This paper will address the political and ethical ramifications of Derrida's concern for friendship in relation to his concerns with the future of democracy, rights of hospitality and cosmopolitics. The questions addressed read as follows: Is there a way we can get beyond this stance which not only consolidates a friendship of the ‘perhaps’ with a friendship of the promise, but also implicates their consolidation with the very future of what we today call democracy? Is there a way in which (...) we can substantiate something more than a romanticized call for a future integration of friendship and democracy while avoiding the pitfalls of on one hand, substantiating a model of friendship for politics or, on the other, offering a disguised and naïve return to a metaphysics of friendship as the saving grace of social unity? Through a close reading of the conclusion to Politics of Friendship as well as his concerns with friendship in Spectres of Marx and Rogues: Two Essays on Reason it will be argued that Derrida's insistence on the future of friendship is bound up with the notion of an ethical promise to the thought of friendship as the condition for its political and ethical relevance. (shrink)
Abstract The effect of inducing negative, positive or neutral affect on the recall of moral and conventional transgressions and positive moral and conventional acts was examined. It was found that inducing negative affect was associated with higher recall of moral transgressions while inducing positive affect was associated with higher recall of positive moral acts. Affect induction condition did not have a significant effect on the recall of the conventional transgressions or positive acts. The results are interpreted within the Violence Inhibition (...) Mechanism model of moral development (Blair, 1995) and by reference to a new, hypothesised system, the Smiling Reward Response. (shrink)
Blair, David David Tribe, in his article, 'On science, good, bad and ugly' (AH, No. 107, Spring 2012), criticises an earlier article by Victor Bien. Bien - rightly in my view - defends present-day science in respect of three areas where science is under attack; the most prominent of these three is anthropogenic global warming (AGW). Tribe claims that, Victor Bien appears to have inflated views on the sagacity, objectivity and probity of scientists, who can be called our new (...) priests. Much as I respected David Tribe for his work in philosophy, I must criticize much of what he says about science in his article. (shrink)
Christian morality has been of enormous significance in world history and still underpins moral notions today. In this groundbreaking volume, J. Ian H. McDonald explores the notion of Christian ethics and discusses its roots, its significance in developing moral standards throughout the world and its stability in the modern world. The Crucible of Christian Morality begins with a study of the ethos of early Christian communities, examining the relation of cosmic vision to moral attitude and authority, noting also the (...) types of moral discourse used, and tracing the roots of these developments to the Old Testament and to the ministry of Jesus. The second half of the book concentrates on selected moral themes, concerned with persons, with communities in societies and with virtue or moral excellence, situating them in the context of ancient cultural developments. (shrink)
Blair, David Concerning David Tribe's rejoinder (AH, Autumn 2013) to my 'Science works better than that' (AH, Summer 2012), it's pleasing to see that there are some points on which we agree. Unfortunately he continues to make a strong and unjustified attack on the scientific community as a whole-essentially on the grounds that, of the conclusions of science that later turned out to be false, virtually all of them were at some time 'believed' by most scientists. In reply, I (...) shall show that it is his underlying framework that needs to be altered-quite radically. He does not understand what the activity of scientists is like-indeed what it has to be like, when faced with the task of extracting knowledge from the real world. (shrink)
In this paper, we will consider the neuro-cognitive systems involved in mediating morality. Five main claims will be made. First, that there are multiple, partially separable neuro-cognitive architectures that mediate specific aspects of morality: social convention, care-based morality, disgust-based morality and fairness/justice. Second, that all aspects of morality, including social convention, involve affect. Third, that the neural system particularly important for social convention, given its role in mediating anger and responding to angry expressions, is ventrolateral prefrontal cortex. Fourth, that the (...) neural systems particularly important for care-based morality are the amygdala and medial orbital frontal cortex. Fifth, that while Theory of Mind is not a prerequisite for the development of affect-based 'automatic moral attitudes', it is critically involved in many aspects of moral reasoning. (shrink)
Psychopathy is a developmental disorder associated with specific forms of emotional dysfunction and an increased risk for both frustration-based reactive aggression and goal-directed instrumental antisocial behavior. While the full behavioral manifestation of the disorder is under considerable social influence, the basis of this disorder appears to be genetic. At the neural level, individuals with psychopathy show atypical responding within the amygdala and ventromedial prefrontal cortex (vmPFC). Moreover, the roles of the amygdala in stimulus-reinforcement learning and responding to emotional expressions and (...) vmPFC in the representation of reinforcement expectancies are compromised. The implications of these functional impairments for responsibility are discussed. (shrink)
This target article considers the relation of fluid cognitive functioning to general intelligence. A neurobiological model differentiating working memory/executive function cognitive processes of the prefrontal cortex from aspects of psychometrically defined general intelligence is presented. Work examining the rise in mean intelligence-test performance between normative cohorts, the neuropsychology and neuroscience of cognitive function in typically and atypically developing human populations, and stress, brain development, and corticolimbic connectivity in human and nonhuman animal models is reviewed and found to provide evidence of (...) mechanisms through which early experience affects the development of an aspect of cognition closely related to, but distinct from, general intelligence. Particular emphasis is placed on the role of emotion in fluid cognition and on research indicating fluid cognitive deficits associated with early hippocampal pathology and with dysregulation of the hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal axis stress-response system. Findings are seen to be consistent with the idea of an independent fluid cognitive construct and to assist with the interpretation of findings from the study of early compensatory education for children facing psychosocial adversity and from behavior genetic research on intelligence. It is concluded that ongoing development of neurobiologically grounded measures of fluid cognitive skills appropriate for young children will play a key role in understanding early mental development and the adaptive success to which it is related, particularly for young children facing social and economic disadvantage. Specifically, in the evaluation of the efficacy of compensatory education efforts such as Head Start and the readiness for school of children from diverse backgrounds, it is important to distinguish fluid cognition from psychometrically defined general intelligence. (Published Online April 5 2006) Key Words: cognition; cognition-emotion reciprocity; developmental disorders; emotion; fluid cognition; Flynn effect; general intelligence; limbic system; neuroscience; phenylketonuria; prefrontal cortex; psychometrics; schizophrenia. (shrink)
This paper looks at conflicts of interest in the not-for-profit sector. It examines the nature of conflicts of interest and why they are of ethical concern, and then focuses on the way not-for-profit organisations are especially prone to and vulnerable to conflict-of-interest scandals. Conflicts of interest corrode trust; and stakeholder trust (particularly from donors) is the lifeblood of most charities. We focus on some specific challenges faced by charitable organisations providing funding for scientific (usually medical) research, and examine a case (...) study involving such an organisation. One of the principal problems for charities of this kind is that they often distribute their funds within a relatively small research community (defined by the boundaries of a small region, like an American state or Spanish Autonomous region, or a small country), and it often proves difficult to find high-level researchers within the jurisdiction to adjudicate impartially the research grants. We suggest and recommend options appropriate for our case study and for many other organisations in similar situations. (shrink)
The metaphysical dispute between moral realists and antirealists is cast in terms of properties: the realist holds that moral properties exist, the antirealist denies this claim. There is a longstanding philosophical dispute over the nature of properties, and the obscurity of properties may make the realist/antirealist dispute even more obscure. In the spirit of deflationary theories of truth, we can turn to a deflationary theory of properties in order to clarify this issue. One might reasonably worry that such an account (...) of properties would not be capable of properly characterizing disputes regarding the existence or nonexistence of genuine moral properties. In this paper, I will show that, within this framework, the traditional disputes over the existence of moral properties can be characterized in a far clearer fashion than is usually the case. A deflationary account of properties, along with an explanatory hierarchy of properties, makes the dispute in ontology clear. (shrink)
I argue that argumentation is not to be identified with (attempted) rational persuasion, because although rational persuasion appears to consist of arguments, some uses of arguments are not attempts at rational persuasion. However, the use of arguments in argumentative communication to try to persuade is one kind of attempt at rational persuasion. What makes it rational is that its informing ideal is to persuade on the basis of adequate grounds, grounds that make it reasonable and rational to accept the claim (...) at issue. (shrink)
We question whether empathy is mediated by a unitary circuit. We argue that recent neuroimaging data indicate dissociable neural responses for different facial expressions as well as for representing others' mental states (Theory of Mind, TOM). We also argue that the general empathy disorder considered characteristic of autism and psychopathy is not general but specific for each disorder.
The aim of the paper is to advance the theory of argument or inference schemes by suggesting answers to questions raised by Walton's Argumentation Schemes for Presumptive Reasoning (1996), specifically on: the relation between argument and reasoning; distinguishing deductive from presumptive schemes, the origin of schemes and the probative force of their use; and the motivation and justification for their associated critical questions.
