Abstract The aim of this article is to describe the moral awareness of future development agents in Malaysia. This study involved a group of senior students from the Developmental Studies program of the Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, National University of Malaysia. The underpinning theories for this study have been based on the Rest's model on moral decision-making and Kohlberg's moral on cognitive development theory. The moral awareness of the students is considerably at high level scores. However, there are (...) some elements of ambiguity in terms of percepting whether the encountered issue is merely violation of laws or ethical violation as well. This article is innovatively reviewing moral awareness of the future development agents based on theories of Rest and Kohlberg. As far as promoting a responsible and ethical decision-making are concerned, this article would render the present value of moral awareness in order to improve the scopes and approach of development education based on current needs and gaps. Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-11 DOI 10.1007/s13520-012-0018-4 Authors Suraiya Ishak, School of Social, Development and Environmental Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia Mohd Yusof Hussain, School of Social, Development and Environmental Studies, Faculty of Social Sciences and Humanities, Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia, 43600 Bangi, Selangor, Malaysia Journal Asian Journal of Business Ethics Online ISSN 2210-6731 Print ISSN 2210-6723. (shrink)
Fictionalism has recently returned as a standard response to ontologically problematic domains. This article assesses moral fictionalism. It argues (i) that a correct understanding of the dialectical situation in contemporary metaethics shows that fictionalism is only an interesting new alternative if it can provide a new account of normative content: what is it that I am thinking or saying when I think or say that I ought to do something; and (ii) that fictionalism, qua fictionalism, does not provide us with (...) any new resources for providing such an account. (shrink)
(Version 2.4) I have argued elsewhere for ascribing an error theory about all normative and evaluative judgements to Nietzsche. Such a nihilism brings with it a puzzle: how could we—or at least the select few of us being addressed by Nietzsche—continue in the face of this nihilism? This is a philosophical puzzle and so, defeasibly, an interpretive puzzle. If there is no theory it would make sense for Nietzsche to have about how the select few could go on, then this (...) is some evidence against the proposed interpretation of him as a nihilist. I defended the interpretation by arguing that Nietzsche’s declarations about creating values point to a practice of generating honest evaluative illusions. Such honest evaluative illusions are tricky things, though, and, precisely because they are honest, one might worry that they lack the motivational power of genuine evaluative belief. Can they truly play the role that evaluative beliefs play in our psychological economies? I suspect that Nietzsche does not want the honest illusions to play exactly the role that evaluative beliefs played. The cheerfulness, the playfulness, the lightness that Nietzsche hopes for are, I have suggested, a function of the shift from belief to pretence, from illusion to honest illusion. The question, nonetheless, is whether the resulting picture is too light. Can I go through life merely acting, as a critic might put it? My suggestion in this essay will be that the thought of eternal recurrence is meant to add weight to the lightness of acting—“acting”, obviously, in both the here relevant senses of the word. (shrink)
Requirements of rationality, like the following, have recently been the focus of much discussion: (1) Rationality requires of S that, if S intends that e and believes that e will not be so unless S intends that m, then S intends that m. (2) Rationality requires of S that S not both believe p and believe not-p.1 How many requirements there are and how precisely to state them is a matter of controversy, but I will focus on a different kind (...) of controversy, namely, how to conceive of such requirements in general.2 I will start by sketching a picture of their general nature and role that I find compelling and attractive. My picture is not, however, consistent with many of the recent approaches to rational requirements in the literature. 3 As I will try to show, the arguments that are often made about rational requirements assume, mostly implicitly, that my picture is flawed. These arguments do not, however, or so I will claim, actually give us reason to reject my picture of rational requirements. Indeed, many of the puzzles about rational requirements taken up by others turn out not to really be puzzles once we realize that this alternative picture.. (shrink)
If we think in terms of mainstream, "analytic" classifications of metaethical theories, then basically every major type of metaethical theory has been ascribed to Nietzsche. In one of the first attempts to assess Nietzsche’s views on foundational questions in value theory in the light of contemporary metaethics, John Wilcox writes: -/- The term "metaethics" was coined after Nietzsche’s time, but the issues were very much on his mind and figure prominently in his writings. … The difficulty is not that Nietzsche (...) did not deal with such issues. The trouble rather is that on these issues, as on so many others, Nietzsche seems so contradictory—he seems to be on both sides, or on all sides, at once. … Consequently, a large portion of the present study … consists of an effort to show just how complex, just how apparently contradictory, Nietzsche’s metaethical suggestions are. (Wilcox 1974: 5) -/- I plan to follow Wilcox’s lead—at least initially. I will show how a wide range of apparently conflicting metaethical theories have been ascribed to Nietzsche on the basis of his writings. I will end, however, with serious consideration of the view that perhaps Nietzsche simply does not have what we would now regard as a metaethical stance. (shrink)
Contemporary Kantianism is often regarded as both a position within normative ethics and as an alternative to metaethical moral realism. We argue that it is not clear how contemporary Kantianism can distinguish itself from moral realism. There are many Kantian positions. For reasons of space we focus on the position of one of the most prominent, contemporary Kantians, Christine Korsgaard. Our claim is that she fails to show either that Kantianism is different or that it is better than realism. Our (...) strategy is to argue that what are supposed to be claims that conflict with realism in fact do not. (shrink)
Nietzsche’s favourable comments about science and the senses have recently been taken as evidence of naturalism. Others focus on his falsification thesis: our beliefs are falsifying interpretations of reality. Clark argues that Nietzsche eventually rejects this thesis. This article utilizes the multiple ways of being science friendly in Nietzsche’s context by focussing on Mach’s neutral monism. Mach’s positivism is a natural development of neo-Kantian positions Nietzsche was reacting to. Section 15 of Beyond Good and Evil is crucial to Clark’s interpretation. (...) The presented interpretation makes better sense of this passage and shows that Nietzsche can accept both falsification and empiricism. (shrink)
We can distinguish between ambitious metanormative constructivism and a variety of other constructivist projects in ethics and metaethics. Ambitious metanormative constructivism is the project of either developing a type of new metanormative theory, worthy of the label “constructivism”, that is distinct from the existing types of metaethical, or metanormative, theories already on the table—various realisms, non-cognitivisms, error-theories and so on—or showing that the questions that lead to these existing types of theories are somehow fundamentally confused. Natural ways of pursuing the (...) project of ambitious metanormative constructivism lead to certain obvious, and related, worries about whether the ambitions are really being achieved—that is whether we really are being given a distinctive theory. I will argue that responding to these initial worries pushes ambitious metanormative constructivism towards adopting a kind of position that I will call “constructivism all the way down”. Such a position does see off most of the above initial worries. Drawing on the work of Ralph Walker and Crispin Wright, I argue, however, that it faces a distinct objection that is a descendent of Bertrand Russell’s Bishop Stubbs objection against coherentist theories of truth. I grant that the constructivist need not be a coherentist about truth. I argue, however, that despite this the constructivist cannot escape my version of the objection. I also distinguish between this objection and various traditional charges of circularity, regress, relativism, or psychologistic reductionism. (shrink)
The maturing of metaethics has been accompanied by widespread, but relatively unarticulated, discontent that mainstream metaethics is fundamentally on the wrong track. The malcontents we have in mind do not simply champion a competitor to the likes of noncognitivism or realism; they disapprove of the supposed presuppositions of the existing debate. Their aim is not to generate a new theory within metaethics, but to go beyond metaethics and to transcend the distinctions it draws between metaethics and normative ethics and between (...) cognitivism and non-cognitivism. In our experience, the differences with traditional metaethics go deep enough that it can feel as if two different paradigms are talking past each other. We attempt to bring clarity and focus to this rather inchoate debate by simultaneously articulating the general issues involved and engaging in a detailed case study of one of the prominent representatives of this discontent, Christine Korsgaard. We argue that Korsgaard fails to go beyond metaethics–indeed, fails even to provide a theory within metaethics. Our strategy for showing this is to argue that her claims are compatible with both cognitivism and non-cognitivism. We have argued elsewhere that her distinctive claims are compatible with realism. Here we focus on the crucial role that claims about agency and the will seem to play her in work and, according to our interpretation, in her attempts to go beyond mainstream metaethics. We show in detail that these claims are actually compatible with non-cognitivism. Though our discussion often focuses on her work in particular, it has clear implications for other attempts to obviate the debates of traditional metaethics. (shrink)
Though Nietzsche traditionally often used to be interpreted as a nihilist, a range of possible metaethical interpretations, including varieties of realism, subjectivism and fictionalism, have emerged in the secondary literature. Recently the possibility that Nietzsche is a non-cognitivist has been broached. If one sees Hume as a central non-cognitivist figure, as recent non-cognitivists such as Simon Blackburn have, then the similarities between Nietzsche and Hume can make this reading seem plausible. This paper assesses the general plausibility of interpreting Nietzsche as (...) a non-cognitivist. Non-cognitivism can mean various things and so some attempt is made to lay out the various kinds of non-cognitivism one might ascribe to Nietzsche. As part of the overall assessment of the plausibility of a non-cognitivist Nietzsche, the paper considers in detail the arguments of Maudemarie Clark and David Dudrick on behalf of a non-cognitivist reading. It argues, however, that there is insufficient evidence to justify the interpretation and that the analogy to Hume is unhelpful. (shrink)
This paper surveys contemporary accounts of error theory and fictionalism. It introduces these categories to those new to metaethics by beginning with moral nihilism, the view that nothing really is right or wrong. One main motivation is that the scientific worldview seems to have no place for rightness or wrongness. Within contemporary metaethics there is a family of theories that makes similar claims. These are the theories that are usually classified as forms of error theory or fictionalism though there are (...) different ways of accepting some form of the view that nothing is really write or wrong. A range of different ways of going in the light of such a realization is also proposed. The resulting taxonomy of positions is quite complicated and sometimes surprising. One surprise will be that some positions plausibly classified as error theories or forms of fictionalism do not quite seem to be forms of nihilism. (shrink)
Bernard Reginster, in his book THE AFFIRMATION OF LIFE: NIETZSCHE ON OVERCOMING NIHILISM, takes up the challenge of figuring out what Nietzsche might mean by nihilism and the revaluation of values. He argues that there is an alternative, normative subjectivist interpretation of Nietzsche's views on nihilism and revaluation that makes as much sense as—indeed, he often clearly leans toward thinking that it makes more sense than—a fictionalist reading of Nietzsche. I argue that his arguments do not succeed. Once we have (...) looked carefully at the details of the positions and the arguments ascribed to Nietzsche, the fictionalist option is the more charitable interpretation of the texts. I focus on the metaethical issues that play a central role for Reginster in his articulation of Nietzsche's nihilism and Nietzsche's strategy for overcoming nihilism. (shrink)
There is a widespread, popular view—and one I basically endorse—that Nietzsche is, in one sense of the word, a nihilist. As Arthur Danto put it some time ago, according to Nietzsche, “there is nothing in [the world] which might sensibly be supposed to have value.” As interpreters of Nietzsche, though, we cannot simply stop here. Nietzsche's higher men, Übermenschen, “genuine philosophers”, free spirits—the types Nietzsche wants to bring forth from the human, all-too-human herds he sees around him with the fish (...) hooks, as he says, of his books—seem to engage in what looks like valuing. These free spirits are supposed to revalue the old values—revaluing, as is clear from the texts, is not simply to remove the old values from circulation (Nietzsche uses “umwerten” and not “entwerten”)—and they are supposed to create new values. And, of course, Nietzsche himself, free spirit that he is, takes on the task of revaluing all values and seems to assert many a strident evaluation. So we need to say more here. What are Nietzsche and his free spirits up to when they engage in what looks, for all the world, like a practice of valuing? What is the practice of valuing Nietzsche is recommending for his free spirits? I argue for two claims: (i) First, we end up facing an interpretive puzzle when we attempt to explain how Nietzsche's free spirits are supposed to engage in a practice of valuing. (ii) Second, we can solve the interpretive puzzle by taking Nietzsche's free spirits to be engaged in a fictionalist simulacrum of valuing. (shrink)
