“Of what use are the odes? ” Cognitive science, virtue ethics, and early confucian ethics

Philosophy East and West 61 (1):80-109 (2011)
In his well-known 1994 work Descartes’ Error, the neuroscientist Antonio Damasio describes his work with patients suffering from damage to the prefrontal cortex, a center of emotion processing in the brain. The accidents or strokes that had caused this damage had spared these patients’ “higher” cognitive faculties: their short- and long-term memories, abstract reasoning skills, mathematical aptitude, and performance on standard IQ tests were completely unimpaired. They were also perfectly healthy physically, with no apparent motor or sensory disabilities. Nonetheless, these patients had been brought to Damasio’s attention as a physician because, despite their apparent lack of physical or cognitive impairment, they ..
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