"There are none so blind as those who will not see." --

Google+ Badge

Sunday, March 29, 2009

What do philosophers agree on? A philosophical poll

At first glance, it is remarkably difficult to get philosophers to agree on anything—or so it seems to me. But is it really? I’d like to get your opinion on the subject, via this informal poll. On what philosophical issues do you think a majority of philosophers agree? Just name, or describe—briefly—the relevant issue, and what position you think the majority of philosophers take on it.

There are two things to keep in mind:

First, I don’t mean to restrict this poll to the opinions of contemporary philosophers—if the majority of philosophers throughout history have taken the same position on some issue, I count that agreement as the majority view, even if a majority of contemporary philosophers reject it.

Second, I’d like to include what I will call “Moorean agreements”; things that, based on your experience, a majority of philosophers believe or assume in practice even if some of them claim to reject it while doing philosophy. (I think the belief that people are, in general, morally responsible for their behavior is an example of a Moorean agreement.) Of course, it can be hard to determine what philosophers—or anyone, for that matter—“really believe” about some issue, so when it comes to establishing what the majority view is on some philosophical issue I regard (purported) examples of Moorean agreements as being less conclusive than examples of what philosophers have explicitly claimed to believe. Still, it will be interesting to see how much agreement there is on what the Moorean agreements are!

And that’s it. I anxiously await your contributions. ^_^

No comments: