A couple days ago I received an email from Emil Višňovský, a pragmatist philosopher based in Bratislava. He informed me that he had recently given a presentation, titled Brain and Culture: From Pragmatist Philosophy of Mind to Neuropragmatism, to a group of cognitive scientists with the Middle European Interdisciplinary Master Programme in Cognitive Science. From what Emil tells me, there is genuine interest among this group in neuropragmatism. Excellent news!
Emil’s excellent presentation (he shared his powerpoint with me) not only gave a strong synthesis of the history of pragmatist thinking about the nature of mind-brain-body-world, he also gave a plug to the website. This has served as a catalyst for an update. So you’ll find some updated information about me, writings, and speaking.
Unfortunately, it has been so long since I used tumblr that they have changed many things behind the scenes. I suspect it’s to make the site more user friendly to the masses. However, this comes at a cost to the aesthetic of this site. It’s nothing major, but the old HTML tricks I had been using don’t seem to work anymore. If I had the time, I might bother to learn how to do the old things in new ways, but we’ll have to wait and see.
I neglected to mention that in March at the annual meeting of the Society for the Advancement of American Philosophy, I organized and participated on a neuropragmatism panel. Bill Bywater, Teed Rockwell, and I were on a panel on “Neuropragmatism: Bridging the Sciences and the Humanities Towards Ameliorative Ends.” The panel held together quite well. It received and continues to receive high praise from the audience (which did fill the room to capacity!). I spoke about the difference between reconstruction and reconciliation. Teed gave an energetic presentation on radical empiricism and music, showing how Western conceptions of music are based on sensationalistic empiricism, which limits the possibilities for composing and performing. Teed drew on his own experience as a musician to illustrate how a Jamesian view of experience opens new possibilities for music. For more on Teed’s music, visit his MySpace. For links or access to his papers, visit his academia.edu profile. Bill Bywater closed the panel by discussing the pedagogy of apprenticeship. Bill masterfully drew many strings together, from education and philosophy, to neuroscience and anthropology. This presentation serves as a basis for a paper Bill is working (with Zach Piso) on about neuropragmatism and pedagogy.
Lastly, I want to inform readers of two European pragmatist events that are worth knowing about. The first is the Central European Pragmatism Forum, which just had its 7th international conference in Turda, Romania. The other event is the First European Pragmatist Conference in Rome, from 19–21 September 2012. I won’t be able to make it, but I hope you can. It’s definitely an event worth attending.
Hopefully more soon…