Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Cafe Philo in New York City next week on Thursday, 1/28: Was Mozart the product of nature or nurture?

Cafe Philo in New York City will hold its second session of the new year next week on Thursday, January 28, 2010 with a discussion on the topic of "Was Mozart the product of nature or nurture?".

It will be fascinating to contemplate the relative roles of genes, "human nature", culture, "the times", education, religion, the environment, family, individual initiative, discipline, etc. in the development of "genius" or even for development of "normal" people.

I have been acting as moderator lately. Bernard Roy has been attending recently as a participant, including last week for the discussion of "What does society owe the individual?"

Catch up on preparatory online discussions in the Yahoo! group for Cafe Philo NYC.

As usual, the meeting will be held from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. in the back room at Bamiyan Restaurant (Afghan food) at the northwest corner of Third Avenue and 26th Street in New York City. In exchange for free meeting space, it is expected that each attendee will purchase a minimum of $5 of food or drink. By the way, the room has a great new air conditioner, so it is a welcome oasis on a hot or humid summer day.

There is also usually some number of attendees who go across the street to McCormack's Bar for drinks and food and extended discussion after Cafe Philo, but not limited to the scheduled discussion topic.

There are a number of small groups in the U.S. and Europe who meet regularly to discuss topics related to philosophy. Some of these groups go by the name "Cafe Philo." There is one here in New York City that meets every two weeks, every other Thursday. It is organized and moderated by Bernard Roy, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Ramapo College of New Jersey. Each meeting focuses on a specific topic which was suggested and voted on by the participants at the last meeting.

Also, there is an online discussion forum for the NYC Cafe Philo at:

There is also a new web site for NYC Cafe

I have been attending the NYC Cafe Philo off and on since 2004. Previously I had attended the Cafe Philo in Washington, D.C. starting in 2001.

-- Jack Krupansky


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