2005 Top Ten of Polemic for Philosophy

American Dream
The American Dream is a national ethos of the United States, the set of ideals in which freedom includes the opportunity for prosperity and success, as well as an upward social mobility for the family and children, achieved through hard work in a society with few barriers. The term "American Dream" was coined by James Truslow Adams in 1931, saying that "life should be better and richer and fuller for everyone, with opportunity for each according to ability or achievement" regardless of social class or
Analogy of the divided line
The analogy of the divided line is presented by the Greek philosopher Plato in the Republic (509d–511e). It is written as a dialogue between Glaucon and Socrates, in which the latter further elaborates upon the immediately preceding Analogy of the Sun at the former's request. Socrates asks Glaucon to not only envision this unequally bisected line but to imagine further bisecting each of the two segments. Socrates explains that the four resulting segments represent four separate 'affections' (παθήματα
Language and thought
The study of how language influences thought has a long history in a variety of fields. There are two bodies of thought forming around this debate. One body of thought stems from linguistics and is known as the Sapir–Whorf hypothesis. There is a strong and a weak version of the hypothesis which argue for more or less influence of language on thought. The strong version, linguistic determinism, argues that without language there is and can be no thought while the weak version, linguistic relativity
Stupidity is a lack of intelligence, understanding, reason, or wit. It may be innate, assumed or reactive. The word stupid comes from the Latin word stupere. Stupid characters are often used for comedy in fictional stories. Walter B. Pitkin called stupidity "evil", but in a more Romantic spirit William Blake and Carl Jung believed stupidity can be the mother of wisdom
Binary opposition
A binary opposition is a pair of related terms or concepts that are opposite in meaning. Binary opposition is the system of language and/or thought by which two theoretical opposites are strictly defined and set off against one another. It is the contrast between two mutually exclusive terms, such as on and off, up and down, left and right. Binary opposition is an important concept of structuralism, which sees such distinctions as fundamental to all language and thought. In structuralism, a binary
Beauty is commonly described as a feature of objects that makes these objects pleasurable to perceive. Such objects include landscapes, sunsets, humans and works of art. Beauty, together with art and taste, is the main subject of aesthetics, one of the major branches of philosophy. As a positive aesthetic value, it is contrasted with ugliness as its negative counterpart. Along with truth and goodness it is one of the transcendentals, which are often considered the three fundamental concepts of human
Anti-Federalism was a late-18th century political movement that opposed the creation of a stronger U.S. federal government and which later opposed the ratification of the 1787 Constitution. The previous constitution, called the Articles of Confederation and Perpetual Union, gave state governments more authority. Led by Patrick Henry of Virginia, Anti-Federalists worried, among other things, that the position of president, then a novelty, might evolve into a monarchy. Though the Constitution was ratified
Anti-Defamation League
The Anti-Defamation League (ADL), formerly known as the Anti-Defamation League of B'nai B'rith, is an international Jewish non-governmental organization based in the United States. It was founded in late September 1913 by the Independent Order of B'nai B'rith, a Jewish service organization, in the wake of the contentious conviction for murder of Leo Frank. ADL subsequently split from B'nai B'rith and continued as an independent US section 501(c)(3) nonprofit. ADL states that its mission is twofold: "To
Communism is a philosophical, social, political, and economic ideology and movement whose goal is the establishment of a communist society, namely a socioeconomic order structured upon the ideas of common ownership of the means of production and the absence of social classes, money, and the state. Communism is a specific, yet distinct, form of socialism. Communists agree on the withering away of the state but disagree on the means to this end, reflecting a distinction between a more libertarian approach of
Paradox of hedonism
The paradox of hedonism, also called the pleasure paradox, refers to the practical difficulties encountered in the pursuit of pleasure. For the hedonist, constant pleasure-seeking may not yield the most actual pleasure or happiness in the long run—or even in the short run, when consciously pursuing pleasure interferes with experiencing it