Philosophy

  • Most Topular Stories

  • The Job market and women in philosophy

    Feminist Philosophers
    jennysaul
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:06 pm
    Meena Krishnamurthy aims to start an important discussion. ….Lately there has been a lot of talk about the problems within the profession and taking action aimed at positive change. I think the job market and best practices are something that should be revisited now. For more, go to her post.
  • Request: Do you have good resources for teaching students how to read philosophy in an intro class?

    In Socrates' Wake
    Harry Brighouse
    10 Sep 2014 | 11:36 am
    A friend just asked me if I have any good resources for teaching intro students how to read philosophy? I thought readers of ISW might know of or be able to link to good resources. I have to confess I have never taught a true intro course -- the courses I teach for students who are not already majors are not designed to attract students to the major, so I tend to think this as the only encounter with philosophy most of them will have; and most of them are juniors and seniors who, certainly at my institution, have quite different  needs from first years. However, this is timely for me…
  • Democracy … Advancing Into Stagnation

    Re-constructing Strategy
    saqib qureshi
    28 Sep 2014 | 3:57 pm
    Out here in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), we are in the midst of our political elections. They are quite similar to political elections in any major Western democracy, and as such they unfortunately suffer from the same stagnation and disenchantment which we are witnessing worldwide in advanced democracies. Up for grabs in the GTA in October are the posts of Mayor, Town Councillors and Regional Councillors. Elected every four years, these chaps have a big say on what services are provided and how public funds are deployed. In my town of Markham, a dozen or so officials are hoping to be…
  • Professor Accidentally Summons Destroyer of Worlds

    Jon Cogburn's Blog
    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:23 am
    As readers of this blog know, Graham Harman holds that the most merciful thing in the world is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. According to Harman, we live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from…
  • Philosophical SF (Science Fiction / Speculative Fiction): Four Lists and a Project

    The Splintered Mind
    Eric Schwitzgebel
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:35 am
    I'm increasingly convinced that science fiction, or more broadly, "speculative fiction" is a powerful philosophical tool. The specificity of the possibilities considered, and its emotional and imagistic power, engages parts of the mind that more abstract forms of speculation leave hungry. Possibilities are livened, affecting how we think about them. Suppose you agree.  What might you want to read (or watch)? A couple dozen professional philosophers who enjoy SF, and two SF writers with graduate training in philosophy, have agreed to offer me lists of ten "personal favorite" works of…
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    Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

  • Dietrich of Freiberg

    Markus Führer
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:54 pm
    [Revised entry by Markus Führer on September 30, 2014. Changes to: Bibliography] The extraordinary long life and active teaching career of Albert the Great (c.1193 - 1280) produced many benefits for the inception of philosophy in medieval Germany. Besides the vast corpus of his writings that fostered a generation of Dominican scholars in the...
  • Seventeenth-Century Theories of Consciousness

    Larry M. Jorgensen
    27 Sep 2014 | 6:27 pm
    [Revised entry by Larry M. Jorgensen on September 27, 2014. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography, notes.html] In the seventeenth century, "consciousness" began to take on a uniquely modern sense. This transition was sparked by new theories of mind and ideas, and it connected with other important issues of debate during the seventeenth century, including debates...
  • Reference

    Marga Reimer and Eliot Michaelson
    26 Sep 2014 | 10:00 pm
    [Revised entry by Marga Reimer and Eliot Michaelson on September 26, 2014. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography, notes.html] Reference is a relation that obtains between certain sorts of representational tokens (e.g., names, mental states, pictures) and objects. For instance, when I assert that "George W. Bush is a Republican," I use...
  • Epistemology in Chinese Philosophy

    Jana Rošker
    26 Sep 2014 | 9:52 pm
    [New Entry by Jana Rošker on September 26, 2014.] In current research, the debate on the epistemological dimensions of Chinese texts and their role in the context of Chinese thought has been developed increasingly successfully under the aegis of rediscovering and applying specific traditional Chinese methodological approaches and categories (Lenk and Paul 1993). Chinese epistemology deals with problems such as the possibility of attaining correct...
  • Friedrich Heinrich Jacobi

    George di Giovanni
    24 Sep 2014 | 7:17 pm
    [Revised entry by George di Giovanni on September 24, 2014. Changes to: Bibliography] Polemicist, socialite, and literary figure, Jacobi was an outspoken critic, first of the rationalism of German late Enlightenment philosophy, then of Kant's Transcendental Idealism, especially in the form that the early Fichte gave to it, and finally of the Romantic...
 
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    Talking Philosophy

  • Transhumanism and The Journal of Evolution and Technology

    Russell Blackford
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:19 am
    This piece was first published over on the IEET site (and I’ve also just reblogged it at my personal blog, The Hellfire Club). It sets out briefly what The Journal of Evolution and Technology is all about, for those who might be interested. I’ve had the honor of serving as editor-in-chief of The Journal of Evolution and Technology (henceforth “JET”) since January 2008 – so it’s now approaching seven years! Where did the time go? Having been invited by Kris Notaro to write something about an aspect of transhumanism as it involves me professionally, I’m taking the opportunity…
  • Gaming Newcomb’s Paradox I: Problem Solved

    Mike LaBossiere
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Billy Jack (Photo credit: Wikipedia) One of the many annoying decision theory puzzles is Newcomb’s Paradox. The paradox was created by William Newcomb of the University of California’s Lawrence Livermore Laboratory. The dread philosopher Robert Nozick published a paper on it in 1969 and it was popularized in Martin Gardner’s 1972 Scientific American column. The paradox involves a game controlled by the Predictor, a being that is supposed to be masterful at predictions. Like many entities with but one ominous name, the Predictor’s predictive capabilities vary with each telling…
  • Assessment, Metrics & Rankings

    Mike LaBossiere
    26 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Having been in academics for quite some time, I have seen fads come, go and stick. A recent fad is the obsession with assessment. As with many such things, assessment arrived with various acronyms and buzz words. Those more cynical than I would say that all acronyms of administrative origin (AAO) amount to B.S. But I would not say such a thing. I do, however, have some concern with the obsession with assessment. One obvious point of concern was succinctly put by a fellow philosopher: “you don’t fatten the pig by weighing it.” The criticism behind this homespun remark is that time spent…
  • Outsourcing Education for Savings

    Mike LaBossiere
    24 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Due to a variety of factors, such as reduced state support and ever-expanding administrations, the cost of college in the United States has increased dramatically. In Michigan, a few community colleges have addressed this problem in a way similar to that embraced by businesses: they are outsourcing education. As of this writing, six Michigan community colleges have contracted with EDUStaff—a company that handles recruiting and managing adjunct faculty. It might be wondered how adding a middleman between the college and the employee would save money. The claim is that since EDUStaff rather…
  • kNOwMORE, Sexual Violence & Brands

    Mike LaBossiere
    22 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    Florida State UniversityPhoto credit: Wikipedia) Florida State University, which is across the tracks from my own Florida A&M University, has had some serious problems with sexual violence involving students. One response to this has been the creation of a student driven campaign to address the problem with a brand and marketing:   Students developed the “kNOw More” brand to highlight the dual message of Florida State’s no tolerance stance on sexual violence and education efforts focused on prevention. Students also are leading marketing efforts for a campaign, “Ask. Respect.
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    AskPhilosophers.org | "All"

  • Question about Religion - Allen Stairs responds

    26 Sep 2014 | 7:25 am
    In the context of "The Problem of Evil" can you help point me to the literature on this sub-category? Lacking this I have dubbed this sub-problem the "God for a day paradox": “If I had only some of the powers of God, I would cure cancer” Am I therefore more merciful than God? Supposedly the most merciful possible Being… Therefore is God’s omni-benevolence (not even that much is needed) itself a contradiction? How can a lesser being even think of a more merciful action (take curing cancer down to a single child; even to just answering a prayer for such a child) than God Himself? It is…
  • Question about Religion - Eric Silverman responds

    26 Sep 2014 | 7:25 am
    In the context of "The Problem of Evil" can you help point me to the literature on this sub-category? Lacking this I have dubbed this sub-problem the "God for a day paradox": “If I had only some of the powers of God, I would cure cancer” Am I therefore more merciful than God? Supposedly the most merciful possible Being… Therefore is God’s omni-benevolence (not even that much is needed) itself a contradiction? How can a lesser being even think of a more merciful action (take curing cancer down to a single child; even to just answering a prayer for such a child) than God Himself? It is…
  • Question about War - Oliver Leaman responds

    25 Sep 2014 | 3:23 pm
    My concerns about the disproportionate civilian casualties in the Israeli-Gaza have fallen on deaf ears among my friends. "There's no moral equivalence between the two sides," they respond. "If Israel has to kill innocent civilians to get at Hamas attackers, sobeit." Their argument seems to be that Hamas is much more "evil" an entity than a self-defending Israel, but I am not certain that Israel did enough to mitigate those civilian casualties. That "moral equivalence" argument seems like a rhetorical hand-grenade that makes actual discussion impossible. Am I being soft-hearted or soft-headed…
  • Question about Logic - William Rapaport responds

