The primary value of Unger’s critique of philosophy may be that it generates good and thoughtful responses. There was Schliesser’s the other day, and also the post by Pigliucci (though he says in a comment it was not aimed at Unger directly). Now Marcus Arvan has a more sympathetic take on what Unger is up to, and it is well worth reading.
What I agree with Unger on..
Reading Quine’s “Two Dogmas”? You’re doing it all wrong, says Hilary Putnam.
A computer has apparently passed a version of the Turing Test.
Eugene Goostman seems like a typical 13-year-old Ukrainian boy — at least, that’s what a third of judges at a Turing Test competition this Saturday thought. Goostman says that he likes hamburgers and candy and that his father is a gynecologist, but it’s all a lie. This boy is a program created by compute..
Wittgenstein once remarked that you could write a book of philosophy consisting entirely of jokes. We all know who could have authored that book. Jonathan Lieberson, who made that connection to Wittgenstein, described Sidney as a combination of Spinoza and Groucho Marx. But Sidney worried about this very gift. He worried that all that people would know of him would ..
Philosophers easily get the idea that somehow or other, just by considering things about the world that they already know, they can write up deep stories which are true, or pretty nearly true, about how it is with the world. By that I especially mean the world of things that includes themselves, and everything that’s spatio-temporally related to them, or anything th..
Modeled on the well-populated site, Women of Philosophy, a group of philosophers are creating a number of other databases, starting with one for Latina/Latino or Hispanic philosophers. Elizabeth Anderson, Tina Fernandes Botts, Ruth Chang, Sally Haslanger, and Manuel Vargas explain the initiative in a letter posted at Feminist Philosophers.
John Kaag (UMass Lowell) holds the surgical scissors and is asked to cut the cord. Time stands still, and he reflects on the relations between philosophy and fatherhood.
The prospect of struggle in life and fatherhood is not an indication that we should opt out, but rather lean in—like Sisyphus, who is destined to push the boulder up a hill, only to have it roll dow..
1. Heather Douglas (Waterloo) and others on how to fix Canadian science policy (audio here).
2. “Good luck idiots. I hope you enjoy your new kangaroo overlords,” said Machiavelli.
3. A continental philosopher complains about the “imperialistic approach of analytic philosophy.”
4. How confronting moral dilemmas in a foreign language makes you more utilitarian, in The New York Times.
5. Teaching a multi-religious philosophy of religion course to a multi-religious class in Beirut, “with car bombs detonating almost every week”.
6. John Martin Fischer’s Immortality Project, in Slate.
7. A brief for the philosophy of food, by Dwight Furrow (San Diego Mesa)
8. Genoveva Marti and Edouard Machery on reference and experimental philosophy at Philosophy TV.
9. John Locke is British MP Lisa Nandy’s favorite political philosopher. See her in a brief and somewhat cheesy modern made-for-tv interview about Locke’s ideas and life.
Meanwhile, elsewhere* in The Weekly Standard, Abigail Lavin, an advertising and marketing professional who recently obtained her master’s degree in philosophy from Columbia, reviews Should I Go to Grad School and reflects on her experience straddling academia and the “real world.”
We’ve all heard Stephen Hawking claim that philosophy is dead because philosophers have not kept up with modern developments in science. And we’ve all concluded from this that Stephen Hawking’s ideas about philosophy are dead, because he has not kept up with modern developments in philosophy. One wonders when he last read any philosophy of science.
Now we have a pa..
1. Churchland vs. McGinn in the New Your Review of Books.
2. The philosophy of mind of the Robocop remake? I’d buy that for a dollar.
3. The ethics of whistleblowing and state secrecy — a review essay by political theoriest William Scheuerman.
4. How do you know you’re not a zombie yourself?
5. “The emotional component of our moral judgment is not strictly based on a harmful act’s outcome” a recent finding from the Brown University Moral Psychology Research Lab.
6. Meanwhile, a team of philosophers at Case Western using fMRI claim to have “found that the human brain has an analytic network and an empathetic network that tend to suppress one another.”
7. Argentina has a National Thinking Office, and its strategic coordinator is a philosopher. Apparently both the appointment and the office are controversial.
8. Using teamwork to get ahead in academia.
The railway strike in France has entered its sixth day, risking making students late for the philosophy portion of the baccalauréat exam.
the timing of this strike, reaching into the baccalauréat week, is also a public-relations risk. Every June, as part of a national ritual, over half a million school-leavers sit down to take the first bac exams. For half of them,..
It was (perhaps) a dark and stormy night, back in the 1950s, when the multi-colored glass panels depicting 24 philosophers were removed from the dome atop Normal Hall at Indiana State University, many broken in the process. No photographs of the dome have been found, and no definitive list of the 24 philosophers is in existence. Now ISU is hoping to restore the dome..
The Nietzsche Club was barred from holding meetings at University College London after a ruling that discussions about right-wing philosophers could encourage fascism and endanger the student body. As well as Nietzsche, a favorite of Benito Mussolini, the philosophers to be studied included Julius Evola and Martin Heidegger, who have been cited as inspiration by far..