You are here:



QUESTION: Is "emotions" to be studied by a psychologist or by a pilosopher?

ANSWER: The answer is both. It's a question of perspective.

Psychologists are scientists -- they formulate hypotheses ("Coffee can prevent depression") and then test them by observation and statistical analysis.

A philosophers works on concepts -- what are emotions? Why do we have them? How does having emotions shed light on the famous mind/body problem? (The 'mind/body problem' is how an apparently immaterial mind can control a material body.) Are your emotions the same as mine (the famous "other minds" problem.)

Hope this helps.



---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: and these two sciences should work together?

Definitely yes.

Philosophy can help refine the concepts used in psychology, and psychology can provide new data for philosophers to think about.

Philosophers are reluctant to call philosophy "science", however. We say that science is one way of knowing about reality, but not the only way.




All Answers

Answers by Expert:

Ask Experts


Charles K. MacKay


I can answer a number of questions in philosophy; my academic concentrations (graduate school at Cornell) are ethics, political philosophy, and 19th-century German philosophy (Marx, Hegel, and hangers-on.)



BA, New College, 1971, Philosophy and Religion
Awarded four graduate fellowships upon graduation

MA, Cornell University, 1974
Social and Political Philosophy, Danforth Fellowship

All course work and dissertation drafts completed for Ph.D. Cornell University, 1971-1975, Social and Political Philosophy, Danforth Fellowship

Courses in statistics and microeconomics, George Washington University and The American University, 1976-1978

EXPERIENCE: Health Insurance Specialist 2005 - Present
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service
US Department of Health and Human Services

Allentown Business School Instructor (Computer Science) 2003 - 2005

Northampton Community College
Adjunct Professor of Philosophy 2003 -2005

Lehigh County Community College
Adjunct Professor of Philosophy and Computer Science


Medicare Made Easy (with Charles B. Inlander) Addison-Wesley, 1989

Good Operations, Bad Operations (with Charles B. Inlander) Viking Press, 1993

Health Rebooted: Information Changes Everything (in press), 2008

Bachelor of Arts, Philosphy and Religion, New College, 1971 Master of Arts, Social and Political Philosophy, Cornell University, 1975

Awards and Honors
Danforth Fellowship, Woodrow Wilson Fellowship

©2017 All rights reserved.