David Deutsch gives a brief talk on explanations and their role in progress.
Read more on progress: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/scientific-progress/ (Section 4. Is Science Progressive? is especially interesting).
And if you enjoy the history and philosophy of science, you should (if you haven’t already) enjoy a good dose of Kuhn: http://plato.stanford.edu/entries/thomas-kuhn/.
Here’s a very short clip of the famous Libet experiment on free will.
The clip gives you a quick idea of Libet’s theory, sans the crucial implications: a concept referred to as the power of veto, or, “free won’t.”
In Libet’s experiment, it is shown that the gradually increasing neuronal signal activates before the person feels the conscious “will” to act. This would imply that consciousness is a by-product of physical mental processes (that can be measured).
However, Libet does not fully commit to a world in which we have no power in decision. Through a similar set of experiments, Libet determined that although we cannot consciously control impulses, we can prevent them from being acted out. This is his “free won’t.”
There are innumerable criticisms of Libet’s theory, aiming to show the flaws of the experimentation procedure and the erroneous philosophical implications of his work. Nevertheless, it is invaluable research in a field of which everybody has a different explanation.
A full-length lecture featuring Dennett on the topic of free will.
Videos are posted in order from Part 1 to Part 6 (top to bottom). Audio is not the best, but the lecture itself is very interesting.
Now that I’ve officially changed my major to Philosophy, I’ve come up with a list of courses to take:
200 – Metaphysics
205 – Philosophy of Mind
280 – Philosophy of Art
301 – World Philosophies
343 – Kant to Nietzsche (history of philosophy requirement)
355 – Philosophy of the Environment
366 – Computers and Culture
405 – Topics in Philosophy of Mind
411 – Philosophy of Space and Time
Also, Philosophy of Religion
I recently read a note posted on Facebook…
…this brings up the statment that strippers have feelings too – which is true. They are human, but we, as society, don’t see them that way. We objectify them to a peice of merchandise like a television or a pencil. . . any thoughts?
My response to this is rather cynical, but without a lot of thought on the subject, I’d have to say it’s fairly solid in my mind.
We, as society, do not objectify strippers – at least not in the way noted above.