January 2018

Stranger Feelings

At much insistence from my friends, I’ve started watching the Netflix hit series Stranger Things. One of the great things about the show is that it raises philosophical questions about emotions people experience when taking in frightening fictional events.

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Gender Fluidity & Social Construction

It is popular in certain circles to think of gender as a fluid spectrum: People can fall on many points between "very feminine" and "very masculine," and where they fall can change over time. But perhaps the gender spectrum is more viscose than fluid.

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Fanon, Violence, and the Struggle Against Colonialism

Frantz Fanon was quite a provocative fellow. In his most influential work, The Wretched of the Earth, Fanon says that “For the colonized, life can only materialize from the rotting cadaver of the colonist.”

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Is there a real you?

Often we are told that spending time alone, meditating, taking the Meyers-Briggs test, or traveling abroad can aid us in our paths to "self-discovery." But to what lengths must any one person go to achieve this—to discover herself? And is there even such a thing as a "self" for one to discover? 

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What props up morality?

Is morality like a leaning tower, with virtue increasing as the floors increase? If so, how would the tower be supported, especially considering self-sacrficing altruistic behavior, a type of behavior at the very top?

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Fractured Identities

What does it mean to have a fractured identity? And what can we do when our sense of self is fractured? Can we choose from the many parts which aspect to identify with? Is it up to us? Or is identity something foisted upon us by others?

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Do Victims Have Obligations?

While victims may not be responsible for being chosen as the unlucky targets of perpetrators or unfortunate circumstances, once they escape their immediate ordeal, victims play an important role in restoring justice by holding perpetrators to account or informing bystanders and potential victims.

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[VIDEO] The Slippery Slope

When is the slippery slope argument fallacious and when is it—if ever—compelling? This video from Wireless Philosophy gives a helpful explanation of the slippery slope argument and how to avoid committing a logical fallacy.

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The Art of Non-Violence

This week we're asking about the Art of Non-violence. And it is an art -- the trick is knowing when and where it will actually work. After all, it looks like it’s worked just about everywhere it’s been seriously tried: non-violence brought down apartheid in South Africa, Jim Crow in America, and British Colonialism in India. 

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The Puzzle of Possibility

Now that we’ve launched into 2018, many of us are wondering what the year ahead has in store. What might happen, to you, your loved ones, the nation or the world as a whole? There seem to be a lot of possibilities, some to be hoped for and others to be feared.

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How to Keep Your 2018 Resolutions

Hint: It's not about willpower.

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Thoughts on Retirement

Retirement, as we think of it, goes like this. A person has a right, or maybe a duty, but at least a choice, to retire at a certain age, and between the government, his or her employers, and their own diligence, should have a pension to live on for the rest of their days.

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