BarbaraStafford is at the forefront of a growing movement that calls for the humanities to confront the brain’s material realities. In Echo Objects she argues that humanists should seize upon the exciting neuroscientific discoveries that are illuminating the underpinnings of cultural objects. In turn, she contends, brain scientists could enrich their investigations of mental activity by incorporating phenomenological considerations—particularly the intricate ways that images focus intentional behavior and allow us to feel thought. This, then, is a book (...) for both sides of the aisle, a stunningly broad exploration of how complex images—or patterns that compress space and time—make visible the invisible ordering of human consciousness. Stafford demonstrates, for example, how the compound formats of emblems, symbols, collage, and electronic media reveal the brain’s grappling to construct mental objects that are redoubled by prior associations. On the other hand, she compellingly shows that findings in evolutionary biology and the neurosciences are providing profound opportunities for understanding aesthetic conundrums as old and deep-seated as the human urge to imitate, the mapping of inner space, and the role of narrative and nonnarrative representation. As precise in her discussions of firing neurons as she is about the coordinating dynamics of image making, Stafford locates these major transdisciplinary issues at the intersection of art, science, philosophy, and technology. Ultimately, she makes an impassioned plea for a common purpose—for the acknowledgement that, at the most basic level, these separate projects belong to a single investigation. (shrink)
Piéron's Law describes the relationship between stimulus intensity and reaction time. Previously (Stafford & Gurney, 2004), we have shown that Piéron's Law is a necessary consequence of rise-to-threshold decision making and thus will arise from optimal simple decision-making algorithms (e.g., Bogacz, Brown, Moehlis, Holmes, & Cohen, 2006). Here, we manipulate the color saturation of a Stroop stimulus. Our results show that Piéron's Law holds for color intensity and color-naming reaction time, extending the domain of this law, in line with (...) our suggestion of the generality of the processes that can give rise to Piéron's Law. In addition, we find that Stroop condition does not interact with the effect of color saturation; Stroop interference and facilitation remain constant at all levels of color saturation. An analysis demonstrates that this result cannot be accounted for by single-stage decision-making algorithms which combine all the evidence pertaining to a decision into a common metric. This shows that human decision making is not information-optimal and suggests that the generalization of current models of simple perceptual decision making to more complex decisions is not straightforward. (shrink)
Fue en Inglaterra donde apareció por vez primera un individualismo virtuoso comprometido con la defensa pública de la libertad frente a la amenaza del absolutismo. Allí surgió un discurso político liberal-republicano que defendió que el bien público y el interés privado fueran de la mano. Así, el liberalismo nació como un discurso público y privado de la virtud individual que tenía la vocación de frenar cualquier arrogancia despótica. Pero en la segunda mitad del siglo XX una tendencia neoliberal y libertaria (...) convirtió el mercado en una abstracción dogmática que justificaba un egoísmo descontrolado y sin límites. En Liberales, José María Lassalle expone la necesidad de que el liberalismo del siglo XXI vuelva a los principios virtuosos de sus padres fundadores, John Locke, Adam Smith y Edmund Burke. Los liberales tienen por delante la responsabilidad de enfrentarse a sus propios fantasmas y liderar nuevamente la defensa de una política del deber, y no del beneficio. Una política al servicio de la libertad: preocupada por el c ontrol del poder; que asegure el establecimiento de mecanismos institucionales que impidan la corrupción y las conspiraciones contra el mercado que se urden a las sombras de los gobiernos; que combata el dogmatismo y que defiende la tolerancia como una seña de identidad de nuestra cultura. Ante la mayor crisis de las últimas décadas, urge recuperar la virtud y los valores, una tarea para la que los liberales están mejor capacitados que nadie. (shrink)
This paper argues that Heidegger's phenomenology of boredom in The Fundamental Concepts of Metaphysics: World, Finitude, Solitude (1983) could be a promising addition to the ‘toolbox’ of scientists investigating conscious experience. We describe Heidegger's methodological principles and show how he applies these in describing three forms of boredom. Each form is shown to have two structural moments – being held in limbo and being left empty – as well as a characteristic relation to passing the time. In our conclusion, we (...) suggest specific ways in which Heidegger's phenomenological description can be used in scientific investigations of boredom. (shrink)
This paper proposes that global peace should be a professional concern because the issues are complex and require critical and creative thinking, and because professionals have status enabling them to convey information to empower others. Professionals must examine priorities in society's needs for application of their particular knowledge areas, and must each make their own unique contribution towards a more peaceful, less threatened planet.
