Current Controversies in Philosophy of Religion // Reviews // Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // University of Notre Dame

Draper opens the collection with a vision for philosophy of religion: that it broaden its focus by paying more attention to non-Western religions and to philosophical issues that concern religion in general (like how religion might make progress, or the philosophical significance of the diversity of religions); that it distance itself from theology (or at [...]

Garden of Painterly Delights | The New York Review of Books |

During World War I, when soldiers thought longingly of home, their minds often turned to the garden. Indeed, they made small gardens in the trenches, planting bulbs in empty brass shell-casings. In a catalog essay, the Garden Museum’s director, Christopher Woodward, quotes Ford Madox-Ford’s No Enemy: A Tale of Reconstruction (1929), on the soldier’s dream [...]

Why we read: the joy of books

There is an ubiquity of apps these days which condense books into snippets or short video/audio presentations. I like the idea. After all, time is the rarest ‘commodity’ in today’s world. (The self quarantine that many of us are currently going through has given us a new sense of the value of personal time.) However, [...]

Why we like a good robot story | OUPblog

We have been telling stories about machines with minds for almost three thousand years. In the Iliad, written around 800 BCE, Homer describes the oldest known AI: “golden handmaidens” created by Hephaestus, the disabled god of metalworking. They “seemed like living maidens” with “intelligence… voice and vigour”, and “bustled about supporting their master.” In the Odyssey, Homer [...]

Seven books on the fascinating human brain [reading list] | OUPblog

The human brain is often described as the most complex object in the known universe – we know so much, and yet so little, about the way it works. It’s no wonder then that the study of brain today encompasses an enormous range of topics, from abstract understanding of consciousness to microscopic exploration of billions of neurons. [...]

What We Can Learn (and Should Unlearn) From Albert Camus’s The Plague | Literary Hub

Usually a question like this is theoretical: What would it be like to find your town, your state, your country, shut off from the rest of the world, its citizens confined to their homes, as a contagion spreads, infecting thousands, and subjecting thousands more to quarantine? How would you cope if an epidemic disrupted daily [...]

Fact-check: the idea of ‘race’ is not modern but late-medieval | Aeon Essays

The history of race helps us understand the conditions in which racism flourishes. If we could find the origins of racial classification, then we would know for certain that racism is not an inevitable aspect of social life. Furthermore, if it turns out that ‘race’ is a modern invention, then dismantling certain modern institutions would [...]

For Nietzsche, life’s ultimate question was: ‘Does it dance?’ | Aeon Ideas

... in Human, All Too Human (1878), Nietzsche elaborates that all human symbolism – even music – is rooted in the ‘imitation of gesture’ at work in ancient tragedy. He writes that the human impulse to move with others ‘is older than language, and goes on involuntarily … [even] when the language of gesture is [...]

Can philosophy and morals be transmitted through a painting? | Aeon Videos

The French painter Jacques-Louis David was a pre-eminent figure in the Neoclassical movement. His painting ‘The Death of Socrates’ (1787), based on Plato’s account of the execution of Socrates for blasphemy in 399 BC, is widely considered a seminal Neoclassical work. This video essay from the US filmmaker called The Nerdwriter, breaks down the ‘interplay [...]

A Life-Saving Philosophy Professor (guest post by Arthur Ward) – Daily Nous

On February 20th, just last week, I donated my left kidney to a stranger. Because of my donation, two other people agreed to donate their kidneys as well, resulting in three simultaneous life-saving transplants. More transplants may still happen in the future as part of the “kidney chain” that I initiated. As a philosopher with [...]