Philosophy Now December 2020 - January 2021

Philosophy Now is a magazine for everyone interested in ideas. It isn't afraid to tackle all the major questions of life, the universe and everything. It tries to corrupt innocent citizens by convincing them that philosophy can be exciting, worthwhile and comprehensible, and also to provide some light and enjoyable reading matter for those already ensnared by the muse, such as philosophy students and academics. It contains articles on all aspects of philosophy, plus book reviews, film reviews, news, cartoons, and the occasional short story.

United Kingdom
Anja Publications Ltd
6 Issues

in this issue

3 min
time and being

“I wasted time, and now doth time waste me; For now hath time made me his numb’ring clock; My thoughts are minutes, and with sighs they jar Their watches on unto mine eyes, the outward watch, Whereto my finger, like a dial’s point, Is pointing still, in cleansing them from tears.”Shakespeare, Richard II Near the end of Shakespeare’s play Richard II, the king, unthroned by his rival Bolingbroke, languishes in a dungeon awaiting his fate and contemplating the nature of time. Such circumstances give even kings the time and inclination to be philosophical. Still, Richard’s musings touch on a deep and fascinating philosophical problem – the interrelation between time and personal identity. The question of how the passage of time affects who we are is one of those philosophical questions that we…

1 min
some of our contributors

Nurana Rajabova Nurana Rajabova is currently taking an MA in Philosophy at University College Dublin. Her philosophical interests lie at the intersection of philosophy of mind and metaphysics. Previously she studied and worked in the field of Peace and Justice. Lawrence Crocker Lawrence Crocker received his PhD in philosophy from Harvard (Rawls, Putnam, Quine, Boyd, Kripke, Nozick). He taught philosophy at the University of Washington. A Duke JD, he litigated civil and criminal cases, taught law at New York University, then, again, taught philosophy at Dartmouth College where he is now a Resident Scholar. Peter Adamson Peter Adamson Peter Adamson is Professor of Late Ancient and Arabic Philosophy at the LMU in Munich. He is the author of the book series A History of Philosophy Without Any Gaps, published by Oxford University Press, and two…

5 min

• Study finds moral choices gendered• Ethics of wiring your brain to a computer • Philosopher rides along Montaigne track Ethics Study 1: Is Morality Gendered? According to a large-scale, crosscultural study published in the Proceedings of the Royal Society B, there are differences between the ways women and men make moral decisions. These differences were more marked in cultural environments with flexible values and good gender equality. Mohammad Atari, one of the authors, comments: “In more equal societies, men and women are freer to express judgments and preferences, so you should expect larger sex differences.” Across the board, women showed a greater concern than men for values of compassion, fairness and ‘moral purity’, whereas values such as loyalty and authority varied more depending on the environment. The research was based on…

1 min
philosophy shorts

More songs about Buildings and Food’ was the title of a 1978 album by the rock band Talking Heads. It was about all the things rock stars normally don’t sing about. Pop songs are usually about variations on the theme of love; tracks like Rose Royce’s 1976 hit ‘Carwash’ are the exception Philosophers, likewise, tend to have a narrow focus on epistemology, metaphysics and trifles like the meaning of life. But occasionally great minds stray from their turf and write about other matters, for example buildings (Martin Heidegger), food (Hobbes), tomato juice (Robert Nozick), and the weather (Lucretius and Aristotle). This series of Shorts will be about these unfamiliar themes; about the things philosophers also write about.…

2 min
philosophers on food

“They fill their bellies like the beasts,” Plato had Socrates remark disapprovingly in the Republic. Truth be told, neither of these two gentlemen, if statues of them are anything to go by, were in a position to preach. Maybe Plato was just getting peckish as he was writing about his ideal society. He was not the last great mind to write about food and overeating. The Christian philosophers rather liked their food. Christ himself had been open about his appetite: “The Son of Man has come eating and drinking, and you say, ‘look, a glutton’ ” (Luke 7:34.) It hardly seem surprising that St Augustine, in his remarks on food, concluded that “Whenever a man takes more meat and drink than is necessary, he should know that this is one of…

12 min
to be is to persist

What does it mean for an object to persist through time? Consider the statement, ‘My car is filthy, I need to wash it.’ Consider the response, ‘How did it get that way?’ The answer is that dirt, dust and other particles have collected on the car’s surface thus making it filthy. Its properties have changed. At one point in the car’s career, none of that dirt and grime existed on its surface and the car was said to be clean. The fact is that for a car to get dirty, the extension of time is necessary. The standard view of identity is that each thing is entirely itself at any given time. So how can an object remain identical with itself over time, if it changes its properties? In many…