Thinking (about) automata in Descartes, Shaftesbury, and Diderot


Event Date: 20 May 2018
43 Gordon Sq
Birkbeck School of Arts
Birkbeck University of London
London WC1H 0PD

Birkbeck School of Arts presents:

Thinking (about) automata in Descartes, Shaftesbury, and Diderot

In the period 1620-1780, discussions of the soul, the mind, and living things, involved thinking about automata, and whether they might think. This talk critiques the contrasting positions of three major writers (Descartes, Shaftesbury, and Diderot) concerning what divides animals from humans, and living creatures from elaborate machines. The lecture and discussion is given by Dr James Fowler (University of Kent) and chaired by Ann Lewis (Birkbeck).

Introduction by Ann Lewis (Birkbeck):

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