Contribution to a book symposium on David Velleman's THE POSSIBILITY OF PRACTICAL REASON. In this book, Velleman argues that agency is compatible with a causal conception of the world, since the role of the agent can be played in this conception by an aim of self-knowledge instantiated in the mechanisms governing mental states. This article argues (i) that he must show what at the causal level plays the role of the agent's awareness of the normative guise of reasons and (ii) (...) that any attempt to provide the needed metaethical account of the normative property of being a reason will either be implausible or require serious changes in his "story of motivation". (shrink)
In THE GENEALOGY OF MORALITY Nietzsche assess the value of the value judgments of morality from the perspective of human flourishing. His positive descriptions of the “higher men” he hopes for and the negative descriptions of the decadent humans he thinks morality unfortunately supports both point to a particular substantive conception of what such flourishing comes to. The Genealogy, however, presents us with a puzzle: why does Nietzsche’s own evaluative standard not receive a genealogical critique? The answer to this puzzle, (...) I argue, lies in recognizing the centrality of the notion of “life”, and its connection to power, in Nietzsche’s overall account. Leiter has argued that his “Millian Model” provides the most charitable reconstruction of appeals to a privileged evaluative standard of power; this model ascribes an inference from a strong doctrine of the will to power according to which only power can be desired. I propose a “Benthamite Model” that ascribes an inference from the inescapability of a tendency towards power, a tendency that is essential to life. I argue that this model avoids the objections Leiter directs at the Millian Model. (shrink)
To determine the knowledge, attitude, and ethical concerns of medical students and graduates with regard to Embryonic Stem Cell (ESC) research. This questionnaire based descriptive study was conducted at the Civil Hospital Karachi (CHK), Pakistan from February to July 2008. A well structured questionnaire was administered to medical students and graduate doctors, which included their demographic profile as well as questions in line with the study objective. Informed consent was taken and full confidentiality was assured to the participants. Data were (...) entered in a Statistical Package for Social Sciences (SPSS version.12) and analyzed. A total of 204 male and 216 female medical students and doctors were administered questionnaires out of which 105 males (51.4%) and 108 females (50%) were aware of the embryonic stem cell research and its ethical implications. Forty percent males and 47% of females were of the opinion that life begins at conception. Forty-six percent males and 39% females were in favor of stem cell research while only 31% males and 28% females supported the ESC research. Less than 1/3 of students supported using frozen embryos for research purposes while more than 2/3 indicated that they were unlikely to support abortion for stem cell research purposes. The majority of the students were in favor of stem cell research with some reservations regarding ESC research. A sizeable number of students withheld their views, reflecting their poor understanding of medical ethics. The result of the study indicates a need for incorporating bioethics into the medical curriculum. (shrink)
Friedrich Albert Lange (b. 1828, d. 1875) was a German philosopher, pedagogue, political activist, and journalist. He was one of the originators of neo-Kantianism and an important figure in the founding of the Marburg school of neo-Kantianism. He is also played a significant role in the German labour movement and in the development of social democratic thought. His book, THE HISTORY OF MATERIALISM, was a standard introduction to materialism and the history of philosophy well into the twentieth century.
A key feature of ISCT is the claim that individuals are required to comply with the norms that are "accepted by a clear majority of the community as standing for an ethical principle" [Donaldson and Dunfee, 1999, "The Ties that Bind" (Harvard Business School Press, Boson, MA), p. 39], so long as these norms are consistent with hypernorms. I refer to this as the communal authority thesis. Many people see the communal authority thesis as an attractive feature of ISCT, a (...) welcome move away from the abstraction of principle-based ethical theories. I argue in this article, however, that the communal authority thesis is false: we do not have a general moral obligation to comply with the accepted norms in our community. I consider and reject several defenses of the communal authority thesis, including the central arguments put forward by Donaldson and Dunfee. I go on to develop my own position, which accepts that social norms can be important from the moral point of view. However, I argue that social norms are important because they can shape the morally important features of our situation, not because we have a general obligation to comply with these norms as such. I use examples such as gift giving in Japan and the housing crisis to illustrate my position. (shrink)
Reinhold Niebuhr begins an essay he wrote for The Nation in 1938 by noting that "one of the recurring motifs of Greek tragedy is the hero's deeper involvement in his own fate through his very efforts to extricate himself from it."1 Niebuhr calls this "abundant proof of the profound insight [of the Greek dramatists] into human tragedy" and suggests that "they were [in fact] not writing melodrama but were interpreting history."2 The essay was occasioned by Niebuhr's deep distaste for the (...) unwillingness of democratic nations of the West to challenge the increasingly aggressive posturing of the axis powers in the years leading up to the second World War. The war they seek to avoid, Niebuhr (as it turns out, correctly) .. (shrink)
Most theorists believe that when it comes to freedom, no economic system does better than laissez-faire capitalism the system may have other problems, but as far as freedom is concerned, laissez-faire is as good as it gets. The goal of this paper is to show that this view is mistaken. I begin by criticising two important contemporary conceptions of freedom, the libertarian and the liberal egalitarian conceptions, both of which support the dominant view. I then develop a better alternative, one (...) that I call the social democratic conception of freedom. Using this conception, I go on to show that an economic system that requires firms to have an internal structure that makes decision-making more transparent and responsive to the concerns of workers actually shows greater respect for freedom than laissez-faire capitalism does. (shrink)
