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All Topic Reviews
A Theory of Feelings Anger and Forgiveness Philosophizing Madness from Nietzsche to Derrida"My Madness Saved Me"10 Good Questions about Life and Death12 Modern Philosophers50 Reasons People Give for Believing in a GodA Cabinet of Philosophical CuriositiesA Case for IronyA Companion to BioethicsA Companion to Buddhist PhilosophyA Companion to FoucaultA Companion to GenethicsA Companion to GenethicsA Companion to HumeA Companion to KantA Companion to Phenomenology and ExistentialismA Companion to PragmatismA Companion to the Philosophy of ActionA Companion to the Philosophy of BiologyA Companion to the Philosophy of LiteratureA Conceptual History of PsychologyA Critical Overview of Biological FunctionsA Critique of Naturalistic Philosophies of MindA Cursing Brain?A Decent LifeA Delicate BalanceA Farewell to AlmsA Fragile LifeA Frightening LoveA Future for PresentismA Guide to the Good LifeA History of PsychiatryA History of the MindA Life Worth LivingA Manual of Experimental PhilosophyA Map of the MindA Metaphysics of PsychopathologyA Mind So RareA Minimal LibertarianismA Natural History of Human MoralityA Natural History of Human ThinkingA Natural History of VisionA Parliament of MindsA Philosopher Looks at The Sense of HumorA Philosophical DiseaseA Philosophy for the Science of Well-BeingA Philosophy of BoredomA Philosophy of Cinematic ArtA Philosophy of CultureA Philosophy of EmptinessA Philosophy of FearA Philosophy of PainA Physicalist ManifestoA Place for ConsciousnessA Question of TrustA Research Agenda for DSM-VA Revolution of the MindA Sentimentalist Theory of the MindA Stroll With William JamesA Tapestry of ValuesA Tear is an Intellectual ThingA Theory of FreedomA Theory of Jerks and Other Philosophical MisadventuresA Thousand MachinesA Universe of ConsciousnessA Very Bad WizardA Very Bad Wizard: Morality Behind the CurtainA Virtue EpistemologyA World Full of GodsA World Without ValuesAbout FaceAbout the Beginning of the Hermeneutics of the SelfAction and ResponsibilityAction in ContextAction Theory, Rationality and CompulsionAction, Contemplation, and HappinessAction, Emotion and WillAdam SmithAdaptive DynamicsAddictionAddictionAddiction and ResponsibilityAddiction and Self-ControlAddiction Is a ChoiceAdvances in Identity Theory and ResearchAftermathAfterwarAgainst AdaptationAgainst AutonomyAgainst BioethicsAgainst HappinessAgainst HealthAgainst MarriageAgency and ActionAgency and AnswerabilityAgency and EmbodimentAgency and ResponsibilityAgency, Freedom, and Moral ResponsibilityAl-JununAlain BadiouAlain BadiouAlasdair MacIntyreAlien Landscapes?Altered EgosAmbivalenceAmbivalenceAn Anthology of Psychiatric EthicsAn Ethics for TodayAn Intellectual History of CannibalismAn Interpretation of DesireAn Introduction to EthicsAn Introduction to Kant's Moral Philosophy An Introduction to Philosophy of EducationAn Introduction to the Philosophy of MindAn Introduction to the Philosophy of MindAn Introduction to the Philosophy of PsychologyAn Introductory Philosophy of MedicineAn Odd Kind of FameAnalytic FreudAnalytic Philosophy in AmericaAncient AngerAncient Models of MindAncient Philosophy of the SelfAngerAnimal LessonsAnimal MindsAnimals Like UsAnnihilationAnother PlanetAnswers for AristotleAnti-ExternalismAnti-Individualism and KnowledgeAntigone’s ClaimAntipsychiatryAre We Hardwired?Are Women Human?Arguing about DisabilityArguing About Human NatureAristotle and the Philosophy of FriendshipAristotle on Practical WisdomAristotle's ChildrenAristotle's Ethics and Moral ResponsibilityAristotle's WayAristotle, Emotions, and EducationArt & MoralityArt After Conceptual ArtArt in Three DimensionsArt, Self and KnowledgeArtificial ConsciousnessArtificial HappinessAspects of PsychologismAsylum to ActionAt the Existentialist CaféAtonement and ForgivenessAttention is Cognitive UnisonAutobiography as PhilosophyAutonomyAutonomy and Mental DisorderAutonomy and the Challenges to LiberalismBabies by DesignBackslidingBadiouBadiou's DeleuzeBadiou, Balibar, Ranciere: Rethinking EmancipationBare Facts And Naked TruthsBasic Desert, Reactive Attitudes and Free WillBattlestar Galactica and PhilosophyBe Like the FoxBeautyBecoming a SubjectBecoming HumanBefore ConsciousnessBehavingBehavioral Genetics in the Postgenomic EraBeing AmoralBeing HumanBeing Mentally Ill: A Sociological Theory Being No OneBeing Realistic about ReasonsBeing ReducedBeing YourselfBelief's Own EthicsBending Over BackwardsBerlin Childhood around 1900Bernard WilliamsBertrand RussellBest ExplanationsBetter than BothBetter Than WellBetween Two WorldsBeyond HealthBeyond Hegel and NietzscheBeyond KuhnBeyond LossBeyond MelancholyBeyond Moral JudgmentBeyond PostmodernismBeyond ReductionBeyond SchizophreniaBeyond the DSM StoryBioethicsBioethics and the BrainBioethics in the ClinicBiological Complexity and Integrative PluralismBiology Is TechnologyBiosBipolar ExpeditionsBlackwell Companion to the Philosophy of EducationBlindsight & The Nature of ConsciousnessBlues - Philosophy for EveryoneBlushBob Dylan and PhilosophyBody ConsciousnessBody Image And Body SchemaBody ImagesBody LanguageBody MattersBody WorkBody-Subjects and Disordered MindsBoundBoundaries of the MindBoyleBrain Evolution and CognitionBrain FictionBrain, Mind, and Human Behavior in Contemporary Cognitive ScienceBrain-WiseBrainchildrenBrains, Buddhas, and BelievingBrainstormingBrave New WorldsBreakdown of WillBrief Child Therapy Homework PlannerBrief Inquiry into the Meaning of Sin and FaithBrief Therapy Homework PlannerBritain on the CouchBritish Idealism and the Concept of the SelfBrute RationalityBuffy the Vampire Slayer and PhilosophyBut Is It Art?Camus and SartreCan Animals Be Persons?Cartesian LinguisticsCartographies of the MindCarving Nature at Its JointsCase Studies in Biomedical Research EthicsCassandra's DaughterCategories We Live ByCato's TearsCausation and CounterfactualsCauses, Laws, and Free WillChanging Conceptions of the Child from the Renaissance to Post-ModernityChanging the SubjectChaosophyCharacter and Moral Psychology Character as Moral FictionCharles DarwinCharles S. Peirce's PhenomenologyCherishmentChildhood and the Philosophy of EducationChildrenChildren, Families, and Health Care Decision MakingChoices and ConflictChoosing Not to ChooseChristmas - Philosophy for EveryoneCinema, Philosophy, BergmanCinematic MythmakingCity and Soul in Plato's RepublicClassifying MadnessClear and Queer ThinkingClinical EthicsClinical Psychiatry in Imperial GermanyCodependent ForevermoreCoffee - Philosophy for EveryoneCognition and the BrainCognition of Value in Aristotle's EthicsCognition Through Understanding: Self-Knowledge, Interlocution, Reasoning, ReflectionCognitive BiologyCognitive FictionsCognitive Neuroscience of EmotionCognitive Systems and the Extended MindCognitive Systems and the Extended Mind Cognitive Theories of Mental IllnessCoherence in Thought and ActionCollected Papers, Volume 1Collected Papers, Volume 2College SexComedy IncarnateCommitmentCommunicative Action and Rational ChoiceCompassionate Moral RealismCompetence, Condemnation, and CommitmentConcealment And ExposureConcepts and Causes in the Philosophy of DiseaseConceptual Analysis and Philosophical NaturalismConceptual Art and PaintingConceptual Issues in Evolutionary BiologyConfessionsConfucianismConnected, or What It Means to Live in the Network SocietyConquest of AbundanceConscience and ConvenienceConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousnessConsciousness ConsciousnessConsciousness and Fundamental RealityConsciousness and Its Place in NatureConsciousness and LanguageConsciousness and Mental LifeConsciousness and MindConsciousness and the NovelConsciousness and the SelfConsciousness EmergingConsciousness EvolvingConsciousness ExplainedConsciousness in ActionConsciousness RecoveredConsciousness RevisitedConsciousness, Color, and ContentConsole and ClassifyConstructing the WorldConstructive AnalysisContemporary Debates In Applied EthicsContemporary Debates in Moral TheoryContemporary Debates in Philosophy of BiologyContemporary Debates in Philosophy of MindContemporary Debates in Political PhilosophyContemporary Debates in Social PhilosophyContemporary Perspectives on Natural LawContested Knowledge: Social Theory TodayContesting PsychiatryContext and the AttitudesContinental Philosophy of ScienceControlControlling Our DestiniesConversations About Psychology and Sexual OrientationCopernicus, Darwin and FreudCrazy for YouCreating a Life of Meaning and CompassionCreating ConsilienceCreating HysteriaCreating Mental IllnessCreating Scientific ConceptsCreating