1. As John Hawthorne and Maria Lasonen-Aarnio appreciate, some of the central issues raised in their ‘Knowledge and Objective Chance’ arise for all but the most extreme theories of knowledge. In a wide range of cases, according to very plausible everyday judgments, we know something about the future, even though, according to quantum mechanics, our belief has a small but nonzero chance (objective probability) of being untrue. In easily constructed examples, we are in that position simultaneously with respect to (...) many different propositions about the future that are equiprobable and probabilistically independent of each other, at least to a reasonable approximation. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: Chronology; Introduction John M. Najemy; 1. Niccol- Machiavelli: a portrait James B. Atkinson; 2. Machiavelli in the Chancery Robert Black; 3. Machiavelli, Piero Soderini, and the Republic of 1494-1512 Roslyn Pesman; 4. Machiavelli and the Medici Humfrey Butters; 5. Machiavelli's Prince in the epic tradition Wayne A. Rebhorn; 6. Society, class, and state in Machiavelli's Discourses on Livy John M. Najemy; 7. Machiavelli's military project and the Art of War Mikael Hörnqvist; 8. Machiavelli's History of Florence (...) Anna Maria Cabrini; 9. Machiavelli and Rome: the Republic as ideal and as history J. G. A. Pocock; 10. Philosophy and religion in Machiavelli Alison Brown; 11. Rhetoric and ethics in Machiavelli Virginia Cox; 12. Machiavelli and poetry Albert Russell Ascoli and Angela Matilde Capodivacca; 13. Comedian, tragedian: Machiavelli and traditions of Renaissance theatre Ronald Martinez; 14. Machiavelli and gender Barbara Spackman; 15. Machiavelli's afterlife and reputation to the eighteenth century Victoria Kahn; 16. Machiavelli in political thought from the Age of Revolutions to the present Je;re;mie Barthas; Index. (shrink)
Some psychologists have recently tried to develop new approaches to psychology incompatible with both natural-science views of the discipline and basic tenets of postmodernism. In her new book on psychology’s interpretative turn, Barbara Held refers to these thinkers as "middleground theorists" or MGTs. Most of the MGTs reject psychological laws, defend free choice and agency, stress the role of values in psychological inquiry, and argue for a hermeneutical methodology. Some reject scientific realism and embrace epistemological relativism. Both Held and (...) I express doubts about some of these views. (shrink)
: Stanley Cavell reflects on the writing of Barbara Cassin in light of his interest in interpreting certain philosophers as "philosophically destructive," where this destructiveness may in fact be understood as philosophically creative. Cavell suggests that the writings of Austin and Wittgenstein may be considered in these terms, and speculates on the potential interest these writers might have for Cassin. Cassin's call for a rethinking of philosophy might be seen as uniquely essential to the practice of Austin and Wittgenstein.
