Where science meets art. The only necessary and sufficient book store in Melbourne.
Hope our friends enjoy the new look and feel – now optimised for mobile devices for access on the go.
Coordinator: Peter Ellerton
Web guy: Jason Etheridge
- Science and Conspiracy
- The Limits of Imagination
- What use Philosophy?
- Truth Puzzles booklet
- Can We Choose To Believe Something?
- Honesty and Charity in Arguments
- A Useful Introduction to Critical Thinking Skills
- Whose brain is it? Consciousness, free will and the brain.
- The Tale of the Slave
- 10 Philosophical Principles
- The Fallacy of Deepest Offence
- Philosophy Graduate Abilities
- Fallacies Poster
- What Truth Doesn’t Mean
- When bad consequences are predicted but are permissible if a good consequence is intended.
- Should we seek a perfect world?
- Jean-Paul Sartre's notion of Bad Faith
- Can Science Save its Soul
- Imagining the Tenth Dimension
- Philosophy of Religion - Cosmological Argument
- The Meaningfulness of Lives
- Language as a Window into Human Nature
- Hume, David - Dialogues Concerning Natural Religion
- Alternative Medicine - Sincerity no substitute for evidence
USEFUL RSS FEEDS
- TED: Phil Hansen: Embrace the shake - Phil Hansen (2013)
- TED: Peter Singer: The why and how of effective altruism - Peter Singer (2013)
- TED: Sergey Brin: Why Google Glass? - Sergey Brin (2013)
- TED: Jay Silver: Hack a banana, make a keyboard! - Jay Silver (2013)
- TED: Liu Bolin: The invisible man - Liu Bolin (2013)
A useful resource produced by NASA debunking claims that the moon landings were faked.
A useful teaching resource in deductive logic. Booklet of logic puzzles.
From NYTimes - By GARY GUTTING, The Stone
Link - As a philosophy professor, I spend much of my time thinking about the arguments put forward by professional philosophers. As a citizen (and an occasional columnist for The Stone), I also spend lots of time thinking about the arguments put forward by Democrats and Republicans on currently disputed political issues.
From John Stuart Mill’s On Liberty, Aristotle’s ‘mean’ philosophy to the principle of charity, here are the greatest principles of philosophy By JULIAN BAGGINI, Editor of The Philosopher’s Magazine
1. THE HARM PRINCIPLE
by JOHN STUART MILL, 1806-1873 Whenever legislation is proposed that limits our freedoms, someone will reach for Mill’s On Liberty and point to the passage that says, ‘The sole end for which mankind are warranted, individually or collectively, in interfering with the liberty of action of any of their number, is self-protection. That the only purpose for which power can be rightfully exercised over any member of a civilised community, against his will, is to prevent harm to others. His own good, either physical or moral, is not sufficient warrant.’ What could be clearer? Except it isn’t clear: it depends on what you mean by harm. Does hate speech harm minorities? Does sexist language harm women, by making them less credible in the eyes of society? Philosophical principles are like credit agreements: the headlines are convincing, but the small print catches you out.
Here’s a pdf… Ten of the greatest: Philosophical principles
Are all ideas equal? Not in the classroom
By Peter Ellerton, University of Queensland
There is a widespread belief amongst teachers that it is part of their duty of care, even a defining aspect of their professionalism, that all views expressed in the classroom are to be treated equally.
I take it as one of my first duties to challenge this. The right to have a view is indeed equally shared, but this is does not imply the same for the idea itself. If all ideas are equal, then all ideas are worthless.
Data on the performance of Philosophy graduates. Click to enlarge.
More info here. Note that the philosophy students perform outstandingly well in verbal and writing skills and are the best of the non-quatitative areas in quantitative reasoning.
A lovely job from http://yourlogicalfallacyis.com/ please visit the site for interactive presentation.
The truth, the whole truth and … wait, how many truths are there?
Calling something a “scientific truth” is a double-edged sword. On the one hand it carries a kind of epistemic (how we know) credibility, a quality assurance that a truth has been arrived at in an understandable and verifiable way.
On the other, it seems to suggest science provides one of many possible categories of truth, all of which must be equal or, at least, non-comparable. Simply put, if there’s a “scientific truth” there must be other truths out there. Right?
Let me answer this by reference to the fingernail-on-the-chalkboard phrase I’ve heard a little too often:
“But whose truth?” Continue reading
Sam Harris on TED
Listen and learn: the language of science and scepticismPeter Ellerton
Making sure what’s intended is what’s heard can be more difficult than it seems.
Melvin Gaal (mindsharing.eu)
Melvin Gaal (mindsharing.eu)
As scientists, one of our responsibilities should be to promote clarity. A lot of problems are caused by an incorrect or incomplete understanding of terms we regularly, and even lovingly, use.
When I use the word “evidence”, what I think I mean is a function of many things, not least my education in science and philosophy.
It’s also the product of many discussions with people about science, superstition, psychology, pseudoscience and subjectivity.
These discussions have added nuance to my understanding of the nature of evidence. They’ve also alerted me to the fact this nature changes in certain circumstances and through certain worldviews. In other words, what I intend to say is sometimes heard as something else entirely.
This type of miscommunication can be bad enough when dealing with someone who isn’t using the terms in a scientific way, but it’s particularly frustrating when it happens when talking to teachers and communicators of science.
I’d like to take a shot, then, at defining some key terms in the name of clarity. Continue reading
No one likes to change their mind, not even on climate
People put up all kinds of psychological barriers to changing their minds.
Last night’s ABC documentary I Can Change Your Mind About Climate was about two people — conservative former politician Nick Minchin and youth activist Anna Rose — exposing themselves to information that ran counter to their deeply held beliefs. We know from both research and experience that people cling to information that is in line with their beliefs and worldviews, even when they suspect or even know the information to be false. In other words, people will defend their beliefs. To do so they engage in “motivated reasoning”. Continue reading
Another legend from Dilbert.
Are you looking to see why teaching philosophy is important? Another great article from NYTimes The Stone
Almost every article that appears in The Stone provokes some comments from readers challenging the very idea that philosophy has anything relevant to say to non-philosophers. There are, in particular, complaints that philosophy is an irrelevant “ivory-tower” exercise, useless to any except those interested in logic-chopping for its own sake.