the American JunkieCreation, Rationality and AutonomyCreatures Like Us?Crime and CulpabilityCrime, Punishment, and Mental IllnessCrimes of ReasonCritical New Perspectives on Attention Deficit/Hyperactivity DisorderCritical PsychiatryCritical PsychologyCritical ResistanceCritical Thinking About PsychologyCritical VisionsCross and KhoraCruel CompassionCTRL [SPACE]Cultural Psychology of the SelfCultural Theory: An IntroductionCulture and Psychiatric DiagnosisCulture and Subjective Well-BeingCulture of DeathCultures of NeurastheniaCurious EmotionsCurrent Controversies in Experimental PhilosophyCurrent Controversies in Values and ScienceCustom and Reason in HumeCustomers and Patrons of the Mad-TradeCutting God in Half - And Putting the Pieces Together AgainCylons in AmericaDamaged IdentitiesDamasio's Error and Descartes' TruthDangerous EmotionsDaniel DennettDaniel DennettDark AgesDarwin and DesignDarwin's Dangerous IdeaDarwin's LegacyDarwin, God and the Meaning of LifeDarwinian PsychiatryDarwinian ReductionismDarwinizing CultureDating: Philosophy for EveryoneDeathDeathDeath and CharacterDeath and CompassionDeath and the AfterlifeDebating DesignDebating HumanismDecision Making, Personhood and DementiaDecomposing the WillDeconstructing PsychotherapyDeconstruction and DemocracyDeeper Than DarwinDeeper than ReasonDefending Science - within ReasonDefining Psychopathology in the 21st CenturyDegrees of BeliefDeleuze and the Concepts of CinemaDelusion and Self-DeceptionDelusions and BeliefsDelusions and Other Irrational BeliefsDelusions and the Madness of the MassesDementiaDemons, Dreamers, and MadmenDennett and Ricoeur on the Narrative SelfDennett’s PhilosophyDepression Is a ChoiceDepression, Emotion and the SelfDepthDerrida, Deleuze, PsychoanalysisDescartesDescartes and the Passionate MindDescartes' CogitoDescartes's Changing MindDescartes's Concept of MindDescribing Inner Experience?Descriptions and PrescriptionsDesembodied Spirits and Deanimated Bodies Desert Islands and Other Texts (1953-1974)Desire and AffectDesire, Love, and IdentityDesire, Practical Reason, and the GoodDeveloping the VirtuesDiagnosing the Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental DisordersDialectics of the SelfDid My Neurons Make Me Do It?Difference and IdentityDigital SoulDimensional Models of Personality DisordersDisability, Difference, DiscriminationDisjunctivismDisorders of VolitionDisorientation and Moral LifeDispatches from the Freud WarsDisrupted LivesDistractionDisturbed ConsciousnessDivided Minds and Successive SelvesDo Apes Read Minds?Do Fish Feel Pain?Do We Still Need Doctors?Does Consciousness Cause Behavior?Does the Woman Exist?Doing PhilosophyDoing without ConceptsDon't be FooledDon't Believe Everything You ThinkDonald DavidsonDonald Davidson on Truth, Meaning, and the MentalDoubting Darwin?Down GirlDreaming and Other Involuntary MentationDSM-IV SourcebookDSM-IV SourcebookDSM-IV-TR CasebookDworkin and His CriticsDying to KnowDynamics in ActionDysthymia and the Spectrum of Chronic DepressionsEccentricsEducational MetamorphosesEffective IntentionsElbow Room: The Varieties of Free Will Worth WantingEmbodied Minds in ActionEmbodied RhetoricsEmbodied Selves and Divided MindsEmbryos under the MicroscopeEmergencies in Mental Health PracticeEmerging Conceptual, Ethical and Policy Issues in BionanotechnologyEmotionEmotion and ConsciousnessEmotion and PsycheEmotion ExperienceEmotion RegulationEmotion, Evolution, And RationalityEmotional IntelligenceEmotional ReasonEmotional ReasonEmotional TruthEmotions in Humans and ArtifactsEmotions in the Moral LifeEmotions in the Moral LifeEmotions, Value, and AgencyEmpathyEmpathy and AgencyEmpathy and Moral DevelopmentEmpathy and MoralityEmpathy in the Context of PhilosophyEmpirical Ethics in PsychiatryEnactivist InterventionsEnchanted LoomsEngaging BuddhismEngineering the Human GermlineEnjoymentEnvyEpicureanismEpistemic LuckEpistemologyEpistemology and EmotionsEpistemology and the Psychology of Human JudgmentEros and the GoodErotic MoralityEssays in Social NeuroscienceEssays in the Metaphysics of Mind Essays on Derek Parfit's On What MattersEssays on Free Will and Moral ResponsibilityEssays on Nonconceptual ContentEssays on Philosophical CounselingEssays on Reference, Language, and MindEssays on the Concept of Mind in Early-Modern PhilosophyEssential Sources in the Scientific Study of ConsciousnessEsssential Philosophy of PsychiatryEternal Sunshine of the Spotless MindEthical Conflicts in PsychologyEthical Issues in Forensic Mental Health ResearchEthical Issues in Human CloningEthical TheoryEthicsEthicsEthics and the A PrioriEthics and the Metaphysics of MedicineEthics and Values in PsychotherapyEthics Beyond the LimitsEthics Done RightEthics ExpertiseEthics in Plain EnglishEthics in PracticeEthics in Psychiatric ResearchEthics of PsychiatryEthics without OntologyEuropean Review of Philosophy. Vol. 5Everyday IrrationalityEvil in Modern ThoughtEvolutionEvolution and the Human MindEvolution's RainbowEvolutionary Origins of MoralityEvolutionary PsychologyExamined LifeExamined LivesExistential AmericaExistentialismExistentialism and Romantic LoveExperimental PhilosophyExperimental PhilosophyExperimental PhilosophyExperimental Philosophy, Rationalism, and NaturalismExperiments in EthicsExplaining ConsciousnessExplaining the BrainExplaining the Computational MindExplanatory PluralismExploding the Gene MythExploring HappinessExploring the SelfExpression and the InnerExpressions of JudgmentExtraordinary Science and PsychiatryFaces of IntentionFact and ValueFact and Value in EmotionFacts and ValuesFacts, Values, and NormsFads and Fallacies in the Social SciencesFaith and Wisdom in ScienceFatherhoodFear of KnowledgeFearless SpeechFeeling Pain and Being in PainFeelings and EmotionsFeelings of BeingFellow CreaturesFellow-Feeling and the Moral LifeFeminism and Its DiscontentsFeminism and Philosophy of ScienceFeminist Ethics and Social and Political PhilosophyFeminist Interpretations of Rene DescartesFeminist TheoryField Notes from ElsewhereFinding Consciousness in the BrainFingerprints of GodFlesh in the Age of ReasonFolk Psychological NarrativesFolk Psychology Re-AssessedForces of HabitForgivenessForgiveness and LoveForgiveness and RetributionFoucault 2.0Foucault and PhilosophyFoucault NowFoucault, Psychology and the Analytics of PowerFoundational Issues in Human Brain MappingFoundations of Ethical Practice, Research, and Teaching in PsychologyFour Views on Free WillFrank Ramsey (1903-1930)Free WillFree WillFree WillFree WillFree Will and Action ExplanationFree Will and LuckFree Will And Moral ResponsibilityFree Will as an Open Scientific ProblemFree Will, Agency, and Meaning in LifeFree: Why Science Hasn't Disproved Free WillFreedomFreedom and DeterminismFreedom And NeurobiologyFreedom and ResponsibiltyFreedom and ValueFreedom EvolvesFreedom RegainedFreedom vs. InterventionFreedom, Fame, Lying, and BetrayalFreudFreud and the Question of PseudoscienceFreud As PhilosopherFreud's AnswerFreud, the Reluctant PhilosopherFriedrich NietzscheFrom Chance to ChoiceFrom Clinic to ClassroomFrom Complexity to LifeFrom Enlightenment to ReceptivityFrom Knowledge to Wisdom: A Revolution for Science and the HumanitiesFrom Morality to Mental HealthFrom Passions to EmotionsFrom Philosophy to PsychotherapyFrom Valuing to ValueFrontiers of ConsciousnessFrontiers of JusticeFurnishing the MindGalileo in PittsburghGenderGender and Mental HealthGender in the MirrorGender TroubleGenesGenes, Women, EqualityGenetic Nature/CultureGenetic ProspectsGenetic ProspectsGenetic SecretsGenocide's AftermathGenomes and What to Make of ThemGerman Idealism and the JewGerman PhilosophyGetting HookedGilles DeleuzeGlobal PhilosophyGluttonyGod and Phenomenal ConsciousnessGoffman's LegacyGoing Amiss in Experimental ResearchGoodness & AdviceGrassroots SpiritualityGrave MattersGrave MattersGreedGreek Models of Mind and SelfGut ReactionsHabilitation, Health, and AgencyHabits of MindHallucinationHandbook of BioethicsHandbook of EmotionsHappinessHappinessHappinessHappinessHappiness and EducationHappiness and the Good LifeHappiness Is OverratedHappiness, Death, and the Remainder of LifeHard LuckHarmful ThoughtsHaving the World in ViewHealing PsychiatryHealing the Soul in the Age of the BrainHealth, Illness and DiseaseHealth, Science, and Ordinary LanguageHegelHeidegger and a Metaphysics of FeelingHeidegger, Metaphysics and the Univocity of BeingHellenistic PhilosophyHermann von Helmholtz's MechanismHermeneutics As PoliticsHeterophobiaHeterosyncraciesHeuristics and BiasesHeuristics and the LawHidden ResourcesHidden SelvesHiding from HumanityHigh Art LiteHistorical