I find Politics dangerously embarrassing.
Dangerously, because my embarrassment about it makes me
quietly leave the debate (any debate) to others.
Dangerously, because everyone should involve themselves in
politics (because politics has always already involved
itself in them, not least in the formation of them...
The having it all wars are on again. Sheryl Sandberg
Facebook's COO, is advising women to “lean in”: to
believe in themselves and be more pro-active if they want to
combine career success with a vibrant family life. Others,
such as Princeton professor Anne-Marie Slaughter,...
Our definition of community is changing. It’s crazy how
few of us know our neighbours: their names, their phone
numbers, what they’re about. The explosion of online
"social" networking has only made it easier to avoid
face-to-face contact in the real world. What might...
We’re used to treating information as ‘free’,* but the
price we pay for the illusion of ‘free’ is only workable
so long as most of the overall economy isn’t about
information. Today, we can still think of information as the
intangible enabler of communications,...
Consider the following situation: a patient in a hospital
ward posts ‘Dead’ in her/his online microblog status
update. She/he is in the final stages of a terminal illness.
She/he, or a relative/friend, posted this message using a
smart phone device from her/his hospital bed....
The Virtues Project comes as a response to the wave of
discussion and feedback that followed the publication of my
book, Religion for Atheists, and a growing sense that being
virtuous has become a strange and depressing notion, while
wickedness and evil bask in a...
I am often asked to denounce religion. At about a third of
the public talks I give, someone will suggest that the root
cause of most of our problems is irrational religious belief
– and will invite me to agree with them. My...
Many people are convinced they are someone else. In fact all
of us at some point or another have told ourselves that
we’re not really the miserable, grumpy, cynical,
obstructive or unreasonable person we appear to be it’s
just that, right now, there are...
The philosopher Daniel Dennett says that one of the
occupational hazards of being a philosopher is that you get
asked difficult questions at parties. Being solicited over
drinks for free consultancy is, of course, commonplace. If
you’re a doctor you’ll be asked to pass...
It’s easy to accept the standard story of the future: that
it’s all going to be rubbish, that vested interests will
always win out and the best you can do is get your head
down, try and beat the prevailing trend and do...
The decline of violence may be the most significant and
least appreciated development in the history of our species.
Its implications touch the core of our beliefs and values
– for what could be more fundamental than an understanding
of whether the human condition,...