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New Philosophers’ Carnival…


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• Is the world eternal? YES
• Do humans have contra-causal free will (i.e., can humans do otherwise)? NO
• Is beauty in the eye of the beholder? YES
• Do humans have souls? YES
• Are there natural rights? YES
• Is it morally permissible to eat meat? NO
• Is the unexamined life worth living? NO
• Is truth subjectivity? YES
• Is virtue necessary for happiness? YES
• Can a computer have a mind? YES
• Can humans know reality as it is in itself? YES
• Is hell other people? YES
• Can art be created accidentally? NO
• Can we change the past? NO
• Are numbers real? NO
• Is it always better to know the truth? YES

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… can be found here. This time the focus is on comedy in philosophy, or philosophy jokes, or philosophical satire. There are some interesting links, though I wish someone would treat the philosophy of humor with the seriousness it deserves.

To what extent might philosophy require humor, satire, and buffoonery? It seems to me that there is a kind of skepticism that is built on satire. It’s a simple as the Dr. Phil question: “how’s that working out for you?” Imagine Kant laying out the categorical imperative at length, only to be faced with that question. The question undercuts his whole enterprise, in the sense that it trades upon viewing his moral philosophy as a kind of psychological coping mechanism, and raises the question whether a moral philosophy, at bottom, is anything more than that.

There, I just spoiled a good line. doesn’t the fact that I spoiled it reveal something about the significance of satire for philosophy?


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