A Seminar on Humanity

For my intro to feminist philosophy course, I am reading Louise Antony’s essay, “Natures and Norms,” which is her engagement with Martha Nussbaum’s defense of an internalist account of human nature.  As a pragmatist poststructuralist and a reader of Arendt, I find the endeavor to ground human dignity in some essence curious and mistaken.  But… Continue reading A Seminar on Humanity

Evolutionary Ethics

An evolutionary approach to ethics made it to the op-ed pages of the New York Times today. David Brooks reports that “many psychologists, cognitive scientists and even philosophers” are beginning to reject the notion that moral thinking “is mostly a matter of reason and deliberation.” Instead they are coming around to the idea that “moral… Continue reading Evolutionary Ethics

Continental Kantianism

Is the following secret or common knowledge? Many continental philosophers (including Levinas, Foucault, Derrida, Lyotard) are Kantians, at least with respect to morality. This may be surprising given that none of them cares much for concepts such as autonomy and reason, two concepts that seem central to Kant’s moral philosophy. But I think they all… Continue reading Continental Kantianism