The efficiency argument for profit maximization says that corporations and their managers should maximize profits because this is the course of action that will lead to an or outcome (see e.g. Jensen 2001, 2002). In this paper, I argue that the fundamental problem with this argument is not that markets in the real world are less than perfect, but rather that the argument does not properly acknowledge the personal sphere. Morality allows each of us a sphere in which we are (...) free to pursue our personal interests, even if these are not optimal from the social point of view. But the efficiency argument does not come to terms with this feature of social life. (shrink)
Should philosophers address the needs of their societies? If the answer is affirmative, and if today's needs are being inadequately answered within the New Age movement for lack of viable alternatives, philosophers' minimal response could be teaching critical thinking outside the academe, and maximal response would be providing relevant wisdom for the world. The first option requires construing logic and epistemology as practical fields. The second requires reforming part of Philosophy as social thinking which provides relevant wisdom for the world. (...) I expose here the maximal response based on an analysis of society's needs forcosmology and spirituality, the New Age Movement's role in providing for those needs, its dangers and imperviousness to criticism, and philosophers' possible responsibility for and interest in answering the needs for a synoptic vision. (shrink)
When the focus is on black or Asian minorities, Britain is frequently described as a multi-cultural state. But when the focus is on Scotland, England and Wales, Britain is also described as a multi-national state. Yet debates about multiculturalism and nationalism have been held in parallel without sharing even a common vocabulary. This book is a pioneering study of how multiculturalism interacts with multinationalism, especially within post-devolution Scotland. -/- It gives equal attention to Scotland's largest 'visible' and 'invisible' minorities: ethnic (...) Pakistanis (almost all of them Muslim) and English immigrants. Rising Scottish self-consciousness could have posed a challenge both these minorities. But in practice, potential problems have proved themselves to be solutions, integrating rather than alienating. -/- In the eyes of the minorities, devolution has made Scots at once more proud and less xenophobic. Even English immigrants feel devolution has defused tensions, calmed frustrations, and forced Scots to blame themselves rather than others for their problems. Pakistanis have suffered increasing harassment - but they attribute that to 9/11 not to devolution. And Muslims adopt Scottish identities, Scottish attitudes, even Scottish nationalism - consciously or unconsciously using these as tools of integration. -/- The book is based in part on large-scale surveys: of Pakistani and English minorities within Scotland, and of the majority populations in Scotland and England. But it is also based on systematic analysis of transcripts of focus-group discussions with minorities revealing the variety of opinion within minorities as well as the contrasts between them. In particular, it presents a unique account of how Scottish Muslims express their feelings in a time of crisis. (shrink)
Do psychotherapists' unethical practices influence how they are perceived? The 202 Israeli lay and professional psychology participants rated systematically varied descriptions of effective therapists and potential clients under conditions of no difficulties (standard), practice without a license, and a previous sexual boundary violation on indexes of evaluation and willingness to refer. Participants completed a measure of important variables in therapist selection. Effective standard therapists were rated most favorably, unlicensed therapists were rated favorably, and therapists who violated sexual boundaries in the (...) past were rated least favorably. When results were analyzed by respondent characteristics, laypersons rated unlicensed professionals (p < .01) and sexual boundary violators (p < .0001) more positively than did clinical psychologists. Men rated the violators more favorably than did women (p < .05). Factor analysis of therapist selection measures identified professional and personal factors, but only the former were associated with ratings of "problem" therapists. The results underscore the gap between ethical standards and applied decisions made by professionals and laypersons. Further investigation is needed to ensure quality care in both professional and consumer approaches to psychotherapy. (shrink)
Cosmological arguments attempt to prove the existence of God by appeal to the necessity of a first cause. Schematically, a cosmological argument will thus appear as: (1) All contingent beings have a cause of existence. (2) There can be no infinite causal chains. (3) Therefore, there must be some non-contingent First Cause. Cosmological arguments come in two species, depending on their justification of the second premiss. Non-temporal cosmological arguments, such as those of Aristotle and Aquinas, view causation as requiring explanatory (...) or conceptual priority, and thus insist that there can be no infinite regresses in such priority. Temporal cosmological arguments, also called kalam cosmological arguments due to their historical roots in Islamic kalam philosophers such as Abu Yusuf Ya'qub b. Ishaq al-Kindi and Abu Ali al-Hussain ibn Sina, view causation as requiring temporal priority, and thus insist that there can be no infinite temporal regresses.1 The kalam cosmological argument thus requires some supporting argument showing the incoherence of an infinite temporal regress of causally related events. William Lane Craig, in "The Finitude of the Past and the Existence of God"2, attempts to provide such an argument: (4) An actual infinite cannot exist. (5) An infinite temporal regress of events is an actual infinite. (6) Therefore an infinite temporal regress of events cannot exist. (9) I will not be concerned here with the general status of cosmological arguments, kalam or otherwise, or with contesting Craig's assumption that an infinite past would (unlike an infinite future) constitute a problematic actual infinity. I am rather concerned with Craig's general working principle, embodied in (4) above, that actual infinities are impossible. Craig, of course, is not alone in denying the possibility of the actually infinite. Resistance to such infinities is at least as old as Aristotle (Physics 3.5.204b1 – 206a8), and, as Craig rightly points out, persists through much of modern (i.e., post-scholastic, pre-twentieth-century) philosophy.. (shrink)
