Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs telecourses video collection, 1973-1974

Overview of the Collection

Monson, Charles H.
Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs telecourses video collection
1973-1974 (inclusive)
30 UMatic videocassettes (some duplicates)
Collection Number
The Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs telecourses collection (1973-1974)consists of video recordings of lectures written and delivered by philosophy Professor Charles H. Monson, Jr. The lectures were intended to serve as a philosophy telecourse for distance education students to view on the Utah Educational Network television station. The telecourses cover such topics as love, death, work, and freedom. Charles H. Monson, Jr. was a professor of philosophy at the University of Utah 1952-1956 and 1958-1960. He served as the deputy academic vice president of the school from 1966 and remained with the University of Utah until his death in 1974.
University of Utah Libraries, Special Collections
Special Collections, J. Willard Marriott Library
University of Utah
295 South 1500 East
Salt Lake City, UT

Telephone: 8015818863
Access Restrictions

Materials must be used on-site; no use of original material, access copies will be made available for viewing. Five business days advanced notice required. Access to parts of this collection may be restricted under provisions of state or federal law, condition of the material, or by donor.


Biographical NoteReturn to Top

Charles H. Monson Jr. was born in Salt Lake City to Charles Horald and Ortencia Merrill Monson on 13 May 1924. He married Vivian Turley in October 1947 and received his bachelor's degree the following year from the University of Utah. His master's degree was obtained a year after that, also from the University of Utah. His doctoral work, however, took him to New York and Cornell University. He received his Ph.D. in philosophy in 1952.

It took Monson several years and a couple of teaching positions before returning with his family to Utah. He was an assistant professor of philosophy at the University of Nevada from 1952 to 1956 and then held the same title at Chico State College in California from 1956 to 1958. He was awarded an associate professor of philosophy position from the University of Utah in 1958, which he accepted. Monson held that position for two years until he was made an administrative intern for the American Council of Education. This took him away from Utah for a year and back to Cornell University. He returned to the University of Utah in 1966 as the deputy academic vice president. Monson remained at the university from that point on.

Throughout the time Monson held administrative positions at the University of Utah, which lasted from 1966 until his death in 1974, he remained cognizant of the student body's needs by serving as a professor on top of his administrative duties. Most of the classes he taught were in philosophy and he received wide recognition for his dedication to teaching and higher education in general. He was awarded the Distinguished Teaching Award in 1970 for his outstanding teaching abilities. The numerous articles and papers he wrote were also widely distributed and his knowledge of teaching and education was often called upon, as seen by his involvement with various groups and committees. Monson was involved with the Association of California State College Instructors, the Mountain-Plains Philosophical Conference, the Woodrow Wilson Foundation, the United States Office of Education, and the Western Interstate Commission for Higher Education.

As an administrator, Monson was able to initiate many major programs at the University of Utah. Some of these included programs for improving the status and effectiveness of teaching assistants, programs for disadvantaged students (including minority groups), and programs for women. He also established departmental advisory committees, departmental chairman leadership programs, and helped maintain the Repertory Dance Theatre, a modern dance company on campus.

Charles H. Monson Jr. died on 23 October 1974 in Salt Lake City as a result of a massive pulmonary embolism.

Biographical note provided by Lisa DeMille copyright 2003.

Content DescriptionReturn to Top

The Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs telecourses video collection (1973-1974) consists of 20 video recordings of lectures on philosophy delivered by Dr. Charles H. Monson, Jr. These lectures were recorded and aired by KUED. The entirety of the collection is digitized and available on DVD for research and personal use.

Use of the CollectionReturn to Top

Restrictions on Use

It is the responsibility of the researcher to obtain any necessary copyright clearances.

Permission to publish material from A0212 Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs telecourses collection must be obtained from the Special Collections Multimedia Archivist.

Preferred Citation

Initial Citation: Philosophical Issues in Human Affairs A0212, Special Collections and Archives. University of Utah, J. Willard Marriott. Salt Lake City, Utah.

Following Citations:A0212.

Administrative InformationReturn to Top


Dates listed on cassettes are dates programs were recorded. Air dates are not available. Duplicate tapes and missing programs have been omitted from this finding aid.

Acquisition Information

Property of the University of Utah.

Processing Note

Processed by Jimi Jones in 2003. Digitized by Molly Steed, Jessica Breiman, and Jamie Qing Ye in 2013.

Related Materials

See also the papers of Charles H. Monson located in the Manuscripts Division of Special Collections. Ms 0609 Charles H. Monson papers

