My second book, currently in progress, is entitled ‘Reason, Empathy, and the Minds of Others’. It’s an attempt to use some relatively new ideas and debates in cognitive science to answer a very old, very simple, question: why be good to other people?
Since this is work-in-progress, there’s not so much published stuff to list here, so I’ve put up some ‘promotional’ materials that try to summarise and convey the plan in an interesting way. First, here’s the slides from a presentation I did on it:
And here are three short little pieces of writing (1 or 2 pages) that approach the project from different angles:
- “For Empathy, Against Empathy? What is Empathy Anyway?”
- “Imagining a New Path to the Holy Grail”
- “Imagine If They Did That to You: A Dialogue”
Also related is my review of an excellent book pursuing a very similar project, “Compassionate Moral Realism” by Colin Marshall. Although we are in a sense fellow-travelers, I put the analysis of the imagination at the centre of my project while Marshall, I think, prefers analysing compassion as analogous to perception.