Humans hunt and kill many different species of animals, but whales are our biggest prey. In the North Atlantic, a male long-ﬁ nned pilot whale (Globiceph- ala melaena), a large relative of the dolphins, can grow as large as 6.5 meters and weigh as much as 2.5 tons. As whales go, these are not particularly large, but there are more than 750,000 pilot whales in the North Atlantic, traveling in groups, “pods,” that range from just a few individuals to a (...) thousand or more. Each pod is led by an individual known as the “pilot,” who appears to set the course of travel for the rest of the group. This pilot is both an asset and a weakness to the pod. The average pilot whale will yield about a half ton of meat and blubber, and North Atlantic societies including Ireland, Iceland, and the Shetlands used to manipulate the pilot to drive the entire pod ashore. In the Faroe Islands, a group of 18 grassy rocks due north of Scotland, pilot whale hunts have continued for the last 1200 years, at least. The permanent residents of these islands, the Faroese, previously killed an average of 900 whales each year, yielding about 500 tons of meat and fat that was consumed by local residents. Hunts have declined in recent years. From 2001 to 2005, about 3400 whales were killed, yielding about 890 metric tons of blubber and 990 metric tons of meat. The whale kill, or grindadráp in the Faroese language, begins when a ﬁ shing boat spots a pod close enough to a suitable shore, on a suitably clear day. A single boat, or even a small group of ﬁ shermen, is not sufﬁ cient to trap a.. (shrink)
This paper explores the notion that economic preferences were shaped by the joint action of genetic and cultural evolution. We review the evidence that preferences are partly innate, the output of genetic forces, and partly plastic, the output of cultural forces. A model of how genes and culture might jointly shape preferences is sketched.
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)
Machine generated contents note: -- List of Contributors -- Acknowledgments -- Introduction: Towards a New Literary Humanism; A. Mousley -- PART I: LITERATURE_AS ERSATZ_THEOLOGY: DEEP SELVES -- Introduction; A. Mousley -- Faith, Feeling, Reality: Anne Brontë as an Existentialist Poet; R. Styler -- Virginia Woolf, Sympathy and Feeling for the Human; K. Martin -- Being Human and being Animal in Twentieth-Century Horse-Whispering Writings: 'Word-Bound Creatures' and 'the Breath of Horses'; E. Graham_ -- Judith Butler and the Catachretic Human; I. Arteel (...) -- PART II: SCEPTICISM,_OR HUMANISM AT THE LIMIT -- Introduction; A. Mousley -- Shakespeare's Refusers: Humanism at the Limit; R. Chamberlain -- Why Eliot Killed Lydgate: 'Joyful Cruelty' in Middlemarch; S. Earnshaw -- Atomised: Mary Midgley and Michel Houellebecq; J. Wallace -- Humanity without Itself: Robert Musil, Giorgio Agamben and Posthumanism; I. Callus_& S. Herbrechter -- PART III: LITERATURE, DEMOCRACY, HUMANISMS FROM BELOW -- Introduction; A. Mousley -- Mobilising Unbribable Life: The Politics of Contemporary Poetry in Bosnia and Herzegovina; D. Arsenijevic -- HUM (-an, -ane, -anity, -anities, -anism, -anise); M. Robson -- Humanising Marx: Theory and Fiction in the Fin de Siècle British Socialist Periodical; D. Mutch -- Civic Humanism: Said, Brecht and Coriolanus; N. Wood -- References -- Index. (shrink)
In several recent papers ArthurRobson sketches evolutionary scenarios in order to explain why we humans evolved hard-wired utility functions and the capacity to choose flexibly on the basis of them. Thesescenarios are scrutinized minutely in the paper. It is pointed out that Robson ignores several relevant insightful ideas and distinctions that have surfaced in other contemporary evolutionary theorizing. A somewhat different picture of human behavior emerges once these ideas and distinctions are taken seriously.