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Essays


The Omniscient Book

Aug 10 2010 02:20 PM | davidm in Philosophy

The Omniscient Book By David Misialowski Oct. 3, 1991, San Francisco This morning I fed yellowcake to the pigeons in the park. They strutted about like diplomats, obsequiously bobbing their heads up and down at my feet as if I were a potentate to whom...

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Mimetopia and the illusion of meaning in Naboko...

Jul 02 2010 09:00 PM | nivenkumar in Literature and Film

(Continued from Part 1...) Cincinnatus, at the end of his tether, begins to understand his circumstances for what they are. He recognises the theatricality around him, he understands that "... everything has duped me..." With this, comes the r...

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"Consciousness... the dagger in the flesh”

Jun 17 2010 11:00 AM | The Heretic in Philosophy

By Awet Moges (2010) After 7 years, I was burned out by philosophy, yet I continued to haunt the philosophy section in search for anything radical and profound. Amidst the expected titles commonly found at any bookstore, sat A Short History of Decay....

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Sisyphus Shrugged

Jun 13 2010 05:00 PM | The Heretic in Philosophy

By Awet Moges (2010) At the end of the 1949 film, Sands of Iwo Jima, after the US soldiers survive a battle, Marine Sergeant John Stryker (John Wayne) tells his fellow comrades in the trench that he's never felt so good in his life. He asks them...

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Thomas Kuhn: Assassin of Logical Positivism or...

Jun 02 2010 07:00 PM | The Heretic in Philosophy of Science

By Awet Moges (2010) In the beginning, there was nothing but fuzzy logic, imaginary mathematics, and monolithic science. Then the philosophy gods said, “Let Kuhn be!” And all was light. Introduction There are only a handful of 20th century boo...

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A Taxonomy of Fundamental Ontologies, Part 3

Jun 30 2009 08:00 PM | Brian M in Philosophy

By Brian Morton (2009) 3.1 Fundamental Historicism Another position one could take is that being in its most fundamental nature is different in different periods of history. Perhaps being looks very type-like in the early moments of being, but once s...

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A Taxonomy of Fundamental Ontologies, Part 2

Jun 23 2009 08:00 PM | Brian M in Philosophy

By Brian Morton (2009) 2.1 Substance-Ontologies Probably the most familiar ontology in my typology, and the most natural to English speakers, is a substance-ontology. The idea is that being has a basic structural dichotomy, noun-like substances, and...

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A Taxonomy of Fundamental Ontologies, Part 1

Jun 10 2009 08:00 PM | Brian M in Philosophy

By Brian Morton (2009) Introduction A colleague once asked if I could give him “a taxonomy of ‘forms of ontology’ and where properties fit within it.” This paper is a preliminary attempt at filling that tall order. Since the history of human though...

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An Introduction to the Philosophy of Time

Jul 18 2007 10:00 PM | Big Blooming Blighter in Philosophy

By Robert P. Taylor (2007) It would not be amiss to compare the mystery of time with the mystery of the divine (should any such thing exist). On the one hand, it seems everyone is aware of it. The transition from morning to afternoon conveys a sense o...

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Borges in his parallel universes

Jun 28 2007 08:00 PM | nivenkumar in Literature and Film

By Niven Kumar (2007) Where does one begin with Borges? What meanings, if there is any at all, do we glean from his work? Who is Borges? And how many? One? Three? Five? Is he Everyman? Or is he No Man? Where do his labyrinths take us? These are mere...

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The Complexity of Newton

Jun 19 2007 09:00 PM | Godot in History

By Steve Nakoneshny (2007) In the most simplistic of terms, religion is an attempt to discuss the nature of the universe with thoughts of a Deity being central. Science is an attempt to describe the nature of the universe simply as the physical, expre...

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The mechanical philosophy and God

Jun 11 2007 09:00 PM | Hugo Holbling in Philosophy of Science

By Paul Newall (2007) In his famous work The Mechanization of the World Picture, E.J. Dijksterhuis described in great detail the development of the so-called mechanical philosophy from its origins in antiquity with the Greeks to Newton in more modern...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 9: Against Art

Jun 19 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) In earlier essays, I talked about the problem of demarcating art from non-art, and efforts to judge art as either good or bad. All such efforts, it turns out, are elusive. This raises another interesting question: Is art,...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 8: Picasso (II) -...

