Top News, Articles, and Interviews in Philosophy

A Dark History of Modern Philosophy

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2018.02.18 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Bernard Freydberg, A Dark History of Modern Philosophy, Indiana University Press, 2017, 146pp., $25.00 (pbk), ISBN 9780253029461.   Reviewed by Brad Frazier, Wells College The title of this book could be taken many ways. It could denote a history of modern philosophy in the tradition of Susan Neiman's excellent work, Evil in Modern Thought: An Alternative History of Philosophy. On Neiman's alternative approach, theodicy displaces epistemology as the ultimate concern of the modern period. However, Freydberg departs from the traditional approach in a different way. He seeks to uncover an underlying, unacknowledged chaos or "primal lack" to which all the so-called rationalists and empiricists respond, with differing levels of awareness of what they are doing. He considers the epistemic-centric reading of modern philosophy to be "so obvious" that it has "long provoked an uneasy discomposure" in him (1). It. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

The Cambridge Companion to Philosophical Methodology

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2018.02.17 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Giuseppina D'Oro and Søren Overgaard (eds.), The Cambridge Companion to Philosophical Methodology, Cambridge University Press, 2017, 466pp., $29.99 (pbk), ISBN 9781107547360.       Reviewed by Mario De Caro, Università Roma Tre/Tufts University In his influential The Philosophy of Philosophy, Timothy Williamson wrote: "Contemporary philosophy lacks a self-image that does it justice." The reason offered for this claim was convincing: all the proposed self-images are "false when bold, uninformative when cautious" (ix). However, realizing that we lack a satisfying self-image of philosophy (i.e., a good metaphilosophy) gives us an excellent motivation to try harder; unsurprisingly, then, in recent years, metaphilosophy has become very popular. Giuseppina D'Oro and Søren Overgaard's book is an important new contribution. As the editors make clear in their introduction, philosophical methodology is a branch of. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

Moral Skepticism: New Essays

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2018.02.16 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews Diego E. Machuca (ed.), Moral Skepticism: New Essays, Routledge, 2018, 243pp., $140.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781138645868. Reviewed by Matt Lutz, Wuhan University This book, edited by Diego Machuca, is a wonderful collection of essays related to moral skepticism. 'Moral skepticism' is understood broadly, with discussions of both epistemic moral skepticism (the view that moral knowledge or justified moral belief is impossible, or else the higher-order "Pyrrhonian" view that we cannot know if justified moral belief is possible) and ontological moral skepticism (including both moral error theory and moral non-cognitivism). The essays are of a very high quality, written by a who's-who of philosophers doing exciting contemporary work in metaethics. They summarize the current state of the literature on moral skepticism and push that literature forward along many fronts. The collection is too advanced to be suitable for. . .

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News source: Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews // News

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