Despite the fundamental and administrative difficulties associated with cross-cultural research the rewards are significant and, given an increasing trend toward globalisation, the move away from singular location studies to more comparative research is to be encouraged. In order to facilitate this research process it is imperative, however, that considerable attention is given to the methodological issues that can beset cross-cultural research, specifically as these issues relate to the primary domain or discipline of investigation, which in this instance is research on (...) business ethics. Utilising the experience of a four country comparative study of both Asian and Western cultures in the field of business ethics, the following presents a discussion of methodological concerns under the three broad areas of operationalising culture, operationalising business ethics, and data interpretation. (shrink)
Knowledge translation has been widely taken up as an innovative process to facilitate the uptake of research-derived knowledge into health care services. Drawing on a recent research project, we engage in a philosophic examination of how knowledge translation might serve as vehicle for the transfer of critically oriented knowledge regarding social justice, health inequities, and cultural safety into clinical practice. Through an explication of what might be considered disparate traditions (those of critical inquiry and knowledge translation), we identify compatibilities (...) and discrepancies both within the critical tradition, and between critical inquiry and knowledge translation. The ontological and epistemological origins of the knowledge to be translated carry implications for the synthesis and translation phases of knowledge translation. In our case, the studies we synthesized were informed by various critical perspectives and hence we needed to reconcile differences that exist within the critical tradition. A review of the history of critical inquiry served to articulate the nature of these differences while identifying common purposes around which to strategically coalesce. Other challenges arise when knowledge translation and critical inquiry are brought together. Critique is one of the hallmark methods of critical inquiry and, yet, the engagement required for knowledge translation between researchers and health care administrators, practitioners, and other stakeholders makes an antagonistic stance of critique problematic. While knowledge translation offers expanded views of evidence and the complex processes of knowledge exchange, we have been alerted to the continual pull toward epistemologies and methods reminiscent of the positivist paradigm by their instrumental views of knowledge and assumptions of objectivity and political neutrality. These types of tensions have been productive for us as a research team in prompting a critical reconceptualization of knowledge translation. (shrink)
According to Christine Korsgaard, Kantian hypothetical and categorical imperative principles are constitutive principles of agency. By acting in a way that is guided by these imperatives, an individual makes herself into an agent. There is hence, on her theory, an inextricable link between the nature of agency and the practical issue of why we should be rational and moral. The benefits of such an account would be great: in Korsgaard’s view, an account that bases morality on the nature of agency (...) is the basis for a refutation of any kind of moral skepticism, providing an indubitable and objective foundation for morality. This may seem too good to be true, and it is. Korsgaard could only succeed at offering a foundation for morality at a great cost. The cost is that Korsgaard gives too restrictive an account of agency. Korsgaard does not present a coherent account of irrational or immoral agency, and the inability to offer an account of such agency implies an inability to offer a proper account of responsibility. Korsgaard’s view shares a fundamental flaw with Immanuel Kant’s account of morality in the Groundwork of the Metaphysics of Morals: Korsgaard cannot give a full, adequate account of individual responsibility. In light of the failure of Kant’s and Korsgaard’s accounts, Kantians need to provide a better, more comprehensive characterization of agency. Presenting a proper account of agency will require a rejection of a central tenet of traditional Kantian metaethics, but the rejection of this central tenet does not require a full rejection of Kantianism. (shrink)
Many just war theorists (call them traditionalists) claim that just as people have a right to personal self-defense, so nations have a right to national-defense against an aggressive military invasion. David Rodin claims that the traditionalist is unable to justify most defensive wars against aggression. For most aggressive states only commit conditional aggression in that they threaten to kill or maim the citizens of the nation they are invading only if those citizens resist the occupation. Most wars, then, claimed to (...) be justified by the traditionalist fail to meet the proportionality criterion. Thus, a just war, for Rodin, is best conceived of as a punitive war of law enforcement, not as a war of national-defense. I argue that Rodin does not have a case against the traditionalist. If national-defense is a disproportionate response to conditional aggression, then punitive war is a disproportionate response as well. Furthermore, the belief that punitive war is a proportionate response to conditional aggression underscores the traditionalist’s view that self-determination, cultural identity and the like are of sufficient value to defend by means of lethal force. I end the paper by very briefly sketching an account, different from that of Rodin’s, of how individual nations can be justified in waging wars of law enforcement. (shrink)
