Cristina Bicchieri, “Norms in the Wild: How to Diagnose, Measure, and Change Social Norms” (Oxford UP, 2017)
Humans engage in a wide variety of collective behaviors, ranging from simple customs like wearing a heavy coat in winter to more complex group actions, as when an audience gives applause at the close of a musical performance. Some of… Read More
Stephanie Ruphy, “Scientific Pluralism Reconsidered: A New Approach to the (Dis)unity of Science (U. Pittsburgh Press, 2017)
The idea that the sciences can’t be unified–that there will never be a single ‘theory of everything’–is the current orthodoxy in philosophy of science and in many sciences as well. But different versions of pluralism present very different views of… Read More
Ryan Muldoon, “Social Contract Theory for a Diverse World: Beyond Tolerance” (Routledge, 2017)
The idea that a political order derives its authority, legitimacy, and justification from some kind of initial agreement or contract, whether hypothetical or tacit, has been a mainstay of political philosophy, at least since Hobbes. Today, the leading approach to… Read More
Carl Gillett, “Reduction and Emergence in Science and Philosophy” (Cambridge UP, 2016)
Are complex phenomena “nothing but the sum of their parts”, or are they “more than the sum of their parts”? Physicists, chemists, and biologists as well as philosophers have long argued on both sides of this debate between the idea… Read More
Fred Feldman, “Distributive Justice: Getting What We Deserve from Our Country” (Oxford UP, 2016)
The philosopher (and 1972 presidential candidate) John Hospers once wrote, “justice is getting what one deserves. What could be simpler?” As it turns out, this seemingly simple idea is in the opinion of many contemporary political philosophers complicated enough to… Read More
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