Free virtual issue: 60 years of the Philosophical Quarterly

The first issue of The Philosophical Quarterly was published in October 1950. In the sixty years since, the PQ has established itself as one of the world’s leading general philosophy journals. We continue to publish across the full spectrum of academic philosophy, and welcome original research in all areas of philosophy and its history.

Our aim in compiling this virtual issue was not to select the ‘best’ articles published in the PQ, but rather to produce a representative sample of the last sixty years. Limiting ourselves to two articles for each decade, we sought to give readers a taste of the variety of topics discussed in the journal, and the range of philosophical approaches taken to those issues. As we find every week, when deciding which articles to publish today, the final choice was not easy.

Many wonderful articles missed out. We could, of course, have included more. (The joy of a virtual issue is that there is no restriction on pages.) But we wanted the virtual issue to be as close as possible to a real issue. Our hope is that our selection will whet the readers’ appetites – encouraging them to search back through the PQ archive and discover hidden riches for themselves.

The virtual issue opens with the editor’s introduction from the first issue, and with a brief piece by Malcolm Knox.

 The Virtual Issue
Front Matter
Volume 1: Issue 1, 1950

A Passage in Hegel’s ‘Philosophy of Right’
T. M. Knox
Volume 1: Issue 1, 1950

Feelings
Gilbert Ryle
Volume 1: Issue 3, 1951

Direct Perception
Norman Malcolm
Volume 3: Issue 13, 1953

Aristotle on the Good: A Formal Sketch
Bernard Williams
Volume 12: Issue 49, 1962

Plato’s “Third Man” Argument (PARM. 132A1-B2):
Text and Logic

Gregory Vlastos
Volume 19: Issue 77, 1969

The ideas of Power and Substance in Locke’s Philosophy
Michael R. Ayres
Volume 25: Issue 98, 1975

Common Knowledge
Jane Heal
Volume 28: Issue 111, 1978

Epiphenomenal Qualia
Frank Jackson
Volume 32: Issue 127, 1982

What does a concept script do?
Cora Diamond
Volume 34: Issue 136, 1984

A Furry Tile About Mental Representation
Deborah Brown
Volume 36: Issue 185, 1996

Finkish Dispositions
David Lewis
Volume 47: Issue 187, 1997

How to Reid Moore
John Greco
Volume 52: Issue 209, 2002

Kant’s second thoughts on race
Pauline Kleingeld
Volume 57: Issue 229, 2007

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Epistemology, Dreaming, Inception

Chistopher Nolan’s imaginative and visually stunning thriller Inception is looking more and more like the hit film of the summer, if not the year. I won’t write here about the nature of the film as danielwilson’s post already does that. Instead, I’ll be concentrating on the ways in which the movie draws on epistemological problems first raised by Descartes.  (Guaranteed spoiler-free!)

Unusually for a commercially successful movie, Inception raises a number of engaging (if well-worn) questions. Indeed, publishers have been quick to see the appeal of the film for philosophers and their students, with open calls for abstracts issued by both Open Court and Blackwell within just a few days of each other.

The central question raised by the film is familiar from a number of sci-fi films, most reminiscently evoking the epistemological conundrums of The Matrix. How does one know when one is dreaming? Pinch me?