Author Archives: Quentin

About Quentin

Science Editor, Catholic Herald. Portrait © Jacqueline Alma

Nudges

The Benedictine asked his abbot for permission to smoke while he was praying. Not only was this refused but he was punished for even asking. His friend, the Jesuit, sought the same permission from his rector by asking if he … Continue reading

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Burka — the real problem

So Boris Johnson is in trouble again. His comment on Muslim women wearing burkas as looking like bank robbers or letter boxes has caused enough stir even to knock Brexit off the front pages. I am no particular fan of … Continue reading

Posted in evolution, Moral judgment, Neuroscience | 8 Comments

Words, words, words

The English language is remarkable for its richness, and often allows for a choice of word or expression according to the flavour which the speaker intends to convey. The two versions of the same statement which follow are both saying … Continue reading

Posted in Quentin queries | Tagged | 2 Comments

Do you remember?

We need a little discipline for this week’s question. Before you read another word pause and think of your very earliest memories. It might be sitting in a room when something relatively dramatic occurred, or really something quite minor which … Continue reading

Posted in Quentin queries | Tagged | 7 Comments

The beginning of a person

You may remember that on my posting of 31 May (The Control of Life) I included “But one theory, albeit controversial, may have strength. In the very early days, it is argued, the conceptus does not yet constitute an individual. … Continue reading

Posted in Uncategorized | 9 Comments

#METOO and evolution

#METOO has caused a great fuss on the press and in social news. But its profile has been overtaken by new issues. It will come back with the next scandal. But in the brief break we may allow ourselves to … Continue reading

Posted in Bio-ethics, evolution, Moral judgment, Quentin queries | 12 Comments

I’ll solve your problem

Looking at a long life I sometimes try to recall incidents or discoveries which I took to heart, and have continued to benefit from since then. The first one which occurs to me is when I learnt how to listen. … Continue reading

Posted in Catholic Herald columns | Tagged | 9 Comments