moral philosophy

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    This Philosophical Argument Convinced People to Give More to Charity

    How much would you pay to prevent your own child becoming blind?Photograph by 1000Photography / Shutterstock Last fall Fiery Cushman, the director of the Moral Psychology Research Lab at Harvard, and I announced a contest: We would award $1,000 to the author of an argument that effectively convinces research participants to donate a surprise bonus […]

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    It’s Time to Retire the “Trolley Problem”

    In the 1960s, the moral philosopher Philippa Foot devised a thought experiment that would revolutionize her field. This ethical puzzle, today known as the “trolley problem,” has become so influential—not just in philosophy but also in neuroscience, behavioral economics, evolutionary psychology, and meme culture—that it’s garnered its own tongue-in-cheek sub-discipline, called “trolleyology.” That body of […]