Tag Archives: philosophy

Revisiting the “Trolley Problem” in the COVID-19 pandemic

Margaret B. Mitchell Boston, Massachusetts, United States Graham M. Attipoe  Nashville, Tennessee, United States   Bridge situation. John Holbo. 2010. CC BY-NC 2.0. Via Flickr The “Trolley Problem” Originally described by Philipa Foot in 1967, the “Trolley Problem” is an ethical dilemma commonly taught in philosophy that challenges participants to explore how far they would […]

Friedrich Nietzsche—much afflicted philosopher

Friedrich Nietzsche By Edvard Munch. 1906. Thielska Gallerie, Sweden. Via Wikimedia. Friedrich Nietzsche was one of the most important philosophers of the nineteenth century. Though often misinterpreted, his influence has been enormous. Like his compatriot Schopenhauer, he questioned the comfortable beliefs of the conservative bourgeoisie of his time. His writings have fascinated generations of readers, […]

Modern neuroscience and the ideas of the Enlightenment

Stephen Martin Durham, United Kingdom   Fig. 1. Mrs. Jane Wilkinson, one of the first independent Georgian music teachers. English, Philip Gaugain, 1835. UK private collection. The Enlightenment was a philosophical movement in eighteenth-century Europe that had a major influence on the arts, science, education, religion, and politics. Its principles paved the way for women […]

Where philosophy and medicine overlap

Mariami Shanshashvili Tbilisi, Georgia   Achilles bandaging Patroclus’s wounded arm. Ink drawing after an Attic cup by the potter Sosias, c.500 B.C. Achilles bandaging Patroclus’s wounded arm. Ink drawing after an Attic cup by the potter Sosias, c. 500 B.C. Credit: Wellcome Collection. CC BY In Plato’s Charmides there is a remark by Socrates that is neither […]

The language game of medicine

Gunjan Sharma Devon, United Kingdom   Photo by Ludomił on Unsplash “The arrow points only in the application that a living being makes of it.” – Ludwig Wittgenstein1   The Language Game Language is a fascinating concept when viewed through a philosophical lens. Imagine if we no longer had a word for jealousy. Would that […]

Aristotle and the four humors

Aristotle is one of the greatest philosophers of all time. He has influenced human thought for almost 2500 years and many of his works are as relevant today as they were in the days of ancient Greece. Students of his philosophical works are likely to be familiar with his Nicomachean Ethics, Politics, Rhetoric, and Poetics, […]

Self and the Phenomenon of Life: A Biologist Examines Life from Molecules to Humanity

Ramon Lim Iowa City, Iowa, United States   Man as conceived by DaVinci. Since an early age, I have often wondered who we are (individually as well as a species) and what might be our place in the universe. I believe that the ultimate goal of science, apart from its utilitarian role, is to help […]

Breathless: philosophical lessons from respiratory illness

Havi Carel United Kingdom   It is 12:28. I have just parked my car in a lucky empty space just outside my office. I have a meeting at 12:30. I am texting with one hand and feeling for my inhaler in my coat pocket with the other. I pull the inhaler out, place it in […]