The Practical Ontologist
»The Practical Ontologist« is a compendium of online philosophical production. Every few hours it automatically aggregates, analyzes, and updates.

Featured Article · Another Panacea

The New (Old) John Locke Manuscript on Catholics

Reasons for Tolerating Papists Equally with Others ¶ I read about it in the Guardian yesterday, and my cousin at St. John’s found the digital copy right there on the internet in plain sight. Apparently no one had attempted to transcribe it yet? It’s a confusing document–looks like reading notes from some separate document, as there are page numbers which appear out of order in the manuscript. ¶ Here is a rough first effort. Please share edits! The folks who discovered the original manuscript in Annapolis have published a transcription at the end of this article–I used it to correct my transcription, though the remaining errors are mine. (Especially impressed by them figuring out “lex talionis” which was really irking me.) Congrats to Walmsley and Waldmann for showing that archival work can be rewarding! ¶ 7 Persecution disobliges the best sort amongst the papist as well as amongst others. ¶ 12 If liberty of conscience makes all men faily...

Read More › - meta trad

Recent Media · Podcasts & Lectures

Ken Burns’ Country Music : Looking forward to this new offing from Ken Burns — and its Hank Williams’ birthday. country and westernhank williamsken burnsroots music ...
meta pro Man Without Qualities -


Multigrade relations: One strategy for avoiding ontological commitment to sets is to deal with pluralities and multigrade relations. Multigrade relations are relations that can be had by a variable number of things. Instead of, say, saying of ...
meta sci trad Alexander Pruss -


Informative characterizations: It is hard to characterize an “informative characterization”. Here is an instructive illustration. Ned Markosian in his famous brutal composition paper says that an informative, or non-trivial, characterization ...
meta sci trad Alexander Pruss -


Contrastive PSR: In my Principle of Sufficient Reason (PSR) book, I defend a PSR that holds that every contingent truth has an explanation, but I do not defend a contrastive PSR. Many think this is a cop-out. But i makes sense to ask why it i ...
meta sci Alexander Pruss -


Two jobs at Baylor: We have two full-time openings in the Baylor Philosophy Department. Both have open AOS and AOC. One position is at the Associate (tenured) or Assistant Professor (tenure-track) level and the other is at the Assistant Profe ...
pro Alexander Pruss -


Naturalism and property dualism: It is generally taken that a view on which there are mental properties that do not supervene on the properties of physics is a non-naturalistic view: it is a form of property dualism. But now imagine that we f ...
meta sci value Alexander Pruss -


Bruce W. Ferguson, in memoriam: My best friend from the Cairo years, Bruce W. Ferguson, died peacefully in his sleep on Saturday morning after an almost year-long battle with cancer. Along with his many accomplishments in the art world, Bruce ...
pro trad Object Oriented Philosophy -



BERIT BROGAARD
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



BERIT BROGAARD
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



MICHAEL RUSE
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



MICHAEL RUSE
meta pro trad What is it like to be a philosopher? -


ARTIST-PHILOSOPHER INTERVIEW: MATT LINDAUER

Musician and philosopher Matt Lindauer interviewed by Alex King for AFB Matt Lindauer is Assistant Professor of Philosophy at Brooklyn College, City University of New York. He specializes in moral and political philosophy, moral psychology, and experimental philosophy, and has published work in Philosophical Studies, Journal of Moral Philosophy, Journal of Ethics and Social Philosophy, and Oxford Studies in Experimental Philosophy, among other venues. He is also a songwriter and multi-instrumentalist. His band Myrna recently released their debut EP on Kitty Wizard Records and a full-length release is coming soon. His solo project Utena also produced a recent album that was recorded almost entirely on his iPhone between Australia and Brooklyn. He also played in the banjo-key-drum group Sugarbat and in Daphne Lee Martin’s band as guitarist and banjo player, and has recorded a number of other projects. Some of his music was recently featured in an ad for Joe’s Jeans. AESTHETICS FOR BI... Read More ›

Aesthetics for Birds · Featured Blog

READING PROJECTS: HISTORICAL SCHEMES AS LITERARY ARTIFACTS
What follows is a guest post by David Alff. Last year I finished writing a book about projects. Not art projects or housing projects or chemistry projects, but the idea of projects itself. I wanted to learn how humans came to organize t...Read More ›

PLAYING GAMES WITH HISTORY: PHILOSOPHERS ON THE ETHICS OF HISTORICAL BOARD GAMES
In a recent New York Times article, journalist Kevin Draper brings us up to date on some recent controversies in the world of historical board games. The article centers on the cancellation of Scramble for Africa, a historical board game...Read More ›

