Final paper

  1. Read one of the books below and extract a specific claim the author makes about cognition, culture, socie­ty, or political life. You must be able to locate and underline the claim in the text itself, in a maximum of two paragraphs, and rephrase it in one sentence. “Just crazy enough to be true” is a good guideline. You may gen­eralize the claim. Large leeway for poetic interpretation. Photocopy of paragraphs, and sentence, due XXX.
  2. Test the claim on a dataset, using the methods of the class.

The paper is expected to be at the level of a peer reviewed journal article. It is due XXX.

Cognition: Ethics, Spinoza; Meno, Phaedrus, Charmides, etc of Plato; Letters, Seneca; Critique of Pure Rea­ son, Kant; The Upanishads; Shobogenzo (Treasury of the True Dharma Eye), Dogen; Charles Sanders Peirce; from our anthology; The Evolution of the Sensitive Soul, Ginsburg and Jablonka; any pre-1936 Monist paper.

Psychology: The Expression of the Emotions in Man and Animals, Charles Darwin; Knots, R. D. Laing; Psy­ chology of Alchemy, C.J. Jung; Varieties of Religious Experience, William James; The Authoritarian Personal­ ity, Adorno et al.; Playing and Reality, D.W. Winnicott; Breakdown of Will, George Ainslie.

Political Theory: The Republic, Plato; The Leviathan, Thomas Hobbes; The Prince, Niccolo Machiavelli; The Human Condition’, Hannah Arendt; Down Girl, Kate Manne; Red Plenty, Francis Spufford; Ulysses Unbound, Jon Elster.

Science of Science: Proofs and Refutations, Lakatos; Against Method, Feyerabend; The Sign of Three: Dupin, Holmes, Peirce, ed. Umberto Eco and T.A. Sebeok. (n.b.: under no circumstances any Thomas Kuhn).

Literature & Arts: A Generative Theory of Tonal Music, Lerhdal and Jackendoff; Poems, Poets, Poetry, He­ len Vendler; Anxiety of Influence, Harold Bloom; Strange Tools, Alva Noe; Poetry as Performance, Gregory Nagy; Graphs, Maps, Trees, Franco Moretti. Homo Ludens, John Huzinga.

Culture: Gifts of Athena, Joel Mokyr; Communities of Practice, Etienne Wenger; Feminisation of American Culture, Ann Douglas; Religion in Human Evolution, Robert Bellah; any history longer than one hundred years(); any anthropological text published before 1960(); any extended blog post or exchange from Lan­ guage Log(*) or psuedo-Erasmus (Economic History, *)

Online Culture: Future of Discovery, Michael Nielsen; Kill All Normies, Angela Nagle; Everything you love will burn, Vegas Tenold; any recent (2015+) mongraph on internet culture(*).

Future: Red Mars, Kim Stanley Robinson; Stories of your life and others, Ted Chiang; any Neal Stephenson novel; Ancillary Justice, Ann Leckie.

Examples of possible datasets: Wikipedia, Reddit, any online forum; Etherium blockchain; text from books (including text jailbroken from Kindle editions); Wikileaks; any historical archive (Annals of the Joseun Dynasty, the Letters of Tolstoy, etc.); any government “open data” archive such as Hansard or the U.S. Con­ gressional Record; any linguistic archive (Ubuntu Dialogue Corpus, Buckeye Corpus, etc).

Inclusion is not endorsement. (*): check with me ahead of time.