Suggested readings, #84

Here it is, a rundown of interesting articles I’ve come across recently, to consider for your weekend readings:

Conscious spoons, really? Pushing back against panpsychism. A really nice take down of the latest in pseudo-philosophy. (NeuroBanter)

The death of philosophers. A few choice examples of how philosophers have died through the ages. (thinkPhilosophy)

The radical aristocrat who put kindness on a scientific footing. An article about Peter Kropotkin’s good political intentions and misguided science. Not enough emphasis by the author on the latter. (Aeon Psyche)

Can lab-grown brains become conscious? Fascinating overview of brain organoids and the likelihood we’ll learn something about consciousness by studying their properties. Also a good discussion of the ethical implications of such research. (Nature)

Successful companies live up to this Ancient Greek ideal. An evidence-based argument that – in the long run – commercially successful companies are those that engage in corporate philotimy, that is, cultivate ethical integrity. (Harvard Business Review)

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Massimo is the K.D. Irani Professor of Philosophy at the City College of New York. He blogs at and He is the author of How to Be a Stoic: Using Ancient Philosophy to Live a Modern Life.

One thought on “Suggested readings, #84”

  1. Couple of quick notes.

    1. On the death of philosophers piece, Nietzsche scholarship has generally rejected the syphilis claim. He’s believed to have had a brain tumor instead. Pretty cheesy and ill-informed to still perpetuate the syphilis idea.

    2. Now, a serious take on the “hard problem” issue. How much of this is to some degree a linguistic philosophy issue of wrangling over “consciousness,” spoons not being conscious aside, of course? I mean, this strikes me as referring to set theory, which of course is tangential to logic. I mean that, you have “constellation of X empirical items” and we call it “consciousness.”

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