Problems of Living: Perspectives from Philosophy, Psychiatry, and Cognitive-Affective Science
addresses philosophical questions related to problems of living, including questions about the nature of the brain-mind, reason and emotion, happiness and suffering, goodness and truth, and the meaning of life. It draws on critical, pragmatic, and embodied realism as well as moral naturalism, and brings arguments from metaphysics, epistemology, and ethics together with data from cognitive-affective science. This multidisciplinary integrated approach provides a novel framework for considering not only the nature of mental disorders, but also broader issues in mental health, such as finding pleasure and purpose in life.
- Draws on the strongest aspects of polar positions in philosophy and psychiatry to help resolve important perennial debates in these fields
- Explores continuities between early philosophical work and current cognitive-affective sciences, including neuroscience and psychology
- Employs findings from modern cognitive-affective science to rethink key long-standing debates in philosophy and psychiatry
- Builds on work showing how mind is embodied in the brain, and embedded in society, to provide an integrated conceptual framework
- Assesses both the insights and the limitations of cognitive-affective science for addressing the big questions and hard problems of living
Dan J. Stein is Professor and Chair of the Dept of Psychiatry at the University of Cape Town and Groote Schuur Hospital, and Director of the South African Medical Research Council's Unit on Risk & Resilience in Mental Disorders. Dan's training includes doctoral degrees in clinical neuroscience and in philosophy, and a post-doctoral fellowship in psychopharmacology. He is a clinician-scientist whose work has long focused on anxiety and related disorders. He has also mentored a range of other research, with publications spanning basic neuroscience, through clinical research, and on to public mental health. His research has had considerable influence (as evidenced by his h-index, perhaps the highest of any African scholar), as has his mentorship (as evidenced by the career success of his postgraduate students and fellows). Awards for his work include the International College of Neuropsychopharmacology's Max Hamilton Award for his contributions to psychopharmacology, and its Ethics in Psychopharmacology Award.
1. Introduction 2. Brain-minds: What's the best metaphor? 3. Reason and passion 4. The pleasures of life 5. Pain and suffering 6. The good and the bad 7. How can we know what is true, then? 8. The meaning of life 9. Conclusion: Metaphors of life