Morris Braverman

1. Summarize the cases of Morris Braverman (Ch.5) and Elinor Rosenblum (Ch. 7) in Milgram’s Obedience to Authority. Each subject manifests strange behavior. What would Sartre say was wrong with each of them (hint: They have slightly different problems)? Use Sartre’s terminology. How would Sartre respond to the claim that these people couldn’t have done anything differently? Would he think that they have an excuse?

2. What are the four main objections to Sartre’s Existentialism? How does Sartre address them in his text? Are all of his responses successful? Explain how they succeed/fail.

3. What does Sartre mean when he says “Existence Precedes Essence”? Summarize his argument for this claim and explain how the realization of this fact leads us to anguish. Do you agree with him? Why (not)?

4. Socrates says that “no one knowingly and willingly chooses evil.” Sartre claims that “we can never choose evil”. Summarize, compare and contrast these positions. Who makes the more compelling case?

5. Reflection on Descartes’ dualism- and in particular, its relation to the Problem of Other Minds- leads Ryle to adopt philosophical behaviorism and Sartre to declare that “hell is other people”. Explain the relationships between (a) Descartes and Ryle, and (b) Descartes and Sartre. (You do not need to discuss the relationship between Ryle and Sartre). A good answer will make proper use of the term “solipsism”.

6. William Paley’s Teleological Argument and Sartre’s argument that existence
precedes essence rely on a common premise. What is that premise, and how does it inform their respective positions?