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The PhilPapers Foundation and the Philosophy Documentation Center will be joining forces to bring the best possible research index to the community of philosophers. 

The Philosophy Documentation Center is a non-profit organization dedicated to providing affordable access to essential resources in the humanities and social sciences. PDC supports scholarly work in many fields with customized publishing and membership services, digitization solutions, and secure hosting. PDC produces Philosophy Research Index, a database of bibliographic information on articles, books, reviews, dissertations, and other documents in philosophy comprising over 1.3M entries. Philosophy Research Index is currently the largest research index in philosophy, with more entries than PhilPapers (1.1M entries) and Philosophers' Index (540,000 entries) 

The agreement between PDC and the PhilPapers Foundation has two main components: First, the Philosophy Research Index database will be incorporated as part of PhilPapers ... (read more)

Are there contemporary philosophers who argue that logic is concrete and particular? (More precisely I think the view would have to be that logics are concrete particulars.)

I'm toying with the idea of advancing that thesis, and I'm sure I'm not the first or only person to think this. But I don't know much about the field and in particular don't know what the relevant names would be.
Any help here would be appreciated.

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Any disagreement, agreement, argument or any evaluation would do. Need a help from you all to write a critical review for this article.

From september onwards I'll be teaching a course on epistemology at secondary school level. The approach to epistemology that I have to take (because of curricular demands) is mostly historical, starting with some Ancient philosophers (Plato, Aristotle), skipping the Middle Ages, and ending with Modern philosophy from Descartes to Kant.

I tend to think that the importance of the views espoused by all these historical thinkers lies not in the veracity of their theories, for clearly some things said by Plato or Locke are most likely false. Furthermore the questions they tend to concern themselves with appear in part to have moved over from philosophy to psychology which give them the appearance of unfounded armchair speculation. Rather in my opinion it is only against the background of the broader scientific developments during the time of these philosophers that we can begin to appreciate their significance. However I feel ill-equiped to talk about this background, because I simply don ... (read more)

Recently I had an awareness that understanding is deeper than knowledge. Then I thought about it for a while. I realized that knowledge involves explanations, while understanding does not necessarily require explanations. for, we understand many things without being able to explain them. This made me very anxious about this problem because it concerns with the way human mind works. How is it possible to understand something without being able to explain it? The traditional notion of 'Intuition' or immediate and direct awareness is not satisfactory enough to clarify this problem. What concerns me is that human mind seems to me to be much more than what we have so far known through or traditional logic or even scientific parameters. By saying that understanding is deeper than knowledge, i mean that understanding is an aspect of Consciousness that seems to be distinct from what we call Mind, though both are connected. Although we are conscious of ourselves we do not need to talk t ... (read more)
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It has recently occurred to me that the advocate of the Kantian Wille may, in significant measure, be victim of a kind of phenomenological illusion.  

We imagine the Kantian going serially down her list of desires -- "passive" matters of fact about what her experiences and behavior reveal to be her preferences -- and saying of each, "I could forebear that, if necessary.  So none of them, not one, is really me.  Me, my autonomous Wille, is distinct from every one of those desires."  A similar mistake led Newton to the postulation of Absolute Space; viz., relative effects are hypostatized into an independent existence.  What enables one to deny identity with any particular desire X is one's background awareness of all the other desires that are not X, whose cumulative preponderance overwhelms any particular desire.

Of course, the "background" cumulative awareness of all of one's desires is indeed separate from any particular desire, so in that sense there is indeed a Wille.  But it is not ... (read more)
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I am bothered with the pressures of objectivity or lack there of as it relates to knowledge, truth and perfection. I ended up re-reading this paper and realized that the primary means of achieving knowledge, truth and perfection would be for there to be a state of absoluteness; which I believe is impossible and completely inapplicable. I am now wondering what are other opinions on the relationship that exist between absolutism and objectivity and there relationship to knowledge, truth and perfection.

This is a rehash of an old post. I'm hoping someone can settle my confusion, xor, confirm my brilliant insight.

