Issue 48

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Issue 48: October/November 2004



by Rick Lewis


News: October/November 2004

Derrida Dead • ‘Innate Grammar’ Shock • World Philosophy Day • Life in the Balance — News reports by Sue Roberts in London and Lisa Sangoi in New York


A Ridiculously Brief Overview of Consciousness

A five-minute guide to the debate by Rick Lewis.

Henri Bergson and the Perception of Time

Know the name, can’t quite recall what he thought? John-Francis Phipps explains the surprising ideas of the philosopher of vitalism.

Macmurray and Consciousness

Jeanne Warren on a philosopher of personality.

Souls, Minds, Bodies and Planets (part 2)

In which Mary Midgley discusses the nature of consciousness and argues that the legacy of Descartes is disasterous for our view of ourselves and our planet.


A Perfumed Philosophy

A dialogue between Marcel Proust and his valet, overheard by Mike Fuller.

Gay Rights: Choice vs. Nature?

Michael Voytinsky says that the choice versus nature debate is irrelevant to the question of gay and lesbian rights.

Humanism on the Front Line

Douglas Gearhart calls on philosophers to develop practical moral guidance for soldiers in war zones.

John Herschel

Toni Vogel Carey on a memorable but forgotten scientist and philosopher.

Ships that should Pass in the Night

Jason Wasserman on balancing the claims of Postmodernism and Critical Realism.

The Psychology & Psychopathology of Philosophers

What makes great thinkers tick? Ralph Blumenau examines some theories.


John Passmore (1914-2004)

by Lisa Sangoi



Deiradiotes unveils the second of his fiendish concoctions. Behold his works, ye philosophical crossword fiends, and despair.


Igor Aleksander

Igor Aleksander is a leading researcher on machine consciousness. Julian Moore asked him about brains and language, self-awareness and robot rights.



Derrida’s Degree • Myths and Truths • Debate Warms Up • Threats to Democracy • Evolution and God • Keeping Art Alive • Why Mistakes Matter • Islamic Philosophers & Theologians • DNA, Explanation & the God Gambit • The ‘Ism’


Dear Socrates

Having returned from the turn of the Fourth Century B.C. to the turn of the Twenty-First A.D., Socrates has eagerly signed on as a Philosophy Now columnist so that he may continue to carry out his divinely-inspired dialogic mission.

The History of the World, Part 2

by Joel Marks


Consciousness: Creeping Up on the Hard Problem by Jeffrey Gray

Norman Bacrac becomes conscious of the merits of Jeffrey Gray’s new book.

Encyclopedia of Ethics

Kenneth Shouler praises Lawrence and Charlotte Becker for producing an encyclopedia of ethics which is truly encyclopedic.

Before Sunset

Our philosophical film guru Thomas Wartenberg is charmed by Before Sunset but thinks it fumbles an opportunity to examine one of the genuine philosophical problems of growing older.


Philosopher or Poettess?

by Sylvia Plate

I Am Dan’s Brain

Memoires of a much-travelled mind, as revealed to Terry Dartnall.

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