About the Department
The Department of Philosophy at Stony Brook University grants B.A., M.A. and Ph.D. degrees to a broad range of students with diverse and varied interests. Committed to a pluralist treatment of philosophical issues, the department encourages interdisciplinary study as well as more traditional approaches to philosophy. Convinced that a knowledge of the history of philosophy is essential to the philosophical enterprise, the department offers intensive courses in ancient, medieval, and modern thought. Other courses address specific philosophical problems in ethics, political theory, epistemology, aesthetics, environmental philosophy, feminism, critical race theory, and philosophy of technology.
The department at Stony Brook is internationally renowned for its concentration in Continental philosophy, with particular emphasis on contemporary French and German thought. Courses in phenomenology, psychoanalysis, structuralism, postructuralism and postmodernism, and critical theory are held regularly, focusing on such figures as Husserl, Merleau-Ponty, Derrida, Kristeva, Freud, Lacan, Irigaray, Levinas, and Habermas. Crucial nineteenth century philosophers such as Hegel and Nietzsche are also treated in depth. As well, the department offers many international research opportunities to graduate students who wish to pursue the study of Continental philosophy in Europe.
Stony Brook maintains a lively dialogue with Anglo-American philosophy, which is also strongly represented among faculty. A comparative seminar in a topic of common concern to continental and analytic philosophy is given each year. Other analytic courses cover computational theory, questions of meaning and metaphor, issues in philosophical psychology, and special problems in philosophical logic.
Stony Brook's Philosophy Department is a member of the New York Consortium of Graduate Schools, which allows graduate students to take courses for credit at schools in the New York City area, including Rutgers, Princeton, New York University, and Columbia.