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Posts tagged "Paul Bloom"

The Humanity of Harassment

The Humanity of Harassment

I’ve been trying to find a way in to writing about the rash of Hollywood headlines, and sexual harassment more generally, and may have finally found one. Don’t think I wasn’t tempted to take Sarah Silverman up on her question–the key question, as far as I can tell, but also too important of one to broach in haste, or before we’ve all had a little longer to absorb the gravity and breadth of the situation.

That is, it feels like any pronouncements at this point, theological or otherwise, would be premature if not insensitive, possibly even a way of avoiding the…

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Whatever You Do, Don't... Empathize?

Whatever You Do, Don’t… Empathize?

I guess it’s unavoidable: once something becomes a buzzword it’s doomed. Perhaps that’s the whole point of calling something a “buzzword”. Like a celebrity with a rabid following, the quality or concept being described reaches a level of public esteem where there is more to be gained from tearing it down than embracing further. More attention, revenue, fame, credibility, etc.

Truth or falsity may not be completely beside the point, but it matters only so much when a bunch of pundits are roaming the interwebs hunting a sacred cow to mount on their wall. As if the first among us to…

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The Pain, The Pleasure and The Pepper

The Pain, The Pleasure and The Pepper

An amusing addition to the annals of human foibles, with a slight tree-of-good-and-evil aspect, from this morning’s NY Times:

Others, notably Dr. Paul Rozin at the University of Pennsylvania, argue that the beneficial effects [of eating spicy chilis] are too small to explain the great human love of chili-spiced food. “I don’t think they have anything to with why people eat and like it,” he said in an interview. Dr. Rozin, who studies other human emotions and likes and dislikes thinks that we’re in it for the pain. “This is a theory,” he emphasizes. “I don’t know that this is true.”

But…

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The Moral Life Of Babies

The Moral Life Of Babies

From a fascinating article in this weekend’s NY Times magazine by Paul Bloom detailing some recent research into the subject Baby Morality. Prime 2 Cor 2:14 material, with some heavy doses of original sin. Some excerpts:

Why would anyone even entertain the thought of babies as moral beings? From Sigmund Freud to Jean Piaget to Lawrence Kohlberg, psychologists have long argued that we begin life as amoral animals. One important task of society, particularly of parents, is to turn babies into civilized beings — social creatures who can experience empathy, guilt and shame; who can override selfish impulses in the…

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