Jun 18 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) ... "cries of children, cries of women, cries of birds, cries of flowers, cries of timbers, and of stones, cries of bricks, cries of furniture, of beds, of chairs, of curtains, of pots, of cats, and of papers, cries of...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 7: Picasso (I)

Jun 17 2006 08:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) People who try to explain pictures are usually barking up the wrong tree." - Picasso What more can anyone say about Picasso? Certainly I have nothing to add in the way of scholarship, so I will confine myself to unsys...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 6: What is Art? (II)

Jun 16 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) In The Principles of Art, first published in 1938, the Oxford philosopher R. G. Collingwood wrote: "The artist proper is a person who, grappling with the problem of expressing a certain emotion, says, 'I want to get...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 5: What is Art? (I)

Jun 15 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) Before moving on to discuss Picasso and the main art trends of the 20th century, I thought I'd tackle the vexing, "But is it art?" question that so many people voice when confronted with images that look like wi...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 4: Post-Impressio...

Jun 14 2006 08:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) (Continued...) In July 1890 van Gogh painted this landscape, Crows Over the Wheatfield: <IMG src="http://www.galilean-library.org/images/david/V_van_Gogh_Wheatfield_with_crows_(1890)_small.jpg"</IMG>...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 3: Post-Impressio...

Jun 12 2006 08:59 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) I have tried to express the terrible passions of humanity by means of red and green. – Van Gogh Art legend holds that Vincent Van Gogh had a brief musical career, lasting a few minutes. Convinced that there was a deep con...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 2: Impressionism

Jun 11 2006 09:05 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) All art constantly aspires towards the condition of music. — Walter Pater In 1863 Edouard Manet scandalized the art world by painting a picture of a picnic. This is it: Click for Larger Image At the time, France was d...

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Schopenhauer's Philosophy, Part 2

Jun 08 2006 08:00 PM | The Heretic in Philosophy

By Awet Moges (2006) (Continued from Part 1...) Book IV The fourth book, regarding ethics in general and particular context, is the "most serious" discussion, largely because it is the most relevant for everyone. However, Schopenhauer is pe...

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Schopenhauer's Philosophy, Part 1

Jun 08 2006 06:00 PM | The Heretic in Philosophy

By Awet Moges (2006) In The World as Will and Representation, Arthur Schopenhauer spoke as a Teutonic philosopher, with mighty prose and thunderous proclamations from the lofty heights of classic Sophia and utterly uninfected by the pretentious delusi...

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The Roots of Modern Art, Part 1: Introduction

Jun 01 2006 07:00 PM | davidm in Art

By David Misialowski (2006) In 1880 Vincent Van Gogh, 27 years old, decided to become an artist. It was a strange decision, because by that age most people either already are artists, or never will be. But Van Gogh needed something to do. He had fai...

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Theological Fatalism, Part 3: Reply to Robert P...

May 04 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Philosophy

By David Misialowski (2006) In the third chapter of his dissertation, Robert considers the Molinist solution to the alleged foreknowledge/free will incompatibility. It is proposed that God has Middle Knowledge, which lies roughly between God's nat...

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Theological Fatalism, Part 2: Reply to Robert P...

May 03 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Philosophy

By David Misialowski (2006) In Part I of my response to Robert P. Taylor's dissertation on the philosophical problem of theological fatalism, I introduced my noisy neighbor – let's call him Sam – who assailed me with 51 consecutive iterations...

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Theological Fatalism, Part 1: Reply to Robert P...

May 02 2006 09:00 PM | davidm in Philosophy

By David Misialowski (2006) It is Jan. 1, 2007. All night, my inconsiderate neighbor has been throwing a raucous New Year's Eve Party. What is especially galling is that he is a fan of 70s disco, and has been blasting the Bee Gees at top volume on...

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Is Human Free Will Compatible With Divine Omnis...

May 01 2006 08:00 PM | Big Blooming Blighter in Philosophy

By Robert P. Taylor (2006) This paper aims to determine whether human free will can exist in the presence of a divine, omniscient being. In doing so, the Foreknowledge Dilemma (that God's foreknowledge precludes human free will) is explored and so...

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Anything Goes: Feyerabend and Method

Sep 22 2005 09:00 PM | Hugo Holbling in Philosophy of Science

By Paul Newall (2005) Perhaps one of the least understood arguments in the philosophy of science, Paul Feyerabend's reductio ad absurdum of specific rationalist conceptions of scientific method is at once a subtle critique of rigidity in thinking...

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Lakatos and the Demarcation Problem

Aug 17 2005 09:00 PM | Hugo Holbling in Philosophy of Science

By Paul Newall (2005) According to lore, Imre Lakatos was an excellent speaker and a highly amusing one. (He would often listen in on Paul Feyerabend's talks from his office and shout rejoinders if the latter got too carried away.) He wrote a seri...

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Galileo and the Bible

Jul 01 2005 09:00 PM | Hugo Holbling in History

By Paul Newall (2005) The so-called Galileo Affair occurred within a variety of contexts, some – like the invention of the telescope – recent and some with an ancient pedigree. This paper looks at examples of the latter, centring on the i...

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