Dr. Bishop would like to thank Saint Louis University, the University Of Chicago Arete Forum, and the John Templeton Foundation for their generous support of this work thus far
Current: Chasing After Virtue: Neuroscience, Economics, and the Biopolitics of Morality.
Co-authors: M. Therese Lysaught and Andrew A. Michel. This book is an interdisciplinary and critical work that examines recent developments in neuroscience, economics, and moral theory as it is depicted in recent and contemporary neuroscience.
Chasing After Virtue critically examines the scientific and scholarly literature around the neuroscience evidence of economic, political, and moral behavior. It exposes a here-to-fore unacknowledged relationship between the political and economic assumptions that structure the way neuroscientific studies are conceived and constructed. It also examines the implicit assumptions of economic theory that shape the concepts of virtue and vice that are operative in neuroscience, tracing them to their more ancient roots. In addition, it shows how the relationship between economics and virtue in contemporary popular and neuroscientific discourse presupposes the relatively recent construct of the homo economicus. Distinguishing this book from all other recent books in the neurosciences, it asks the unseemly and inconvenient question: Given that the last time we tied our science to certain understandings of political economy the result was not so pleasant, what kind of political economy gives birth to the neuroscience we see today, and how might history assess this current configuration of political economy, neuroscience, and the social control of morality?
Forthcoming: Body Work and the Work of the Body
The body in contemporary Western culture is both worshipped and hated. It is everywhere, and in a way it is nowhere. On the one hand, we are obsessed with it as seen in our preoccupation with the cosmetics industry, massage studios, exercise gyms, not to mention the attention given to the body by the medical community with the rise in cosmetic dermatology, cosmetic dentistry, Botox injections, and cosmetic surgery. On the other hand, the extreme technological attitude toward the body is best articulated in the transhumanist hope that we will exceed many of our bodily limitations, reaching as many transhumanists hope, “intellectual heights as far above any current human genius as humans are above other primates” and “to be resistant to disease and impervious to aging” and “to have unlimited youth and vigor” among many other things. The body is mere matter to be manipulated for pleasure and desire.
In this book, Bishop will explore the cultural phenomena and practices, these ersatz liturgies that produce the Western body. The body is both object and subject of creation. It is both everything, and nothing; it is only thing, and the only thing to be escaped.
In conclusion, Bishop will explore the body in ancient liturgical practices of the Church, which resist the binary of worship and hatred of the body in the late modern West.