This paper suggests a critique of the zombie argument that bypasses the need to decide on the truth of its main premises, and specifically, avoids the need to enter the battlefield of whether conceivability entails metaphysical possibility. It is argued that if we accept, as the zombie argument’s supporters would urge us, the assumption that an ideal reasoner can conceive of a complete physical description of the world without conceiving of qualia, the general principle that conceivability entails metaphysical possibility, and (...) the general principle that for any s and t the metaphysical possibility of s & − t entails that s does not necessitate t, we have to conclude not that materialism is false but rather that either materialism or the “mental paint” (or “phenomenist”) conception of phenomenality is false. And further, given the initial advantages of materialism, the fact that proponents of the zombie argument are not allowed to rely on arguments against materialism in confronting this dilemma, and difficulties with arguments in favor of phenomenism, we find ourselves pushed to reject the mental paint conception rather than materialism. Or at any rate, it is hard to see how the proponent of the zombie argument can carry the burden of proof that lies with her. Thus, whether or not those premises of the zombie argument are true, the argument fails to refute materialism. (shrink)
In recent years, firms have greatly increased the amount of resources allocated to activities classified as Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR). While an increase in CSR expenditure may be consistent with firm value maximization if it is a response to changes in stakeholders’ preferences, we argue that a firm’s insiders (managers and large blockholders) may seek to over- invest in CSR for their private benefit to the extent that doing so improves their reputations as good global citizens and has a “warm-glow” (...) effect. We test this hypothesis by investigating the relation between firms’ CSR ratings and their ownership and capital structures. Employing a unique data set that categorizes the largest 3000 U.S. corporations as either socially responsible (SR) or socially irresponsible (SI), we find that on average, insiders’ ownership and leverage are negatively related to the firm’s social rating, while institutional ownership is uncorrelated with it. Assuming that higher CSR ratings is associated with higher CSR expenditure level, these results support our hypothesis that insiders induce firms to over-invest in CSR when they bear little of the cost of doing so. (shrink)
The purpose of the paper is to show that semanticexternalism â the thesis that contents are notdetermined by ``individualistic'' features of mentalstates â is mistaken. Externalist thinking, it isargued, rests on two mistaken assumptions: theassumption that if there is an externalist wayof describing a situation the situation exemplifiesexternalism, and the assumption that cases in which adifference in the environment of an intentional stateentails a difference in the state's intentional objectare cases in which environmental factors determine thestate's content. Exposing these mistakes (...) leads to seethat the conditions that are required for thetruth of externalism are inconsistent. (shrink)
There are two kinds of view in the literature concerning the relevance of intention to permissibility. While subjectivism assumes that an agent acts permissibly if he or she believes that the conduct is necessary for a moral purpose, for objectivism the de facto presence of an objective reason to justify one’s deeds is what matters. Recently, Scanlon and Hanser defend a moderate version of objectivism and subjectivism, respectively. Although I have a degree of sympathy toward both views, I will argue (...) that the truth lies somewhere in between. The view that I suggest in this paper hopefully occupies a space between subjectivism and objectivism and can accommodate the intuitions that neither of those views cannot account for. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: List of contributors; Acknowledgements; Note on texts, translations, references; Introduction Simon May; 1. The future of evil Raymond Geuss; 2. On the nobility of Nietzsche's priests R. Lanier Anderson; 3. The genealogy of guilt Bernard Reginster; 4. Why Nietzsche is still in the morality game Simon May; 5. Who is the 'sovereign individual'? Nietzsche on freedom Brian Leiter; 6. Ressentiment and morality Peter Poellner; 7. The role of life in the Genealogy Nadeem Hussain; 8. The (...) relevance of history for moral philosophy: a study of Nietzsche's Genealogy Paul Katsafanas; 9. Why would master morality surrender its power? Lawrence Hatab; 10. 'Genealogy' and the Genealogy Peter Kail; 11. The promising animal: the art of reading On the Genealogy of Morality as testimony Stephen Mulhall; 12. Nietzsche and the 'aesthetics of character' Edward Harcourt; 13. Nietzsche and the virtues of mature egoism Christine Swanton; 14. Une promesse de bonheur? Beauty in the Genealogy Aaron Ridley; Bibliography; Index. (shrink)
The Kripkean conception of natural kinds (kinds are defined by essences that are intrinsic to their members and that lie at the microphysical level) indirectly finds support in a certain conception of a law of nature, according to which generalizations must have unlimited scope and be exceptionless to count as laws of nature. On my view, the kinds that constitute the subject matter of special sciences such as biology may very well turn out to be natural despite the fact that (...) their essences fail to be microphysical or micro-based. On the causal conception of natural kinds I privilege, the naturalness of a kind is a function of the fact that it figures prominently in at least one causal law. However, there is a strong tendency prevailing among contemporary philosophers to assume that, in order to count as proper laws generalizations must be expectionless. Since most generalizations tracked down by the special sciences turn out not to fulfill these criteria, what this conception of a law implies is that most of the generalizations the special sciences trade in are not proper laws. It follows that, on this view, most if not all of the kinds the special sciences dealing with turn out not to constitute natural kinds, understood as kinds to which bona fide laws apply. In order to establish that the non-microstructurally defined kinds that fall within the domain of enquiry of the special sciences are eligible for the status of natural kind, I must therefore establish that generalizations needn’t have unlimited scope and be exceptionless to count as laws of nature. This is precisely what I seek to do in this paper. I begin by arguing that the question “what is a law of nature?” is most naturally interpreted as the question “what features must generalizations exhibit in order to ground scientific explanations?” and by offering reasons to believe that generalizations needn’t be exceptionless and have unlimited scope to play the crucial role laws have been thought to play in scientific explanation. Drawing on Sandra Mitchell [Mitchell, S. (2000). Philosophy of Science, 67, 242–265] and James Woodward’s [Woodward, J. (1997). Philosophy of science, 64 (proceedings), 524–541; Woodward, J. (2000). British Journal for the philosophy of science, 51(2), 197–254; Woodward, J. (2001). Philosophy of science, 68, 1–20] work, I subsequently develop an alternative account of the criteria generalizations must satisfy in order to count as laws of nature, which at least some of the generalizations of the special sciences turn out to fulfill. I thus give credence to the idea that at least some of the kinds that fall within the domain of the special sciences figure in laws of nature, and I thereby restore the possibility that some special science kinds deserve to be deemed natural. (shrink)
