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

Featured Article · Reason and Meaning

Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church

© Darrell Arnold Ph.D.– (Reprinted with permission.) http://darrellarnold.com/2018/08/14/sexual-abuse-in-the-catholic-church/ ¶ For those who hoped that the Catholic church had begun to appropriately handle its systemic sexual abuses from the 1980s and 1990s, the recent Pennsylvania Grand Jury report is deeply disturbing. The report indicates that in the state of Pennsylvania alone, over a period of 70 years, more than 300 priests were accused of the systemic sexual abuse of over 1000 individuals and the systematic cover-up of this abuse. This report comes just weeks after the resignation of Cardinal Theodore McCarrick, the Archbishop of Washington, who had been accused of sexual abuse of children and adults over decades, and after recent revelations of systemic clerical sexual abuse in Chile and Australia. ¶ With a focus on the Pennsylvania report the New York Times reports: “Despite some institutional reform, individual leaders of the church have largely escaped public accountability,” the grand jury wrote. “Priests were raping little boys and girls, and the men of God...

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Recent Media · Podcasts & Lectures

What Does It Mean to Be Human? Don’t Ask : We don’t see the problem with our self-importance because our narcissism is so complete. ...
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Hume the humane : Julian Baggini on Hume. Hume was always suspicious of what he called ‘enthusiasts’ and it is perhaps telling that the meaning of this word now has an unambiguously positive meaning . . . To be an enthusiast in Hume’s sense i ...
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Philosophy, Politics and the Conversation of Mankind: Essays in Honor of Tim Fuller : My copy of Tim’s festschrift finally arrived today. It’s a well-deserved and beautifully produced and edited collection. Over the years Tim has ...
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ENGLISH SUMMARY OF BADIOU, DELEUZE, AND THE ACCESS TO INFINITIES: Some of Badiou’s criticisms of Deleuze can be rejected because he sometimes seems to be taking Deleuze’s system for a bad « set-theoretic » approach but ...
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Life Is Short. That’s the Point. : Our mortality is not something to be overcome. It is integral to our humanity. ...
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A Neuro-Philosophy of History: “Sustainable History”; with Dignity, and without Directionality: By Nayef Al-Rodhan Philosophies of history tend to assume one form or another of directionality. For an important number of philosophers, History ...
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Virtual Dissertation-Writing Groups for Philosophy Grad Students
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Fawning Sycophancy Is Unprofessional, Gross, and if Ongoing, the Professor’s Fault
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Enowning: On WRAL, Gail Collins on elite education. The Obama administration worked very hard to weed out bad for-profit colleges. The policy it finally came up with was to compare an average graduate’s debt with the average graduate’s earnings. Then ...
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Enowning: In the Washington Post, White House terminates academic. In 2016, [Darren Beattie] went public with his support for Trump and cited Trump’s hard-line immigration position as one of the key reasons for his victory. “One of the signals for m ...
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NDPR Forum: Joseph Millum’s The Moral Foundations of Parenthood: Welcome to another NDPR Forum, this one on Joseph Millum’s The Moral Foundations of Parenthood (OUP 2018), recently reviewed in NDPR by Liezl van Zyl. As always, all are w ... PEA Soup -


Gamescom 2018: At Gamescom again this year, but unusually I have client projects to offer to publishers – and really interesting ones too! Looking forward to finding out what the dev community makes of these games. Still interested in meeting ...
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Resistance Rising: Socialist Strategy in the Age of Political Revolution.: APP Editors’ Note: This is the third in a series on the historical and philosophical foundations of anarchism and socialism, with special reference to social anarchism ...
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Sexual Abuse in the Catholic Church
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Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson Meet: In June, Sam Harris and Jordan Peterson had a debate (or discussion, if you prefer) about ethics and religion. They’d met before on Harris’s podcast, but this was their first in-person matchup. Their first ...
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IFL2: the introductory chapters again

After a hiatus, back to work on the second edition of my Introduction to Formal Logic. I’ve been tidying and (I hope!) slightly improving the first tranche of chapters — so here they are again: IFL2: Chapters 1 – 7 A quick look at the Table of Contents should give you a good idea of what they are about if you don’t know the book. If you do know the first edition, then the main change is that I now take a somewhat different line about the notion of logical validity. The headline news, anyway, is that these really are introductory chapters (general scene-setting before we start work in earnest on propositional logic in Chapter 9).  So I introduce ideas like: validity, deduction vs induction, showing validity by ‘proofs’, showing invalidity by ‘counterexamples’, logical validity vs validity (necessary preservation of truth more generally). The chapters aim to be accessible and reasonably user-friendly without talking down to the reader. So thes... Read More ›

Logic Matters · Featured Blog

Getting it right …
After a bad day battling with my intro logic book and feeling really rather despondent about it, I stumbled over this, from Philip Roth, whose Americal Pastoral I’m currently reading: “Writing turns you into somebody who’s al...Read More ›