OntologyHistory of Psychiatry and Medical PsychologyHistory, Historicity And ScienceHobbesHomosexualitiesHope and Dread in PsychoanalysisHot ThoughtHow Can I Be Trusted?How Can the Human Mind Occur in the Physical Universe?How Children Learn the Meanings of WordsHow Could Conscious Experiences Affect Brains?How Do We Know Who We Are?How Emotions WorkHow Emotions WorkHow History Made the MindHow Images ThinkHow is Nature Possible?How Propaganda WorksHow Science WorksHow Scientific Practices MatterHow Scientists Explain DiseaseHow The Body Shapes The MindHow the Body Shapes the Way We ThinkHow the Mind Explains BehaviorHow the Mind Uses the BrainHow to Be a StoicHow to Make Opportunity EqualHow to Solve the Mind-Body Problemhow to stop timeHow to Think More About SexHow We HopeHow We ReasonHuman CloningHuman Development, Language and the Future of MankindHuman EnhancementHuman Evolution, Reproduction, and MoralityHuman GoodnessHuman Identity and BioethicsHuman NatureHuman NatureHuman Nature and the Limits of ScienceHuman-Built WorldHumanismHumanism, What's That?HumanityHumans, Animals, MachinesHumeHumeHumeHume on Motivation and VirtueHume's True ScepticismHume’s Moral Philosophy and Contemporary PsychologyHusserlHystoriesI Am Dynamite!I of the VortexI Was WrongIdeas that MatterIdentifying the MindIdentity and Agency in Cultural WorldsIgnorance and ImaginationIllnessIllnessImagination and Its PathologiesImagination and the Meaningful BrainImagining NumbersImmortal RemainsImproving Nature?In Defense of an Evolutionary Concept of HealthIn Defense of SentimentalityIn Love With LifeIn Praise of Athletic BeautyIn Praise of DesireIn Praise of Natural PhilosophyIn Praise of the WhipIn Pursuit of HappinessIn Search of HappinessIn the Name of GodIn the Name of IdentityIn the Space of ReasonsIn the SwarmIn Two MindsInclusive EthicsIncompatibilism's AllureIndividual Differences in Conscious ExperienceInfinity and PerspectiveInformation ArtsInformed Consent in Medical ResearchIngmar Bergman, Cinematic PhilosopherInhuman ThoughtsInner PresenceInsanityIntegrating Psychotherapy and PharmacotherapyIntegrity and the Fragile SelfIntelligent VirtueIntentionIntentionality, Deliberation and AutonomyIntentions and IntentionalityIntentions and IntentionalityInterpreting MindsInterpreting NietzscheIntroducing Greek PhilosophyIntrospection and ConsciousnessIntrospection VindicatedIntuition, Imagination, and Philosophical MethodologyIntuitionismInvestigating the Psychological WorldIrrationalityIrrationalityIs Academic Feminism Dead?Is It Me or My Meds?Is Long-Term Therapy Unethical?Is Oedipus Online?Is Science Neurotic?Is Science Value Free?Is the Visual World a Grand Illusion?Is There a Duty to Die?Issues in Philosophical CounselingJacques LacanJacques RancièreJacques RanciereJean-Paul SartreJohn McDowellJohn SearleJohn Searle's Ideas About Social RealityJohn Stuart MillJohn Stuart Mill and the Writing of CharacterJoint AttentionJokesJonathan EdwardsJudging and UnderstandingJustice for ChildrenJustice in RobesJustice, Luck, and KnowledgeKantKant and MiltonKant and the Fate of AutonomyKant and the Limits of AutonomyKant and the Role of Pleasure in Moral ActionKant on Freedom, Law, and HappinessKant on Moral AutonomyKant's Anatomy of EvilKant's Anatomy of the Intelligent MindKant's Theory of VirtueKarl JaspersKarl PopperKarl Popper, Science and EnlightenmentKey Concepts in PhilosophyKierkegaardKierkegaard as PhenomenologistKierkegaard's Concept of DespairKierkegaard's MuseKinds of MindsKinds, Things, and StuffKnowing EmotionsKnowing, Knowledge and BeliefsKnowledge MonopoliesKnowledge, Belief, and CharacterKnowledge, Possibility, and ConsciousnessLacanLack of CharacterLack of CharacterLanguageLanguage in ContextLanguage, Consciousness, CultureLanguage, Culture, and MindLanguage, Vision, and MusicLaw and the BrainLaw, Liberty, and PsychiatryLaws, Mind, and Free WillLeaving YouLectures on the History of Political PhilosophyLevelling the Playing FieldLiberal Education in a Knowledge SocietyLiberatory PsychiatryLife and ActionLife at the Texas State Lunatic Asylum, 1857-1997Life Is Not a Game of PerfectLife of the MindLife's FormLife's ValuesLife, Death, & MeaningLife, Death, and Meaning: Key Philosophical Readings on the Big Questions Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of UtilityLife, Sex, and IdeasLight in the Dark RoomLike a Splinter in Your MindLiving and Dying WellLiving NarrativeLiving Outside Mental IllnessLiving with DarwinLiving With One’s PastLockeLocke LockeLogic and the Art of Memory Loneliness in Philosophy, Psychology, and LiteratureLooking for SpinozaLooking for The StrangerLost in DialogueLost SoulsLOT 2LoveLoveLove's ConfusionsLove's VisionLove, Friendship, and the SelfLove, Sex & TragedyLuckyLudwig WittgensteinLustLyingMachine ConsciousnessMad for FoucaultMad TravelersMade with WordsMadness And Death In PhilosophyMadness and DemocracyMadness at HomeMadness Is CivilizationMaking Natural KnowledgeMaking Sense of EvolutionMaking Sense of Freedom and ResponsibilityMaking the DSM-5Making the Social WorldMaking TruthMale Female EmailMan, Beast, and ZombieMandated Reporting of Suspected Child AbuseManiaManic Depression and CreativityMapping the Edges and the In-betweenMapping the Future of BiologyMarcus AureliusMaster PassionsMatters of the MindMe++Meaning and Moral OrderMeaning and Value in a Secular AgeMeaning in LifeMeaning in Life and Why It MattersMeaning, Basic Self-Knowledge, and MindMeanings of ArtMeasuring HappinessMeasuring PsychopathologyMedia MadnessMedical Enhancement and PosthumanityMedical NihilismMedical ReasoningMedicine and Philosophy in Classical AntiquityMedicine of the PersonMedicine, Mental Health, Religion, Science and Well-BeingMeditations on Self-Discipline and FailureMelancholy And the Care of the SoulMelancholy and the Otherness of GodMementoMemory and NarrativeMental ActionsMental CausationMental Causation and OntologyMental HealthMental Health At The CrossroadsMental Health Policy in BritainMerit, Meaning, and Human BondageMerleau-PontyMerleau-Ponty and the Possibilities of PhilosophyMetacognition and Theory of MindMetacreationMetaethical SubjectivismMetaethicsMetal and FleshMetaphors of MemoryMetapoliticsMethods in MindMichel FoucaultMidlifeMill's UtilitarianismMindMindMindMind and ConsciousnessMind and CosmosMind and MechanismMind GamesMind in a Physical WorldMind in Everyday Life and Cognitive ScienceMind in LifeMind the BodyMind TimeMind's LandscapeMind, Brain and the Elusive SoulMind, Brain, and Free WillMind, Reason and ImaginationMinding MindsMindreadersMindreading AnimalsMinds and PersonsMinds, Brains, and LawMinds, Ethics, and ConditionalsMindshapingMindsightMindworldsMirror, MirrorMixed FeelingsMockingbird YearsModels of the SelfModern Social ImaginariesModern Theories of JusticeModernity and SubjectivityModernity and TechnologyMoody Minds DistemperedMoral BrainsMoral DimensionsMoral FailureMoral ImaginationMoral LiteracyMoral MachinesMoral ParticularismMoral PsychologyMoral Psychology and Human AgencyMoral Psychology, Volume 1Moral Psychology, Volume 2Moral Psychology, Volume 3Moral Psychology: Volume IVMoral RepairMoral Responsibility and Alternative PossibilitiesMoral TribesMoral Value and Human DiversityMorality and Self-InterestMorality in a Natural WorldMorality, Moral Luck and ResponsibilityMotherhoodMotive and RightnessMoving Beyond Prozac, DSM, and the New PsychiatryMultiple Analogies in Science and PhilosophyMultiple Identities & False MemoriesMusic, Madness, and the Unworking of LanguageMy Brain Made Me Do ItMy Double UnveiledMy WayNarrativeNarrative and IdentityNarrative MedicineNarrative PsychiatryNarrative Theory and the Cognitive SciencesNatural Ethical FactsNatural Kinds and Conceptual ChangeNatural MindsNatural-Born CybogsNaturalism and the First-Person PerspectiveNaturalism and the Human ConditionNaturalism in the Philosophy of HealthNaturalism in the Philosophy of HealthNaturalized BioethicsNaturalizing the MindNatureNature and NarrativeNear Death ExperienceNeither Bad nor MadNeither Victim nor SurvivorNeuro-Philosophy and the Healthy MindNeuroethicsNeuroethicsNeuroexistentialismNeurological Foundations of Cognitive Neuroscience Neurophilosophy at WorkNeurophilosophy of Free WillNeuropoliticsNeuropsychoanalysis in PracticeNeuroscience and PhilosophyNew Essays on the Explanation of ActionNew Philosophy for a New MediaNew Versions of VictimsNew Waves in Philosophy of ActionNietzscheNietzsche and Buddhist PhilosophyNietzsche and PsychotherapyNietzsche and Suffered Social HistoriesNietzsche on Ethics and PoliticsNietzsche's TherapyNietzsche, Culture and EducationNietzsche: The Man and His PhilosophyNihil UnboundNihilismNoir AnxietyNormative EthicsNormativityNorms of NatureNotebooks 1951-1959Notes Toward a Performative Theory of AssemblyNothing So AbsurdOblivionOn AnxietyOn ApologyOn Being AuthenticOn Being AuthenticOn BeliefOn BetrayalOn BullshitOn DelusionOn DesireOn EmotionsOn HashishOn Human NatureOn Human RightsOn Loving Our EnemiesOn Nature and LanguageOn PersonalityOn ReflectionOn Romantic LoveOn the EmotionsOn the Freud WatchOn the Government of the LivingOn the Human ConditionOn the InternetOn the Meaning of LifeOn the Philosophy of LawOn the Pragmatics of CommunicationOn the Punitive SocietyOn TruthOn Virtue EthicsOn What MattersOn What We Owe to Each OtherOne Hundred DaysOnflowOnly a Promise of HappinessOntology of ConsciousnessOpen MindedOpen Your EyesOrgans without BodiesOther MindsOur Last Great IllusionOur Own MindsOur Posthuman FutureOur StoriesOut of Its MindOut of Our HeadsOxford Guide to the MindOxford Handbook of Psychiatric EthicsOxford Studies in Experimental PhilosophyOxford Studies in Normative EthicsOxford Studies in Normative Ethics, Volume 7Oxford Textbook of Philosophy of PsychiatryPanic DisorderPanpsychismPanpsychism in the WestPartialityPassionate EnginesPassionate EnginesPathologies of BeliefPathologies of ReasonPatient Autonomy and the Ethics of ResponsibilityPC, M.D.Perceiving the WorldPerception & CognitionPerception and Basic BeliefsPerception, Hallucination, and IllusionPerceptual ExperiencePerfecting VirtuePerplexities of ConsciousnessPersistencePersonal AutonomyPersonal Autonomy in SocietyPersonal IdentityPersonal Identity and EthicsPersonal Identity and Fractured SelvesPersonhood and Health CarePersonsPersons and BodiesPersons, Humanity, and the Definition of DeathPersons, Souls and DeathPerspectives on ImitationPerspectives on PragmatismPessimismPhenomenal Concepts and Phenomenal KnowledgePhenomenal ConsciousnessPhenomenal IntentionalityPhenomenologyPhenomenology and ExistentialismPhenomenology and Philosophy of MindPhenomenology of IllnessPhilosophersPhilosophers on MusicPhilosophers without GodsPhilosophical CounselingPhilosophical Counselling and the UnconsciousPhilosophical DevicesPhilosophical Foundations of NeurosciencePhilosophical History and the Problem of ConsciousnessPhilosophical Issues in PharmaceuticsPhilosophical Issues in PsychiatryPhilosophical Issues in PsychiatryPhilosophical Issues in Psychiatry IIPhilosophical MethodologyPhilosophical MidwiferyPhilosophical Myths of the FallPhilosophical Perspectives on DepictionPhilosophical Perspectives on Technology and PsychiatryPhilosophical PracticePhilosophical Reflections on DisabilityPhilosophizing About Sex Philosophizing the EverydayPhilosophy and HappinessPhilosophy and LivingPhilosophy and PsychiatryPhilosophy and PsychotherapyPhilosophy and Science FictionPhilosophy and the EmotionsPhilosophy and the EmotionsPhilosophy and the Interpretation of Pop CulturePhilosophy and the Moving ImagePhilosophy and the NeurosciencesPhilosophy and This Actual WorldPhilosophy As FictionPhilosophy BitesPhilosophy Bites BackPhilosophy for Counselling and PsychotherapyPhilosophy for LifePhilosophy in a New CenturyPhilosophy in an Age of SciencePhilosophy in Children's LiteraturePhilosophy in the Roman EmpirePhilosophy of ActionPhilosophy of ActionPhilosophy of Action from Suarez to AnscombePhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BiologyPhilosophy of BodyPhilosophy of Film and Motion PicturesPhilosophy of LovePhilosophy of Love, Sex, and MarriagePhilosophy of Love, Sex, and Marriage: An IntroductionPhilosophy of MedicinePhilosophy of MindPhilosophy of Mind and CognitionPhilosophy of Personal Identity and Multiple PersonalityPhilosophy of PsychologyPhilosophy of Public HealthPhilosophy of SciencePhilosophy of SciencePhilosophy of Sex and LovePhilosophy of Technology: The Technological ConditionPhilosophy of the Social SciencesPhilosophy on TapPhilosophy PracticePhilosophy the Day after TomorrowPhilosophy Within Its Proper BoundsPhilosophy's Role in Counseling and PsychotherapyPhilosophy, Neuroscience and ConsciousnessPhilosophy, Politics, DemocracyPhotography and PhilosophyPhysical RealizationPhysicalism and Its DiscontentsPhysicalism and Mental CausationPhysicalism, or Something Near EnoughPhysician-Assisted DyingPillar of SaltPin-up GrrrlsPlanning, Time, and Self-GovernancePlant MindsPlatoPlatoPlato, Not Prozac!Platonic Ethics, Old and NewPleasurePluralistic CasuistryPolarities of ExperiencesPolitical EmotionsPopper, Objectivity and the Growth of KnowledgePornPorn StudiesPornographyPornography, Sex, and FeminismPortrait of the Psychiatrist as a Young ManPositive NihilismPost-TruthPostcolonial DisordersPostpsychiatryPosttraumatic Stress DisorderPower and the SelfPower SplitPractical Autonomy and BioethicsPractical ConflictsPractical Identity and Narrative AgencyPractical PhilosophyPractical RulesPractical Tortoise RaisingPractically ProfoundPracticing Feminist Ethics in PsychologyPragmatic BioethicsPragmatismPragmatism, Old And NewPraise and BlamePredicative MindsPreferences and Well-BeingPrescriptions for the MindPresocraticsPrimary and Secondary QualitiesPrimates and PhilosophersPrimitive ColorsPrivacyPrivileged AccessProblems in MindProblems of RationalityProzac As a Way of LifeProzac BacklashProzac on the CouchPsyche and EthosPsyche and SomaPsychiatric Aspects of Justification, Excuse and Mitigation in Anglo-American Criminal Law Psychiatric Cultures ComparedPsychiatric Diagnosis and ClassificationPsychiatric EthicsPsychiatric HegemonyPsychiatric PowerPsychiatric SlaveryPsychiatry and Philosophy of SciencePsychiatry and ReligionPsychiatry as a Human SciencePsychiatry as Cognitive NeurosciencePsychiatry in SocietyPsychiatry in the New MilleniumPsychiatry in the Scientific ImagePsychiatry, Psychoanalysis, And The New Biology Of MindPsycho-Physical Dualism TodayPsychoanalysis and Narrative MedicinePsychoanalysis and the Philosophy of SciencePsychological Concepts and Biological PsychiatryPsychology and PhilosophyPsychology and the Question of AgencyPsychology's Interpretive TurnPsychology, Psychotherapy, Psychoanalysis, and the Politics of Human RelationshipsPsychotherapy and ConfidentialityPsychotherapy As PraxisPublic PhilosophyPunishmentPure ImmanencePurple HazePursuing MeaningQuality of Life and Human DifferenceQueer PhilosophyQuestions for FreudQuestions for FreudQuine and Davidson on Language, Thought and RealityRaceRace in Contemporary MedicineRadiant CoolRadical AlterityRadical ExternalismRadical HopeRational and Social AgencyRational CausationRational Choice in an Uncertain WorldRationality + Consciousness = Free WillRationality and FreedomRationality and the Reflective MindRationality in ActionRawls, Dewey, and ConstructivismRe-creating MedicineRe-EmergenceRe-Engineering Philosophy for Limited BeingsReading AutobiographyReading Bernard WilliamsReading SartreReadings in the Philosophy of TechnologyReal MaterialismReal Natures and Familiar ObjectsReal ScienceRealism in ActionReason & EmancipationReason in ActionReason in PhilosophyReason's GriefReasonably ViciousReasoning About Rational AgentsReasoning in Biological DiscoveriesReasons from WithinReasons without RationalismReclaiming CognitionReclaiming the SoulReconceiving SchizophreniaReconstructing Reason and RepresentationReconstructing the Cognitive WorldRecreative MindsRediscovering EmotionRediscovering EmpathyReference and ExistenceReference and the Rational MindReflections on Ethics and ResponsibilityReflections On How We LiveReframing Disease ContextuallyRefusing CareRegard for Reason in the Moral MindRegulating SexReinventing the SoulRelativism and Human RightsRelativism and the Foundations of PhilosophyRelativism and the Foundations of PhilosophyReliable ReasoningReligion without GodRelying on OthersRemembering HomeResponsibility and PunishmentResponsibility and PunishmentResponsibility from the MarginsResponsible BrainsRestraining RageRethinking ExpertiseRethinking IntrospectionRethinking Mental Health and DisorderRethinking RapeRethinking the DSMRethinking the Sociology of Mental HealthRethinking the Western Understanding of the SelfReturn to ReasonRevolt, She SaidRichard RortyRichard RortyRichard RortyRichard RortyRichard RortyRichard Rorty's New PragmatismRightsRights, Democracy, and Fulfillment in the Era of Identity PoliticsRise And 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Current Controversies in Values and ScienceReview - Current Controversies in Values and Science
by Kevin C. Elliott and Daniel Steel (Editors)
Routledge, 2017
Review by Vincenzo Politi
Oct 17th 2017 (Volume 21, Issue 42)

