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NEWS
  • The Modesty Manifesto

    3/11/11 By David Brooks, The New York Times We’re an overconfident species. Ninety-four percent of college professors believe they have above-average teaching skills. A survey of high school students found that 70 percent of them have above-average leadership skills and only 2 percent are below average...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • What is a Good Life?

    By Ronald Dworkin, The New York Review of Books Plato and Aristotle treated morality as a genre of interpretation. They tried to show the true character of each of the main moral and political virtues (such as honor, civic responsibility, and justice), first by relating each to the others, and then to...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • The Social Animal

    By David Brooks, The New Yorker 1/17/11 Harold and Erica got their first glimpse of each other in front of a Barnes & Noble. They smiled broadly as they approached, and a deep, primeval process kicked in. Harold liked what he saw, from the waist-to-hip ratio to the clear skin, all indicative of health...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Searching for the Source of a Fountain of Courage

    By Natalie Angier, The New York Times An excerpt: In his 20 years as a firefighter and paramedic in Colorado Springs, Bruce Monson, 43, has had his little fist-bumps with death: a burning roof collapsing on top of him, toxic fumes nearly suffocating him. Yet far more terrifying than any personal threats...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Saying Yes to Saying No

    By Meghan Clyne, Wall Street Journal An excerpt: If you've already ditched your New Year's resolution, you are not alone: These days, self-control isn't exactly America's strong suit. Our economy is hobbled because too many of us bought homes we couldn't afford. Obesity is rampant...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • An Unconventional History of Human Rights

    PBS By David E. Anderson An excerpt: In a provocative and contrarian new book, “The Last Utopia: Human Rights in History” (Harvard University Press, 2010), Columbia University professor Samuel Moyn outlines the moral and political dilemmas in which the movement currently finds itself, describing his...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • The Science of Good and Evil

    By Sam Harris from The Daily Beast. " As I argue in my new book, The Moral Landscape , questions about values—about meaning, morality, and life’s larger purpose—are really questions about the well-being of conscious creatures. Throughout the book I make reference to a hypothetical space that I call...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Experiments in Philosophy

    By Joshua Knobe from The New York Times. "...The study of human nature, whether in Nietzsche or in a contemporary psychology journal, is obviously relevant to certain purely scientific questions, but how could this sort of work ever help us to answer the distinctive questions of philosophy? It may...
     Posted by: agomberg
  • Moral Skepticism and Moral Disagreement: Developing an Argument from Nietzsche

    By Brian Leiter from On the Human Brain "By “moral skepticism,” I shall mean the view that there are no objective moral ‘facts’ or ‘truths.’ Moral skeptics from Friedrich Nietzsche to Charles Stevenson to John Mackie have appealed to the purported fact of widespread and intractable moral disagreement...
     Posted by: cait
  • The Future of the Past, Cleansing Our Minds of Crime and Vice

    By William Saletan from Slate "When Elizabeth Loftus began to plant false memories to test their therapeutic benefits, the memories seemed innocuous. They weren't about families or politics. They were just about food. You went into the experiment thinking you'd always loved strawberry ice...
     Posted by: cait
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PUBLICATIONS
  • Moral Psychology Must Not Be Based on Faith and Hope: Commentary on Narvaez (2010) (2010)

    By Johnathan Haidt An excerpt: Narvaez (2010, this issue) calls for a moral psychology in which reasoning and intuitions are equal partners. But empirical research on the power of implicit processes and on the weakness of everyday reasoning indicates that the partnership is far from equal. The ancient...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: agomberg
  • AGAINST METAETHICAL IMPERIALISM: Several Arguments for Equal Partnerships between the Deontic and Aretaic (2010)

    By Jesse Couenhoven Virtue and deontological ethics are now commonly contrasted as rival approaches to moral inquiry. However, I argue that neither metaethical party should seek complete, solitary domination of the ethical domain. Reductive treatments of the right or the virtuous, as well as projects...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: agomberg
  • Becoming a Better Person: Temporal Remoteness Biases Autobiographical Memories for Moral Events (2010)

    By Jessica R. Escobedoa and Ralph Adolphs Abstract: Our autobiographical self depends on the differential recollection of our personal past, notably including memories of morally laden events. Whereas both emotion and temporal recency are well known to influence memory, very little is known about how...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: agomberg
  • Suffering and Soul‐Making: Rethinking John Hick’s Theodicy (2010)

    By Mark S. M. Scott John Hick transformed the shape of thinking about theodicy in contemporary philosophical theology with his conception of the world as a “vale of soul‐making.” Suffering, he argues, enables our development as spiritually and morally mature persons. Without suffering we could not cultivate...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: cait
  • The Neuropeptide Oxytocin Regulates Parochial Altruism in Intergroup Conflict Among Humans (2010)

    By Carsten K. W. De Dreu, Lindred L. Greer, Michel J. J. Handgraaf, Shaul Shalvi, Gerben A. Van Kleef, Matthijs Baas, Femke S. Ten Velden, Eric Van Dijk, Sander W. W. Feith. "Humans regulate intergroup conflict through parochial altruism; they self-sacrifice to contribute to in-group welfare and...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
  • Fairness and the Development of Inequality Acceptance (2010)

    By Ingvild Almås, Alexander W. Cappelen, Erik Ø. Sørensen, Bertil Tungodden "Fairness considerations fundamentally affect human behavior, but our understanding of the nature and development of people’s fairness preferences is limited. The dictator game has been the standard experimental design for...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
  • The Calculus of Selfishness (2010)

    By Karl Sigmund "How does cooperation emerge among selfish individuals? When do people share resources, punish those they consider unfair, and engage in joint enterprises? These questions fascinate philosophers, biologists, and economists alike, for the "invisible hand" that should turn...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
  • Should Human Beings Have Sex? Sexual Dimorphism and Human Enhancement (2010)

    By Robert Sparrow "Since the first sex reassignment operations were performed, individual sex has come to be, to some extent at least, a technological artifact. The existence of sperm sorting technology, and of prenatal determination of fetal sex via ultrasound along with the option of termination...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
  • On the Evolutionary Debunking of Morality (2010)

    By Erik J. Wielenberg "Many claim that the availability of evolutionary explanations for human moral beliefs threatens the view that humans have moral knowledge. Peter Singer suggests that evolutionary explanations can debunk moral claims.1 Michael Ruse declares: “Morality is a collective illusion...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
  • Virtue Ethics and the Search for an Account of Right Action (2010)

    By Frans Svensson "Conceived of as a contender to other theories in substantive ethics, virtue ethics is often associated with, in essence, the following account or criterion of right action: VR: An action A is right for S in circumstances C if and only if a fully virtuous agent would characteristically...
    (Something interesting I found) Posted by: ajstasic
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DISCUSSIONS
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