Abstract This essay draws upon Gramsci?s understandings of law and of the philosophy of praxis to develop a critical analysis of international law in the constitution and potential revolutionary transformation of the contemporary global political economy. The analysis illustrates the analytical utility of Gramscian conceptions of historical bloc and hegemony in capturing the significance of international law as an effective historical force. It also extends these conceptions, theoretically, by arguing that the global political economy is undergoing a process of juridification (...) in which a commodified legal form provides the template for economic and political regulation. The commodity form theory of law is presented as the key to understanding the significance of international law under the culture of global capitalism. (shrink)
This paper is the report of a meetingthat gathered many of the UK's most senioranimal scientists with representatives of thefarming industry, consumer groups, animalwelfare groups, and environmentalists. Therewas strong consensus that the current economicstructure of agriculture cannot adequatelyaddress major issues of concern to society:farm incomes, food security and safety, theneeds of developing countries, animal welfare,and the environment. This economic structure isbased primarily on competition betweenproducers and between retailers, driving foodprices down, combined with externalization ofmany costs. These issues must be addressed (...) by acombination of legislation, restructuring ofthe market, and use of public funds. Themeeting included workshops that made otherrecommendations for research and education. Themost urgent requirement is recognition thatchange is needed and development of a visionfor what that change must achieve. (shrink)
Top-down feedback does not benefit speech recognition; on the contrary, it can hinder it. No experimental data imply that feedback loops are required for speech recognition. Feedback is accordingly unnecessary and spoken word recognition is modular. To defend this thesis, we analyse lexical involvement in phonemic decision making. TRACE (McClelland & Elman 1986), a model with feedback from the lexicon to prelexical processes, is unable to account for all the available data on phonemic decision making. The modular Race model (Cutler (...) & Norris 1979) is likewise challenged by some recent results, however. We therefore present a new modular model of phonemic decision making, the Merge model. In Merge, information flows from prelexical processes to the lexicon without feedback. Because phonemic decisions are based on the merging of prelexical and lexical information, Merge correctly predicts lexical involvement in phonemic decisions in both words and nonwords. Computer simulations show how Merge is able to account for the data through a process of competition between lexical hypotheses. We discuss the issue of feedback in other areas of language processing and conclude that modular models are particularly well suited to the problems and constraints of speech recognition. Key Words: computational modeling; feedback; lexical processing; modularity; phonemic decisions; reading; speech recognition; word recognition. (shrink)
The central thesis of our target article is that feedback is never necessary in spoken word recognition. In this response we begin by clarifying some terminological issues that have led to a number of misunderstandings. We provide some new arguments that the feedforward model Merge is indeed more parsimonious than the interactive alternatives, and that it provides a more convincing account of the data than alternative models. Finally, we extend the arguments to deal with new issues raised by the commentators (...) such as infant speech perception and neural architecture. (shrink)
Clahsen proposes two distinct processing routes, for regularly and irregularly inflected forms, respectively, and thus is apparently making a psychological claim. We argue that his position, which embodies a strictly linguistic perspective, does not constitute a psychological processing model.
Language production and comprehension are intimately interrelated; and models of production and comprehension should, we argue, be constrained by common architectural guidelines. Levelt et al.'s target article adopts as guiding principle Ockham's razor: the best model of production is the simplest one. We recommend adoption of the same principle in comprehension, with consequent simplification of some well-known types of models.