“And what kind of man am I? One of those who would gladly be refuted if anything I say is not true, and would gladly refute another who says what is not true, but would be no less happy to be refuted myself than to refute…”
That is Socrates (Gorgias 458A). I put that quote on all of my syllabi, as a reminder to my students of what I like to call the “philosophical d..
Graham Priest (CUNY, Melbourne) presents a brief defense of the history of philosophy over at the OUP blog.
One of my friends said that he regards the history of philosophy as rather like a text book of chess openings. Just as it is part of being a good chess player to know the openings, it is part of being a good philosopher to know standard views and arguments, so..
Massimiliano Cappuccio, an assistant professor of philosophy at United Arab Emirates University, has received a grant for over $100,000 for “examining the theory of ‘the choking effect’ – when less experienced athletes crumble under pressure – and looking for ways to overcome this.” Details here.
Nancy Snow (Marquette University) has won a $2.6 million grant from the Templeton Religious Trust for a project called “The Self, Motivation, and Virtue.” More info here and on the Marquette Philosophy Department’s home page.
Ruth Chang (Rutgers) is interviewed at 3am Magazine. Apart from a good discussion of her work on incomparability, the interview also includes some thoughts from Chang on sexual harassment in philosophy. Here’s one excerpt:
It’s not that we have to blog about it or call up the victim, whomever we might believe him/her to be, but even casual remarks to colleagues in a ..
Epictetus, Nietzsche, Wittgenstein — they’re just some of the philosophers known for putting big ideas into small packages. They are great to read, yet the aphoristic or epigrammatic style is not very common among philosophers today. Sydney Morgenbesser comes to mind as a more recent master of the philosophical quip (e.g., “Of course pragmatism is true; the trouble..
A pride of lions, a murmuration of starlings, a dazzle of zebras, an eloquence of lawyers, a pack of lies — the English language has some unusual names for collectives. Sometimes the collective names apply only when the members of the groups are engaged in certain actions, for example, a group of ducks swimming is a raft of ducks, while a group of ducks flying is a..
Bookforum’s Omnivore has an assortment of links up about Rawls, distributive justice, and related topics.
Were Einstein’s complaints about quantum theory evidence of his senility? Some people think so, but Thomas Ryckman (Stanford) says no, defending Einstein and the importance of philosophy to physics, as reported at phys.org. Also, over at Huffington Post there’s a story on how the idea of a multiverse might be owed to 13th Century philosopher Robert Grosseteste.
Once upon a time, there was a website called History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps, run by a man named Peter Adamson. On the website was a blog that Peter Adamson wrote. And on that blog, boys and girls, was a very nice collection of philosophical excerpts from childrens’ books. Take a look and live happily ever after. The end.
The Museum of Modern Art is hosting a series of debates on issues at the intersection of design and violence.
Too often, and naïvely, we only celebrate the positive impact that design artifacts have on the world. However, design also has a history of violence that, unless linked overtly to political and social suppression and upheaval, often goes unexplored. Humanit..
Times Higher Education has published “Let’s Discuss The Way We Live Now,” an essay by Luke Brunning, a DPhil student in philosophy at Oxford, on the importance of universities taking students’ perspectives seriously in the aftermath of allegations of harassment or sexual misconduct by faculty.
Would you buy a car that would drive you off a cliff, to your death, in order to save the lives of several pedestrians your car would otherwise run over? The world of driverless cars will likely soon be upon us, and with them a number of questions like that and scenarios that make something like this seem simple. Aeon Magazine has a new article from Tom Chatfield on..
Have you ever seen the obituary of Ludwig Wittgenstein written for Mind by Bertrand Russell?
Quite at first I was in doubt as to whether he was a man of genius or a crank…
While I was still doubtful as to his ability, I asked G. E. Moore for his opinion. Moore replied, ” I think very well of him indeed “. When I enquired the reason for his opinion, he said that i..