Religious diversity is a key topic in contemporary philosophy of religion. One way religious diversity has been of interest to philosophers is in the epistemological questions it gives rise to. In other words, religious diversity has been seen to pose a challenge for religious belief. In this study four approaches to dealing with this challenge are discussed. These approaches correspond to four well-known philosophers of religion, namely, Richard Swinburne, Alvin Plantinga, William Alston, and John Hick. The study is concluded by (...) suggesting four factors which shape one’s response to the challenge religious diversity poses to religious belief. (shrink)
: The late Nietzsche defended a position which he sometimes to refers as ‘sensualism’ and which consists of two main theses: senses ‘do not lie’ (T1) and sense organs are ‘causes’ (T2). Two influential interpretations of this position have been proposed by Clark and Hussain, who also address the question whether Nietzsche's late sensualism is (Hussain) or not (Clark) compatible with the epistemological view which he held in his previous work and which has been dubbed the ‘falsification thesis’ (...) (FT). In my paper I will show that both readings raise substantial difficulties and propose an alternative account of Nietzsche's sensualism. In particular, I will argue: (a) that according to Nietzsche the representational content of sensory experience ‘does not lie’ since it is physically grounded in causal exchanges with the external world which are mediated by sense organs; (b) that Nietzsche believes that the claim that senses ‘do not lie’ is also true of the phenomenal, qualitative content of sensory experience; and (c) that FT, despite its prima facie tension with (a) and (b), fit well Nietzsche's sensualism. (shrink)
In "Contents just are in the head" (Erkenntnis 54, pp. 321-4.) I have presented two arguments against the thesis of semantic externalism. In "Contents just aren't in the head" Anthony Brueckner has argued that my arguments are unsuccessful, since they rest upon some misconceptions regarding the nature of this thesis. (Erkenntnis 58, pp. 1-6.) In the present paper I will attempt to clarify and strengthen the case against semantic externalism, and show that Brueckner misses the point of my arguments.
Computational properties, it is standardly assumed, are to be sharply distinguished from semantic properties. Specifically, while it is standardly assumed that the semantic properties of a cognitive system are externally or non-individualistically individuated, computational properties are supposed to be individualistic and internal. Yet some philosophers (e.g., Tyler Burge) argue that content impacts computation, and further, that environmental factors impact computation. Oron Shagrir has recently argued for these theses in a novel way, and gave them novel interpretations. In this paper I (...) present a conception of computation in cognitive science that takes Shagrir's conception as its starting point, but further develops it in various directions and strengthens it. I argue that the explanatory role of computational properties emerges from the idea that syntactical properties and the relevant external factors presented by cognitive systems compose wide computational properties. I also elaborate upon the notion of content that is in play, and argue that it is contents of the kind that are ascribed by transparent interpretations of content ascriptions that impact computation. This fact enables the thesis that external factors impact computation to rebuff the challenge which concerns the claim that psychology must be individualistic. (shrink)
Physicalist epiphenomenalism is the conjunction of the doctrine that tokens of mental events are tokens of physical events and the doctrine that mental events do not exert causal powers by virtue of falling under mental types. The purpose of the paper is to show that physicalist epiphenomenalism, contrary to what many have thought, is not subject to the objections that have been raised against classic epiphenomenalism. This is argued with respect to five such objections: that introspection shows that our mental (...) properties are causally efficacious; that concrete existents and their properties necessarily possess causal powers; that the explanatory and predictive success of psychology implies that psychological properties exist and are causally efficacious; that epiphenomenalism cannot deal with the other minds problem, and that it is unlikely that our mentality does not endow us with evolutionary advantages and therefore it is unlikely that mental properties are not causally efficacious. (shrink)
The acquaintance principle (AP) and the view it expresses have recently been tied to a debate surrounding the possibility of aesthetic testimony, which, plainly put, deals with the question whether aesthetic knowledge can be acquired through testimony—typically aesthetic and non-aesthetic descriptions communicated from person to person. In this context a number of suggestions have been put forward opting for a restricted acceptance of AP. This paper is an attempt to restrict AP even more.
In 1997, thanks to a conference paper by Rolf Löther of Berlin Humboldt University, the name of Fritz Jahr (1895-1953) was mentioned for the first time as the creator of the term and concept of bioethics (Bio-Ethik). As yet, Hans-Martin Sass of the Kennedy Institute of Ethics has been the only one to analyze Jahr's ideas more thoroughly, dedicating to the subject a series of papers (see Sass 2007). In December 2010, a collection of 15 papers by Jahr was published (...) in the German original, while in May 2011, a selection of 16 papers appeared in English translation (Jahr 2011).So who, in fact, was Jahr? A humble teacher and curate who never left his home city of Halle, an old university center on the Saale River in .. (shrink)
Tel-Aviv University and York University, Toronto Plato suggested ways to regulate and integrate slaves within the legal system of his Utopian Cretan polis Magnesia as described in his work, Laws . This text alone invalidates most criticism of Popper's presentation of Plato's political views. His 50-year-old reading of Plato fits the text better than any other. To preserve the noble tradition of classical scholarship, classical scholars should acknowledge explicitly that he was correct, and that by now they have surreptitiously incorporated (...) the substance of his views. Key Words: Plato slavery apologetics classical scholarship Laws Popper. (shrink)
The goal of responsible engineers is the creation of useful and safe technological products and commitment to public health, while respecting the autonomy of the clients and the public. Because engineers often face moral dilemma to resolve such issues, different engineers have chosen different course of actions depending on their respective moral value orientations. Islam provides a value-based mechanism rooted in the Maqasid al-Shari‘ah (the objectives of Islamic law). This mechanism prioritizes some values over others and could help resolve the (...) moral dilemmas faced in engineering. This paper introduces the Islamic interpretive-evaluative maxims to two core issues in engineering ethics: genetically modified foods and whistleblowing. The study aims primarily to provide problem-solving maxims within the Maqasid al-Shari‘ah matrix through which such moral dilemmas in science and engineering could be studied and resolved. (shrink)
