Piece written for Aeon on the Syndrome E hypothesis: "Is Neuroscience Getting Closer to Explaining Evil Behavior?"
‘‘The self-consciousness that characterises the human mind is nowhere more baffling than in this problem of evil, which philosophers have been discussing since Plato. An obvious place to look for explanations of evil is in the patterns of behaviour that those who commit atrocities display.‘‘
Written for issue on "States of Mind" of Lapham’s Quarterly
‘‘This “metacognitive” ability to think and communicate complex thoughts, and thoughts about our thoughts, while being aware we are doing so, is uniquely human. In the field of cognitive psychology, the awareness that other people have different minds has been called theory of mind…’’
Conference organised with Paris 7/Sphere, Paris, Reid Hall, 5-6 October 2018
‘‘The concept of soul seems to have outlived its use long ago. Yet, our increasing capacity to transform our bodies, and interfere in the very processes of birth and death, is accompanied by urgent questions about the nature of identity, the individual, consciousness, and the living organism…’’