    22 Sep 2014 | 1:02 pm
    Is it possible for two tautologies to not be logically equivalent? Response from: William Rapaport Stephen Maitzen raises some interesting philosophical issues, but, of course, his response is not the "textbook" answer to the question (but, then, isn't that what philosophy is all about? : Questioning "textbook" answers? :-)The "textbook" answer would go something like this: By definition, a tautology is a "molecular" sentence (or proposition---textbooks differ on this) that, when evaluated by truth tables, comes out true no matter what truth values are assigned to its "atomic"…
  • Question about Logic - Richard Heck responds

    22 Sep 2014 | 1:02 pm
    Is it possible for two tautologies to not be logically equivalent? Response from: Richard Heck The term "tautology" has no established technical usage. Indeed, most logicians would avoid it nowadays, at least in technical writing. But when the term is used informally, it usually means: sentence (or formula) that is valid in virtue of its sentential (as opposed to predicate, or modal) structure. I.e., the term tends to be restricted to sentential (or propositional) logic.It is clear that Rapaport is assuming the sort of usage just mentioned: "a tautology is a 'molecular' sentence...that, when…
 
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    Leiter Reports: A Philosophy Blog

  • New Books in September

    Brian Leiter
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:59 am
    Authors and/or publishers kindly sent me these new books: After Hegel: German Philosophy, 1840-1900 by Frederick C. Beiser (Princeton University Press, 2014). Disagreement by Bryan Frances (Polity Press, 2014). Axel Hagerstrom and Modern Social Thought edited by Sven Eliaeson, Patricia...
  • In Memoriam: Gerhard Øverland (1964-2014)

    Brian Leiter
    30 Sep 2014 | 11:15 am
    Jeff McMahan (Oxford) has just written with the tragic news of the "death of Gerhard Øverland, a brilliant philosopher who had appointments at the University of Oslo and at CAPPE in Australia. He died of cancer in Oslo on September...
  • Marmor from USC to Cornell

    Brian Leiter
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:28 am
    The legal philosopher Andrei Marmor at the University of Southern California will join the law and philosophy faculties at Cornell University as of July 1, 2015, while his wife, legal scholar Beth Garrett, the current Provost at USC, will become...
  • Toronto's Jennifer Nagel on intuitions about knowledge...

    Brian Leiter
    30 Sep 2014 | 7:01 am
    ...at Philosophy Bites.
  • Yale's Chris Lebron interviewed...

    Brian Leiter
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:52 am
    ...at 3AM.
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    Ethics Etc

  • NYU Conference on Measuring Borderline States of Consciousness

    S. Matthew Liao
    19 Sep 2014 | 5:09 pm
    Friday, October 24th – Saturday, October 25th 53 Washington Square South, 1st Floor Auditorium, New York On October 24-25, the NYU Center for Mind, Brain, and Consciousness and the NYU Center for Bioethics will host a conference on Measuring Borderline States of Consciousness. There are famous difficulties in measuring subjective states of consciousness. Nevertheless, a […]
  • CFA: Dominating Speech at UConn

    S. Matthew Liao
    17 Sep 2014 | 9:14 pm
    Dominating Speech Conference at UConn November 21-23, 2014 Keynotes: Ishani Maitra (Michigan) Jason Stanley (Yale) The Injustice League in the Philosophy Department at the University of Connecticut seeks abstracts on topics related to the conference theme. Suggested topics include: hate speech, slurs, propaganda, slut-shaming, bragging, and gossip. Philosophical work from a variety of subfields, including: […]
  • Op-ed in Scientific American on Brain Implants and Supersoldiers

    S. Matthew Liao
    4 Sep 2014 | 8:11 pm
    Readers of Ethics Etc might be interested in an op-ed of mine in Scientific American, which explores the ethics of using brain implants to create supersoldiers. The online version can be found here: http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/mind-guest-blog/2014/09/04/could-d eep-brain-stimulation-fortify-soldiers-minds/
  • CONF: Moral Sentimentalism and the Foundations of Morality

    S. Matthew Liao
    4 Sep 2014 | 7:58 pm
    Friday, November 14 and Saturday, November 15, 2014 College of the Holy Cross, Worcester, MA Speakers (in alphabetical order): Simon Blackburn (UNC Chapel Hill); Justin D’Arms (Ohio State); Remy Debes (Memphis); Sabine Döring (Tübingen); Michael Frazer (Harvard); Daniel Jacobson (UMichigan); Antti Kauppinen (Trinity College, Dublin); Michelle Mason (Minnesota); Diana Tietjen Meyers (UConn); Jesse Prinz (CUNY); […]
  • Human Rights as Fundamental Conditions for a Good Life

    S. Matthew Liao
    20 Aug 2014 | 9:06 pm
    A number of important philosophical books and articles on the topic of human rights have appeared in recent years including James Nickel’s Making Sense of Human Rights, James Griffin’s On Human Rights, Charles R. Beitz’s The Idea of Human Rights, Martha Nussbaum’s Creating Capabilities, Allen Buchanan’s Heart of Human Rights, and John Tasioulas’s various articles […]
 
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    European Journal of Philosophy

  • Transcendental Philosophy and Naturalism, by Joel Smith and Peter Sullivan (eds.), Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2011, 212 pp. ISBN 978-0199608553

    Sebastian Rödl
    28 Sep 2014 | 8:05 pm
  • Narrative and the Stability of Intention

    Edward S. Hinchman
    14 Sep 2014 | 5:22 pm
    Abstract This paper addresses a problem concerning the rational stability of intention. When you form an intention to φ at some future time t, you thereby make it subjectively rational for you to follow through and φ at t, even if—hypothetically—you would abandon the intention were you to redeliberate at t. It is hard to understand how this is possible. Shouldn't the perspective of your acting self be what determines what is then subjectively rational for you? I aim to solve this problem by highlighting a role for narrative in intention. I'll argue that committing yourself to a course…
  • The Limits of Learning: Habermas' Social Theory and Religion

    Maeve Cooke
    28 Jul 2014 | 10:17 pm
    Abstract Habermas' view that contemporary philosophy and social theory can learn from religious traditions calls for closer consideration. He is correct to hold that religious traditions constitute a reservoir of potentially important meanings that can be critically appropriated without emptying them of their motivating and inspirational power. However, contrary to what he implies, his theory allows for learning from religion only to a very limited degree. This is due to two core elements of his conceptual framework, both of which are key features of his account of postmetaphysical thinking.
  • Kierkegaard's Phenomenology of Spirit

    Ulrika Carlsson
    7 Jul 2014 | 7:27 pm
    Abstract Kierkegaard's preoccupation with a separation between the ‘inner’ and the ‘outer’ runs through his work and is widely thought to belong to his rejection of Hegel's idealist monism. Focusing on The Concept of Irony and Either/Or, I argue that although Kierkegaard believes in various metaphysical distinctions between inside and outside (the inwardness of faith and the outwardness of ethics and language; the inwardness of emotion and the outwardness of behavior), he nonetheless understands the task of the philosopher as that of making outside and inside converge in a…
  • Heidegger the Metaphysician: Modes-of-Being and Grundbegriffe

    Howard D. Kelly
    13 Jun 2014 | 9:55 pm
    Abstract Modes-of-being (Seinsarten) figure centrally in Heidegger's masterwork Being and Time. Testimony to this is Heidegger's characterisation of two of his most celebrated enquiries—the Existential analytic and the Zeug analysis—as investigations into the respective modes-of-being of the entities concerned. Yet despite the importance of this concept, commentators disagree widely about what a mode-of-being is. In this paper, I systematically outline and defend a novel and exegetically grounded interpretation of this concept. Strongly opposed to Kantian readings, such as those advocated…
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    Philosophical Review current issue

  • Critical Pragmatics

    Pagin, P.
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:54 am
  • Semantic Plasticity and Speech Reports

    Dorr, C., Hawthorne, J.
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:54 am
    Most meanings we express belong to large families of variant meanings, among which it would be implausible to suppose that some are much more apt for being expressed than others. This abundance of candidate meanings creates pressure to think that the proposition attributing any particular meaning to an expression is modally plastic: its truth depends very sensitively on the exact microphysical state of the world. However, such plasticity seems to threaten ordinary counterfactuals whose consequents contain speech reports, since it is hard to see how we could reasonably be confident in a…
  • On Myself, and Other, Less Important Subjects

    Markosian, N.
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:54 am
  • Aristotle on the Apparent Good: Perception, Phantasia, Thought, and Desire

    Tuozzo, T. M.
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:54 am
  • Love and the Value of a Life

    Setiya, K.
    4 Sep 2014 | 6:54 am
    This essay is about love and its place in ethics. It argues that there is no one it is irrational to love, that it is rational to act with partiality to those we love, and that the rationality of doing so is not conditional on love. It follows that Anscombe and Taurek are right: you are not required to save three instead of one, even when those you could save are perfect strangers.
 
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    Feminist Philosophers

  • The Job market and women in philosophy

    jennysaul
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:06 pm
    Meena Krishnamurthy aims to start an important discussion. ….Lately there has been a lot of talk about the problems within the profession and taking action aimed at positive change. I think the job market and best practices are something that should be revisited now. For more, go to her post.
  • Help Fund PIKSI!

    jennysaul
    30 Sep 2014 | 1:02 pm
    For nine years, PIKSI, or the Philosophy in an Inclusive Key Summer Institute, has been helping students from underrepresented groups develop the skills, confidence, and community needed to pursue graduate study in philosophy. Our students include women, people of color, LGBT individuals, individuals with disabilities, and people from economically disadvantaged communities. But PIKSI now needs financial help. PIKSI has traditionally received two sources of funding. The program is housed at the Pennsylvania State University’s Rock Ethics Institute, who together with Pennsylvania State…
  • Men philosophizing about expertise

    philodaria
    29 Sep 2014 | 10:20 pm
    An all-male list of invited speakers for the “The Philosophy of Expertise: What is Expertise?,” January, 12 – 13, 2015  conference at University of Muenster, Germany.  (For more information about the GCC, see here.)
  • Chris Lebron Interviewed at 3:AM: “The Colour of Our Shame”

    Stacey Goguen
    29 Sep 2014 | 1:53 pm
    You can read the interview here. “Chris Lebron is a philosopher who asks deep questions about theories of justice appropriate for race. He thinks about bridging the gap between abstraction and lived experiences, about American democracy and racial inequality, marginalisation and oppression, about the idea of character and how it helps explain racial inequality, about the problem of social value, about why Rawls isn’t enough, about ‘white power’, about despair and blame, about perfectionism and egalitarianism, about soulcraft politics, about three principles of racial justice and…
  • The rational high ground

    magicalersatz
    29 Sep 2014 | 5:46 am
    “What I am not going to do is capitulate to a cyber mob that is exercised about issues that are irrelevant.” – Brian Leiter [my emphasis] Brian Leiter has a tendency to describe his critics in the language of irrationality. He suggests that this current fracas is a ‘smear campaign’ put together by a ‘cyber mob’, for example. Mobs don’t think very carefully or very critically. Mobs have worked themselves up into a frenzy of groupthink and are not easily influenced by reason. (Though in this instance, the ‘mob’ of people signing on to…
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    In Socrates' Wake

  • Teaching Philosophy seeks trustee

    Michael Cholbi
    12 Sep 2014 | 7:44 am
    The Board of Trustees of the Teaching Philosophy Association, Inc. would like you to know about an opportunity to have an impact on the journal.  Teaching Philosophy Association, Inc. is the nonprofit organization that oversees the business of the journal Teaching Philosophy.  The Board is responsible for:         evaluation of and strategic planning for the journal;         authorizing and carrying out special projects;         appointing and providing guidance to…
  • Request: Do you have good resources for teaching students how to read philosophy in an intro class?

    Harry Brighouse
    10 Sep 2014 | 11:36 am
    A friend just asked me if I have any good resources for teaching intro students how to read philosophy? I thought readers of ISW might know of or be able to link to good resources. I have to confess I have never taught a true intro course -- the courses I teach for students who are not already majors are not designed to attract students to the major, so I tend to think this as the only encounter with philosophy most of them will have; and most of them are juniors and seniors who, certainly at my institution, have quite different  needs from first years. However, this is timely for me…
  • Soliciting 'How to Teach' articles

    Michael Cholbi
    8 Sep 2014 | 4:45 pm
    No doubt many of you have been reading the 'How to Teach' series in Teaching Philosophy, articles dedicated to how to teach a particular philosophy course. Thus far, the journal has published articles on how to teach early modern philosophy, critical thinking, and comparative philosophy. There are plans for articles on how to teach business ethics and how to teach information technology ethics.To that end, here are some areas where we'd like to see more articles in this series:philosophy of sciencemedieval philosophyphenomenology and existentialism, the Continental traditionfeminist…
  • Call for Abstracts: Experiential Learning

    Michael Cholbi
    8 Sep 2014 | 7:39 am
    Call for Abstracts: Central APA Panel on Experiential LearningOrganized by the APA Committee on the Teaching of PhilosophyDeadline: September 25, 2014The American Philosophical Association (APA) Committee on the Teaching of Philosophy invites abstracts for a panel on experiential learning in philosophy to take place at the Central Division meeting of the APA, February 18-21, 2015, in St. Louis, MO.Philosophical work has traditionally involved armchair analysis, so the institutional request to think about designing a course with an experiential learning component can serve as a challenge to…
  • Survey on graduate philosophy education

    Michael Cholbi
    4 Sep 2014 | 11:52 am
    A note from David Concepción: Please take this survey if you are eligible. Thanks!Colleagues,We invite you to help us learn more about teacher training for Philosophy graduate students by taking approximately 10 minutes to complete an online survey.The objective of this research is to determine the current state of teacher training for graduate students in the field of Philosophy. The data generated from this research should make it possible to develop recommendations regarding how, if at all, teacher training in the field of Philosophy might evolve.To participate in this research study, you…
 
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    Philosophy by the Way

  • Two levels of reality

    28 Sep 2014 | 4:05 pm
    In his article “Free will as a social institution”, Wolfgang Prinz defends the thesis of dual representation of reality. On the one hand, the thesis says, we have a direct representation of what is going on and what is present around us in the world (we can say that we have an “image” of it, if we take this notion not too literally). This representation exists on an unconscious level, which I want to call “level 1”. This level-1-representation is the basis of our doings. On a conscious level we can experience this level-1-representation and have a conscious representation of it.
  • How to write my blogs (2)

    21 Sep 2014 | 4:30 pm
    Creative walkWhen I write these weekly blogs, I am always sitting in the armchair in my study and I write them with my laptop. I told you that several times before, if I remember well. Is it the right method? I always thought so, until I discovered that it would be better to write my blogs by hand, at least the draft. Not so long ago I explained to you why (see my blog dated June 16, 2014). But like most human beings here on earth, I stick to my habits and I still write my blogs with a computer. In view of the positive comments I sometimes receive, they are not that bad, although – you…
  • The uneven development of technology and man

    15 Sep 2014 | 7:35 am
    Driverless carIn a short interview a Dutch technology professor, Marieke Martens, said that within ten years we’ll have automatic driving cars on our roads, so cars that do not have a driver behind the wheel. This will not happen all at once, she says, but it will happen in five steps. In the interview prof. Martens didn’t say what steps these are, but the last step would be taken within ten years. Will it? Prof. Martens admitted that there are not only technical challenges for completing the project but also juridical ones, like questions of liability in case of accidents and how other…
  • Why policy fails

    7 Sep 2014 | 4:33 pm
    Cattle dealersA few days ago I was browsing through some books in my book cases and my eye was caught by the next quote, which I had underlined, in a already rather old book by Karl Mannheim, a Hungarian-born sociologist (1893-1947):“Every specialist is acting in good faith when he believes that his own method is the right one, for he unconsciously confuses the section of reality on which he is working with reality itself ...” (Karl Mannheim, Man and Society in an Age of Reconstruction, London: Routledge & Kegan Paul, 1949; p. 29).Everyone looks at the world from his or her…
  • Confusing mind and brain

    31 Aug 2014 | 3:42 pm
    The Meuse near Charny, Meuse, FranceA single water molecule doesn’t stream but a river does. Nevertheless a river consists of a countless number of water molecules. Also the countless number of water molecules as such don’t stream. So if we want to study fluvial processes like erosion, the velocity of the flow, the friction between the current and the riverbed and so on, we do not study the movements of the water molecules but we study the river. We don’t say that the molecules erode the landscape but that the river does. Or, a different example, we do not say that the water molecules…
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    Jon Cogburn's Blog

  • Two archives for material concerning recent issues concerning the Philosophical Gourmet Report

    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 5:00 pm
    Leigh Johnson's archive of recent debates about Leiter Reports and the Philosophical Gourmet Report is by far the most complete thing I've seen. Future researchers will avail themselves of it. Richard Heck's has also started archiving discussions more narrowly focused on the issue of departmental rankings, and the fruits of his labors can be found here. These archives show that philosophical blogosphere is back in a way that it hasn't been since I don't know when. Brian Weatherson can almost hear Jack White's guitar musings, slightly tinny voice, and Meg bringing the…
  • A Proposed Generalization of the Evans/Salmon Argument (Not Involving Identity)

    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 10:49 am
    In this post, I proposed a solution to the notorious Evans/Salmon argument against vague identity, one rooted in my work on Moore's Paradox. Here I want to generalize the argument in a way that I haven't seen it generalized in the literature yet. The literature is pretty big and I've barely dented it, so apologies if this has been done before. From what I've read thusfar, there seems to be an assumption that if one could have vague predication without vague identity, then one wouldn't need to worry about the Evans/Salmon argument. This is my understanding of why there is a…
  • Aaaaaaamstel Light!!! Taaaaastes Alright!!!

    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 6:02 am
    I love how the stone(hengy) Metallica logo is well on it's way to crushing Snake Liberty. I don't know what the relative time frames are with respect to this album and the drummer's testifying in front of the U.S. Congress in favor of the current copyright regime.
  • Professor Accidentally Summons Destroyer of Worlds

    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 4:23 am
    As readers of this blog know, Graham Harman holds that the most merciful thing in the world is the inability of the human mind to correlate all its contents. According to Harman, we live on a placid island of ignorance in the midst of black seas of infinity, and it was not meant that we should voyage far. The sciences, each straining in its own direction, have hitherto harmed us little; but some day the piecing together of dissociated knowledge will open up such terrifying vistas of reality, and of our frightful position therein, that we shall either go mad from the revelation or flee from…
  • Yes, judge the person

    Jon Cogburn
    30 Sep 2014 | 3:58 am
    This last month the commonest thing one is hearing on the internet is that we should judge a person's actions but not judge the person. Anyone who grew up in a religious household where we were enjoined to "hate the sin, but not the sinner" finds this a bit disconcerting. In religious contexts it is often applied to activities that many of us don't regard as sins and that form an important part of the person's identity. It's very hard to hate things that are a core part of a person's identity without actually hating them. But Jesus did famously say "Judge…
 
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    Continental Philosophy

  • The Global Crisis of Capitalism: Marxist and Post-Keynesian Views – Conference 19 November 2014

    James Luchte
    23 Sep 2014 | 1:18 pm
    The Global Crisis of Capitalism: Marxist and Post-Keynesian Views The Global Crisis of Capitalism: Marxist and Post-Keynesian Views This event, hosted by the John Jay College Department of Economics, is a discussion of global capitalism featuring Matias Vernengo and his Post Keynesian analysis along with Paul Cooney and his Marxist analysis and moderated by Julio Huato. All who are interested are encouraged to attend. Wednesday November 19th, 1:30pm, Room L2.85NB To visit the Conference Facebook page please visit The Global Crisis of Capitalism: Marxist and Post-Keynesian Views
  • CALL for PARTICIPATION – 7th International Conference of Critical Geography

    James Luchte
    15 Sep 2014 | 12:17 pm
    CALL for PARTICIPATION – 7th International Conference of Critical Geography 26-30 JULY 2015  |  Ramallah, Palestine   The sense of revolutionary times triggered by recent events such as the Greek revolts, the Indignados and Occupy movements, as well as the Arab uprisings and the Idle No More protests in Canada, has been gradually overshadowed by a wave of virulent and violent responses by both state and global powers. Although these and other struggles have captured our imagination, an anxious feeling of being in a permanent state of crisis seems to have taken over as we observe…
  • No New Wars, No To Nato – Week-Long Protest of Nato Summit 2014 – 30 August – 5 September

    James Luchte
    30 Aug 2014 | 2:40 am
    60 world leaders, including Barack Obama, meet in the UK for the NATO Summit on 4-5 September to plan their war on the world. From 30 August protesters will flock to South Wales for international actions including a national demonstration, counter summit, and week-long peace camp. Stop the War and CND have organised NO TO NATO – NO NEW WARS protests from 30 August to 5 September. See the timetable of action and events below. Transport to the national demonstration 30 August… Saturday 30 August: Mass demonstration March through central Newport. Assembles 1pm at the Civic Centre Car…
  • The Many Dimensions of Herbert Marcuse – October 1-2, 2014 – Brandeis University

    James Luchte
    19 Aug 2014 | 8:20 pm
    The Many Dimensions of Herbert Marcuse Join us for this two-day conference that will explore the critical theory of Herbert Marcuse. The conference coincides with the 50th anniversary of the publication of Marcuse’s most famous book, “One-Dimensional Man: Studies in the Ideology of Advanced Industrial Society,” and our recent discovery of an early draft of this book that was given to Brandeis by Marcuse himself. All conference talks will be held in the Rapaporte Treasure Hall in Brandeis’ Goldfarb Library. Registration for the conference is free. Lunch will be provided…
  • Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari: Refrains of Freedom – International Conference, Athens, Greece, 24-26 April 2015

    James Luchte
    18 Aug 2014 | 2:09 pm
    Gilles Deleuze and Félix Guattari: Refrains of Freedom International Conference, Athens, Greece, 24-26 April 2015 The Philosophy Department and the Graduate Programme for Theory, Politics and Culture of Trent University in Ontario, Canada, in co-operation with the Sector of Philosophy of the Department of Philosophy, Pedagogy and Psychology of the University of Athens, the Department of Social Anthropology and the Department of Political Science and History of Panteion University in Athens, the Sector of Philosophy of the Department of Philosophy, Pedagogy and Psychology of the University of…
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    In Search of Enlightenment

  • End of Sabbatical

    22 Sep 2014 | 10:41 am
    This blog has been very quiet for the past 12 months or so as I was away on sabbatical (and I joined FB, where I post almost daily). As such I thought I should post a few remarks here.While I am sad that the extra research time afforded by the sabbatical has come to an end, I am happy to have full-time teaching return as a regular part of my responsibilities. I find teaching helps stimulate thought and balances what can be an otherwise hermit-like existence (my research tends to be very solitary).What did I accomplish on the sabbatical? I spent the Fall term teaching in the School of Public…
  • Ideas for New Paper

    19 Mar 2014 | 6:18 am
    This blog post is posted on my FB page with comments open. If you are a political philosopher who wishes to comment please send me a FB friend request. In the coming weeks I hope to develop some ideas that I have been mulling over for a few years now on methodological issues in normative political philosophy into a coherent paper tentatively titled “Justice by Earthlings” or "Psychology Constrains Political Philosophy". I thought I would try something new for me and invite FB friends interested in ideal/non-ideal theory to offer comments, suggestions, etc. as I work through these ideas…
  • SPP Article Now Out

    20 Feb 2014 | 4:31 pm
    My paper titled "EMPIRICAL ETHICS AND THE DUTY TO EXTEND THE “BIOLOGICAL WARRANTY PERIOD”is now available in the latest issue of Social Philosophy and Policy. The abstract:The world's aging populations face novel health challenges never experienced before in human history. The moral landscape thus needs to adapt to reflect this novel empirical reality. In this paper I take for granted one basic moral principle advanced by Peter Singer — a principle of preventing bad occurrences — and explore the implications that empirical considerations from demography, evolutionary biology, and…
  • Norman Geras (RIP)

    18 Oct 2013 | 8:37 am
    So sorry to learn the news that my former colleague from Manchester University and friend Norm Geras has died. Norm will be sadly missed. The Guardian reports here.
  • Health Affairs Article on Age Retardation

    8 Oct 2013 | 2:56 pm
    The Oct 2013 issue of Health Affairs has this important article which is worth noting. Here is the abstract:Recent scientific advances suggest that slowing the aging process (senescence) is now a realistic goal. Yet most medical research remains focused on combating individual diseases. Using the Future Elderly Model—a microsimulation of the future health and spending of older Americans—we compared optimistic “disease specific” scenarios with a hypothetical “delayed aging” scenario in terms of the scenarios’ impact on longevity, disability, and major entitlement program costs.
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    In Living Color

  • Male and Female Brains

    24 Sep 2014 | 9:03 am
    My trek through the literature on sex differences continues. These podcasts from NeuroGenderings III are interesting, especially the talks by Anne Fausto-Sterling and Rebecca Jordan-Young.  The Jordan-Young talk led me to version 2, which she gave at a symposium in honor of Fausto-Sterling (video here).  And from there, I was led to two papers--"Male or Female? Brains are Intersex," by Daphna
  • What Sam Harris Said

    19 Sep 2014 | 9:37 am
    Lately I've been working on the gender chapter of my book about parenthood. Because I've been knee deep in the literature about gender differences, I've been intrigued by the recent Sam Harris dust up in the blogosphere.  Michelle Boorstein, a Washington Post reporter, gives this account of an interview she did with Harris at a Center for Inquiry event in DC: I also asked Harris at the event why
  • Taboo Questions

    27 Aug 2014 | 7:47 am
    I've been working forever on one chapter of my manuscript/book on parenthood--the chapter on gender.  I think I know part of the reason why it's been so hard and time consuming to get this done.  In other chapters I've felt free to philosophically explore, even if the issues are controversial, but there are a lot more constraints here.  Certain views, and even certain questions, are politically
  • Against empathy?

    27 Aug 2014 | 6:59 am
    When I have time to read this I think I'm going to enjoy it!
  • "Socially constructed"

    16 Aug 2014 | 9:34 am
    http://www.theplasticbrickmuseum.com I've been thinking and reading about the idea that sex and/or gender are "socially constructed."  This is often asserted by feminists who have a debunking and liberatory agenda.  The idea is that sex and gender "binaries" are not written into the nature of things, but results of choices, perceptions, customs, cultural assumptions, etc. You couldn't abandon
 
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    Stephen Law

  • Open Letter to Karen Armstrong on 'The Myth of Religious Violence'

    29 Sep 2014 | 6:49 am
    An open letter to Karen Armstrong on her Guardian article ‘The Myth of Religious Violence’. I invite Karen to either come out as a Secularist with a capital 'S', or come up with a better argument. Go here to CFI logs for my post.
  • 'But is it art?' Wittgenstein on family resemblance concepts - explained!

    21 Sep 2014 | 4:00 am
    But is it Art? From my The Philosophy Gym: 25 Short Adventures in Thinking. This introduces Wittgenstein on 'family resemblance' and the idea of 'necessary and sufficient conditions'.Philosophy Gym category: Warm upMediumMore challengingI mean they’d gone and fucking installed the work without me even being here. That’s just not on. This is my bed. If someone else installs it, it’s just dirty linen. If I do it, it’s art. Tracey Emin (artist), Evening Standard, 12/9/00.Today it seems almost anything can be classified as a work of art: Damien Hirst’s pickled shark or Tracey Emin’s…
  • Follow my CFI blog: The Outer Limits

    10 Sep 2014 | 1:01 am
    Just posted my first blog post for CFI here as part of their Free Thinking site. I will be posting exclusive Humanist/Skepticism related article there regularly - at least once a month. Do please follow!My CFI blog is called The Outer Limits. They made me a nice banner - have a look.This blog will of course continue. In particular I'll put more academic posts here (e.g. drafts of papers for discussion, etc.), plus news of events (CFI UK especially, which I organize) and other interests. Skeptical/humanism related posts here will usually also appear over at The Secular Outpost.
  • Werewolves, Vampires and Witches sceptically investigated by CFI UK, 18 October

    9 Sep 2014 | 2:55 am
    Centre for Inquiry UK and Conway Hall Ethical Society present: Deborah Hyde, Jessica Monteith, and Owen Davies speaking on vampires, werewolves, and witches. Register here.   Deborah Hyde, Jessica Monteith, and Owen Davies introduce us to the myth and the reality regarding some of the most horrific creatures imaginable. A skeptical inquiry into some of the most terrifying creatures imaginable. Come and be terrified and informed.Note that even if you have heard e.g. Hyde on vampires before, she is talking about werewolves at this event. Organised and chaired by Stephen Law Date:…
  • Secular Humanism: DON'T define it as requiring naturalism

    9 Sep 2014 | 2:15 am
    What does secular humanism (or, as we say in the UK, humanism) involve? In Humanism: A Very Short Introduction (OUP 2011) I suggest that most of those who sign up to secular humanism sign up to following:1. Secular humanists place particular emphasis on the role of science and reason. 2. Humanists are atheists. They do not sign up to belief in a god or gods. 3. Humanists suppose that this is very probably the only life we have. 4. Humanists usually believe in the existence and importance of moral value.5. Humanists emphasize our individual moral autonomy and responsibility. 6. Humanists are…
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    gonepublic: philosophy, politics, & public life

  • Sign on to the September Statement

    Noelle McAfee
    26 Sep 2014 | 6:04 pm
    The list of philosophers unwilling to take part in the Philosophical Gourmet Report so long as Brian Leiter is editing it keeps growing: https://sites.google.com/site/septemberstatement/ .  Any philosophy professor with an academic appointment is invited to join the list.  You need not be someone who would have been likely to be an evaluator. If you wish to add your name to those declining for these reasons to volunteer their services to the PGR while under the control of Brian Leiter, please email septemberstatement@gmail.com with your name and affiliation. Please use your verifiable…
  • A Search Engine for Philosophy

    Noelle McAfee
    26 Sep 2014 | 1:54 pm
    I made this proposal the other day over at Daily Nous (which just got a nod from the Daily Nous editor Justin Weinberg here) for an alternative to the PGR and other rankings: a 21st century tool that students could use to get information on graduate programs. The APA has been collecting data from philosophy PhD programs for a few years now for its Guide to Programs on placement rates, etc. What if more information were collected, such as numbers of books published with university presses, faculty citation and Google Scholar analytics, peer-reviewed conference papers, faculty areas of…
  • Emory Philosophy Placements

    Noelle McAfee
    23 Sep 2014 | 10:13 pm
    Congrats to our brilliant PhDs for the positions they are getting: http://philosophy.emory.edu/home/graduate/Placement.html
  • Seminar on Habermas & His Critics

    Noelle McAfee
    22 Sep 2014 | 2:05 pm
    This semester I am teaching a graduate seminar on Habermas & His Critics.  Putting the syllabus together was quite a feat, and so I want to share it with my dear readers.  Feel free to offer ideas for the next time I teach this.  And also feel free to borrow liberally for your own teaching. Phil 571R – 000: HABERMAS & HIS CRITICS Fall 2014 McAfee, Tu 2:00PM – 5:00PM Office Hours: Bowden Hall 302, MW 10-noon and by appointment nmcafee@emory.edu Content: Jürgen Habermas is easily one of the most important and influential philosophers of the past half century. The most…
  • Open Rank Position in African-American Philosophy at Emory

    Noelle McAfee
    22 Aug 2014 | 8:08 am
    EMORY UNIVERSITY, ATLANTA, GA. AOS: African-American Philosophy. AOC:  Africana philosophy, philosophy of race, and ability to deepen existing strengths in American philosophy/philosophy of the Americas.  Rank: Open (Assistant, Associate, or Full Professor, tenure-track or tenured), beginning Fall 2015. Four courses/year, beginning undergraduate to graduate level. Usual advising, committee, and other non-teaching duties. Ph.D. required by beginning of appointment. Review of applications begins October 20, 2014. Applications received up to 30 days after review begins will be given full…
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    Alexander Pruss's Blog

  • Two kinds of desire strength

    29 Sep 2014 | 8:58 am
    Suppose I am designing a simple vacuuming robot not unlike a Roomba, but a little more intelligent. I might set up the robot to have multiple drives or "desires" including the drive to maintain well-charged batteries and to maintain a clean floor. The robot, then, will use its external and internal sensors to obtain some relevant pieces of information: how much dirt remains on the floor, how low its battery charge is and how far away from its charging station it is. I now imagine the processor uses the dirt-remaining value to calculate how much it "wants" to continue vacuuming and the battery…
  • Possibility, probability and propensity

    25 Sep 2014 | 7:48 am
    I have defended at length the idea that metaphysical possibility is grounded in the causal powers of things. It just occurred to me that this view is very naturally connected to the view that objective probability is grounded in causal propensities. We can think of probability as a measure of the degree of possibility, and of possibility as an attenuated kind of probability. If we see things in this very natural way—and hopefully its naturalness isn't just due to alliteration—then we have a unified and mutually supporting story about probability and possibility. Both are grounded in…
  • Low probability explanations

    22 Sep 2014 | 1:07 pm
    Some people think that for C to explain E, P(E|C) must be high. This is false. Suppose two events E1 and E2 have probabilistic explanations, and we understand that the events are independent. Then we understand why E1 occurs and why E2 occurs, and we also understand why their conjunction occurs. But of course their conjunction has lower probability than either of them, and iterating this argument we get to a conjunctive event such that we understand why it occurs even though its probabilistic explanation is a quite low probability one.
  • Evolution and the Principle of Sufficient Reason

    19 Sep 2014 | 11:00 am
    This is an oldish argument, inspired by a student comment, but I kind of like my present formulation of it. Start with this fine inductive argument: All the known explanations of present species are evolutionary. So, all the explanations of present species are evolutionary. But (2) isn't all that the evolutionary biologist claims about present species. She claims more strongly: All the present species have evolutionary explanations. Claim (3) is stronger than claim (2). Let's suppose that half of the present species have evolutionary explanations and the other half have no explanations at…
  • Trying and intending

