Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy


War is coming. Two nations have set aside their differences to fulfil their historical ambition: to reclaim a province lost long ago. As with any war, arms and armor are needed and who better to claim a long-lost armory stocked with Imperial equipment than the bold adventurers? Complicating the situation is the fact that the [More]

A Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil,

2019.06.21 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Candice Delmas, A Duty to Resist: When Disobedience Should Be Uncivil, Oxford University Press, 2018, 295pp., $29.95 (hbk), ISBN 9780190872199. Reviewed by Christopher Finlay, Durham University In this book, Candice Delmas defends quite radical conclusions based on intuitions, principles, and theories frequently cited within a relatively mainstream liberal and cosmopolitan literature: what she calls 'ordinary and critical morality' (9). Her argument builds on three, closely-related ideas: the widespread public endorsement of a right of civil disobedience; the permissibility of methods that exceed the limits of that doctrine; and the deontic status of this permission as a duty rather than a liberty-right. The result is a cogent, insightful, provocative, and original contribution to the political theory of oppression, the philosophical debates about political obligation and its limits, and the ethics of resistance to social injustice and domination. The belief that people generally have a right of civil disobedience... Read [More]

Voting Methods

[Revised entry by Eric Pacuit on June 24, 2019. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] A fundamental problem faced by any group of people is how to arrive at a good group decision when there is disagreement among its members. The difficulties are most evident when there is a large number of people with diverse opinions, such as, when electing leaders in a national election. But it is often not any easier with smaller groups, such as, when a committee must select a candidate to hire, or when a group of friends must decide where to go for dinner. Mathematicians, philosophers, political scientists and economists have devised [More]

Giving Talks: Thirteen Tips from a Conference Nihilist

There is a famous Seinfeld joke about public speaking. It's based on an old opinion poll result that reported that people fear public speaking more than death. Seinfeld used this to make the wry observation that the next time you are at a funeral you should reflect on the fact that the person giving the eulogy would rather be in the coffin.Suffice to say, I don't feel that way about public speaking. I have many social anxieties but speaking in front of a large (or small) audience is not one of them.1 That's not to say I'm any good at it, of course. But I have at least done a lot of it and grown accustomed to its rhythms and its demands. Furthermore, I have learned from the mistakes that I have made over the years so that even if I amn't particularly good at it, I am at least better than I used to be.This is all by way of justifying what you are about to read. I get asked quite often for advice on giving talks (by students) and I am frustrated that I have still not got around to formalising my thoughts on the matter. What follows is my first attempt to do so. If you are in a hurry and are just interested in reading my 'tips' on how to give a talk, then you can find them summarised in the poster that accompanies the text. If you have more time, and are willing to tolerate the occasional diversion, then I hope you will read the full thing because I'm not just going to explain the methods I follow when giving talks, I'm also going to reflect on things I love and hate about the [More]