Welcome to the Philosophers’ Carnival #173. This edition contains a selection of some of the best philosophy blog posts to recently hit the web. Not all of these articles are easy reading, but they are all worth tackling nonetheless.
Two posts this month had stage magic as their theme. Tharindra Galahena explores why magic shows are interesting in How does a Rabbit Come out of a Top Hat? : Philosophy in a Magic Show. In Philosophy, Science, and Magic, Nick Byrd takes a different angle and discusses how learning some things in philosophy (or science) can leave us feeling like we just saw a magic trick as our pre-reflective intuitions are undermined.
This is a feeling I’m familiar with, and still got a hint of when reading some of the posts featured below. Where things appear magical, or as Nick puts it, “they do violence to our assumptions about the world”, philosophers and philosophy students alike would do well to recall Jonathon Creek‘s approach to solving mysteries – “We mustn’t confuse what’s impossible with what’s implausible.”
I shan’t editorialize any further except to say that if you have anything to say about any of these posts, in agreement or otherwise, please comment – the authors of these blogs will appreciate your interest. I hope you enjoy the carnival.
Posting on The Brains Blog, Brie Gertler presents an interesting discussion of privacy and dispositional beliefs. Implications for issues of privacy and the significance of a belief being occurent are also raised by John Danaher in his discussion concerning Two Interpretations of the Extended Mind Hypothesis.
Richard Chappell from Philosophy, et cetera wonders if Mark Schroeder’s Implicature is a satisfactory response to Parfit’s Trivality Objection.
Alexander Pruss explores the puzzle of grounding overdetermination.
Tristan Haze presents the first of a proposed series of posts on de re modality in De Re Modality and Quantifying In.
Wolfgang Schwarz provides a detailed post on Robert Stalnaker’s account of self-location.
Hilary Putnam continues to generate well reasoned answers to interesting questions. This month we feature his post on Rational Reconstruction.
The authors at PEA Soup were certainly hard at work on their meta-ethics over February. normative necessity is not distinct from metaphysical necessity – or at least that Fine (in Gendler and Hawthorne, Conceivability and Possibility, Oxford, 2002) does not show that it is. Following from this, Finally, Doug Portmore argues that appealing to parsimony is not a good reason to defend metaphysical naturalism against metaphysical pluralism. (For what it’s worth, I’m inclined to agree with Doug on this).argues that
In considering a cross-over between the Problem of Evil and the Ontological argument , Michael Almeida of The Prosblogion asks, Which Worlds are Possible? Some that are quite bad, apparently.
At Practical Ethics, hold ethicists to higher moral standards, though we should commend them for intellectual honesty even if they are sometimes morally inconsistent.argues that we shouldn’t necessarily
In Moral Blindness, Cruelty, and Three Faces of Responsibility, Paul Boswell argues that even if an agent is morally blind, they can still be considered to be cruel.
Following from Peter Railton’s Dewy lecture, Eric Schwitzgebel considers Depressive Thinking Styles and Philosophy, wondering if some of the thinking styles associated with depression might actually be an aid to working as a philosopher.
Finally, Walter Sinnott-Armstrong asks, Does Philosophy Matter? (Spoiler Alert: Yes. Again, I’m inclined to agree)
If you have some philosophy, or philosophy-related posts on your blog, and you would like to see included in subsequent carnivals, please go to the Philosophers’ Carnival homepage and make use of the submission form. Thanks for reading.