    18 Sep 2014 | 9:38 am
    Suppose I have a sore knee and a doctor asks me to try to lift my leg to see if I can do so. So I try, and let's say I succeed. Did I intend to lift my leg? It seems not. It seems that I intended to lift my leg if and only if I could, as a means to the doctor's being able to diagnose my knee. But this is very strange. I tried and I succeeded, but I didn't intend my success!Maybe I didn't really try to lift my leg? Maybe I only tried to lift it if and only if I could. But that doesn't seem right. The doctor didn't want to see the effects of my trying to "lift my leg if and only if I could",…
 
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    The Splintered Mind

  • Philosophical SF (Science Fiction / Speculative Fiction): Four Lists and a Project

    Eric Schwitzgebel
    30 Sep 2014 | 8:35 am
    I'm increasingly convinced that science fiction, or more broadly, "speculative fiction" is a powerful philosophical tool. The specificity of the possibilities considered, and its emotional and imagistic power, engages parts of the mind that more abstract forms of speculation leave hungry. Possibilities are livened, affecting how we think about them. Suppose you agree.  What might you want to read (or watch)? A couple dozen professional philosophers who enjoy SF, and two SF writers with graduate training in philosophy, have agreed to offer me lists of ten "personal favorite" works of…
  • Three Kinds of Transparency in Self-Knowledge (Or Maybe 1 3/4 Kinds); and How the World Looks If You're Disagreeable

    Eric Schwitzgebel
    25 Sep 2014 | 10:26 am
    Transparency is a fun concept, as applied in the recent philosophical literature on self-knowledge (e.g., here; see also these past posts). I want to extend the transparency metaphor to self-knowledge of personality traits, where philosophers haven't yet taken it (to my knowledge). First, the established versions: Transparency 1: Sensory experience. As G.E. Moore and Gilbert Harman have noticed, when you try to attend to your visual experience you (usually? inevitably?) end up attending to external objects instead (or at least in addition). Attend to your experience of the computer screen. In…
  • Network Analysis of the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy

    Eric Schwitzgebel
    23 Sep 2014 | 11:56 am
    Andrew Higgins has sent me several interesting social network analyses based on my son's and my recent citation analyses from the Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy. First, some pretty pictures, then some explanations. I can't embed the hi-res pictures properly in this narrow-column post, so please right-click to "open link in new tab" for the full view, then zoom in and out, scrolling around. If you want pictures hi-res enough to read even the smallest font entries, I've posted them here, here, and here. First, SEP cited authors: Next, SEP articles: Finally, SEP top 100 cited authors and…
  • The MacArthur Drought in Philosophy

    Eric Schwitzgebel
    17 Sep 2014 | 11:17 am
    See here.  The last MacArthur "genius" fellowship awarded to someone they classified as philosopher was in 1993.On the whole, scholars outside of philosophy tend, I think, not to see much value in what most professional philosophers do.  The MacArthur drought is one reflection and measure of that.Not that prizes matter.  Sheesh.  We're too busy thinking about important stuff like whether the external world exists (82% of target faculty agree that it does).  The MacArthur folks probably think that climate change is a more important topic.  But if the…
  • Use of "She" and "He" in Philosopher's Index Abstracts

    Eric Schwitzgebel
    16 Sep 2014 | 9:09 am
    The Philosopher's Index has long been the standard database of philosophy articles (though that might soon change, with PhilPapers mounting an impressive challenge). As one measure of the greater visibility of men than women in philosophy, I looked at the rates at which "she" and "he" appear in the Philosopher's Index article abstracts from 1940 to the present. One interesting thing about analyzing abstracts is that mentioning someone in an abstract implies a high degree of attention to that person -- much higher than is implied by a passing reference (the usual target of bibliometric…
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    In the Space of Reasons

  • Two draft abstracts for presentations in Durham

    18 Sep 2014 | 6:50 am
    6th October:On the role of the Constitutive Ideal of Rationality. Does inter-personal understanding emerge from shared rationality?According to an influential, although contested, thought experiment in the philosophy of language, facts about linguistic meaning and belief contents derive from facts about interpersonal understanding which, in turn, presupposes comparison to an ideal of rationality. Thus, belief and meaning must be essentially rationally structured. This provides a rationale for holding that such understanding emerges from shared rationality. There are, however, two distinct…
  • One in Four Film Festival, Mental Health: It's everybody''s business

    18 Sep 2014 | 2:48 am
    MENTAL HEALTH - IT'S EVERYBODY'S BUSINESS6TH -10TH OCTOBER 2014The One in Four Film Festival 2014 is a week-long free event featuring films which explore the effects of mental ill health upon individuals, communities and families. The aim of the Festival is to raise awareness of and stamp out the stigma associated with mental ill health. The Festival is sponsored by the School of Health.ENTERTAINMENT AND INFORMATIONEvery evening a film that explores mental health is shown at 7pm, the film is introduced by the person who has nominated the film for the festival and then a service user speaks…
  • UCLan Philosophy HeRMI

    5 Sep 2014 | 4:47 am
    What’s a HeRMI? The School of Health is setting up a number of ‘Health Research Methodology and Implementation Hubs’ in areas such as Qualitative Research, Health Informatics, Systematic Review, User Engagement. Their focus is thus on particular methods or approaches to research rather than on particular subject areas. Although the nature of the activity undertaken will vary as appropriate between the different hubs, their initial aims are:• To build methodological capability• To act as a link to external methodological resources and networks• To support high quality bids and…
  • Oxford Summer Schools and Conferences: Mind, Value and Mental Health: Philosophy and Psychiatry Summer School and Conference

    1 Sep 2014 | 1:39 pm
    Oxford Summer Schools and Conferences: Mind, Value and Mental Health: Philosophy and Psychiatry Summer School and Conference23–25 July 2015Applications are now open for these two linked events exploring areas in which the philosophy of mind and ethics or the philosophy of value make contact with issues about mental health. Summer School23–24 July 2015Highlights include:Other Minds: Anita Avramides, Joel Kruegar and Vasu ReddyHallucination/Psychosis : Matthew Broome, Matthew Parrott and Owen EarnshawEmbodiment: Katherine MorrisMental Health and Human Flourishing:Edward Harcourt and Jeremy…
  • Quick thoughts on contesting Jaspers and ununderstandability

    1 Sep 2014 | 9:28 am
    Aline M.P., who is working on a PhD on delusion, and I had one of those interesting PhD supervisions today which made me regret the lack of time to go very carefully over some key texts. In this case, Jaspers’ General Psychopathology. And thus my summary of our rather swift conversation may reveal some key ignorance on my part but I found it really helpful to talk through the strategic issues even if they refer as much to a logically possible Jaspers rather than the actual one (so what follows is an alloy of Aline’s and my thinking today although blindspots reflect badly only on me, as…
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    Freemason Information

  • WHO HAS GOT YOUR BACK?

    TimBryce
    29 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    BRYCE ON BUSINESS - A lesson of loyalty in the workplace, and in life. (Click for AUDIO VERSION) To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request. In the office, we like to believe our fellow co-workers will back us up when push comes to shove. Actually, we’re being quite naive when this occurs. To illustrate, there was a systems manager in Chicago who had grown weary of the petty politics practiced by his boss, the I.T. Director. Projects were late, none of the systems were integrated, end-users were unhappy, and they found themselves in a constant fire-fighting…
  • NONSENSE SONGS

    TimBryce
    26 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    BRYCE ON MUSIC - It is interesting what we remember. (Click for AUDIO VERSION) To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request. Ever drive along in a car and suddenly an old tune comes to your lips, perhaps something from your childhood? Recently, I found myself blurting out, “Boop boop dit-tem dat-tem what-tem Chu!” Frankly, I couldn’t remember the name of the song, which I found rather irritating. This caused me to look it up through an Internet search engine. Remarkably, it was: “Three Little Fishes” (click for Lyrics) This was…
  • THERE IS MEANING IN YOUR HANDSHAKE

    TimBryce
    22 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    BRYCE ON LIFE - It is not a frivolous gesture, but represents something significant; your word. (Click for AUDIO VERSION) To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request. If you haven’t noticed, the handshake has been slowly going the way of the Dodo bird. If you watch sporting events, particularly at the youth level, you are more likely to see fist “bumps” or the slapping of hands as opposed to a genuine handshake. These variations of the handshake likely came from pop culture. The handshake originated from Medieval times when combatants would greet…
  • The Little Project

    Greg Stewart
    20 Sep 2014 | 8:14 am
    Just recently, I decided to bring to life a little project of mine that began somewhere back in 2007. The “project” evolved as a series of short works, or treatises, on the degrees of Scottish Rite Freemasonry. The project had an purpose, one that I followed through its course. Slowly, the pile of works grew to encompass 12 near complete works, many at written at great pains of research and time. But what was I to do with them? I wanted to do something more with them than to publish them onto the web. I felt like they deserved better than that, they needed something to encapsulate…
  • Counting Our Blessings

