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Sexbots Playing the Imitation Game

Jon Bialecki

Traditionally, “trolley problems,” the genre of decontextualized scenarios used by some philosophers, are not associated with the idea of “sex with robots.” This article addresses one ethnographic instance where, I argue, there are unexpected

Open access

Trolleyology and the Anthropology of the Ethical Imagination

Hallvard Lillehammer

Abortion and the Doctrine of Double Effect .” Oxford Review 5: 5–15. . Fried , Barbara H. 2012 . “ What Does Matter? The Case for Killing the Trolley Problem (or Letting It Die). ” The Philosophical

Open access


Switching Tracks

Matei Candea

Trolley problems are simplification devices. Could it be that, in so forcefully rejecting the simplifications of trolley problems, anthropologists are also working out their anxieties about their own simplification devices? For, despite our much

Open access

“A Lovely, Nasty Difficulty”

What's Funny about Killing Fat Men?

Joanna Cook

greater hold over our moral responses than “positive duties,” like the duty to save lives. Foot developed what would later be named by Judith Jarvis Thomson as “the trolley problem”: An out-of-control tram is speeding towards five workers. The driver has

Open access

Off the Rails

Thin Moral Thinking and Stylized Ethical Dilemmas

Paolo Heywood and Adam Reed

best known through the series of philosophical exercises often collectively termed “the trolley problem” (see Lillehammer 2023 ). In its most basic form, the trolley problem poses the moral dilemma faced by the driver of (or bystander to) an out

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Truth or Trick

Thinking of Trolley Problems as Tinkering

Teresa Kuan

, despite its abominable simplicity, the experiment can be any one of these multiple things, depending on who you ask. Among anthropologists, there is typically disinterest or suspicion of trolley problems. “Obviously the trolley scenario is highly

Open access

Dramatic Vignettes in Moral Inquiry

Ben Colburn

work on such counterfactuals, namely the dramatic vignette: this is a familiar device in moral inquiry, especially in the form of “trolley problems,” which pervade normative ethics ( Lillehammer 2023 ) and have broken out into popular culture too (e

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Productive Decontextualization

Philosophical Conversations in the Pub

Soumhya Venkatesan

puzzlements, in order to make them good to think with and enable general discussion, some work has to happen. Germane to our interest in trolley problems, this work involves decontextualization and paring down. Both are deemed necessary to get to the heart of

Open access

Life on the Lifeboat

Stylizing Ethical Dilemmas in the Philosophy and Activism of Animal Protection

Adam Reed

characteristics of other types of stylized ethical dilemmas in the wider philosophical register such as trolley problems, this account displays a ruthless succinctness (the lines of the example are quoted in full). Regan is clearly not concerned to enliven the

Open access

A Thought Experiment in the Wild

Paolo Heywood

this exercise of imagination a thought experiment—the mode of philosophical reasoning of which trolley problems form a subset—insofar as everything described is factually correct, if biographers and intellectual historians are to be believed, with the