This paper distinguishes four major types of futility (physiological, imminent demise, lethal condition, and qualitative) that have been advocated in the literature either in a patient dependent or a patient independent fashion. It proposes five criteria (precision, prospective, social acceptability, significant number, and non-agreement) that any definition of futility must satisfy if it is to serve as the basis for unilaterally limiting futile care. It then argues that none of the definitions that have been advocated meet the criteria, primarily because (...) their proponents have not paid sufficient attention to the problematic nature of the data supporting the use of their definitions. Keywords: futility, limiting care, medical decision making, PVS, CPR CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
On July 12, 2006, the Hezbollah terrorist organization attacked two Israeli Defense Forces' armored Hummer jeeps patrolling along the border with gunfire and explosives, in the midst of massive shelling attacks on Israel's north. Three soldiers were killed in the attack and two were taken hostage. The Israeli Defence Forces (IDF) began heavy artillery and tank fire. Prime Minister Ehud Olmert convened the government on Wednesday night, June 12, 2006 to decide Israel's reaction. The government agreed that the attack had (...) created a completely new situation on the northern border, and that Israel must take steps that will "exact a price", and restore its deterrence. The Israeli-Hezbollah War had started after one rushed and short governmental meeting, without realizing the full implications of the decision. The war ended on August 14, 2006 when the UN Security Council Resolution (no. 1701) entered into force. During the war, voices of protest were heard in Israel, mainly from reserve service soldiers, journalists, and distinguished writers. After the war, thousands of people have criticized the government decisions, demanded the establishment of a national inquiry committee to investigate the war events and, called for the resignation of the war architects: Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Minister of Defence Amir Peretz, and Chief of Staff Dan Halutz. This article criticizes the establishment of the committee and the results it reached, arguing that it was a "sold game": The person under investigation should never be allowed to nominate his judges. This is mockery of justice, and travesty of social responsibility. (shrink)
Contributors to the recent disagreement debate have sought to provide a uniform response to cases in which epistemic peers disagree about the epistemic import of a shared body of evidence, no matter what kind of evidence they are disagreeing about. The varied cases addressed in the literature have included examples of disagreement about restaurant bills, court verdicts, weather forecasting, chess, morality, religious beliefs, and even disagreements about philosophical disagreements. The equal treatment of these varied cases has motivated the search for (...) a uniform response to peer disagreement wherever it is encountered. In this article I challenge this prevalent approach in the literature. I grant the notion of epistemic peer and accept that being a peer may amount to the same thing in different domains; nonetheless I contend that different domains appear to call for different responses to disagreement. I argue that the appropriate response to finding out about a disagreement with a peer is different in different domains. (shrink)
Conventional economic theory assumes that people care only about ultimate outcomes and are indifferent to the decision and allocation processes by which outcomes are brought about. Building on Sen (1997), I relax this assumption, and investigate the formal and philosophical issues that arise. I extend the formal apparatus of preference theory to analyse how processes may enter preferences, and investigate whether traditional invariance requirements like the Weak Axiom of Revealed Preference are still satisfied in this new setting. I show that (...) it is, provided certain conditions of separability hold, and I discuss the plausibility of these conditions. Further, I argue that processes are often valued in a mode that diverges from the conventional modes of instrumental and intrinsic/independent valuation. I introduce the notion of dependent non-instrumental valuation, and show how processes could depend on their instrumental function for their value – making their value dependent – and yet derive their value from something else – making it non-instrumental. Dependent non-instrumental value, I argue, can be explained by symbolic and evidential relations between processes and outcomes. (Published Online July 31 2007) Footnotes1 This article is based on the third chapter of my Ph.D. dissertation (Sandbu 2003). I would like to thank Richard Tuck for many discussions over several years, which helped me develop and elaborate the ideas presented here. I am also very grateful to Amartya Sen, Nien-hê Hsieh, Luc Bovens, and Xaq Pitkow for their close readings of various versions of the paper and their incisive comments, questions, and suggestions. Further thanks go to Christopher Avery, Matthias Benz, Jerry Green, Waheed Hussain, David Laibson, Robert Sugden, Alan Strudler, Justin Wolfers, and seminar participants at Harvard University and the Wharton School of Business. Akshay Jashnani provided helpful research assistance. Most of the ideas in the present article were developed while I was the recipient of a doctoral grant from the Research Council of Norway, which I gratefully acknowledge. (shrink)
This paper presents a series of 4 single subject experiments aimed to investigate whether children with autism show more social engagement when interacting with the Nao robot, compared to a human partner in a motor imitation task. The Nao robot imitates gross arm movements of the child in real-time. Different behavioral criteria (i.e. eye gaze, gaze shifting, free initiations and prompted initiations of arm movements, and smile/laughter) were analyzed based on the video data of the interaction. The results are mixed (...) and suggest a high variability in reactions to the Nao robot. The results are as follows: For Child2 and Child3, the results indicate no effect of the Nao robot in any of the target variables. Child1 and Child4 showed more eye gaze and smile/laughter in the interaction with the Nao robot compared to the human partner and Child1 showed a higher frequency of motor initiations in the interaction with the Nao robot compared to the baselines, but not with respect to the human-interaction. The robot proved to be a better facilitator of shared attention only for Child1. Keywords: human-robot interaction; assistive robotics; autism. (shrink)
One of the central factors influencing the process and the outcome of technology transfer is the nature of the technology being transferred. This paper identifies and discusses the main characteristics of Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology from the point of view of international technology transfer. It attempts to indicate the peculiarities of AI in this context and move towards a framework to assist recipient decision makers in optimising the formulation of their policies on AI technology transfer.