Current Controversies in Values and Science, edited by Kevin Elliott and Daniel Steel, is the latest instalment in the series 'Current Controversies in Philosophy', published by Routledge. Like all the other volumes of the series, the essays of this book revolve around a number of questions, each answered first in the positive and then in the negative by philosophers holding juxtaposed views.

The first question is: "Can we distinguish epistemic from non-epistemic values?"

For Hugh Lacey, we can (and we should). In his view, those philosophers who argue that we cannot distinguish between epistemic and non-epistemic values usually speak about the role of the latter in 'accepting' a scientific theory. In this way, however, several different attitudes towards scientific theories are unjustly put under the same label. Lacey, in short, highlights the fact that  scientific theories are not just accepted or eliminated.

For Lacey, cognitive values are "essential to evaluating whether a theory provides adequate and well-founded understanding of a particular set of phenomena" (p. 16); they are essential, that is, to evaluating when a theory can be impartially held.  This is not say that non-cognitive or social values play no role whatsoever in science. While cognitive values help us to recognise which theories should be impartially held, social values can tell us when a theory should be adopted (that is, "used for the sake of framing and giving direction to ongoing research in a given scientific area, and of testing the range of phenomena of which the theory can come to incorporate understanding", p. 20), or when a claim can be endorsed (that is, "judged to be sufficiently well supported by available evidence to warrant acting or making decisions in ways informed by it", p. 27).