In wonderland
A Cambridge story, from Arnie Koslow. Back in the day, the Moral Sciences Club met in the rooms of Richard Braithwaite, then the Club’s chairman. A sofa at the front provided the regular seating for the nervous figure of Alfred Ewi...Read More ›

A reading resolution kept!
For some while now, I’ve kept a list of the novels that I’ve being reading or re-reading  — my memory for this sort of thing being pretty bad. But the list used to grow depressingly slowly; so very many good (or better!...Read More ›

[Security, etc.]
[Just an update to say that I have now installed an SSL certificate so that this becomes a “secure” site served via https, which will stop some browsers telling you this isn’t a secure site. I’ve also moved domain...Read More ›

It is not the case that p
You can of course very often express the negation of p  by saying ‘it’s not the case that p’. But some logicians in intro texts incautiously claim more — saying something like “This is cumbersome, but it works in every case” (that&...Read More ›

Valuations again
[The original version of this post misread the quoted passage from Nick Smith’s book — see his comment! I’ve edited so that his comment still fits, but so that someone browsing through and not delving into comments does...Read More ›

« It would be a great honor for my partner and I »: case deviance or enunciative progress?: Steven Shaviro remarks on an interesting grammatical phenomenon: « A grammatical thing I have been noting lately is that lots of people use &laq ...
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Logistics, Counterlogistics, and the Communist Prospect: LOGISTICS, COUNTERLOGISTICS AND THE COMMUNIST PROSPECT by Jasper Bernes What is theory for? What good is it, in the fight against capital and state? For much of the left, the Marxist le ...
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The Baby Huey Story: The Living Legend : Born on this date. Any self-respecting funkster, acid or otherwise, should have this album in their collection — but this album is far more than just that. My copy is a Japanese import and though ...
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BADIOU, DELEUZE, ET LA NÉGATIVITÉ: épistémologique ou ontologique?: Deleuze affirme paradoxalement le principe que la déterritorialisation vient en premier, en affirmation. C’est un maxime fondamental de son système. C’est aussi l ...
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IT’S NOT EASY TO BE A PLURALIST: Bruno Latour and the Filter of Catholicity: I tried to read Bruno Latour’s ideas on the Anthropocene, as explicated in his lectures FACING GAIA, against the background of his pluralist ontology (AN INQUI ...
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Chirping in Conspiracy Networks Introduction and Motivation : A timely paper by an occasional collaborator of mine, the very excellent Ted Lewis. Attempts to control the flow of information through a social network by censorship or blocking a ...
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Walker Percy, Philosopher (12) : Forthcoming: Walker Percy, Philosopher. Percy on the Allure of Violence and Destruction Brian A. Smith Anxiety concerning the decline and fall of civilization appears throughout Walker Percy’s body of work. Sm ...
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Enowning: In China Daily on philosophy in China. "The sun of philosophy rose in Greece, but should not set in Greece", [Tu Weiming] added. Its rays should be able to fall on the whole world, including countries with ancient civilizations, such as tho...
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AN APPEAL: A while ago, I had a lovely email from a woman in India who is a philosophy student and came across my Kant lectures. I have just received the appeal below from her. I never post appeals of this sort on my blog, but I decided aft...
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What Are You Reading…On the Uses of Introductory Logic: Being familiar with logic is a double-edged sword. While it teaches rules about what counts as a good argument, it can be frustrating to realize ... Read more......
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Online Philosophy Resources Weekly Update
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A Pragmatic Approach to Libertarian Free Will: 2018.08.26 : View this Review Online | View Recent NDPR Reviews John Lemos, A Pragmatic Approach to Libertarian Free Will, Routledge, 2018, 184pp., $140.00 (hbk), ISBN 9781138498037. Re...
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Tarski's Truth Definitions: [Revised entry by Wilfrid Hodges on August 20, 2018. Changes to: Main text, Bibliography] In 1933 the Polish logician Alfred Tarski published a paper in which he discussed the criteria that a definition of &rsquo...
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Adolf Reinach: [Revised entry by James DuBois and Barry Smith on August 20, 2018. Changes to: Bibliography] Adolf Reinach was a leading representative of the so-called realist tradition within phenomenology who has been described as Husserl...
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The Swampman
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Roots of a project on method: How should one do philosophy across cultures? This is not an easy question, though too many people treat it as if it is. Mid-twentieth-century answers leaned to a perennialism like Ken Wilber’s, where at so ...
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Old Glory
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Safety culture or safety behavior?: Andrew Hopkins is a much-published expert on industrial safety who has an important set of insights into the causes of industrial accidents. Much of his career has focused on the oil and gas industry, but h ...
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A Brief Post-Script on the Case of Avital Ronell: Now that the (select) details of the accusation against Avital Ronell have become public, some journalists and friends (or, rather, “friends”) asked me: do you still stand by your support for ...
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Getting it right …: After a bad day battling with my intro logic book and feeling really rather despondent about it, I stumbled over this, from Philip Roth, whose Americal Pastoral I’m currently reading: “Writing turns you into somebody ...
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Giving the Devil His Due (Liner Notes, Bill Mallonee, Rags of Absence)
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