Friday, July 13, 2007

Links and Notes

* Currently reading: Jon Miller, "Spinoza and the a priori" Canadian Journal of Philosophy, vol. 34 (December 2004). (Can be found on Miller's website here.)

* Zuska has recently pointed out (here and here) a study that got a lot of attention in the media that drew general conclusions about both men and women even though it was based entirely on a study of men. As I've noted previously (and it is hardly a point original to me), this is precisely the type of case that shows how important it is to take seriously feminist examination of scientific practice. We know that men and women often have different results due to different physiology and development; we know that we can't automatically assume that a generalization about one sex applies to the other, since we've often been surprised by unexpected differences before; and yet people still think they can get away with generalizations from men to women (although almost no one generalizes in the opposite direction!). Perhaps the conclusions really are generalizable, perhaps they're not. We have no way of knowing until women are actually studied.

* My favorite country song, by a long shot, is "Please Come to Boston." This is the best version of it currently on YouTube.

* Arthur Brooks discusses the four major things that tend to be associated most closely with generous charitable giving: religion, skepticism about government's role in economic life, working for a living, and highly integrated families. (ht)

* Very excited: The SEP entry on Pierre Duhem, by Roger Ariew, is up.

* Koons reviews Rescher's book on presumptive reasoning.

* Doug Marlette, the cartoonist behind Kudzu, recently died at age 57 in an automobile accident. Marlette was also a Pulitzer-prize-winning (and often very controversial) editorial cartoonist. The Comics Curmudgeon, the blogosphere's snarky comics connoisseur, comments.

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