Josh Berson

Essayist, novelist, bothy enthusiast. Author of Computable Bodies (2015), The Meat Question (2019), and Ditch Kit (2020). My background is in linguistic anthropology, the history of science, and computer science. Some of what I do could be called philosophy of mind, or deep history, or cognitive anthropology. But my remit is broader. It includes questions of values — What distinguishes flourishing from survival? What kinds of phenomena make up the world, and which of them demand recognition as social presences? One recurring theme for me is the coupling of the intimate (eating, sleeping, being in pain) and the evolutionary (sentience, capitalism, niche exhaustion).

In 2018–19 I am a USC Berggruen Fellow at the Berggruen Institute in Los Angeles. From 2013 through 2017 I was visiting researcher at the Max Planck Institute for Human Cognitive and Brain Sciences.

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