The paper discusses how the oldest manuscripts (L, C, V) of De civitate Dei are related to the more recent ones. The problems that emerge concern theexistence of an archetype; the relationship between L and C; the question whether the earlier manuscripts may be right (they sometimes are). In quite a few passages the readings preferred by editors are questionable, and others are proposed. It is shown that interpolation and revision of the text play an important role, and that the (...) context must take priority in attempting to establish the text. We should not put excessive trust in the older manuscripts, yet, at the same time, we should be aware of the uncertainty of our choices. (shrink)
Aims The aim of this study was to examine if it is plausible to interpret the appearance of shame in a Swedish healthcare setting as a reaction to having one's honour wronged. Methods Using a questionnaire, we studied answers from a sample of long-term sick-listed patients who had experienced negative encounters (n=1628) and of these 64% also felt wronged. We used feeling wronged to examine emotional reactions such as feeling ashamed and made the assumption that feeling shame could be associated (...) with having one's honour wronged. In statistical analyses relative risks (RRs) were computed, adjusting for age, sex, disease-labelling, educational levels, as well as their 95% CI. Results Approximately half of those who had been wronged stated that they also felt shame and of those who felt shame, 93% (CI 91 to 95) felt that they had been wronged. The RR was 4.5 (CI 3.0 to 6.8) for shame when wronged. This can be compared with the other emotional reactions where the RRs were between 1.1 (CI 0.9 to 1.3)–1.4 (CI 1.2 to 1.7). We found no association between country of birth and feeling shame after having experienced negative encounters. Conclusions We found that the RR of feeling shame when wronged was significantly higher compared with other feelings. Along with theoretical considerations, and the specific types of negative encounters associated with shame, the results indicate that our research hypothesis might be plausible. We think that the results deserve to be used as point of departure for future research. (shrink)
As part of the conference commemorating Theoria's 75th anniversary, a round table discussion on philosophy publishing was held in Bergendal, Sollentuna, Sweden, on 1 October 2010. Bengt Hansson was the chair, and the other participants were eight editors-in-chief of philosophy journals: Hans van Ditmarsch (Journal of Philosophical Logic), Pascal Engel (Dialectica), Sven Ove Hansson (Theoria), Vincent Hendricks (Synthese), Søren Holm (Journal of Medical Ethics), Pauline Jacobson (Linguistics and Philosophy), Anthonie Meijers (Philosophical Explorations), Henry S. Richardson (Ethics) and Hans Rott (...) (Erkenntnis). (shrink)
Theoria , the international Swedish philosophy journal, was founded in 1935. Its contributors in the first 75 years include the major Swedish philosophers from this period and in addition a long list of international philosophers, including A. J. Ayer, C. D. Broad, Ernst Cassirer, Hector Neri Castañeda, Arthur C. Danto, Donald Davidson, Nelson Goodman, R. M. Hare, Carl G. Hempel, Jaakko Hintikka, Saul Kripke, Henry E. Kyburg, Keith Lehrer, Isaac Levi, David Lewis, Gerald MacCallum, Richard Montague, Otto Neurath, Arthur N. (...) Prior, W. V. Quine, Nicholas Rescher, Ernest Sosa, Robert C. Stalnaker, P. F. Strawson, Patrick Suppes, Johan van Benthem, Georg Henrik von Wright and many others. Hempel's confirmation paradoxes, Ross's deontic paradox, Montague's universal grammar and Lindström's theorem are among the contributions to philosophy that were first published in Theoria. (shrink)
It is now generally agreed that we have to rely on value judgments to distinguish mental disorders from other conditions, but it is not quite clear how. To clarify this, we need to know more than to what extent attributions of disorder are dependent on values. We also have to know (1) what kind of evaluations we have to rely on to identify the class of mental disorder; (2) whether attributions of disorder contain any implicit reference to some specific evaluative (...) standard; and (3) whether the concept of mental disorder is value laden in the definitional or in the epistemic sense. I will argue that the evaluations we have to rely on are mainly considerations of harm, but that we also need to rely on other evaluations; that there should be no references to specific evaluative standards; and that even though mental disorders are necessarily undesirable, "mental disorder" may well be a descriptive phrase. (shrink)
All definitions of mental disorder are backed up by arguments that rely on general criteria (e.g., that a definition should be consistent with ordinary language). These desiderata are rarely explicitly stated, and there has been no systematic discussion of how different definitions should be assessed. To arrive at a well-founded list of desiderata, we need to know the purpose of a definition. I argue that this purpose must be practical; it should, for example, help us determine who is entitled to (...) publicly funded health care. I then propose eight conditions of adequacy that can be used to assess competing definitions (e.g., the ordinary language condition, the coherence condition, and the condition of normative adequacy). These conditions pull in different directions, however, and we must decide which are most important. I also suggest that there is no single definition that can help us deal with all the relevant practical issues. (shrink)
