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Essays

Fine writing on philosophy, psychology, science, history and the arts
Seeing and somethingness | Aeon
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Consciousness and altered states

Seeing and somethingness

An evolutionary approach to consciousness can resolve the ‘hard problem’ – with radical implications for animal sentience

Nicholas Humphrey

Fortune favours the shrewd | Aeon
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Evolution

Fortune favours the shrewd

Attaining and maintaining power lies at the heart of almost all animal societies. And it’s as devious as human politicking

Lee Alan Dugatkin

The utopian machine | Aeon
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Subcultures

The utopian machine

For children like me, growing up in an utopian community, life was a bewildering chaos of freedom and indoctrination

Susanna Crossman

Exhuming the truth | Aeon
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Human rights and justice

Exhuming the truth

Thousands of victims of political executions lie in anonymous graves. Forensics offers hope for the ‘forgotten’ ones

Nicole Iturriaga

Life in the buff | Aeon
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Subcultures

Life in the buff

Naturists believed nudity was profoundly beneficial to society. In order to spread the message, they took to photography

Annebella Pollen

Why we crave | Aeon
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Addiction

Why we crave

The neuroscientific picture of addiction overlooks the psychological and social factors that make cravings so hard to resist

Zoey Lavallee

Democracy or apocalypse | Aeon
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Thinkers and theories

Democracy or apocalypse

Eric Voegelin and Hans Kelsen fled the Nazis. In the US, they clashed over the nature of modernity and government

David Dyzenhaus

Care from afar | Aeon
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History of technology

Care from afar

For over a century telemedicine has promised healthcare for all. But will it ever replace seeing a human being in person?

Jeremy A Greene

Happy the person | Aeon
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Animals and humans

Happy the person

She has deep emotions, complex social needs and a large, elephant brain. Her legal personhood should be recognised too

Lori Marino

Sisters in dharma | Aeon
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Religion

Sisters in dharma

In Indonesia, the world’s largest Muslim nation, Parwati Soepangat pioneered a Buddhist feminist theology with deep roots

Jack Meng-Tat Chia

Collective wrongs | Aeon
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Ethics

Collective wrongs

Even when individual perpetrators and victims are dead, states and institutions have a responsibility to make restitutions

Joshua Stein

The Calvinist conquest | Aeon
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Religion

The Calvinist conquest

In the 17th century, Dutch proselytisers set out for Asia, Africa and the Americas. The legacy of their travels endures

Charles H Parker