Surprising as it may appear, the philosophical writings of political economist Karl Marx (1818–1883), and those of philosopher, educator Maria Montessori(1870–1952), show thematic resemblances that invite further exploration. These resemblances reflect both keen awareness of the historical period they shared, but also important common threads in their philosophical anthropology, ethical and political values, and goals. In this paper, I examine one central thread which both take as fundamental, namely, the centrality of work in achieving the harmonious development of humankind. (...) I critique Marx’s description of the dynamic process leading to his classless society, because he fails to supply the proximate, efficient cause or middle term that effects this goal. My thesis is that Montessori supplies this missing causal link through her scientific demonstration of the work and function of the child and her holistic understanding of the human person in its full historical dimension, and human and cosmic telos. (shrink)
In this response to essays by Barbara J. King, Gregory R. Peterson, Wesley J. Wildman, and Nancy R. Howell, I present arguments to counter some of the exciting and challenging questions from my colleagues. I take the opportunity to restate my argument for an interdisciplinary public theology, and by further developing the notion of transversality I argue for the specificity of the emerging theological dialogue with paleoanthropology and primatology. By arguing for a hermeneutics of the body, I respond (...) to criticism of my notion of human uniqueness and argue for strong evolutionary continuities, as well as significant discontinuities, between primates, humans, and other hominids. In addition, I answer critical questions about theological methodology and argue how the notion of human uniqueness, theologically restated as the image of God, is enriched by transversally appropriating scientific notions of species specificity and embodied personhood. (shrink)
Patrick J. Carr and Maria J. Kafalas, Hollowing Out the Middle: The Rural Brain Drain and What It Means for America Content Type Journal Article DOI 10.1007/s10806-010-9266-2 Authors Doug Seale, 21 Turner Ridge Road Marlborough MA 01752 USA Journal Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics Online ISSN 1573-322X Print ISSN 1187-7863.
: One of the most influential branches of nineteenth-century American feminism was a resistance movement committed to the idea that the key to social reform was the recognition and maintenance of human differences. This approach, which became central to American pragmatism, had its roots in a tradition of American women writers including Lydia Maria Child. This paper examines Child's work and focuses on her conception of pluralism and its role in sustaining diverse communities.
Barbara Jordan (1936?1996), a formidable politician, won election to the Texas Senate (1966) and to the US Congress (1972). She became one of the most celebrated African?American politicians of the twentieth century, acclaimed both by white and black. Jordan was a voluntarist, viewing individuals as able to change the world through their own actions. She was committed to the American dream of inclusion, and also to the importance of positive ties to elites; to coping with the ?world as it (...) is?, to the futility of confrontation, and also to changing and influencing the attitudes of men at the top. Jordan opposed civil disobedience, nonviolent or not. Yet she admired symbols of defiance like Malcolm X and Mohammed Ali. A highly public figure, she was also exceptionally self?repressed. Critics likened her to the conservative Booker Washington, yet she was a staunch defender of voting rights and a radical integrationist. (shrink)
Cowan defines a chunk as “a collection of concepts that have strong associations to one another and much weaker associations to other chunks currently in use.” This definition does not impose any constraints on the nature and number of elements that can be bound into a chunk. We present an experiment to demonstrate that such limitations exist for visual short-term memory, and that their analysis may lead to important insights into properties of visual memory.
A new essay to analyse the demonstration which Aristotle gave of Barbara ACP (first premise “actual”, second premise “contingent”, conclusion “possible”) is realized with the techniques of mathematicallogic. The critical points (conclusion “possible” from two premises “possible”, problem de dicto - de re, etc) are indicated; based on them it is considered that Aristotle’s proof is not conclusive.
: The response of Barbara Pfeffer Billauer to my article "If I Am Only My Genes, What Am I? Genetic Essentialism and a Jewish Response" highlights the conflict between a sociological understanding of religion and the resistance to such analysis from within a faith tradition. Ms. Billauer makes three main points; the first strangely credits to me, and then attacks, an argument the article takes great pains to refute, but does so to emphasize the faith's prescient guidance in matters (...) scientific. The second attempts to rebut my critical analysis of the tensions inherent in Jewish views of the body with an insistence that Judaism so perfectly balances the relation between the sacred and profane that there is not now, and never was, the slightest tension between corporeality and divinity in the Jewish corpus. The third uses my article as vehicle for her to expound on an interesting but tangential formulation of three Jewish terms. In all, the need to defend her interpretation of Judaism's solutions to the problems the article raises results in un-self-critical and ahistorical theorizing, making the utility of her arguments in a discussion of the sociology of religion unsatisfactory. (shrink)
Este trabajo ofrece el contexto de la vida y la obra de María Zambrano - sus orígenes intelectuales; su vida itinerante y de exilio; la correspondencia con su hermana Araceli; la España soñada; las claves humanas del exilio y el ...