Charmed by Corballis's presentation, we challenge the use of mirror neurons as a supporting platform for the gestural theory of language, the link between vocalization and cerebral specialization, and the relationship between gesture and language as two separate albeit coupled systems of communication. We revive an alternative explanation of lateralization of language and handedness.
'At last, a volume on civilization that truly reflects the complexity of multiple civilizations. The wealth of contributions Arjomand and Tiryakian have assembled demonstrates the value of an old concept for understanding the awful dilemmas confronting human kind in the global age. Its thoroughgoing renewal here establishes this book as the essential benchmark for future scholars of civilization' - Martin Albrow, Founding Editor of International Sociology and author of The Global Age - winner of the European Amalfi Prize, 1997 'In (...) our tension filled world, many are heralding, and others fearing, a"clash of civilizations." The contributors to this volume provides a healthy and persuasive argument about why this clash need not, and certainly should not, take place. They do so, moreover, not by rejecting the concept of civilization, but by developing a less primordial, homogenous, and essentialist concept of it. An important collection that provides illumination in this sometimes frighteningly dark time' - Jeffrey Alexander, Professor and Chair of Sociology at Yale University 'The concept of civilization may well replace the notions of globalization and identity as the core component in the vocabulary of 21st century sociology. The authors contribute a great deal to the clarification of fashionable controversies around the "clash of civilizations" and "multiculturalism". They go a long way toward purging the concept of civilization of its ideological overtones, and they suceed admirably in turning it into powerful analytic tool of an emerging fleld of macrosociology, known already as civilizational analysis' - Piotr Sztompka, President, International Sociological Association Although the concept of 'civilization' has deep roots in the social sciences, there is an urgent need to re-think it for contemporary times. This book points to an exhaustion in using 'the nation state' and 'world system' as the basic macro-units of social analysis because they do not get to grips with the 'soft power' variable of cultural factors involved in global aspects of development. Also, globalization requires us to reconsider the link between civilization and a fixed or given territory. This book focuses upon the dynamic aspect of civilizations. Among the topics covered are: · Civilizational analysis and social theory · Global civilization and local cultures · Civilizational forms · Rationalization and Civilization · Civilizations as zones of prestige · Historical and comparative dimensions of civilization · The clash of civilizations. (shrink)
This work discusses a number of issues concerning mental contents. Its main purpose is to account for our thinking about extra-mental reality. I wish, in other words, to answer the question what makes it the case that mental states have the specific contents that they do. I try to present a theory that answers this question without using any semantic/intentional terms. Yet, the theory is neutral regarding the ontological status of the intentional and of the mental generally.
What is the relationship between acquaintance and aesthetic judgement? Wollheim’s acquaintance principle (AP) is one answer. Amir Konigsberg—the most recent critic of AP—has produced a number of examples which he claims will require us to restrict AP even further than has previously been suggested. I argue that Konigsberg is mistaken and that his examples do not necessitate any further restrictions on AP. This failure, however, is not the result of some specific flaw in Konigsberg’s argument; rather it is an (...) artefact of a deeper problem at the heart of the current debate over AP (and its successors). I conclude by arguing that this problem—the absence of any satisfactory reformulation of AP itself—has far-reaching consequences for our theorizing in aesthetics. (shrink)
This study examines an important part of Richard Swinburne’s case for the plausibility of Christianity, namely his Atonement theory. My examination begins by presenting Swinburne’s theory before alluding to the many criticisms it has attracted. I conclude with some lessons which can be learnt about philosophical theology and its use in interreligious dialogue. My main contention is that if philosophical theology is going to be used for inter-religious dialogue, then it should not be used with the expectation that disagreements will (...) be overcome. (shrink)
In this paper I present a criticism of Sarah Moss‘ recent proposal to use scoring rules as a means of reaching epistemic compromise in disagreements between epistemic peers that have encountered conflict. The problem I have with Moss‘ proposal is twofold. Firstly, it appears to involve a double counting of epistemic value. Secondly, it isn‘t clear whether the notion of epistemic value that Moss appeals to actually involves the type of value that would be acceptable and unproblematic to regard as (...) epistemic. (shrink)
Nobody has died yet as a result of the ongoing trials for transferring money internationally without a license of four Harrisonburg men from Kurdish parts of Iraq: Rashid Qambari, Ahmed Abdullah, Amir Rashid, and Fadhil Noroly. However, before coming here they were threatened because of their work for groups associated with the United States, and they were brought here by the United States government as part of Operation Pacific Haven. Saddam Hussein killed members of local Kurdish families. Qambari, convicted (...) on January 30, 2006, has stated, “If I get deported back to Iraq, I will be a nice gift to the insurgents. I will be dead.” Deportation is a possible outcome of his conviction. (shrink)
Much has been said on the religious pluralism of John Hick but little attention has been given to a key step in his argument for religious pluralism. This key step is the observation that the universe is religiously ambiguous. Hick himself is ambiguous about what he means by ‘religious ambiguity’. In this essay I will attempt to rectify this ambiguity by analysing the notion of ‘religious ambiguity’ and arguing what interpretation of this term Hick must commit himself to.
In this paper we prove the independence of δ 1 n for n ≥ 3. We show that δ 1 4 can be forced to be above any ordinal of L using set forcing. For δ 1 3 we prove that it can be forced, using set forcing, to be above any L cardinal κ such that κ is Π 1 definable without parameters in L. We then show that δ 1 3 cannot be forced by a set forcing to (...) be above every cardinal of L. Finally we present a class forcing construction to make δ 1 3 greater than any given L cardinal. (shrink)
FOUCAULT: A CRITICAL READER Edited by David Couzens Hoy New York: Basil Blackwell, 1986. 246pp., $45.00 ($14.95 paper) MICHEL FOUCAULT by Mark Cousins and Althar Hussain New York: St. Martin's Press, 1984. 278pp., $27.95 ($11.95 paper).