jswenson02@hamline.edu
Joe Swenson

Contact Info

Joe Swenson
jswenson02@hamline.edu
(651) 523-2306
St. Paul Main Campus > Giddens/Alumni Learning Center > GLC 232W

Joe Swenson

Visiting Faculty - Philosophy

Contact Info

Joe Swenson
jswenson02@hamline.edu
(651) 523-2306
St. Paul Main Campus > Giddens/Alumni Learning Center > GLC 232W

Biography

Joe Swenson is a Visiting Lecturer in the Department of Philosophy. He earned a BA in Philosophy and English from Hamline University, an MA in Philosophy from Baylor University, and a Ph.D in Philosophy from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. His main teaching and research interests include: ethical theory and applied ethics, aesthetics, the philosophy of religion, and nineteenth and twentieth century continental philosophy (esp. Nietzsche.)

Teaching Style

My classes typically involve a mixture of lecture and discussion that use primary texts as a means to explore philosophical topics and questions from both a historical and contemporary perspective. A basic goal that I set for all of my classes is to help students explore how and why the philosophical questions they encounter in the classroom really do apply to their own daily lives. Once discovered, philosophy is everywhere. Learning to engage in careful reading, thoughtful discussion, and critical writing all play a significant role in that discovery. 

“Philosophy is at its best when it forces us to reexamine our everyday habits of thought, value, and belief from a new perspective that encourages creative and critical reflection. I try to show students that one of the most important functions of asking a philosophical question is found in its ability to make the familiar strange and the ordinary uncanny. No doubt this means that philosophy can sometimes make things a bit weird. But human beings are a bit weird. So the whole process ends up working out pretty well.” -Joe Swenson