Josep Maria Capdevila (1892-1972) és un dels intel·lectuals més destacats de la primera meitat del segle XX a Catalunya. L’autor n’ha resseguit el pensament, reconstruint-ne significativament la formació intel·lectual, el món ideològic i les idees estètiques, per acabar amb una digressió sobre el punt de partença de la filosofia.
Este trabajo tiene por propósito presentar de manera secuencial dos puntos asociados a la actualidad filosófica de lo religioso en el contexto de un pensamiento como el de María Zambrano. Por qué María Zambrano, pues porque nos da dos cosas:1) nos ubica en un tejido hermenéutico que califica de filosófica la cuestión religiosa y, 2) si bien lo religioso como problema tiene su tiempo, Zambrano recupera el tono de actualidad de la relación Dios-persona, vale decir, su pertinencia para la descripción (...) de la impronta del lugar primario de lo religioso en la comunidad humana. Además, que ante la tarea de validar sus objetivos filosóficos, ve en la razón la capacidad de elaborar discursos explicativos sobre la presencia o no de lo sacro en la existencia. This paper has for intention to present sequentially two points associated with the philosophical current importance of the religious thing in a context of a thought as that of Maria Zambrano. Why Maria Zambrano, because she gives us two things: 1) She locates us in a hermeneutical tissue who qualifies of philosophical the religious question and 2) though the religious thing like problem has his time, Zambrano recovers the tone of current importance of the relationship God-person, that is, its pertinence for the description of the stamp of primary place that the religious thing take place in the human community. In addition, that before the task of validating her philosophical aims, she sees in the reason the aptitude to elaborate explanatory speeches about the presence or not of the sacred thing in the existence. (shrink)
Ser, pensar, ver, mirar son el sustrato de la escritura de María Zambrano, que se apoya y brota de una irrenunciable voluntad de pensar y trazar la palabra que la vida necesita. Por ello escribe con la intención de reconducir la filosofía a la concreción de la existencia, para hacer del pensamiento, como ha dicho Wanda Tommasi, una instancia mediadora capaz de llevar a la luz de la conciencia las realidades oscuras del cuerpo, del sentir, de la pasión. María Zambrano (...) se mueve en la frontera entre filosofía y poesía. En los ensayos de Entre el alba y la aurora alienta algo de la investigación filosófica que los unifica: la voluntad de hacer de la lectura experiencia y de la escritura su articulación. En todos ellos la investigación ha sido reflexión sobre el modo en el que la obra de esta autora nos interpela y sobre el porqué de esta interpelación, dirigiendo la atención al contexto de las propias expectativas, a lo que el encuentro con sus páginas obliga a recomponer, al sentido que de aquí nace abriendo posibilidades de comprensión e interpretación. María Zambrano ayuda a pensar el fondo originario del vivir personal y enseña a darle un cauce, pone así de manifiesto el sentido del filosofar, acción reflexiva dirigida a la apertura de un futuro en tarea de creación que no es impositiva, sino liberadora. Carmen Revilla Guzmán es profesora de Filosofía contemporánea en la Universidad de Barcelona. Sobre María Zambrano, entre otras cosas, dirige la revista Aurora y ha editado el libro Claves de la razón poética (Trotta, 1998); recientemente ha publicado Simone Weil: nombrar la experiencia (Trotta, 2003). (shrink)
Descartes estabeleceu conceitos através dos quais explicaria sua tese geral para o movimento dos corpos. Em total desacordo, Newton realizou um ostensivo ataque a teoria cartesiana concluindo que o movimento assumido pelo filosofo francês não deveria ser considerado como um movimento real. O diálogo desenvolvido ao longo da discussão, fundamentada na teoria newtoniana referente à natureza física do mundo, demonstra de forma sutil e refinada as observações precisas feitas por Newton acerca das contradições a que levavam o desenvolvimento dos conceitos (...) propostos por Descartes. Imbuída de espírito físico-filosófico, este artigo tem por objetivo elucidar as “ficções” cartesianas, bem como demonstrar a forma pela qual Newton buscou refutá-las: contrapondo a referida teoria de movimento com a sua. (shrink)