Let's suppose that zombies are conceivable. Many argue against this, but let's suppose. What I want to call into question is that an entire zombie world is conceivable. There is just one problem with this allegedly conceivable world: the person doing the conceiving. That's you. You, if you are truly conceiving of anything at all, are not a zombie.

I am of course assuming that "having a conception" implies "having consciousness." But this seems very fair to me. I am also assuming that "you" can be a disembodied consciousness. But 2-d semantics seems unable to deny the conceivability of such a thing.

1. Having a conception of a complete zombie world implies having a conception. (assumption)
2. Having a conception implies having (some) consciousness. (assumption)
3. Having (some) consciousness implies that there is consciousness. (assumption)
c4. Having a conception of a complet ... (read more)
Latest replies:
  • Derek Allan, yesterday : A dreadful hush has fallen over the thread... So, should I take it that everyone agrees with my analysis of the Chalmers... (read more)
  • Daniel Clay Davis, yesterday : Derek, if zombies look and act like human beings normallg do, then they are not  comotose. DCD
  • Derek Allan, today : Hi Daniel RE: “if zombies look and act like human beings normallg do, then they are not  comotose.' I couldn’t... (read more)
  • Gregory Nixon, today : I have a rule of conscious behaviour: Never feed zombies (sausages or limbs or whatever). GN
  • Derek Allan, today : I have presented a serious philosophical argument, Greg. Assuming you understand it (and please ask me questions if you... (read more)
  • 333 more ..
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(1) That sentient life will one day come to an end is no solace for those sentients existing and suffering today.

(2) Whether it is better to have been or not to have been is a Cartesian koan I can ponder concrerning myself, but not one I have a right to decide concerning another sentient that is or has been; all the less right have I to create or support the creation of another sentient, out of nothing.

(3) Pain and pleasure are incommensurable; only pain is pertinent to moral musings like these: No number of orgasms (for me) compensates for one fallen sparrow; and, again, the sparrow’s pains or solaces are not for me to weigh -- for the sparrow.

(4) Christianity is particularly self-righteous and presumptuous on such questions, always ready to sanction temporal risk and suffering for the bodies of others for the salvation of their immaterial, immortal souls, sub specie aeternitatis.

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Oh dear. I changed my name from Peter Jones to Peter G. Jones to clear up some confusion caused by having such a common name and have promptly lost all my 'followers'. I assumed that it would be a citation/reference change only, but apparently not. 

Is there anything I can do about this?


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For PhilPapers to survive and thrive, it needs financial support.  In five years, PhilPapers has grown from a side project into the most widely used bibliographical resource in the field.  During this time, many changes have taken place.  David Bourget, the architect of PhilPapers, now has a tenure-track appointment with teaching, research, and service duties in addition to PhilPapers. We need technical staff that can assume David's many roles, from server maintenance and administrative support to application programming and user interface design. A whole team is needed for PhilPapers to thrive and develop to its full potential.

We have considered many different financial models, including asking for donations and requiring subscriptions.  After much consultation, it has become clear to us that the best way forward is a model involving annual subscriptions for large institutions.

Starting June 1, 2014, we ask large institutions (especially universities) to pay an annual subscription fee for ... (read more)


In the effort to understand the Williams-Parfit dispute regarding internal and external reasons, I have found it useful to distinguish between pre-choice and post-choice normativity.  The literature being voluminous, it is not clear to me whether this or a similar distinction has already been drawn somewhere.  I'd much appreciate any feedback in that and indeed any other regard.

Deliberation is a process culminating (in normal circumstances) in choice, e.g. to do A rather than not.  For simplicity, assume cases in which an individual is practically able, i.e. there is no slip betwixt cup and lip, in which the individual does what he/she chooses, viz. A (what Parfit calls being "fully practically rational").  So the sequence is:  deliberation, choice, action.

