Final Call for Papers

Dec 5th is the deadline for submissions! Note the updated special sessions!

I am pleased to announce the call for papers for the fourth online consciousness conference. The Invited Program includes,

Bernard Baars, The Neurosciences Institute

Special Session on Attention, Awareness, and Expectation organized by the Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition, and Behavior featuring,
Floris P. de Lange, Donders Institute for Brain, Cognition and Behavior

Jacqueline Gottlieb, Columbia

Marisa Carrasco, NYU

Special Session on Action Consciousness organized by Myrto Mylopoulos, The Graduate Center CUNY

Élisabeth Pacherie, Institut Jean Nicod

Christopher Frith, Wellcome Trust Centre for Neuroimaging

Special Session on the Social Conditions of Self Consciousness organized by James Dow, Hendrix University

Radu J. Bogdan, Tulane University

Peter Carruthers, University of Maryland

Papers in any area of consciousness studies are welcome (construed broadly to include philosophy of mind and philosophy of neuroscience). Papers should be roughly 3,000-4,000 words and subsequent presentations, should the presenter choose to make one, should be about 20 minutes (though longer papers/presentations are acceptable). Submissions, suitable for blind review, should be sent to by December 5th 2011. Those interested in being referees or commentators should also contact me. Authors of accepted papers are urged to make, or have made, some kind of audio/visual presentation (e.g. narrated powerpoint or video of talk) though this is not required to present.

For more information visit the conference website at

Find Consciousness Online on Facebook!

News Flash: Philosophy Sucks!

Via the latest philosophers’ carnival I learn of a recent kerfluffle, started here, and continued here over the usefulness of philosophy and I can’t resist throwing my $0.02 in.

One thing that I have little patience with is the view that dismisses philosophy all together. The view that there is no progress in philosophy is itself a philosophical view. The view that all knowledge is scientific knowledge is also a philosophical view. When people say that philosophy is a waste of time they invariably mean one particular way of doing philosophy is a waste of time. This is clearly illustrated by people like Richard Feynman who spend a lot of time denouncing philosophy in general when a closer looks reveals that he was pissed off about the method used by particular philosophers (that he happened to encounter). This is also born out by the anti-philosophy comments at the linked posts. If you do not like thought-experiments, analysis of ordinary language, or scholastic proofs for God’s existence that is fine, but that is not the same thing as not liking philosophy.

Philosophy is unavoidable. You cannot even say why it is worthless without actually doing some philosophy; that is part and parcel of its suckiness. I think it was Aristotle who first voiced this sentiment, (though I can’t seem to find the passage any where in my Barnes anthologies)…anyways. Deal with it.