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Adam Smith on Sensory Perception: A Sympathetic Account

The aim of this chapter is to propose an account of sensory perception from the known writings of Adam Smith, chiefly his juvenile work, “On the External Senses.” This account asserts that when we perceive an object we simulate its painful or pleasurable effects on our body—we imaginatively place ourselves in proximity to the object and…

Indulgent Sympathy and the Impartial Spectator

Cognitive neuroscience is in the midst of what has been called an “affective revolution,” which places empathy at the center of a core set of moral competencies. While empathy has not been without its critics (Bloom, 2013; Prinz, 2011), both the radicals and the reactionaries routinely cite Adam Smith’s The Theory of Moral Sentiments (TMS)…

The digital world, cognition and behaviour

Herbert Simon Society call for papers. For a comprehensive overview of Simon’s work by a Who’s Who of writers, check out this collection of essays. Behavioral economicsBounded RationalityCognitionCognitive scienceecological rationalityHerbert SimonheuristicsSocial network

Walker Percy Wednesday 186

AFTER READING Feeling and Form, Susanne Langer’s extraordinary work on aesthetics, one inevitably goes back to her earlier book Philosophy in a New Key, of which according to the author the former is the companion volume — not just to get one’s bearings in the general semiotic on which the aesthetic is based, but in…

Free Will Revisited: Dennett and Harris in Conversation

Check out this excellent discussion between Dan Dennett and Sam Harris. Both shine since I think they have raised each other’s game; this despite being recorded after an already long day. As Sam rightly says, since so much gets lost and/or miscognized in writing it is thus vital to listen to the first 8 or so minutes…