Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy

TEA, Rand & 2020

From a philosophical perspective,I respected the Tea Party for having an explicit  and publicly stated philosophical foundation.  This foundation was, of course, the ethical egoism of Ayn Rand. It can be argued that the Tea Party died on July 22, 2019, but the ethical egoism it embraced has lived on and can be used, perhaps, [More]

Big Red Logic Book, no. 3?

Well, not quite yet! But here’s the plan. I’ll finish a draft update of Gödel Without (Too Many) Tears in the next couple of weeks or so. Of course, I find myself tinkering more than I predicted I would, and … Continue reading → The post Big Red Logic Book, no. 3? appeared first on Logic [More]

Geoffrey Hellman* and Stewart Shapiro.**Mathematical Structuralism. Cambridge Elements in the Philosophy of Mathematics, Penelope Rush and Stewart Shapiro, eds

HellmanGeoffrey** and ShapiroStewart.****Mathematical Structuralism. Cambridge Elements in the Philosophy of Mathematics, RushPenelope and ShapiroStewart, eds. Cambridge University Press, 2019. Pp. iv + 94. ISBN 978-1-108-45643-2 (pbk), 978-1-108-69728-6 (e-book). doi: [More]

Big Red Logic Book, no. 2

Exciting headline news. Like the Gödel book, IFL2 is now available as a freely downloadable PDF. There is also an inexpensive Amazon print-on-demand book, for those who want a hard copy. UK link; US link. (Find on your local Amazon by … Continue reading → The post Big Red Logic Book, no. 2 appeared first on Logic [More]

Isaac Albalag

[New Entry by Bakinaz Abdalla on August 20, 2020.] Isaac Albalag stands out as one of the most rigorous representatives of the school of Jewish Averroism which flourished in Western Europe in the thirteenth century and lasted until the Renaissance. The members of this school, such as Ibn Kaspi, Shem Tov Ibn Falaquera, Moses Narboni, Isaac Polqar, Gersonides, and Elijah Delmedigo, regarded Averroes' philosophical writings, particularly his commentaries on Aristotle, as the main source for the study of science and philosophy. The impact of Averroes on these [More]

Big Red Logic Book, no. 1

I made the second edition of An Introduction to Gödel’s Theorems freely available as a downloadable PDF a few days ago (here’s the link again), announcing it on this blog and also on Twitter. And then, because someone also posted … Continue reading → The post Big Red Logic Book, no. 1 appeared first on Logic [More]

Vulcan Interests and Moral Status

Inspired by David Chalmers' recent Zoom talk on 'Consciousness and Moral Status': consider affectless (but otherwise phenomenally conscious) vulcans. They can perceive, and think, but have no positive or negative feelings of any kind.  Do they matter?  Is there anything in their lives that is (intrinsically) good or bad for them?I think these are importantly distinct questions.  One way to see this is to note that even if (as I am inclined to think) their vulcanized lives contain no basic goods or bads, this very fact might be (extrinsically, comparatively) bad for them.  We would have strong moral reasons to devulcanize them, if possible, and provide them with the capacity for valenced experiences.  Crucially, this moral reason stems from concern for the very being that already exists: It is importantly different from simply bringing into existence a new conscious being where none was before.  So vulcans have one important kind of moral status -- they are morally considerable individuals -- even though in the ordinary run of things (i.e., while remaining a vulcan) nothing we did could be basically good or bad for them: their welfare is stuck at zero.Compare this to our reasons for dezombifying a phenomenal zombie.  I think we may have some reason to do the latter, as we have some reason to bring additional (good) lives into existence.  But I do not think that the reason stems from concern for the zombie as an [More]