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Displaying 16 - 29 of 29 news clips related to this topic.

Wisconsin Public Radio

Prof. Kieran Setiya talks with Kate Kent of Wisconsin Public Radio about what we can learn about ourselves and our world from this hard year.

New York Times

Prof. Emerita Judith Jarvis Thomson, known for her work creating “new fields of inquiry in philosophy through her writings on abortion and a moral thought experiment that she named the ‘Trolley Problem’,” has died at age 91, reports Alex Taub for The New York Times. Taub notes that Thomson “wrote some of the most influential papers in contemporary American philosophy” and “made her imagination her most powerful intellectual tool.”


Prof. Brad Skow speaks with WCVB-TV’s Chronicle about the concept of time and the “block universe” theory of time, which states that time does not pass by but is instead part of the larger fabric of the universe. “The future is a place just like Australia,” says Skow. “Australia is far away spatially and the future is also far away temporally.”

The New Yorker

Writing for The New Yorker, Prof. David Kaiser contrasts a new study in Nature, which concludes that “if human will is free, there are physical events… that are intrinsically random, that is, impossible to predict,” with the 19th century writings of Stephen Freeman, who argued that, “human consciousness and our perception of free will must be subject to chains of causation.” The researchers, says Kaiser, “turned Freeman’s formulation on its head.”

Fast Company

In this 5-minute read for Fast Company, Prof. Kieran Setiya discusses the common “sense of repetition and futility” that comes in middle age. “We should not give up on our worthwhile goals,” writes Setiya. “But we should meditate, too, on the value of the process. It is no accident that the young and the old are generally more satisfied with life than those in middle age.”

The Wall Street Journal

Wall Street Journal reporter Eric Felten writes about Prof. Kieran Setiya’s new book on midlife crises. Felten notes that Setiya, “hopes to lift sufferers out of this dip and help them flourish by conveying the insights of modern philosophy.”

New York Times

In an article for The New York Times, Prof. Kieran Setiya writes that, in his view, living in the present means appreciating activities that cannot be completed and are not incomplete. “If projects are all we value, our lives become self-subversive, aimed at extinguishing the sources of meaning within them,” he explains.  

New York Times

In this New York Times opinion piece, Prof. Emeritus Noam Chomsky discusses the current state of American politics with George Yancy, a professor of philosophy at Emory University. Speaking about the weightiest issues facing humanity, Chomsky explained that in his view, “The most important issues to address are the truly existential threats we face: climate change and nuclear war.”

WBUR Open Source

In this episode of WBUR’s Open Source, Christopher Lydon speaks with Prof. Emeritus Noam Chomsky about a wide range of topics, from the current political situation in America and Europe to the greatest challenges facing humanity. Chomsky noted that a “Socratic-style willingness to ask whether conventional doctrines are justified,” is a key ingredient in his thought process. 

Inside Higher Ed

Carl Straumsheim writes for Inside Higher Ed that instructor grading will be offered in an MITx philosophy MOOC this fall. “You can still achieve scale through partially automating courses, but keeping some bits of human interaction that are really important, like the interaction between you and the person you are writing a paper to,” explains Prof. Caspar Hare. 

Inside Higher Ed

Dan Butin writes for Inside Higher Ed that MITx will begin offering students taking a popular philosophy MOOC the chance to have their work evaluated by professional philosophers. “MITx has solved a real problem in the MOOC world – of quality feedback and engagement – and has done so in a way that sustains the ability to scale,” Butin writes.

Associated Press

The Associated Press reports on the career of Professor Emeritus Irving Singer, a prominent philosopher who passed away Feb. 1 at the age of 89. Singer, who served on the MIT faculty for more than 50 years, wrote 21 books in the field of humanistic philosophy. 

New York Times

Professor Emeritus Irving Singer, who taught philosophy at MIT for more than 50 years and was well known for his three-volume work, “The Nature of Love,” died on Feb. 1, reports Sam Roberts for The New York Times. Singer penned 21 books on everything from creativity and morality to love aesthetics, literature, music and film. 

BBC News

In a piece exploring the possibility of time travel, BBC News reporter Sean Coughlan highlights Prof. Brad Skow’s new book about the concept of time. Skow argues that, “past moments or experiences are just as real as the present, but are inaccessible in another part of time.”