The Rutgers University student group, Women Organizing Against Harassment, is leading a protest against Peter Ludlow’s candidacy for a job there, owing to allegations of sexual misconduct against him. Details in The Daily Northwestern.
David Bourget and David Chalmers have announced a new service at the PhilJobs website called “New Appointments in Philosophy,” through which people can post information about the jobs they’ve obtained or the people they’ve hired, as well as search through the data. In an announcment at the APA website, Bourget, Chalmers, and APA Executive Director Amy Ferrer write, ..
Philosofict is a free online magazine of philosophical fiction and poetry. Editor Ellie Farnsworth writes to tell me that the magazine “gives philosophers an avenue for creative release.” The second issue just came out.
1. L. A. Paul has a new article on the lack of rationality involved in hairstyle choices called, “What You Can’t Expect When You’re Expecting To Have Your Life Totally Transformed By a Kicky New Look.”
2. Presence of bald man in first row has rest of audience absolutely riveted during APA session on vagueness.
3. Derek Parfit grows out “mad bangs” to test self-eff..
With a remark that was at once completely unexpected yet in retrospect totally unsurprising, Martha Nussbaum, in the middle of a talk at the World Bank about how Greek tragedy can inform our understanding of same-sex marriage policy in India, revealed that she is her own hair stylist and gives herself regular haircuts. The highly accomplished, glamorous, and toned 6..
After years combing through the details and knotty issues of the Trolley Problem, Judith Jarvis Thomson has come up with what she says is a novel solution. In a new article appearing in the journal Capillus, she first irons out what the problem is:
A trolley is speeding down the track towards five people who are stuck to it and will be killed if the trolley hits the..
John Searle was recently bestowed with a lifetime achievement hat by SCALP (Skull Covering Association for Lively Philosophers). SCALP, one of the oldest philosophical societies, is known for its unusual choices, and it lived up to its reputation this time with its selection of a deerstalker, which Searle is sporting in this photo. Previous awards include a shower c..
A recent conference at Paul Mitchell University took as its focus some new work on philosophers of mind. Dominating the event were several sessions on David Chalmers’ new haircut (‘before’ photo here). A panel on Chalmers and other rockstars favorably compared his transformation with those of David Lee Roth and Jon Bon Jovi. However, there was also some criticism. “..
A recent argument from David Killoren (Coastal Carolina) has convinced me to shift the direction of the blog. He writes:
Case 1: You’re looking at the Daily Nous banner logo. Case 2: You’re looking at a hair salon’s logo circa 1986. How can you distinguish these experiences? A skeptical problem.
I have tangled privately with this for some time, but now it is time to..
The Mellon Foundation has donated $1.5 million to create the first endowed chair in philosophy at Rutgers. This was supplemented by a matching gift of another $1.5 million from an anonymous donor. Whoa.
Pointless speculation about who will get appointed to this chair to begin in 3… 2….
Three members of the APA Inclusiveness Committee publish a statement “to correct unfounded accusations that the American Philosophical Association (APA) discriminates based on disability against people like us.” (This is in response to a recent petition noted here.)
William Harper, a philosopher at the Rotman Institute of Philosophy at Western University (London, Ontario), and one of the few philosophers (I’m assuming) to have an asteroid named after him, is the recipient of the 2014 Patrick Suppes Prize in Philosophy of Science. The philosophy of science prize, which includes a $10,000 honorarium, is awarded once every three y..
This informative and well-designed poster illustrates the work habits and daily routines of a number of famous “creatives,” including Kant. If it is to be believed, Kant wrote from 6-7am. Wait, what? One hour a day? Well if you add up enough days…
How about philosophers today? When do you typically get your writing done? Answer in the poll below, picking the on..
Janice Dowell, program committee chair for the 2015 Central Division meeting of the APA, says that the committee would like to especially encourage submissions in continental philosophy. She writes, “Continental philosophy is often underrepresented on our submitted program and one source of the difficulty seems to be that we receive so few submissions in that area.”..