Steve Fuller

Man’s Best Friend

Aping Mankind: Neuromania, Darwinitis and the Misrepresentation of Humanity

By

Acumen Publishing 388pp £25 order from our bookshop

My philosopher friends do not much like Raymond Tallis, the distinguished gerontologist who upon retirement has become a prolific amateur philosopher. They find his style of argument at once flippant, crude, condescending and metaphysically pretentious. Yet that seems also to be the norm for the professional philosophers who write about Tallis’s favourite topic, the mind–body problem. Tallis is no more flippant than Jerry Fodor, no cruder than Patricia Churchland, no more condescending than Daniel Dennett and certainly no more pretentious than Thomas Nagel. And he is just as well-informed and clear a writer as all of them. My friends are simply jealous.

Sign Up to our newsletter

Receive free articles, highlights from the archive, news, details of prizes, and much more.

Follow Literary Review on Twitter

  • Last Tweets

    • He has 'raised his country’s international influence to unprecedented heights, while at the same time jailing hundr… ,
    • 'It is one of those nice linguistic ironies that English should have attempted to make sex respectable by clothing… ,
    • 'He was to my mind the father of the idea that journalism – yes, even journalism – can have a moral dimension to it… ,
    • RT : Feeling old, as exhumes a piece I wrote 37 years ago. But a joy to see Kathy O’S there too. Here’s why:… ,
    • 'Enough of his character remains just out of reach for Barnes to relish the challenge of imagining him.' Patrick M… ,
    • RT : I did a thing about the new Penguin Book Of Oulipo for this month’s Literary Review: @Lit_Review,
    • 'Moore’s work has been so influential that the former ministers who provided him with much of his information now r… ,