Philosophy of Microbiology

2015.03.44 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Maureen A. O'Malley, Philosophy of Microbiology, Cambridge University Press, 2014, 269pp., $31.99 (pbk), ISBN 9781107621503.
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2015.03.44 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Maureen A. O'Malley, Philosophy of Microbiology, Cambridge University Press, 2014, 269pp., $31.99 (pbk), ISBN 9781107621503. Reviewed by Ellen Clarke, All Souls College, University of Oxford Microbes have stood in need of rehabilitation in the public imagination since their long days as bad guys, as dirty causes of disease. This image change is now in full swing, with yoghurt adverts reminding us that some microbes are vital to our health and asthma researchers urging us to cease our pursuit of a sterile home. The biotech bubble may have burst, but the science of microbiology has never have been more important, with our tiny friends playing an ever increasing role in processing our waste, producing our medicines and our food, and with potential implications for tackling obesity, climate change, antibiotic resistance and more. This book shows how, in addition, microbes are guiding our biological research and. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Rational and Social Agency: The Philosophy of Michael Bratman

2015.03.43 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Manuel Vargas and Gideon Yaffe (eds.), Rational and Social Agency: The Philosophy of Michael Bratman, Oxford University Press,
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2015.03.43 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Manuel Vargas and Gideon Yaffe (eds.), Rational and Social Agency: The Philosophy of Michael Bratman, Oxford University Press, 2014, 360pp., $85.00 (hbk), ISBN 9780199794515. Reviewed by Sarah K. Paul, University of Wisconsin-Madison All who take an interest in the contemporary philosophy of action should form a plan to read this excellent collection, or perhaps even a shared intention to assemble a reading group. Our very understanding of what it is to form a plan or shared intention is owed in no small part to Michael Bratman's massively influential body of work, and is further advanced by the eleven papers in this Festschrift. All the papers except J. David Velleman's are new. Bratman replies to each contributor and also gives a crisp statement of his current view on the relationship between planning agency, rationality, and normativity. The contributions fall naturally into thematic groups, in light of. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Memoir of madness

In 1988, the historian Barbara Taylor arrived at a great Victorian institution: the Colney Hatch mental asylum. She was a patient…
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In 1988, the historian Barbara Taylor arrived at a great Victorian institution: the Colney Hatch mental asylum. She was a patient… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Humans and human evolution

Humans are changing the planet, maybe changing evolution as well. That notion is fascinating, far-reaching, and almost certainly nonsense…
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Humans are changing the planet, maybe changing evolution as well. That notion is fascinating, far-reaching, and almost certainly nonsense… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Orwell and Camus

Orwell was 35 when he suffered his first bout; Camus was 17. Tuberculosis was one thing to discuss had they met in Paris, as planned, in February 1945…
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Orwell was 35 when he suffered his first bout; Camus was 17. Tuberculosis was one thing to discuss had they met in Paris, as planned, in February 1945… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

Video of van Inwagen-de Sousa Debate

I have just posted a video of a debate between Peter van Inwagen and Ronald de Sousa that took place in Toronto on March 6th, 2015. The video can be viewed at: www.ryerson.ca/~kraay/theism.html. The
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I have just posted a video of a debate between Peter van Inwagen and Ronald de Sousa that took place in Toronto on March 6th, 2015. The video can be viewed at: www.ryerson.ca/~kraay/theism.html. The topic was: “What Difference Would (or Does) God’s Existence Make?”

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News source: The Prosblogion

The University as a Money Funnel

View image | gettyimages.com One serious problem with American higher education is that the cost of a four-year degree is higher than ever—even when adjusting for inflation. The causes of this
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View image | gettyimages.com One serious problem with American higher education is that the cost of a four-year degree is higher than ever—even when adjusting for inflation. The causes of this increase are well known and well understood—there is no mystery about this. One contributing factor is that universities tend to spend considerable money on facilities that are not connected to education. Critics like to, for example, point out that some universities spend millions on luxurious fitness facilities. These sort of expenditures are ironic (and stupid) given that education funding has been consistently reduced across the United States. To use the obvious analogy, this would be like a family putting in a pool, spa, and exercise room when they do not have enough money to pay for their actual necessities. What seems to be the major factor contributing to costs is the ever-expanding administrative class at universities. This expansion occurs in terms of both individual salaries and. . .

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News source: Talking Philosophy

Honor, History, and Relationship: Essays in Second-Personal Ethics II

2015.03.42 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Stephen Darwall, Honor, History, and Relationship: Essays in Second-Personal Ethics II, Oxford University Press, 2013, 285pp.,
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2015.03.42 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Stephen Darwall, Honor, History, and Relationship: Essays in Second-Personal Ethics II, Oxford University Press, 2013, 285pp., $29.95 (pbk), ISBN 9780199662616. Reviewed by D. Justin Coates, University of Houston Opening his review of the Rolling Stones' Exile on Main St., Lenny Kaye writes: There are songs that are better, there are songs that are worse, there are songs that'll become your favorites and others you'll probably lift the needle for when their time is due. But in the end, Exile on Main Street spends its four sides shading the same song in as many variations as there are Rolling Stone readymades to fill them, and if on the one hand they prove the group's eternal constancy and appeal, it's on the other that you can leave the album and still feel vaguely unsatisfied.[1] Given the enduring critical acclaim that Exile has received in the subsequent four decades, this might seem like a weak... . . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Music and perception of time

Ever lost yourself sublimely in a work of music? Schubert understood this effect two centuries before science caught
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Ever lost yourself sublimely in a work of music? Schubert understood this effect two centuries before science caught up…more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily

On Lionel Trilling

“I am ashamed of being in a university,” said Lionel Trilling. “I have one of the great reputations in the academic world. This thought makes me retch”…
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“I am ashamed of being in a university,” said Lionel Trilling. “I have one of the great reputations in the academic world. This thought makes me retch”… more»

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News source: Arts & Letters Daily