Lacey's position leads to at least two consequences. First, it calls for a redefinition of the distinction between epistemic and non-epistemic values. For instance, 'fertility', which has been traditionally considered to be part of the family of epistemic values, tells us which theories we should adopt, not which theories can be impartially held: in fact, that a theory is viewed as fertile does not guarantee that such a theory will automatically generate understanding. Fertility, therefore, is not an epistemic value. Second, it is Lacey's contention that his revisit of the epistemic/non-epistemic values distinctions contributes to make explicit the methodological usefulness of such a distinction.

Phyllis Rooney, by contrast, argues that there can be no strict distinction between epistemic and non-epistemic values. Rather, big chunks of scientific research takes place within a "robust borderland" of values (p. 34).

Rooney reminds us, and rightly so, that, although philosophers began to generally speak about epistemic values, as opposed to the non-epistemic ones, with time they started to see the necessity of differentiate between 'epistemic' (i.e., conducive to the truth) and 'cognitive values' (i.e., values facilitating the cognitive operations necessary to theorising, such as, for example, simplicity). 'Non-epistemic values', however, may also be a rather diverse lot. They can be, for example, 'moral', 'social', 'political' or even 'religious values'.

About the methodological usefulness of a strict distinction between all these values, Rooney  argues that the use of some non-epistemic values may actually serve the overall epistemic aims of science. For instance, well known feminist studies of science have uncovered a number of biases in fields such as primatology, which, for a long time, were male-dominated. By discarding the more or less masculinist biases, and inviting scientists to consider new hypotheses and look for new kinds of evidence, non-epistemic values actually improved science.

A supporter of the epistemic/non-epistemic values distinction could still respond that, precisely in the cases discussed by Rooney, the feminist critique did not make science more 'value laden'. On the contrary, by liberating primatology from its implicit masculinist biases, feminist studies contributed to make such a field 'value freer', leading scientists to consider new hypotheses on the basis of epistemic values alone, rather than because such hypotheses conformed to their prejudices. One could re-read Rooney's examples through Lacey's lenses: non-epistemic values allowed scientists to 'consider' the adoption of alternative theories which, however, began to be 'impartially held' only on the basis of epistemic considerations.

In the end, the matter of disagreement between Lacey and Rooney is very subtle: the previous admits that non-epistemic values play a role in science, the latter claims that the epistemic/non-epistemic value distinction may be a matter of degree and that, if some contexts are characterised by a robust borderland of values, in other contexts the distinction might be more discernible. Ultimately, the uninitiated reader may fail to appreciate the exact scope of the controversy between the two philosophers.

The second question is: "Must science be committed to prioritising epistemic over non-epistemic values?". The role of non-epistemic values in science notwithstanding, this question asks whether we should still give priority to the epistemic values.

Daniel Steel claims that we should prioritise the epistemic over the non-epistemic values. He  argues that those who believe that epistemic values have no special priority in science adopt the aims approach, for which the influence of non-epistemic values in science is legitimate and non-secondary, insofar as such values promote the aims of scientific inquiry. The problem with this view is that, sometimes, scientific inquiry may be guided by aims conflicting with the very ideal of scientific knowledge and may actually result in the corruption of science.

Inspired by Henrik Ibsen's play An Enemy of the People, Steel define this problem in terms of the "Ibsen predicament". In an Ibsen predicament, the community at large highly values some aims or objectives, to the point that any scientific research which may ostacolate their accomplishment will be either dismissed or bent in vicious ways. Clear examples of Ibsen predicaments are the 'politicised' or even 'corrupted' scientific studies on drugs or fossil fuels. In both cases, those who fund the scientific research (pharmaceutical companies or governments) prioritise their set of non-epistemic values (wealth, technological innovation, and so on) and may 'bent' the actual scientific results should these conflict with such values (in the case, for example, of results indicating the harming effects of a new drug, or of results suggesting the potential dangerous impact of fossil fuels on environment).

By contrast, Steel holds a view known as qualified epistemic approach. Such an approach does not deny that science plays an important role in society. However, it is argued, the reason for why science plays such an important role in society is precisely because science aims first and foremost at advancing knowledge. Therefore, non-epistemic values may sometimes guide, but should not interfere with, the advancement of scientific knowledge.

Matthew Brown rejects the 'Epistemic Priority Thesis' (EPT), which Steel's qualified epistemic approach is one particular version of, and argues that we should not prioritize epistemic over non-epistemic values in science. He develops (at least) three different criticisms to EPT.

First, EPT is, in some cases, unjustified. In fact, in the actual scientific practice, epistemic and non-epistemic values may happen to be mingled in complicated ways. This is why, for Brown, "[we] require values to select epistemic standards, interpret them, and determine how to apply them; they are intertwined and interrelated in such a way that talk of 'priority' doesn't make sense" (p. 69).

Second, Brown argues that EPT is associated with some forms of non-cognitivism or anti-realism about moral values. Value judgments, however, are not just a matter of subjective preferences: indeed, there could be very good reasons for holding some values, and there could also be some very good reasons for preferring a science which holds such values.

Finally, "EPT treats epistemic standards as criteria for successful scientific inquiry, rather than as values that are good if we can have them" (p. 72). There is no absolute and universal set of epistemic criteria that 'good science' must satisfy in order to be qualified as such. Scientific research is 'good' insofar as it solves the very problems which prompts it.

Of Brown's three criticisms to EPT, this is the least developed and, probably, the more unfair. Although Brown is right in pointing out that there is no such a thing as an eternal and absolute Archimedean point of scientific reason, one can still regard the epistemic values prioritised by EPT as 'minimal' criteria of scientificity. Surely, we wouldn't like a science which does not satisfy any epistemic criteria whatsoever and which, therefore, would be undistinguishable from other forms of non-scientific and non-epistemic human enterprises. Furthermore, although it is true that the 'goodness' of scientific research lies in its problem-solving power, we accept a solution to a problem as 'scientific' when we can explain and understand why such a solution works the way it does: that is, when the epistemic rationale of the proposed solution is made clear.

It seems like Brown's aim is to reject a 'strong' version of EPT. On the one hand, it must be wondered, however, up to which point his criticisms can successfully attack Steel's view, which is, after all, a form of 'qualified' epistemic priority. On the other hand, Brown himself agrees about the importance of epistemic considerations in science and denies that claims and theories can be advocated on the basis of non-epistemic values alone, with no consideration for empirical evidence (pp. 75-76).

The problem with the second question is similar to the problem with the first question: namely, that it may be difficult to see what the two opposed parties are really disagreeing about. The controversy between Steel and Brown may be just a matter of emphasis: while the previous prefers to stress the epistemic character of science (without denying the guiding and constraining role of non-epistemic values), the latter is more concerned with the ethical and moral dimension of scientific practice (subject to the fact that science is, first and foremost, an epistemic enterprise).

I think that the real disagreement between Steel and Brown revolves around some implicit meta-philosophical views about what science is and what science ought to do.

For Steel not only accept that science is an epistemic activity, but also adds that, indeed, "there is social value in having a number of institutions dedicated to prioritizing different aims" (p. 61). What Steel is saying is that it is not the scientists' job to tell society what is good and what is bad. Rather, what scientists ought to do is to tell us what the empirical data and our best theories re suggesting. It is not entirely clear, however, whether Steel's qualified epistemic priority can be of any practical help in the case of those very Ibsen predicaments he regards as terribly problematic for the aims approach, but not for his own. Scientists can go on doing their epistemic job, prioritizing the epistemic values, but, in the end, it may still be the case that society decide to dismiss or ignore what scientists are saying. Steel's view, therefore, saves the internal 'epistemic dignity' of science, but leaves too much in the hands of a social majority, which may decide not value science to begin with.

Brown, instead, wants a social and ethical responsible science. Although it would be probably hard to find anyone arguing in favor of an 'irresponsible science', sometimes Brown's position risks to relapse in a sort of 'paternalistic attitude'. Brown argues that scientists qua scientists have the moral responsibility not to disseminate works which may put social justice at risk. He begins his chapter by discussing the imaginary example of some psychologists who find some correlation between race and intelligence. Knowing the potential impact that such a work may have in a society riddled by prejudices and, in some case, blatant racism, the ethical psychologists ought not to publish their work. The problem here is that things like 'racism' may be in the eye of the beholder, or, in this case, of the public stakeholder of science. For a scientist, it may not always be easy to foresee which scientific results may be interpreted as racist. While Brown's example looks rather forward, actual science can be full of grey areas.