A "reason", it seems plausible to suppose, is something that plays some significant role in deliberation.  Insofar as we are concerned with understanding happenings in the world, we are interested in persons’ actions.  ... (read more)
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(From Author) Sadly enough, this article has badly edited parts. Although I asked Editor to correct them many times, it seems that he did not have enough time to do that. I would like to apologize to readers for that.Editor, who sent me a letter afterwards, said as follows:

September 10, 2012


This is to apologize for the typographical errors in the article published by Yusuke Kaneko in our journal, 
the International Journal of Arts and Sciences.
The mistakes were few but they were committed at the printing phase and should not be held against Dr. Kaneko.
We profusely apologize to Dr. Kaneko about the above.


Mark Bridge
Conferences Department

It seems odd to me that there is no refereeing of submitted articles. Amateurs cannot easily post on forums yet seem to be able to submit essays to the archive without any quality checks. Is this the case, or did I miss something?

If so, this does not seem the correct way around. It should surely be more difficult to archive an article here than post a message in the forums.

I mention this because the other day I referred someone to an article on philpapers during a discussion, thinking that this connection would lend the article some credibility, only to be told that any old fool could archive stuff here. I found that I wasn't able to deny this assertion.

What should I have said in response? 


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After clicking "Submit" i see the window:

Processing bibliography ..

Initializing ..

and i can't go any further.

This happens even with the .bib files that were succesfully uploaded before (half a year ago).


This article points out: “The combination of men and women in families is irrational.” Men and women are two different “species.” They only require sexual activities from each other, which are considered the less time-consuming activities during their lives. Sex must be treated as an enemy of marriage, due to its inferior and treacherous nature, and should not be included in marriage. Men and women should not live together in a family, since this institution must be understood as a permanent place for all family members and is expected to have a solid structure. The traditional family model is the result of men‟s enslavement of women and the exaggeration of the role of sex. This model creates an overwhelming advantage for men in selecting partners, proposing marriage, and other family activities. This article indicates: (i) The prominent family models existing between the group-marriage period and now are sex-based family models. (ii) Technical and social conditions nowadays r ... (read more)

The PhilPapers category system now contains comprehensive bibliographies for a large number of areas of philosophy.  We now have 450 subject editors editing 1357 bibliographies (a comprehensive list is here).  Over the last year or so we have introduced a number of features to make the bibliography system more effective.

First, bibliographies are now supplemented with a summary of the key themes and issues involved, a list of key works, and a list of introductory works, compiled by the editor for that category.  For now, about 600 categories (listed here) have these summaries. Eventually, all categories will have them.

Second, we have introduced topical subcategories for categories on historical figures, linked to the PhilPapers subject categories wherever possible.  For example "Kant: Perception" is a subcategory of Kant and is also listed under Perception.  A number of historical figures now have a detailed subcategory system: notably Aristotle, Plato, Hobbes, Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Kant, H ... (read more)

How could I unlink the (mistakenly entered, since deleted) reference to the collection in which a paper appears in? See . Thanks.

A very popular text book, Sensation and Perception by Goldstein, states the following:
"Light reflected from objects in the environment enters the eye through the pupil and is focused by the cornea and lens to form sharp images of the objects on the retina."
This is a common view that I have found explicitly expressed in any book or article I have read on vision.
The assumption of a retinal image poses at least two problems:
1) 2D array vs 3D world. How come we see objects in 3D while the retinal image is 2D?
2) The Inverse Problem: different objects have the same projection on the retina, but still we have no difficulty distinguishing between them.
I would like to add a third one. The retinal blind spot.
The explanations I have found have me baffled. The ingenious tests by Ramachandran and others, that purport to prove the existence of the blind spot, only add to my confusion. I have tried to find an answer to a similar problem, Tunnel Vision (Retinitis Pigmentosa), but I did not get any far ... (read more)
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I have recently been discussing various interpretations of the Knobe effect with a friend of mine and we have been struck by the fact that all of the vignettes used in the empirical studies we have seen present subjects with conversations (or at least someone saying something to an audience, which may be the speaker herself, as in Knobe's terrorist case: ).

We are trying to find empirical studies that have used vignettes that *don't* do this, but which instead simply describe the mental states and decision of an agent. Does anyone know if such studies have been carried out? I would be grateful for pointers, thanks.

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