THE ETHICS OF ARTISANSHIP: OR, NO, YOU MAY NOT PUT MILK IN YOUR COFFEE
Sometimes I put milk in brewed coffee. I do so when I go to I-HOP for a plate of International Pancakes and a bottomless cup of diner swill. Sometimes I buy coffee at the airport. It’s usually godawful sludge that’s been over-roasted an...Read More ›

ZOMBIE FORMALISM: OR, HOW FINANCIAL VALUES PERVADE THE ARTS
Damien Hirst, Dantrolene (1994) What follows is a guest post by Sarah Hegenbart. Once upon a time, the month of June was jet-set season for the international artworld. After a meet and greet at the preview days at the Venice Biennale, wh...Read More ›

WHICH INTERPRETATION? AESTHETIC EVALUATION IN THE GALLERY-MUSEUM
What follows is a guest post by Jennifer A. McMahon. Have you ever found yourself patiently listening to a range of interpretations of an artwork, wondering whether there was some objective way to negotiate the plethora of sometimes idio...Read More ›

THE PHILOSOPHICAL BEAUTY OF BLACK MIRROR
What follows is a guest post from Laura Di Summa, Assistant Professor of Philosophy at William Paterson University. Black Mirror, the TV series created by enfant terrible Charlie Brooker, is often described as the quintessential embodime...Read More ›


Why Humans Are The Most Irrational Animals
meta trad IAI.tv -


Perception As Controlled Hallucination: Predictive Processing and the Nature of Conscious Experience : A Conversation with Andy Clark (video, audio and transcript). AIAndy ClarkCognitive scienceConsciousness StudiesDaniel DennettExtended Mind ...
pro sci value Man Without Qualities -


Deepfakes Are Coming. We Can No Longer Believe What We See.: It will soon be as easy to produce convincing fake video as it is to lie. We need to be prepared. ...
meta The Stone -


Labour of Lust : Part two of Nick Lowe’s power pop phase dropped 40 years ago. musicnick lowepower poprock ’n rollrockpile ...
meta pro trad Man Without Qualities -


Group Minds and Natural Kinds : A close-grained discussion of this vexed issue by the very excellent Rob Rupert. distributed cognitionEmbodied cognitiongroup mindsnatural kindsRob Rupertsocial epistemologysocial ontology ...
meta value Man Without Qualities -


Marguerite Yourcenar : Born on June 8th. Becoming the Emperor: How Marguerite Yourcenar reinvented the past. Then she came upon the drafts of a novel about Hadrian that she had begun when she was twenty-one and had later put aside. …. S ...
pro sci Man Without Qualities -


Three Ideas of the University : The very excellent James Alexander in The European Legacy. Oakeshott’s The Voice of Liberal Learning freely available here. Noel Annan commented that Michael Oakeshott’s “was the finest evocation of the ‘ ...
meta pro trad Man Without Qualities -


Ordinary language and "exists": In Material Beings, Peter van Inwagen argues that his view that there are no complex artifacts does not contradict (nearly?) universal human belief. The argument is based on his view that the propositions expre...
meta Alexander Pruss -


Creation and artifacts: Analytic metaphysics is widely thought a dry discipline. I want to show how it could be used to connect with some deeply devotional theological claims. Here is a valid argument: If artifacts exist, we created them. On...
meta trad Alexander Pruss -



Giant screen stopwatch app
pro Alexander Pruss -


Anselm's ontological argument: Here is my favorite version of the “existence is not a property” objection to Anselm’s first ontological argument. It makes no sense to talk of the greatness of a nonexistent being except hypothetically as the g...
meta trad Alexander Pruss -


Ethics and complexity: Here is a picture of ethics. We are designed to operate with a specific algorithm A for generating imperatives from circumstances. Unfortunately, we are broken in two ways: we don’t always follow the generated imperativ...
meta trad Alexander Pruss -


Eleven varieties of contrastive explanation: In connection with free will, quantum mechanics or divine creation it is useful to talk about contrastive explanation. But there is no single generally accepted concept of contrastive explanation, ...
meta sci Alexander Pruss -


Substances are not parts of substances: Here is a quick and simple argument for the Aristotelian axiom that substances are not parts of substances. The parts of substances are at least partly grounded in the substances. Substances are not ev...
meta Alexander Pruss -



JUSTIN WEINBERG
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



JUSTIN WEINBERG
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



MARY LOUISE GILL
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



MARY LOUISE GILL
pro trad What is it like to be a philosopher? -



AL MELE
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



AL MELE
pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -



JOSH KNOBE
meta pro What is it like to be a philosopher? -


Yesterday’s Frontpage