Detailed Description of the CollectionReturn to Top

Container(s) Description Dates
1 Rocks and Men: The Problem of Freedom
Color, sound. Running time: 30:20 mins.
Introduces a collection of theories on freedom by philosophers such as: Jacques Maritain, Thomas Hobbes, V.I. Lenin, Benedict Spinoza, and David Hume. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
December 28, 1973
2 Seeing is Believing
Color, sound. Running time: 30:45 mins.
A discussion about the relationship between human sensory perception and objective reality. This lecture introduces the theories of philosophers such as Lao Tse, George Berkeley, and Rene Descartes. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
February 5, 1974
3 The Truth, the Whole Truth
Color, sound. Running time: 30:16 mins.
Examines the definition and establishment of truth. This lecture introduces three theories of truth: correspondence theory; coherence theory; and pragmatic theory and related philosophers such as Baruch Spinoza and William James. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
December 26, 1973
4 "Who is Responsible?" The Problem of Universals
Color, sound. Running time: 30:33 mins.
Discusses one of the ancient problems: the problem of one and many, known as universals and particulars. This lecture introduces the theories of Thales, Empedocles, and Democritus. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
December 26, 1973
5 Cultural Relativism
Color, sound. Running time: 31:01 mins.
Discusses the concept of cultural relativism as defining right and wrong by each culture's achievements. Introduces theories of philosophers such as: William Graham Sumner. This lecture concludes that cultural relativism is not enough to set up prescriptive questions to address moral issues of our life and conflicts in the world. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
December 27, 1973
6 Art of Loving
Color, sound. Running time: 30:09 mins.
Introduces a variety of understandings of love including the Christian traditions, Greek tradition, and theories developed by philosophers such as Moses Maimonides and Erich Fromm. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
December 27, 1973
7 Tolerance: The Problem of Commitment
Color, sound. Running time: 29:51 mins.
Questions what degree humans are willing to accept other humans and reject their own values. This lecture introduces the writings of Joseph Lecler, John Locke, and John Stuart Mill on tolerance and commitment. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 4, 1974
8 Work: By the Sweat of the Brow
Color, sound. Running time: 30:15 mins.
Introduces different views on work as punishment in such works as the Book of Genesis, and in the writings of Jean Jacques Rousseau and Lucretius. This lecture examines the contrasting theory of work as self-realization in the writings of C. Wright Mills and Erich Fromm on job satisfaction and fulfillment. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 4, 1974
9 On Recreating the Self
Color, sound. Running time: 30:02 mins.
Discussion of how to think about leisure time as a very important part of our life. Directed by Allyson Beecher. This tape has very poor quality -- scratched and jumpy, with background noises, and missing the opening marker.
No Date
10 The High Price of History
Color, sound. Running time: 29:36 mins.
Raises the question of the value of preserving history. Directed by Allyson Beecher. Very jumpy at the beginning of the tape, and missing the opening marker.
No Date
11 Is There a Pattern to History?
Color, sound. Running time: 30:45 mins.
Examines various philosophers' understanding of the patterns of history. The lecture discusses the ideas of John Calvin, Thomas Aquinas, Jean Jacque Rousseau, Herbert Spencer, and Oswald Spengler, and focuses on Karl Marx's theory of Economic Determinism. Directed by Allyson Beecher. Scratched tape.
January 17, 1974
12 Consent
Color, sound. Running time: 30:33 mins.
Introduces theories on popular sovereignty including John of Salisbury's notion of people as the sovereignty and John Locke's contract theory of the state. The lecture explains the design of government by legislature, and the operation of government by the consent of the governed. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 17, 1974
13 On Changing a Society
Color, sound. Running time: 30:37 mins.
Introduces methods of changing a society: by persuasion; by non-violent resistance; by withdrawal; or by revolution. Explains John Stuart Mill's writings on representative government, Mahatma Gandhi's non-violent resistance, Charles Fourier's discussions on escaping society, and Lenin's proposition of destroying existing society by revolution. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 16, 1974
14 Is Nature All There Is?
Color, sound. Running time: 30:13 mins.
A debate between a humanist and a theist about if there are any beings that exist beyond nature. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
March 26, 1974
15 Mysticism: On Knowing the Nameless
Color, sound. Running time: 30:53 mins.
Examines the philosophical issue of mystical experience and mystical beliefs and introduces the writings of Jan van Ruysbroeck and John Dewey. Inclueds an account of Dr. Monson's personal experience. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 22, 1974
16 For When We are, Death is Not
Color, sound. Running time: 30:45 mins.
Addresses the difficulties of defining death and examines the philosophical literature on death. Uses Socrates' death in Plato's Crito as an example to explore the right attitude toward death. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 22, 1974
17 The Ascent from the Cave
Color, sound. Running time: 29:19 mins.
Examines the function, purpose and importance of education; introduces the ideas of Plato, Cardinal Newman, Robert Maynard Hutchins, and Hyman Rickover on general education. Tape is missing final credits. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 16, 1974
18 The Freedom to Learn
Color, sound. Running time: 31:39 mins.
Examines theories of effective learning experience, including Jerome Brunner's act of discovery, Jean Piaget's self direction, John Dewey's reflex arc concept of learning, Maria Montessori's motor coordination and imagination, A.S. Neil 's freedom of learning, and Jean Jacques Rousseau's self-discipline. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 23, 1974
19 I'm All Learned Out
Color, sound. Running time: 30:15 mins.
Introduces Alfred North Whitehead's three stages of learning: romance, precision, and generalization. Directed by Allyson Beecher.
January 29, 1974

Names and SubjectsReturn to Top

Subject Terms

  • History
  • Philosophy
  • Theory (Philosophy)

Personal Names

  • Monson, Charles H.

Corporate Names

  • University of Utah

Geographical Names

  • Utah

Form or Genre Terms

  • Moving images