Browsing All Posts filed under »Philosophy«

Bleg: Philosophy survey for mathematicians (From Logblog)

July 23, 2014 by


There’s a new survey about the intuitions of mathematicians which will be very helpful for philosophers of mathematics (like me). Here is Richard Zach’s original post: A group of researchers in philosophy, psychology and mathematics are requesting the assistance of the mathematical community by participating in a survey about mathematicians’ philosophical intuitions. The survey is […]

Philosophy of Mathematics?

June 23, 2014 by


I work primarily in the philosophy and history of mathematics which has naturally led to discussion about the philosophy of mathematics with people outside my field, and outside of philosophy. In this post I will try to address, in a loose and (mostly) non-technical way, some of the questions that often arise in such discussions. […]

University of Calgary Graduate Student Colloquium

June 17, 2014 by


Today we’ll be having a graduate student colloquium in the Philosophy Department. If you’re around feel free to come by and join in the discussion. Here is the schedule: Special Summer Session of the Philosophy Graduate Colloquium Department of Philosophy, University of Calgary June 17, 2014   Session 1: Chair Aaron Thomas-Bolduc 10—10:45 Justin Caouette […]

Neil deGrasse Tyson and the value of philosophy

May 12, 2014 by


Originally posted on Scientia Salon:
by Massimo Pigliucci It seems like my friend Neil deGrasse Tyson [1] has done it again: he has dismissed philosophy as a useless enterprise, and actually advised bright students to stay away from it. It is not the first time Neil has done this sort of thing, and he is…

Is Dennett rethinking free will?

April 4, 2014 by


Originally posted on Why Evolution Is True:
Reader Jiten called my attention to this post by Gregg Caruso on Flickers of Freedom about Dan Dennett’s comment on Free Will—a comment that appeared in a discussion in the journal Methode. I admit that I haven’t yet read Dan’s whole piece, but Caruso gives an interesting excerpt, which suggests…

On the Benefits of Being a Philosophy Major

March 23, 2014 by


Originally posted on Pleas and Excuses:
My fantastic colleague, Ty Fagan, made this graphic from recent data coming from the Educational Testing Service. I thought it was worth a blog post, because students interested in a philosophy major often ask me whether they should do a double-major or minor in “something more practical.” Often, business…

CFP: Free Will (University of Michigan-Flint)

February 26, 2014 by


Details “Mankind has a free will; but it is free to milk cows and to build houses, nothing more.” — Martin Luther “[M]en believe themselves free, simply because they are conscious of their actions, and unconscious of the causes whereby those actions are determined.” ― Baruch Spinoza We have an intuitive sense of ourselves as […]

Sam Harris Still Needs to Read More Philosophy

February 12, 2014 by


In a scathing review of Sam Harris’ pamphlet Free Will , Daniel Dennett rightfully calls out Harris for some obvious missteps that Harris has taken (once again).  Harris responds here. Though I am more aligned with incompatibilism these days, Harris again makes some serious missteps in his response. First, he forwards his compatibilist thesis with regards to […]

30 Views on Free Will

February 5, 2014 by


Anyone trying to get caught up to date with the contemporary views in the free will debate will do well to visit this site (see here). This is the newest issue of Methode, and they interviewed 30 philosophers working on free will. Each philosopher, the line-up is impressive, was asked the same series of questions […]

Calgary Woman Gets 18 More Months In Prison (36 Total!) For Killing 2 Children?

January 30, 2014 by


My initial reaction when reading the headline today was, WHAT!?! (see article here) Meredith Borowiec just killed two babies by putting them in the dumpster (leaving them for dead) and she can walk the streets in 18 months? I think my reaction is telling. To me, this woman ought to get punished with more severity. Why? Because […]

Romantic Dysfunction, BPD, and Moral Responsibility

January 22, 2014 by


It is commonly argued that for one to be morally responsible, one must have control over one’s actions (see here for a run-down on arguments for that claim). Now, one does not generally concede that a person is moral pariah simply because the person is in the deepest stages of love, even if we do tend to […]

Martha Nussbaum, “What is Anger, and Why Should We Care?”

January 16, 2014 by


Martha Nussbaum has given a very nice talk on why anger is “of dubious value in both life and the law“, the talk can be found here. Although it seems obvious that anger can be bad for our well-being and is often associated with acts of malice and bad intent (and rightfully so), I do […]

Do Incompatibilists Have Inconsistent Intuitions?

December 20, 2013 by


Incompatibilism, for our purposes here, is the view that the sort free will required for moral responsibility is not compatible with determinism. In a few recent studies there seems to be an apparent disconnect between  incompatibilist intuitions when asked compatibility questions in a different way. On the one hand, in abstract cases the folk seem […]

Moral Responsibility and PAP: Can we uphold PAP and advance a “quality of the will” account of moral responsibility?

December 20, 2013 by


Recently, over at PEA Soup, Heath White blogged about an important question concerning moral responsibility and control. The question was: Does moral responsibility require the ability to do otherwise? PAP (or, the “principle of alternative possibilities) is the principle that says: If S is blameworthy for doing X, S must have been able to do otherwise than […]

Moral Responsibility and Volunteer Soldiers

December 3, 2013 by


When considering one’s moral responsibility we often take voluntariness into account and with good reason. If one was forced to commit some action against their will we usually claim that they are not morally responsible for what they did. We say this because, all things being equal, they didn’t voluntarily commit the act. Similarly, if […]


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