For example, medical studies have found that Asian women are at a very high risk of osteoporosis. That is because Asian women consume less calcium. The low consumption of calcium by Asian women, however, has nothing to do with social or cultural factors alone. It depends, instead, by the fact that 90% of them is lactose intolerant. And the reason for why they are lactose intolerant is that Asians have evolved in such a way that their genes direct a slowdown in the production of lactase, the enzyme responsible for the 'breaking' and assimilation of lactose. Furthermore, on average, Asian women are, on average, small framed; this can be a further factor in the development of osteoporosis. Now, in some societies these data may be interpreted in a way which support prejudice and racial biases against Asian people, who could be considered 'weaker' and more inclined to physical problems. The potentially dangerous impact of these ideas notwithstanding, it is also in the interests of Asian women to know that they may be at a higher risk of developing osteoporosis. It is not the scientists' fault that their results may support racist views. Furthermore, it is not the responsibility of scientists (who, after all, represent an unelected minority of experts) to be the moral guide of a democratic society.

Both Steel's and Brown's positions have strengths and weaknesses. Making their views about the role of science in society more explicit could have helped to make the controversy between the two of them clearer and, maybe, fiercer.

The third question is: "Does the argument from inductive risk justify incorporating non-epistemic values in scientific reasoning?". The argument of inductive risk is developed in the light of uncertainty in science. Whether empirical data are strong enough to support a claim is not something which can be understood by looking at the data alone. Taking a decision, therefore, always involves some risk.

Heather Douglas claims that social and ethical considerations ought to play a crucial role in scientific reasoning, since they help scientists to assess the potential risk of errors. It must be added that, for Douglas, although epistemic criteria are not sufficient for assessing evidential strength, they are nevertheless a necessary component of science: under this respect, her view is closer to Steel's qualified epistemic priority approach.

Douglas' position is both descriptive and normative. She claims that scientists, as a matter of fact, are already using social and ethical value judgments, especially in research which may have a strong public impact – for example, on assessing the potential risks associated with some new types of chemicals.

Furthermore, after taking into consideration the often endemic disagreement of the scientific community, which may be exacerbated in cases of difficult and risky decisions, she suggests that scientists ought to make explicit their guiding values. In this way, they would allow the general public to check whether scientific research is being conducted with integrity, and whether scientists' values are appropriate.

Gregor Betz begins by distinguishing different ways in which our knowledge can be limited. In fact, uncertainty can be had about the quality of data collected, the parameters of a model, the justification of our theoretical assumption, our methodologies, and so on. Such uncertainties are rather common in science and do not justify the implementation of any particular social or ethical values, if not in a rather weak sense.

The force of the argument of inductive risk can be appreciated in cases of 'deep uncertainty'. Betz argues, however, that in such cases scientists do not have to make explicit the set of values guiding their considerations. Rather, what they ought to make explicit is uncertainty itself. This can be done in several different ways: for instance, scientists may run some scenario analysis and spell out the consequences of every potential alternatives.

Ultimately, for Betz, science policy is characterized by a rather neat division of labor: scientists provide data and of the different risk associated to different decisions, but, in the end, it is the policy makers who decides.

Betz concludes by saying that not only scientists do not incorporate social and ethical values in their decision but, also, that they ought not to: if science begins to be seen as subscribing to non-epistemic values, society may begin to question its epistemic authority, regard it as yet another enterprise guided by personal interests and, finally, stop trusting it.

Question 4 asks: "Can social diversity be best incorporated into science by adopting the social value management ideal?". On answering this questions, both Kristina Rolin and Kristen Intemann do a great job explaining why social diversity should be incorporated into science to begin with.

Rolin's and Intemann's starting point in the influential work of Longino (1990, 2002). Longino develops a view known as contextual empiricism, for which justification is always relative to a set of background assumptions. The more diversified the background assumptions in science, the higher the chance of uncovering implicit biases, which may threaten the impartiality of science. In this view, sexist or racist theories are not to be excluded because sexism and racism are 'bad non-epistemic values', but because such values are conducive to bad science.

For Longino, then, the so-called 'value-free' ideal of science is not only untenable, but also undesirable. In her view, scientific objectivity is not the (somehow legendary) 'view from no-where and no-one in particular', but, rather, the product of the concerted and dialectical convergence of views coming from different standpoints. In this view, then, objectivity is a sort of constant collective 'work in progress'.

To attain objectivity, for Longino, an ideal scientific community should conform to her 'social value management ideal', for which:

1.    there must be recognised venues for criticism

2.    the community as a whole must be engaged and be responsive to criticism

3.    there must exist shared standards for criticisms

4.    participants must be granted equality of intellectual authority

Granted that there are very good reasons to believe that social diversity ought to be implemented in science, it remains to be seen how such an implementation is supposed to be accomplished.

For Rolin, Longino's social value management ideal is sufficient for the incorporation of social diversity into science. Such an ideal has several benefits. For instance, the co-presence of alternative standpoints is the very condition of possibility for doing criticism -- in the Ancient Greek sense of krinein ("to separate, to decide, to be able to judge and assess"), rather than in the more trivial  and impoverished sense of "being polemical". The rationale for this belief is that, in a sense, the limits of a standpoint become clearer when viewed through the lenses of other standpoints. Furthermore, the value management ideal would promote creativity as well as an equal distribution of research efforts among different research programs. It would also encourage a reflection about the structures of power governing the institution of science.

Rolin defends the social value management ideal from two main criticism. The first is that such a model, in virtue of the requirement of shared standards (3), risks to exclude criticisms coming from outside the scientific community -- for instance, coming from the public stakeholders of science. For Rolin, this problem is solved through a 'thin interpretation' of the requirement of shared standards. As long as criticisms are raised and responded within publicly recognized venues, and as long as scientists recognize the validity of such criticisms, the problem of exclusion does not exist.

The second criticism is about the problem of inclusion. If the social value ideal promotes plurality and diversity in science then, it could be argued, such an ideal should not and cannot exclude a priori some rather undesirable standpoints, such as sexist or racist standpoints. For Rolin, however, the problem of 'dangerous' inclusion is not really that threatening. Not excluding a priori a theory developed from a particularly undesirable or morally repugnant standpoint does not mean that such a theory should be necessarily accepted. Following the principles of the value management ideal, morally repugnant theories would have to be publicly assessed and criticised. In this way, the problem of inclusion can be 'dissolved' within the very mechanism of the value management ideal.

Intemann, by contrast, does not believe that Longino's value management ideal is a viable method for the implementation of social diversity into science. To begin with, such an ideal is still too 'internalist': Rolin's 'thin interpretation' of the requirement of shared standards notwithstanding, in Longino's model those who decide which values to endorse and which criticisms are acceptable are the scientists and the scientists alone. In this way, the interests of all stakeholders risk not to be equally represented. It is therefore taken for granted that it is the community of scientists that must have the last word in decisions about human health, the environment or the impact of new technologies on the general population.

Furthermore, as Intemann explains, Longino is not even concerned with the implementation of social diversity into science per se. Her model is for the inclusion and management of a plurality of values. 'Values diversity', however, does not necessarily imply 'social diversity'.