In this paper, I examine a new line of response to Frankfurt’s challenge to the traditional association of moral responsibility with the ability to do otherwise. According to this response, Frankfurt’s counterexample strategy fails, not in light of the conditions for moral responsibility per se, but in view of the conditions for action. Specifically, it is claimed, a piece of behavior counts as an action only if it is within the agent’s power to avoid performing it. In so far as (...) Frankfurt’s challenge presupposes that actions can be unavoidable, this view of action seems to bring his challenge up short. Helen Steward and Maria Alvarez have independently proposed versions of this response. Here I argue that this response is unavailable to Frankfurt’s incompatibilist opponents. This becomes evident when we put this question to its proponents: “Are actions that originate deterministically ipso facto unavoidable?” If they answer “yes,” they encounter one horn of a dilemma. If they answer “no,” they encounter the other horn. Since no one has a clearer stake in meeting Frankfurt’s challenge than these theorists do, it is significant that the Steward-Alvarez response is unavailable to them. (shrink)
This is a rebuttal of influential attempts to appropriate Murdoch for either Christianity or Buddhism. I show that Maria Antonaccio and Peter Byrne ignore Murdoch's explicit statements and misunderstand Murdoch’s interest in the Ontological Argument. I explain how St. Anselm’s remark ‘I believe in order to understand’ is properly connected with Murdoch’s parable of the Mother-in-Law: Murdoch is here offering support for a virtue epistemology. Later, I explore the merits and dangers of exegesis from Peter J. Conradi and Gordon (...) Graham treating Murdoch as a kind of Buddhist. I argue that the sense in which Murdoch is speaking as a ‘Buddhist Christian’ makes her a third kind of thinker resembling a Buddhist on some points, and a Christian on others. (shrink)
I want to explore strategic expressions of ignorance against the background of Charles W. Mills's account of epistemologies of ignorance in The Racial Contract (1997). My project has two interrelated goals. I want to show how Mills's discussion is restricted by his decision to frame ignorance within the language and logic of social contract theory. And, I want to explain why Maria Lugones's work on purity is useful in reframing ignorance in ways that both expand our understandings of ignorance (...) and reveal its strategic uses. I begin with Mills's account of the Racial Contract, and explain how it prescribes for its signatories an epistemology of ignorance, which Mills characterizes as an inverted epistemology. I briefly outline his program for undoing white ignorance and indicate that retooling white ignorance is more complex than his characterization suggests. Making this argument requires an abrupt shift from the white-created frameworks of social contract theory to Lugones's system of thinking rooted in the lives of people of color. So, the next section outlines Lugones's distinction between the logic of purity and the logic of curdling and explains its usefulness in addressing ignorance. With both accounts firmly in place the third section demonstrates how the Racial Contract produces at least two expressions of ignorance and explains how the logic of purity underlying the Contract shapes each expression in ways that limit possibilities for resistance. I don't mean to suggest that the social contract theory's love of purity invalidates Mills's work, only that this framework limits prospects for long-term change by neglecting the relationship between white ignorance and non-white resistance. The final sections explain how people of color use ignorance strategically to their advantage , and argue that examining ignorance through a curdled lens not only makes strategic ignorance visible, but also points to alternatives for retooling white ignorance. (shrink)
In this response to Malt's and Prinz's commentaries, I argue that neo-empiricist hypotheses fail to threaten the argument for the elimination of ‘concept’ because they are unlikely to be true of all concepts, if they are true at all. I also defend the hypothesis that we possess bodies of knowledge retrieved by default from long-term memory, and I argue that prototypes, exemplars, and theories form genuinely distinct concepts.
This paper strengthens the theoretical ground of feminist analyses of anger by explaining how the angers of the oppressed are ways of knowing. Relying on insights created through the juxtaposition of Latina feminism and Zen Buddhism, I argue that these angers are special kinds of embodied perceptions that surface when there is a profound lack of fit between a particular bodily orientation and its framing world of sense. As openings to alternative sensibilities, these angers are transformative, liberatory, and deeply epistemological.