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 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. [...]

Seventeenth-Century Theories of Consciousness (Stanford Encyclopedia of Philosophy)

In the seventeenth century, “consciousness” began to take on a uniquely modern sense. This transition was sparked by new theories of mind and ideas, and it connected with other important issues of debate during the seventeenth century, including debates over the transparency of the mental, animal consciousness, and innate ideas. Additionally, consciousness was tied closely [...]

Opting for the Best: Oughts and Options // Reviews // Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // University of Notre Dame

Philosophers are sometimes caricatured for offering unhelpful answers to difficult questions. For example, if asked, "What ought I to do?", we philosophers might say, "Do what matters most!" This answer seems problematic because it exchanges the original question for another -- what matters most? -- that is at least as challenging. Another thing that philosophers [...]

Clean Hands? Philosophical Lessons from Scrupulosity // Reviews // Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // University of Notre Dame

Philosophical lessons come in many different shapes and sizes. Some lessons are big, some are small. Some lessons go deep and have a big impact, some are shallow and have almost none. Some lessons are not really philosophical at all or would not really be lessons for an audience of academic philosophers. I mention these [...]

The American Psychological Association Keeps Getting the Science of Video Games Wrong

In 2013, the APA announced it was putting together a task force to update its existing policies on aggressive video games. Scholars were concerned. Video game research had been contentious for decades and the APA had a history of overstating the evidence for effects. Although the APA ostensibly wanted open-minded scholars, a majority of task [...]

Hope theory: the possibilities of positive psychology for alleviating stress and achieving goals – PsycNET

Hope is defined as the perceived ability to produce pathways to achieve desired goals and to motivate oneself to use those pathways. The historical origins of hope theory are reviewed. Definitions and explanations are given for the core concepts of Snyder's (1994c) cognitive model of hope, including goals, pathways, and agency. Goals are abstract mental [...]