    TimBryce
    19 Sep 2014 | 3:00 am
    BRYCE ON LIFE - Do not despair, try writing a list of the positive things in life instead. (Click for AUDIO VERSION) To use this segment in a Radio broadcast or Podcast, send TIM a request. I was having a cigar with a good friend recently where we were lamenting about the state of affairs in our government, business, and the country in general. It’s easy to be negative when events do not turn out as you expect them. However, I made the observation people tend to overlook the blessings in their lives, those events, however large or trifle, somehow had a profound effect on our lives. I…
 
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    Philosophy News

  • Writers’ private lives

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:09 pm
    We insist on prying into the lives of writers who seek privacy, like Harper Lee and J.D. Salinger. What is it we’re after?… more»Continue reading . . . News source: Arts & Letters Daily
  • Myth of self-made men

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:08 pm
    The rags-to-riches narrative permeates the American psyche. From Franklin to Carnegie to his own father, John Swansburg ponders why… more»Continue reading . . . News source: Arts & Letters Daily
  • Versailles, avant-garde & kitsch

    30 Sep 2014 | 7:08 pm
    World War I was the supreme disillusionment. But the culture we connect with that – Picasso, the Futurists, Stravinsky – emerged before a shot was fired… more»Continue reading . . . News source: Arts & Letters Daily
  • Reference and Existence: The John Locke Lectures

    30 Sep 2014 | 6:37 pm
    2014.09.35 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Saul A. Kripke, Reference and Existence: The John Locke Lectures, Oxford University Press, 2013, 170pp., $35.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199928385. Reviewed by Stuart Brock, Victoria University of Wellington This book is destined to become a philosophical classic, something it already should be. It is the published version of his John Locke Lectures, delivered in 1973. Here, Kripke explores and develops themes from Naming and Necessity (NN), applying ideas from that work to discussions of fictional and mythological discourse, the…
  • Dietrich of Freiberg

    30 Sep 2014 | 4:34 pm
    [Revised entry by Markus Führer on September 30, 2014. Changes to: Bibliography] The extraordinary long life and active teaching career of Albert the Great (c.1193 - 1280) produced many benefits for the inception of philosophy in medieval Germany. Besides the vast corpus of his writings that fostered a generation of Dominican scholars in the...Continue reading . . . News source: Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy
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    The Mindful Word

  • THE G MAN: Focus on the purpose, not the task

    editor-er
    30 Sep 2014 | 12:36 pm
    Excerpted from naturopathic doctor Joseph Christiano’s latest book, Living Beyond Your Chronic Pain, in which he teaches people to manage the physical and mental aspects of […] Continue reading at The Mindful Word journal of engaged living [http://www.themindfulword.org]
  • COMING TO BABA: My 43-Year Romance With Meher Baba

    Max Reif
    27 Sep 2014 | 12:45 pm
    The following story is an excerpt from Max Reif’s forthcoming book, Toward an Interior Sun. 1. I first encountered the name Meher Baba while walking […] Continue reading at The Mindful Word journal of engaged living [http://www.themindfulword.org]
  • COMPASSION IMAGINATION: You remake the world when you imagine it compassionate

    editor
    22 Sep 2014 | 9:26 pm
    A number of years ago, I was walking down the street in Manhattan when I happened to pass a pricey new restaurant. My ego started […] Continue reading at The Mindful Word journal of engaged living [http://www.themindfulword.org]
  • YOUR RAINBOW BODY: Discovering our personality differences and auras

    Jerry Kvasnicka
    17 Sep 2014 | 1:13 pm
    Why are we so different from one another? I have always been curious about this and have considered human diversity to be at least as fascinating […] Continue reading at The Mindful Word journal of engaged living [http://www.themindfulword.org]
  • AN URGE TO MERGE: The first stage in the cycle of falling (and staying) in love

    editor-er
    16 Sep 2014 | 1:30 pm
    Excerpted from Love Cycles by couples therapist Linda Carroll, in which she explains the five essential stages of love that a person may cycle through with […] Continue reading at The Mindful Word journal of engaged living [http://www.themindfulword.org]
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    Philosophy Walk

  • A Brief Update and Some News

    rick@rdcoste.com (R.D. Coste)
    17 Sep 2014 | 9:17 am
    Philosophy Walk Philosophy Walk - Official Site of the Podcast I'd like to provide you with a brief update and some news about a new podcast! The post A Brief Update and Some News appeared first on Philosophy Walk.
  • Moral Realism

    rick@rdcoste.com (R.D. Coste)
    8 Sep 2014 | 2:53 am
    Philosophy Walk Philosophy Walk - Official Site of the Podcast Are there moral facts and objective moral values, that are as real, and as certain, as the fact that 2 + 2 equals 4? The post Moral Realism appeared first on Philosophy Walk.
  • Consequentialism

    rick@rdcoste.com (R.D. Coste)
    1 Sep 2014 | 3:18 am
    Philosophy Walk Philosophy Walk - Official Site of the Podcast Philosopher Jeremy Bentham focused on happiness. The maximum amount of happiness for the most people. It is this that drove his version of utilitarianism. Being that we ought to consider only the consequences of an act in order to determine its goodness, Bentham equated that goodness with happiness and a minimization of pain. John Stuart Mill stepped in to carry Bentham's torch 1861 work 'Utilitarianism'. The post Consequentialism appeared first on Philosophy Walk.
  • Virtue Ethics

    rick@rdcoste.com (R.D. Coste)
    25 Aug 2014 | 2:26 am
    Philosophy Walk Philosophy Walk - Official Site of the Podcast For a person who follows virtue ethics it is their goal to identify, develop, and achieve desirable virtues. Anything less would translate to a less virtuous life and a loss of potential. The post Virtue Ethics appeared first on Philosophy Walk.
  • Deontology with Hobbes, Locke, and Kant

    rick@rdcoste.com (R.D. Coste)
    18 Aug 2014 | 3:06 am
    Philosophy Walk Philosophy Walk - Official Site of the Podcast In our pursuit of what we ought to do when faced with any particular situation we started off with Normative ethics. Particular the category of Normative ethics knows as Deontology. In the last episode we were introduced to the Divine Command Theory, a flavor of Deontology that looks towards God for the answer. Today we are going to take a slightly different approach and ask Hobbes, Locke, and Kant what they think we should do. The post Deontology with Hobbes, Locke, and Kant appeared first on Philosophy Walk.
 
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    TheYoungSocrates

  • The Life of a Twenty-something

    Rob
    14 Sep 2014 | 9:23 am
    Most of the people in their early twenties that I have met seem not to know what to do with their professional lives. They seem to be lost in the vast range of opportunities that they can pick from. This paper focuses on ‘the’ reasons why these ‘twenty-somethings’ might feel this way and how they could solve this issue.  See more at The Life of a Twenty-something
  • Sex ever more present in Pop Music: problematic or not?

    Rob
    14 Sep 2014 | 8:32 am
    The prevalence of ‘sex’ in pop music Look at the video clip of Miley Cyrus’s song Wrecking Ball. Now tell me: what do you think? Probably something along the lines of: why is she naked pretty much all time? But while Cyrus’s clip is ‘shocking’, it seems like we have hit a new peak in the prevalence of sex in pop-song music. This peak is called Anaconda and its singer Nicki Minaj. The facts It is not only old people who say that today’s music is all about sex. There are data to back up this claim. Psychology professor Dawn R. Hobbs shows in…
  • Top Universities, Reputation and Employers

    Rob
    25 Jun 2014 | 10:18 am
    The University of Cambridge: one of the top universities It is a fact that some universities are more popular among employers than others. See this link for a ranking of the top 10 universities in the world — according to employers in 2013/2014. There are hardly any surprises in this top 10. As always, the University of Oxford, Cambridge and Harvard are included. The question I ask in this post is: based on what criteria does an employer prefer one university to an other? And how reasonable is it for a company to base its preference on these criteria? Admission standards It seems fair…
  • Tobacco Taxation and Autonomy: How do They Add Up?

    Rob
    1 May 2014 | 7:41 pm
    According to a survey held by the British “Action on Smoking and Health” society (the “ASH”) 20% of the British adults smoke. Is this a good thing? I don’t know. I believe that the act of smoking isn’t intrinsically good or bad; it is something that each person should decide for him- or herself. However, what I believe is intrinsically valuable is human autonomy. By autonomy I mean the right each person has to decide form him- or herself how to live his or her life without unjustified intervention from third parties. And it is this latter point I want to draw attention to.
  • Exams In the Summer Term: The Optimal Option?

    Rob
    1 May 2014 | 7:34 pm
    Most universities in the United Kingdom apply what is called the “trimester-structure”: the division of the academic year into a Michaelmas, Lent and Summer Term. In general, although this differs per program and per university, it is the case that by far most of the examinations are due in the Summer Term. The question is: is this the optimal educational structure? There are, I think, at least two main problems with the structure as it is currently being applied: one regarding its didactic implications, and one regarding its (in)efficiency. Let’s start with the didactics. As numerous…
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    The Philosophers' Cocoon

  • No Problem of Contingency for Religious Belief?

