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Patricia Smith Churchland


Patricia Smith Churchland is professor emerita of philosophy at the University of California, San Diego, and an adjunct professor at the Salk Institute. Her research focuses on the interface between neuroscience and philosophy. She is author of the pioneering book Neurophilosophy (1986) and co-author with T.J. Sejnowski of The Computational Brain (1992). Her current work focuses on morality and the social brain: Braintrust: What Neuroscience Tells us About Morality (2011). Touching a Nerve (2013) portrays how to get comfortable with this fact: “I am what I am because my brain is as it is”. She has been president of the American Philosophical Association and the Society for Philosophy and Psychology, and won a MacArthur Prize in 1991, the Rossi Prize for neuroscience in 2008, and the Prose Prize for science for the book Braintrust. She was chair of the Philosophy Department at the University of California San Diego 2000–07.

Books by Patricia Smith Churchland

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