the discussion was useful to faculty as Hotchkiss rethinks its curriculum to prepare students for a multicultural world," Van Norden said.
The following day, Van Norden listened to students discuss Chinese philosophers' opposing views on human nature in lower-mid humanities philosophy and religion classes taught by Jared Hall, instructor in history, and Sam King, instructor in philosophy and religion. Van Norden also discussed Charles Darwin's conceptions of humankind in the natural world. He ended his visit with a student lunch, at which he spoke about what Chinese philosophy can teach us about the "good life."