I am an Assistant Professor of Philosophy, which I teach at The University of Texas at Dallas in the School of Arts & Humanities. I am also the director of the Center for Values in Medicine, Science, and Technology, which organizes research projects, puts on public lectures and conferences, and advocates for understanding and improving the relation between human values and culture with science and tech. I also do a bit of work in cognitive science, history and philosophy of psychology, and comics and pop culture studies.
A couple of weeks back, Justin Weinberg at the Daily Nous posed a really interesting question. The context was Daniel Dennett’s review of Alfred Mele’s book Free: Why Science Hasn’t Disproved Free Will. Dennett gives a relatively standard story about … Continue reading
I’ve just begun reading Jill Lepore’s new book about Wonder Woman and William Moulton Marston. So far, I’m finding it to be really thorough and excellent! I was a little disturbed, though, to discover that on the first page of the … Continue reading
[TL;DR: If a direct role for values is illegitimate it science, it is also illegitimate in any ethical or practical reasoning about what to do in particular cases, or any evaluations of the rightness or goodness of act action. The … Continue reading
So, I am rearranging a bit my life on the web. I’ve put up a new “professional” homepage at http://matthewjbrown.net/. I’ve also got a new place to post classes at http://classes.matthewjbrown.net/, though only my current courses are up there at … Continue reading
This post is an abbreviated form of what I have come to think of as the most interesting part of a paper I’m working on for the volume of papers from this summer’s conference at Notre Dame on “Cognitive Attitudes … Continue reading
So, last Thursday we lost one of our chickens. Wait, back up, let’s start a little earlier. A little over a year ago, we got chickens for our backyard. The reasons were complicated, partly about finding a source of fresh … Continue reading
“The Hanged Man” was an online alias or “handle” I adopted somewhere around 1994, when I didn’t even have access to the internet and instead was using local dialup bulletin board systems (BBS’s). I continued to use the name on into the next … Continue reading
Some of you may have already seen my review of John Wright’s Explaining Science’s Success: Understanding How Scientific Knowledge Works that appeared yesterday at NDPR. I tried to write the kind of review that PD Magnus likes to read:
It isn’t just about the book and what the author says in it. Rather, it offers a critical view of the issue and situates the book in recent discussions. It also treats the book as a bit of philosophy worthy of criticism. This contrasts with the veneer of rhetorical objectivity which bad reviews have.
I don’t know if I really succeeded. Some will surely think my review was overly dismissive. Obviously, I thought the book was Not Very Good. While there are some ideas and arguments in the book that I found interesting, what struck me most about the arguments is that they seemed so irresponsible in the light of the contemporary scene in phil sci.
Anyhow, I’d love to hear what people think of the review, especially the points I made that went beyond Wright’s book itself.
- Ode to the Mint Julep
- Raymond Chandler Quote
- Bowman Brothers Pioneer Spirit
- David Graeber on Superheroes
- Dewey on Standpoint Epistemology
- UT Dallas Disc Golf Course
- Inspiration for the day from Jillian
- Three Direct Roles for Values in Science: A Sketch of a Sketch
- The Great Chicken Caper, Part II: Zazzles Regained, OR It’s M*F*ing Zazzles Time