Campus philosophers bring back existentialism

Katie Mastro

Strapped in gleeful togas, Saddleback College philosophy club members have been seen at several campus events, including Club Rush and the Second Annual Hot Dog Eating Contest.

“The togas attract people walking by,” said Lindsey Nolan, 20, history. “It is like a uniform that attracts attention, prompting people to ask questions.”

The philosophy club is concerned with other insightful topics than their mundane fashion sense.

“The club follows a syllabus type thing that describes what we are going to discuss,” said David Barschat, 18, English. “They also have hand outs on different source works from philosophers.”

The topics discussed among the members each week vary.In the beginning, the club members did not have a complete tailored structure, but now they have a precise meeting time and the officers supply discussion sheets for the other members.

“On the first week, our topic was logic arguments for fatalism,” said Alex Limon, the club’s secretary and photojournalist “The second week’s topic was animal rights. The third was truth. We have thought of a few topics for future weeks like identity puzzles, but I want to do problems of universals.”

The philosophy club, although it meets up every Wednesday in SM 205, has other events as well.

Last week there was a social where they played soccer, as well as a cook-out was hosted by them in the Village quad to get more students interested in their club, and to raise money since the members wants to see more philosophy professors talk.

“We want to raise money, I think, to buy t-shirts,” Nolan said. “We also want to fund a retreat in the around springtime possibly to Big Sur; we’re thinking of camping there for a weekend.”

“The atmosphere is relaxed and friendly,” Barkschat said. “They all are open-minded and intelligent, and it has been a great experience so far.

“The officers are very charismatic. But I think they like to show off in their togas. So you’ll see them at other events. I have not worn a toga, not yet. But if I get the opportunity to, I will. I will represent the Grecian-Roman ideals.”

Additional information on the philosophy club can be found on their website,

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