As an antidote to these problems, Intemann's proposes what she defines as the social justice standpoint model. In this model, the ideal scientific community should:

1.    include participants with diverse social background and experiences

2.    share a commitment to social justice and view science as an activity aimed at promoting and protecting the public good

3.    provide opportunities for criticism and feedback, including by those affected by the research

4.    be responsive to the criticism of others, particularly from those impacted by the research (p. 141)

Although suggestive, Intemann's model is not problem free. That science should take into consideration criticisms and suggestions from those affected and impacted by the research is an important point, which cannot be stressed enough. The importance of this point seems to be recognised by several projects in contemporary bio-medical research, where the so-called 'expert patients' are regarded as a vital resource for the understanding of chronic disease, for the effectiveness of new drugs, or even for the agenda which future research should follow. However, even in a scenario in which the voices of the expert patients are heard, it looks like those who decide which values, standpoints and criticisms should be taken into consideration are still the scientists, who continue to have the last word when it comes to making decision. This happens because, the valuable first-person knowledge of the expert patients notwithstanding, the 'expert experts' are still the scientists. Under this respect, Intemann should provide an argument for why the criticisms of lay people should have the same weight of the scientists' expertise.

Moreover, if, on the one hand, 'value diversity' does not mean 'social diversity', as Intemann rightly points out, on the other hand, 'social diversity' does not necessarily imply 'value diversity'. For example, people coming from marginalized groups, given their potential desire to be accepted by the majority, may hold the same values of such a majority. For example, women and other minorities may suffer from 'internalized misogyny', or 'internalized homophobia', or 'internalized racism'. A solution to this problem would be to include people coming from marginalized social groups who also hold values different from those of the majority. In this way, however, Intemann's social justice standpoint model would easily relapse into the value management model. These are important issues that Intemann needs to examine, in order to clarify and possibly strengthen her view.


Finally, question 5 asks: "To ensure that scientific institutions serve values of social justice and democracy, should biomedical research be socialized?"


For James Brown, socialized biomedical research does not look too different from free education. In the same way as everybody has the right of accessing free education, so everybody should have the right to free healthcare too. If the basis for democracy is the freedom, autonomy and self-determination of citizens, than healthcare must be free and available to everybody.


For Brown, furthermore, privately funded biomedical research does not guarantee that the best products are made available to the public. This does not mean that privately funded biomedical research is necessarily 'bad' or 'dangerous', but only that, often, pharmaceutical companies may prefer to focus on the more profitable cures, rather than on the more effective ones. By contrast, publicly funded researchers would be free to explore the most promising avenues of research, without being intellectually coerced by the thought of profit.


Socialized medicine, in one way or in another, is already implemented in several European nations, in Canada and in Cuba: all nations which, following Brown, have similar or longer longevity rates as well as similar or lower infant mortality rates than the United States.


Finally, Brown also specifies that publicly funded medical researchers "should be well paid and their research should be well funded. They don't need to get rich, any more than mathematicians or anthropologists need to get rich" (p. 157).

Julian Reiss is very critical of the system of patents and regulations in use in the US. His solution, however, is not the socialization of biomedical research, but a robust 'biomedical capitalism'. In Reiss' view, patents should be abolished. Furthermore, it is not necessarily the case that governmental institutions, which are supposed to regulate the pharmaceutical market, are more value-free, impartial and disinterested than the pharmaceutical companies. Since experts from the pharmaceutical industry will inevitably be more and better informed than any bureaucrat, they should be free to take their own decisions and to self-regulate.


To the criticism that biomedical capitalism would only serve the interests of the pharmaceutical companies and, ultimately, of the market, Reiss responds that it is precisely in the interests of the pharmaceutical companies not to flood the market with dangerous and harmful drugs. In a capitalistic scenario, pharmaceutical companies compete to win the trust of the consumers, who are the ultimate judges of the quality of the marketed drugs.


Of all the parts of the volume, question 5 is where the two philosophers are the most engaged with one another's view. There are, however, some problems. First, it is difficult to assess Reiss' 'biomedical capitalism', since it represents a rather drastic departure from his previous works, in which he proposed stricter and more careful regulations of the pharmaceutical market, rather than the abolition of regulations tout court (see Reiss, 2010; Reiss and Kitcher, 2009). It is not very clear whether Reiss, in this volume, is expressing his actual view or is just developing an extreme and opposite alternative to Brown's, for the sake of controversy.

Second, the whole discussion seems to be dominated by a special concern for the situation in the US -- and this happens despite the fact that Brown is based at the University of Toronto and Reiss is based at the University of Durham (UK)! Brown does mentions examples of nations with a socialised biomedical system, but only en passant. Overall, it looks like the two thinkers answering question 5 take the US system as the inevitable test bench against which our moral intuitions about biomedical research must be evaluated. However, readers coming from outside the US may feel a bit detached from this discussion, while many readers from the US may be left wanting to know how things work elsewhere.

Having provided a sketchy a necessarily oversimplified summary of the main arguments developed in the book, I would like to conclude  by discussing some of its more general shortcomings.

To begin with, while all the philosophers of the volume recognize the plurality of values -- indeed, to echo the title of Elliott's new monograph on the topic, values can form an intricate 'tapestry' (Elliott 2017) -- most of them speak, in general, of science (in the singular). After all, the very title of the book is not 'Current Controversies in Values and theSciences'. The problem is that science is not a monolith, and different values may be more or less pervasive, playing stronger or weaker roles, in different sciences.

Of all the contributors of the volume, this point is made explicit only by Rooney (see p. 34). In her view, the epistemic/non-epistemic value distinction is context dependent: this is one of the reasons for why she does not believe in the possibility of drawing such a sharp distinction. Clearly, the medical and health sciences are underwritten by moral and social values. Moral considerations also play a heavy role in the discussions about the impact of technology in society. Admitting that social and behavioral sciences, part of biology and technological research are heavily value-laden, and that a careful examination of such values is therefore necessary, is hardly controversial. It still remains to be seen whether 'harder' sciences, such as physics and chemistry, are, if not 'value free', at least 'value freer'. Therefore, it is not clear whether it is even possible to make any general claim about 'values and science', instead of using, for example, a more case-to-case approach.


Another problem with this volume is that, considering the current social climate, characterized by growing public concerns about the impact or even usefulness of science in society, concerns which not too uncommonly lead to skepticism or even anti-scientific stances, the majority of the chapters seem to be interested almost exclusively in the values held and used by the scientists alone.

A clear exception is Intemann's chapter. Whether her social justice standpoint model is still in need of further improvements or not, Intemann has the merit of addressing, in quite explicit terms, the problem of the representation of all the stakeholders in science. This is an important problem which is not discussed with enough depth in a book concerned with 'current controversies'.

Finally, considering the relatively short length of each chapter, the uninitiated reader may feel that the views of each contributor are underdeveloped and that, in lieu of arguments, this book offers just references to previously published works. By saying this, it is not my intention to blame the contributors to the volume, who are all well-known philosophers, who have researched extensively and given important contributions to the debates of values in science. Some of them have even authored some widely read monographs on such issues (see, for example, Douglas, 2009; Lacey, 1999; Steel, 2015). Probably, the problem lays in the difficulty of understanding whether the books in the 'Current Controversies' series are intended to be general introductions for philosophy student and the general public or whether, instead, they are aimed at the advanced reader.

That said, considering the interests of philosophers for the ethical dimension of science, as well as the growing public awareness for the role and impact of science in society, Current controversies in Values and Science is a welcomed, much needed and often thought provoking volume.



Douglas, H. (2009), Science, Policy and the Value-Free Ideal, University of Pittsburgh Press

Elliott, K. (2017), A Tapestry of Values, Oxford University Press

Lacey, H. (1999), Is Science Value-Free? Values and Scientific Understanding, Routledge

Longino, H.E. (1990), Science as Social Knowledge: Values and Objectivity in Scientific Inquiry, Princeton University Press

Longino, H.E. (2002), The Fate of Knowledge, Princeton University Press

Reiss, J. (2010), "In favour of a Millian Proposal to Reform Biomedical Research", Synthese, 177, 427-447

Reiss, J. and Kitcher, P. (2009), "Biomedical Research, Neglected Diseases, and Well-Ordered Science", Theoria, 66, 263-282

Steel, D. (2015), Science and the Precautionary Principle: Science, Evidence, and Environmental Policy, Cambridge University Press


© Vincenzo Politi


Vincenzo Politi, PhD, Instituto de Investigaciones Filosóficas, UNAM (México)


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