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Taking An Anti-reductionist Turn

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Taking An Anti-reductionist Turn

  1. 1. Taking An Anti-Reductionist Turn Lewis
  2. 2. Philosophy is often a matter of finding a suitable context inwhich to say the obvious. Iris MurdochThe point of philosophy is to start with something sosimple as not to seem worth stating, and to end withsomething so paradoxical that no one will believe it. Bertrand Russell
  3. 3. From whence I come BSc - Human Biology PhD - AnatomyMA - History of Philosophy
  4. 4. My research is concerned with exploring the biological andphilosophical aspects of the concepts ofdisease and health and considering theuses and applications of these findings.
  5. 5. An essentialist position holds that not all of an objectsproperties are of equal signification – that is, some are essential to its being what it is, whereas others are accidental. For example, one might argue that thepossession of pages is an essential feature if we are to call something a book, whereas the precise colour of those pages is accidental. The main problem with anessentialist position is that of establishing the grounds upon which to base the distinctions one makesbetween essential and accidental features. It does not necessarily follow that what one knows intuitivelycan be easily supported by a rational argument. There are always what ifs with which to contend.
  6. 6. Historically, the focus of philosophical interest in medicinehas been on its ethics, to the neglect of its logic,epistemology, and metaphysics. As a result, no philosophyof medicine exists comparable to the extant philosophiesof science, law, religion, politics, history, or art. Edmund Pellegrino
  7. 7. Darwinian medicine is the enterprise of trying to findevolutionary explanations for vulnerabilities todisease. Randolph NesseNesse contends that since, according to Dobzhanskynothing in biology makes sense except in the light ofevolution, the same must also be true of medicinesince biology is a basic science underpinning medicine.
  8. 8. What is it like to be exposed to selection pressures? What forms do such pressures take in daily life? How do we even begin to investigate questions such as these?
  9. 9. As taught in Nat Sci 2, science was a liberal art, away of knowing. We were taught how, throughscience, we could go about answering importantphilosophical questions ...There science facilitated the query of profoundquestions where philosophy and science merge ... Lynn Margulis
  10. 10. It seems to be physics that most often gets associated with thereally questions about life, the universe and everything.While there may be some perks to studying physics …
  11. 11. … of the sciences, it is biology that may be bestsuited to the enterprise to which Margulis refers. However,it depends very much on the way in which it isundertaken. Its not just a matter of worrying about words. What is needed is a philosophy of the object. (à la Georges Canguilhem (1904-1995))
  12. 12. What I did most recently. (i.e. the last couple of weeks)
  13. 13. Where Im going To be a Lockeone must also learn from Hume

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