More thoughts on killing

As promised, I’ve just posted the (lightly edited) text of what I was talking about last night at the Cambridge Union, over on my Wayward Philosophy blog. It is about killing, and Levinas, and uncertainty, and ambivalence. I was uncomfortably aware last night that ambivalence is not a strong position to take when engaging in debates of this kind; but then I’m pretty uneasy with strong ethical positions — for reasons that should be clear in the piece.

Read the whole thing here.

Thinking about Killing – at Cambridge Union

This evening, I’m heading to Cambridge where I’m taking part in a Cambridge Union debate on the motion ‘This House Would Kill One to Save Many’. Also debating are Professor Julian Savulescu from the University of Oxford, the prolific philosopher, writer and podcaster Nigel Warbuton, Professor Alexandra Tanensini from Cardiff, Charlotte Knowles from Birbeck, and Lucy Yu, who is head of innovation and New Mobility Services at the Centre for Connected and Autonomous Vehicles (and who, I imagine, has a professional interest in the problems of speeding vehicles and imperilled members of the public that most of us do not).

It should be a fun and interesting evening, although I’m hoping that we won’t spend the entire evening talking about the famous trolley problem. I have to confess in advance that I don’t really know whether I would or wouldn’t kill one to save many. Nor am I wholly convinced that the debate format is much more than a weird form of entertainment. But hopefully it will be possible to derail things for long enough to allow in some interesting thoughts.

Anyway, I’ll post something about it all after the event over on my (currently rather inactive) Wayward Philosophy blog, and link to it from here.

Now Represented by C+W

I’m very pleased to have found myself a new agent at C+W, where I will be represented by the excellent Emma Fine. I’m very much looking forward to getting started on work with Emma on two non-fiction projects that have been in the works for a long time: one big, single-themed project that ranges across anthropology, philosophy, literature, history and other such things, and also a memoir with Chinese characteristics or 中国特色 (as they say in the PRC). Or at least with Chinese philosophical characteristics. I’ll post more news about both of these projects once they are up and running.

The link to my bio page on C+W’s website is here.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox

Join other followers: