Interview with Mary Midgley on consciousness and the limits of physical science

… at iai News. An excerpt:

The physical sciences have been so extraordinarily successful in their own sphere of late that people tend now to expect them to be applicable everywhere. Enlightenment thinking has built up a general optimism about human capacities which centres at present on what is called `the scientific method’ – a grossly simplified notion about how scientists work, one which almost treats them as omnipotent.

Brain science, in particular, has been greeted with a credulous rapture which is quite out of proportion to any light that it has actually thrown on the rest of life. In fact, at present the sort of wild credulity which used to be associated chiefly with religious movements seems to flow most naturally towards scientific developments.

All this distracts people from older ways of thinking – not just from religious thinking, but from all sorts of instinctive and traditional social approaches by which human life has habitually been guided, and which are probably necessary to it. In this area, isolated experimental results are really not a substitute for the accumulated experience of history.

22. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Consciousness, Neuroscience | Leave a comment

CFP: Reciprocity and Social Cognition


Reciprocity and Social Cognition Symposium

Berlin School of Mind and Brain, 23rd-25th March 2015

Submissions close: October 1st 2014

Notifications sent: October 15th 2014

For more details, please see our website:


The Berlin School of Mind and Brain is pleased to announce the Reciprocity and Social Cognition interdisciplinary symposium, to be held at the Berlin School of Mind and Brain from the 23rd to 25th March, 2015. Continue Reading →

22. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: CFPs | Leave a comment

Mele and Nahmias on Free Will and Science

… at Philosophy TV.

19. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Free will | Leave a comment

Templeton Foundation Call for Grant Proposals

As part of its fall open submission cycle, the John Templeton Foundation welcomes online funding inquiries in the areas of philosophy and theology. The submission window is August 1 to October 1, 2014. Proposed philosophical projects need not have religion or theology as a focus. To submit an online funding inquiry, please visit

Please note that the Templeton Foundation does not normally provide dissertation fellowships through this open submission process. For more information on the kinds of projects that the Foundation can support, visit

A list of Foundation grants in the areas of philosophy and theology can be found here:

14. August 2014 by Gualtiero Piccinini
Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Two takes on consciousness

David Chalmers at TED on the hard problem; Eric Schwitzgebel at his blog on a possible problem for Giulio Tononi’s Integrated Information Theory.

14. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Consciousness, Consciousness; Chalmers | Leave a comment

Philosophers’ Carnival #166

… is at Philosophical Disquisitions.

13. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Uncategorized | Leave a comment

Rebooting the Society for the Philosophy of Animal Minds

Via Kristin Andrews (who, incidentally, will be a featured scholar at Brains beginning in mid-September) comes news of a “reboot” of the Society for the Philosophy of Animal Minds (yes, SPAM), which is “a means to promote and support the work of philosophers and scientists interested in philosophical questions about animal minds and culture”. There’s more information, plus a form to register as a member, at the preceding link. Check it out!

12. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Cognition | Leave a comment

Is neuroscience ready to replace philosophy?

Of course not!

Still, here are Maggie Boden, Barry Smith, and Steven Rose discussing the question at a forum hosted by the Institute for Art and Ideas:

Watch more videos on

11. August 2014 by John Schwenkler
Categories: Neuroscience | Leave a comment

CFP – Technological Mediation & Changing Conceptions of Humanity

Please see the following Call for Authors:

(Feel free to contact me, if you have questions.)


Frank Scalambrino

Summary Version of the Call for Authors:

This edited volume seeks to bring together scholars from across disciplines to discuss the social effects of technological mediation, focusing on the normative social dimensions effected by technological mediation of knowledge or the changing conceptions of humans and humanity effected by technological mediation of embodiment.  A 500 word abstract is due by Oct. 6th.  If selected as a book chapter, then 3,000 to 4,000 words by March 2nd 2015.  If selected as a journal article, then 4,000 to 5,000 words by March 2nd 2015.  The edited book titled Social Epistemology and Technology: Toward Increasing Public Self-Awareness regarding Technological Mediation will be published by Rowman & Littlefield International as part of the Collective Studies in Knowledge and Society series.  The articles will be published by the peer-reviewed online journal Social Epistemology Review and Reply Collective.  The book and articles are expected to be published in July, 2015.

06. August 2014 by Frank Scalambrino
Categories: CFPs, Epistemology, Ethics, human nature, Robotics | Leave a comment

Precis of Attention (Routledge)

A precis of my book, Attention, can be found at Lisa Bortolotti’s blog, Imperfect Cognitions:

Both Lisa and I were featured scholars here as Jakob is now (thanks John). I still(!) think attention is important and happy to have any discussion of the topic or on the book, here or there. Please have a look.

17. July 2014 by Wayne Wu
Categories: Uncategorized | Comments Off

← Older posts