Most of the detailed research findings of this book tie a series of new approaches to mind and world (theories of extended mind in cognitive science, and theories of mind in life from philosophy) to Deleuze's philosophy, which Protevi reads as at once materialist but also (and therefore necessarily) virtualist
: a genuine materialism accounts not only for matter as it actually is, but also for the processes and potentials that bring it into being.
By the late 1840s, Pusey and Wilberforce "regarded both the virtualist
and receptionist doctrines as wholly inadequate expressions of patristic teaching" (Nockles, p.
This concern occupies the first three sections of the book, in which Doheny-Farina looks beyond the rosy proclamations by people he calls "immersive virtualists
" and evaluates the more probable effects of virtuality on our life at home, work, and school.
Set in the near future around the globe and off it, peopled by lovably goofy ex-morticians, virtualists
, young sacrifices, disease developers, and epistemological detectives who are always thoughtful, always filled with a strong will to survive and sometimes even do good, Pearlman's tales are quirky and surprising, winkingly comic, invariably iconoclastic, rich with moral conundrums and opulent ideas about everything from Frost's poetry to historiography, travel between dimensions to the possibility of a new humanism.
In introducing this idea, of course, Mill had brought the doctrine of the equality of man into the science of politics in a way not open to the old virtualists
among Mill's Whig contemporaries and predecessors.