Clash of the Titans: Plantinga & Dennett in Chicago


Apparently Alvin Plantinga and Daniel Dennett debated a week ago at a meeting of the Central Division of the American Philosophical Association. An anonymous individual live-blogged it somewhat hyperbolically  (“The tension between the titans fills the room”) but the account is worth a read, even if it is clear that the blogger is biased towards Plantinga. Apparently Plantinga attempted to defend Behe and Dennett slapped him around for that.

Short anonymous blogger: Dennett was snarky, nasty and didn’t take Plantinga seriously.

That’s the sort of thing that would get PZ’s blood boiling!

There - apparently - will be audio posted at some stage.

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I guess I don't see the point in debating cdesign proponentsists creationists. It seems like a big waste of time.

Dennett is a 'titan' of philosophy? News to me.

Plantinga is a "philosopher"? That's news to me! Just another one of those "western philosophers" who have claimed 'philosophy' for theology.

@ Rimpal

That's a bit of a stupid comment. Plantinga - whether you agree with his religious beliefs or not - *is* a well respected philosopher. Your comment merely illustrates you know nothing about "western" philosophy (whatever you mean by that).

I listened to the debate. It seemed that Dennett's response and most of the Q and A strayed from (what I took to be) the key issues. For instance, do we have a defeater for all of our beliefs given Naturalism and Evolution?(as Plantinga argues). Dennett mentions a function of the human brain that destroys faulty cognitive faculties (ones that produce false beliefs) but does such a function of the brain plausibly arise from naturalistic evolution? A full human brain has a hard enough time ascertaining truth, is there really a function of the brain that knows truth so well that it destroys faulty cognitive faculties? Perhaps. However, the existence of such a function seems much more likely on Theism than on Naturalism.

By Wayne Alder (not verified) on 07 Mar 2009 #permalink