Date of Degree

10-2014

Document Type

Dissertation

Degree Name

Ph.D.

Program

Philosophy

Advisor

Jesse Prinz

Subject Categories

Cognitive Psychology | Philosophy | Social and Behavioral Sciences

Keywords

Cognitive science, Experimental philosophy, Metaethics, Metaphilosophy, Moral psychology, Neuroethics

Abstract

This project addresses the question of why philosophical disputes persist, and tackles the problem of how we might better approach them. I demonstrate empirically several ways in which personality, gender, and other factors are associated with specific philosophical beliefs. Typically, one might assume that these individual difference factors are irrelevant to philosophy, and can only serve to bias philosophical disputants. Against this view, I present four case studies, which collectively highlight the different ways in which individual differences in lived experience may be inseparable from philosophical concepts themselves.

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