Bengt BrÃ¼lde in his article ``The Goals of Medicine. Towards a Unified Theory'' has proposed a normative theory of the goals of medicine within which the concept of quality of life plays a crucial role. In BrÃ¼lde's analysis, however, the very concept of medicine is deliberately left quite vague and it is therefore difficult to see how the goals of medicine are related to the goals of closely allied enterprises such as health promotion and social welfare. In this reply (...) I therefore propose an analysis of these related conceptual areas. I do this mainly in two respects. (1) Following the nomenclature in a previously published article (Nordenfelt, 1998) I propose a systematic conceptual framework for all varieties of health enhancement and distinguish different notions of medicine within this framework. A consequence of this analysis is, for instance, that the means and also the immediate goals of medicine in its broadest sense are more diversified than the means and immediate goals of medicine in its narrowest sense. (2) From this position I expand the topic further by comparing medicine and health enhancement with social welfare and try to trace the basic features between â as well as the common properties of â these different enterprises. (shrink)
Although Bayesian methods are widely used in phylogenetic systematics today, the foundations of this methodology are still debated among both biologists and philosophers. The Bayesian approach to phylogenetic inference requires the assignment of prior probabilities to phylogenetic trees. As in other applications of Bayesian epistemology, the question of whether there is an objective way to assign these prior probabilities is a contested issue. This paper discusses the strategy of constraining the prior probabilities of phylogenetic trees by means of the Principal (...) Principle. In particular, I discuss a proposal due to Velasco (Biol Philos 23:455–473, 2008) of assigning prior probabilities to tree topologies based on the Yule process. By invoking the Principal Principle I argue that prior probabilities of tree topologies should rather be assigned a weighted mixture of probability distributions based on Pinelis’ (P Roy Soc Lond B Bio 270:1425–1431, 2003) multi-rate branching process including both the Yule distribution and the uniform distribution. However, I argue that this solves the problem of the priors of phylogenetic trees only in a weak form. (shrink)
Current anti-doping in competitive sports is advocated for reasons of fair-play and concern for the athlete's health. With the inception of the World Anti Doping Agency (WADA), anti-doping effort has been considerably intensified. Resources invested in anti-doping are rising steeply and increasingly involve public funding. Most of the effort concerns elite athletes with much less impact on amateur sports and the general public.
It is argued that political democracyand citizenship should not be taken as primarygoals within university education. Instead theauthor argues for a notion of ``academicdemocracy'' with the overall goal or ethos oflearning together. Moreover it is argued that``learning'' then should be understood accordingto ``practical traditions of knowledge'', whichmeans that truth is not the ultimate goal. Theultimate goal is practices that lead to thegood of men and women.
The basic theory of preference relations contains a trivial part reflected by axioms A1 and A2, which say that preference relations are preorders. The next step is to find other axims which carry the theory beyond the level of the trivial. This paper is to a great part a critical survey of such suggested axioms. The results are much in the negative — many proposed axioms imply too strange theorems to be acceptable as axioms in a general theory of preference. (...) This does not exclude, of course, that they may well be reasonable axioms for special calculi of preference. I believe that many axioms which are rejected here may be plausible if their range of application is restricted by conditions which are possible to formulate only in a language richer than that of the propositional calculus, e.g. in one containing modal operators or probabilistic concepts. (shrink)
A so called “weak value” of an observable in quantum mechanics (QM) may be obtained in a weak measurement + post-selection procedure on the QM system under study. Applied to number operators, it has been invoked in revisiting some QM paradoxes (e.g., the so called Three-Box Paradox and Hardy’s Paradox). This requires the weak value to be interpreted as a bona fide property of the system considered, a par with entities like operator mean values and eigenvalues. I question such an (...) interpretation; it has no support in the basic axioms of quantum mechanics and it leads to unreasonable results in concrete situations. (shrink)
Recently, Bengt Hansson presented a paper about dyadic deontic logic,2 criticizing some purely axiomatic systems of dyadic deontic logic and proposing three purely semantical systems of dyadic deontic logic which he confidently called dyadic standard systems of deontic logic (DSDL1–3). Here I shall discuss the third by far most interesting system DSDL3 which is operating with preference relations. First, I shall describe this semantical system (Sections 1.1–1.3). Then I shall give an axiomatic system (Section 1.4) which is proved to (...) be correct (Section 2) and complete (Section 3) with respect to Hansson's semantics. Finally, in face of these results Hansson's semantics will be discussed from a more intuitive standpoint. After emphasizing its intuitive attractiveness (Section 4.1) I will show that two objections often discussed in connection with preference relations do not apply to it (Section 4.2 and 4.3); more precisely, I will show that the connectedness condition for preference relations can be dropped and that, in a sense, it is not necessary to compare two possible worlds differing in infinitely many respects. (What exactly is meant by this, will become clear later on.) Yet there is a third objection to Hansson's semantics which points to a real intuitive inadequacy of DSDL3. A way of removing this inadequacy, which corresponds to Hansson's own intuitions as well as to familiar metaethical views, is suggested, but not technically realized (Section 4.4). In the last section (section 4.5) I shall briefly show that DSDL3 is decidable, as expected. (shrink)