Suggested readings, #107

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

Stoic methods of journaling. Self-improvement through moral self-examination. (Medium)

When your authenticity is an act, something’s gone wrong. (Psyche)

Stockdale Paradox: why confronting reality is vital to success. Balancing realism and optimism in a dire situation is a key to success. (Big Think)

Should a self-driving car kill the baby or the grandma? Depends on where you’re from. The infamous “trolley problem” was put to millions of people in a global study, revealing how much ethics diverge across cultures. (MIT Technology Review)

The four moral judgments you make everyday. Our brains make snap moral decisions in mere seconds. (Big Think)

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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.

3 thoughts on “Suggested readings, #107”

  1. Saw that Psyche piece and a companion one from its sister site, Aeon, a few days ago. Agreed, and it fits in with the whole idea of “searching for your authentic self,” which the Aeon piece got into.

    Before reading the MIT piece, I predicted that, if any hunter-gatherer societies were surveyed, they’d definitely tilt even more toward “save grandparents, kill baby.” But, the survey was country-by-country, and hunter-gatherers don’t have cars, so it didn’t cover that! Oh, well.

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  2. Interesting reads.

    On “Should a self-driving car kill the baby or the grandma?” I found the paper’s survey results really interesting but the author’s ideas on how it might help cars and AI design off the wall and at times really disturbing. For starters I’d hope a good AI wouldn’t be driving too fast in the first place, or wasting its time trying to guess the social status of pedestrians!

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