    Tomas Bogardus
    29 Sep 2014 | 6:10 am
    Thanks again to my hosts here at the Cocoon for this great opportunity. Today I’d like to continue the conversation about “The Problem of Contingency for Religious Belief.” The problem, as you’ll recall from my first post, is that our religious beliefs have been shaped to a disturbing degree by factors that are completely on the wrong side of the question, factors like when and where we were born, who our parents were, which peer group we admired most, etc.  (See my first post for some statements of the argument from John Hick and Philip Kitcher.) In my own case, there’s a lot of…
  • Development of a Grad Student Report

    Marcus Arvan
    26 Sep 2014 | 6:23 am
    I am happy to report that I will be collaborating with Carolyn Dicey Jennings and the volunteer committee she is working with to collect and report job placement data to also develop a philosophy grad student report. Although the report is only at the very beginning stages of development--and our aim at this point to see whether a sound methodology can be developed for such a report--its prospective aim will be to report grad student evaluations of their graduate programs on issues such as: Overall department climate Climate for women Support from faculty Job placement Attrition Etc. In…
  • A Philosophy Grad-Student Report?

    Marcus Arvan
    24 Sep 2014 | 10:18 am
    There's a lot of discussion on the philosophy blogosphere today over whether the Gourmet Report should continue, and if so, how. I don't want to wade into that discussion, as there are plenty of other places for that. I want to explore something else. Several commenters over at Daily Nous (including our own Helen De Cruz) have suggested that perhaps instead of program-reputation rankings, there should be (as the APA already has) reports of other things -- for instance, program placement-rates, attrition rates, etc. I think these kinds of reports are good, as they give prospective…
  • The Problem of Contingency for Religious Belief

    Tomas Bogardus
    24 Sep 2014 | 6:13 am
    It’s a pleasure to have some of my work featured here in the Cocoon (again!). Thank you to my hosts, the regular Cocoon bloggers, and especially to Marcus Arvan, Pupa-in-Chief. The paper I’d like to submit to your scrutiny—“The Problem of Contingency for Religious Belief”—was recently published in Faith and Philosophy and can be found here. For this first of three posts, I’ll introduce you to this problem for religious belief and set up how I mean to solve it. In the next two posts, we’ll see if my solution works. I’m interested in a very old and very common objection to…
  • Featured Author: Tomás Bogardus

    Marcus Arvan
    24 Sep 2014 | 5:00 am
    I am excited to kick off the Cocoon's new Featured Author series by introducing our first FA, Tomás Bogardus. Tomás received his PhD from AT-Austin in 2011 and is now Assistant Professor at Pepperdine University. He works mainly in metaphysics and epistemology, and is most interested in the mind-body problem and rationality of religious belief. His publications include: Tomas Bogardus (2013). Disagreeing with the (Religious) Skeptic. International Journal for Philosophy of Religion 74 (1):5-17. Tomas Bogardus (2013). Knowledge Under Threat. Philosophy and Phenomenological…
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    Re-constructing Strategy

  • Democracy … Advancing Into Stagnation

    saqib qureshi
    28 Sep 2014 | 3:57 pm
    Out here in the Greater Toronto Area (GTA), we are in the midst of our political elections. They are quite similar to political elections in any major Western democracy, and as such they unfortunately suffer from the same stagnation and disenchantment which we are witnessing worldwide in advanced democracies. Up for grabs in the GTA in October are the posts of Mayor, Town Councillors and Regional Councillors. Elected every four years, these chaps have a big say on what services are provided and how public funds are deployed. In my town of Markham, a dozen or so officials are hoping to be…
  • Why Does The US Irk At ISIS?

    saqib qureshi
    21 Sep 2014 | 6:56 pm
    It’s an odd question to ask but one that I threw out at a friend who’s quite involved in US foreign policy. His answer was predictable and frankly shallow: ISIS was guilty of mass human rights atrocities and no civilized country could allow for it continue, it had to be stopped. In fact, it had to be destroyed. I couldn’t disagree with what he said. ISIS is a nasty piece of work. Every armed forces has its lunatic fringe, the guys who like killing for its own sake. This is the first armed forces I’ve come across which is proud to advertise its killing of innocent people. Given that…
  • The Great Canadian Retail Scam

    saqib qureshi
    14 Sep 2014 | 6:27 pm
    Living in Toronto now for more than three years, I’ve not yet got my head around two aspects of its retail world. First, that almost everything here is sold at a higher price than in the nearest American city, Buffalo, which according to Google Maps is a mere 99 mile road journey away. Second, that most Torontonians are quite content in paying the difference. There’s actually a third enigma, being how the Toronto Maple Leafs generate so much retail revenue despite having won nothing in almost five decades… but let’s not go there for now. Let’s explore the first conundrum.
  • The Race Card

    saqib qureshi
    7 Sep 2014 | 1:39 pm
    My summer blogging retreat was a valuable opportunity to reflect and reassess, and the conflict between Hamas and Israel provided ample fuel for just that. While the war transformed from the murder of three innocent teenagers to the murder of hundreds of innocent teenagers, and men, women and children, I was increasingly struck by something that should have been very obvious. Almost every Jewish person I knew, from the cluttered idiot to the ivory tower academic, supported, defended or excused Israeli policy. Yes there were exceptions, but the vast majority of Jews supported Israel’s…
  • Gaza: It’s Our Bias

    saqib qureshi
    11 Aug 2014 | 12:57 am
    Against the backdrop of the awful crisis in Gaza, I have been on a bit of an introspective journey. In fact, I’ve found myself dealing with issues of racism and religious bias more profoundly than I can ever recall. I’ve had to arrest myself more than a few times while nearly 2,000 people have died in Gaza. And given that I have quite a bit of living experience in the Middle East, one of the world’s most racially stratified regions, and completed my formal academic training at LSE’s International Relations department that says something. It’s more than a coincidence that almost all…
 
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  • The Referendum Fallout

    Diana Wallis
    23 Sep 2014 | 9:59 pm
    The nation state has been saved; the United Kingdom remains intact. That seemed to be the immediate comment on the “No” result of last week’s referendum in Scotland. However, the reality is of course much more complex, and actually in a matter of just hours comments, statements and raised expectations mean that the future of the UK as a nation state has started to look distinctly ragged around the edges. Perhaps the whole event has been another staging post in a continuing process of constitutional change; the question then is, where do we go next and what is the ultimate destination?
  • A Great British Conspiracy

    Nikolai Tolstoy
    23 Sep 2014 | 4:33 am
    Victims of Yalta was first published in Britain in 1978. Over ensuing weeks, the scandal it provoked filled the press, and resulted in numerous radio and television interviews. Among media and public alike, the reaction was one of almost universal horror and disgust at what could only be regarded as major war crimes. Particular obloquy was directed against the then British Foreign Secretary, Anthony Eden, and his underlings in the Northern Department of the Foreign Office. The generally reluctant role played by British troops in despatching hundreds of thousands of men, women, and children,…
  • The Persecution of Heretics

    David Healy
    23 Sep 2014 | 3:29 am
    Behind medicine's apparent Biblical authority lies an inquisitional apparatus aimed at silencing dissent. It is run by corporate PR and scientific planning agencies, backed by academic expertise, and its aim is to ensure that prescribing doctors keep on prescribing. The heretic ends up in the broad light of day, but the persecutor hides in the shadows. I should know. In a lecture for IAI, I outlined some of the many things that can be done to intimidate doctors – especially those who suggest that a brand-name drug might have significant adverse events. At the time the talk was being given I…
  • When Art Meets Activism

    IAI News Editorial Staff
    23 Sep 2014 | 3:06 am
    Scrutiny of arts funding is in the spotlight once more. Tate have recently appeared before the Information Tribunal following their refusal to declare the exact amount they receive in sponsorship from oil giants BP. The hearing is the result of the gallery's heavily redacted response to a Freedom of Information request made by Request Initiative, working with the art-activist campaign group Platform. It comes just days after a major interactive intervention organised by art activists took place at Tate Modern. In the tribunal itself, Tate admitted to fears that such protests “might…
  • A New Science of Life

    Rupert Sheldrake
    8 Sep 2014 | 6:17 am
    The hypothesis of morphic resonance proposes that memory is inherent in nature. The laws of nature are more like habits. Each species has a collective memory on which all individuals draw and to which they contribute. My interest in evolutionary habits arose when I was doing research at Cambridge on developmental biology, and was reinforced by reading Charles Darwin, for whom the habits of organisms were of central importance. As Francis Huxley has pointed out, Darwin’s most famous book could more appropriately have been entitled The Origin of Habits.   Morphic fields in biology Over the…
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