To date the teaching of business ethics has been examined from the descriptive, prescriptive, and analytical perspectives. The descriptive perspective has reviewed the existence of ethics courses (e.g., Schoenfeldtet al., 1991; Bassiry, 1990; Mahoney, 1990; Singh, 1989), their historical development (e.g., Sims and Sims, 1991), and the format and syllabi of ethics courses (e.g., Hoffman and Moore, 1982). Alternatively, the prescriptive literature has centred on the pedagogical issues of teaching ethics (e.g., Hunt and Bullis, 1991; Strong and Hoffman, 1990; Reeves, (...) 1990; Castro, 1989; George, 1987; Golenet al., 1985) and in providing recommendations for teachers of business ethics (e.g., Nappi, 1990; Hosmer and Steneck, 1989). From the analytical perspective judgments have been made as to whether courses in ethics are in fact effective in achieving value and attitudinal modifications in students (e.g., Loeb, 1991; Weber, 1990; Wynd and Mager, 1989; Pamental, 1989; Martin, 1982; Purcell, 1977). The evidence to date suggests that courses can be a means of achieving ethical awareness and sensitivity in students although it should be recognized that significant objections to the teaching of business ethics do exist and greatly inhibit their successful introduction. This paper addresses a number of the common objections to the teaching of business ethics that must be overcome if ethical programs are to continue in the future, and concludes with recommendations to facilitate the establishment of ethical training in an academic context. (shrink)
Primary issues raised by the commentaries on the target article relate to (1) the need to differentiate distinct but overlapping aspects of fluid cognition, and (2) the implications that this differentiation may hold for conceptions of general intelligence. In response, I outline several issues facing researchers concerned with differentiation of human cognitive abilities and suggest that a revised and expanded theory of intelligence is needed to accommodate an increasingly diverse and varied empirical base. (Published Online April 5 2006).
This paper combines a review of existing literature in the field of business ethics education and a case study relating to the integration of ethics into an undergraduate degree. Prior to any discussion relating to the integration of ethics into the business curriculum, we need to be cognisant of, and prepared for, the arguments raised by sceptics in both the business and academic environments, in regard to the teaching of ethics. Having laid this foundation, the paper moves to practical questions (...) such as who should teach ethics, and when and how can ethics be taught. The paper presents alternative models for the teaching of ethics in the curriculum of undergraduate and postgraduate business programmes. An integrative model is elaborated on in more detail with a case example describing the six-stage process undertaken in the move from a single entry course to an integrated approach. The case study details not only the planning and initial implementation of ethical education in the context of an undergraduate business degree programme, but also the means by which a change in the way that ethics is taught was achieved in a business faculty in a tertiary institution. (shrink)
In the recent literature of environmental ethics, certain criticisms of pragmatism in general and Dewey in particular have been made, specifically, that certain features of pragmatism make it unsuitable as an environmental ethic. Eric Katz asserts that pragmatism is an inherently anthropocentric and subjective philosophy. Bob Pepperman Taylor argues that Dewey’s naturalism in particular is anthropocentric in that it concentrates on human nature. I challenge both of these views in the context of Dewey’s naturalism. I discuss his naturalism, his critique (...) of subjectivity, his naturalization of intrinsic value, and his holistic treatment of justification. (shrink)
Noam Chomsky’s well-known claim that linguistics is a “branch of cognitive psychology” has generated a great deal of dissent—not from linguists or psychologists, but from philosophers. Jerrold Katz, Scott Soames, Michael Devitt, and Kim Sterelny have presented a number of arguments, intended to show that this Chomskian hypothesis is incorrect. On both sides of this debate, two distinct issues are often conflated: (1) the ontological status of language and (2) the relation between psychology and linguistics. The ontological issue is, I (...) will argue, not the relevant issue in the debate. Even if this Chomskian position on the ontology of language is false, linguistics may still be a subfield of psychology if the relevant methods in linguistic theory construction are psychological. Two options are open to the philosopher who denies Chomskian conceptualism: linguistic nominalism or linguistic platonism. The former position holds that syntactic, semantic, and phonological properties are primarily properties, not of mental representations, but rather of public languagesentence tokens; The latter position holds that the linguistic properties are properties of public language sentence types. I will argue that both of these positions are compatible with Chomsky’s claim that linguistics is a branch of psychology, and the arguments that have been given for nominalism and platonism do not establish that linguistics and psychology are distinct disciplines. (shrink)
There is near universal recognition that human participant protection is both morally and practically essential for all forms of research involving humans. Yet most of the discourse around human participant protection has focussed on norms—rules, regulations and governance arrangements—rather than on the actual effectiveness of these norms in achieving their ends—protecting participants from undue risk and ensuring respectful treatment as well as advancing the generation of useful knowledge. In recent years there has been increasing advocacy for evidence-based human participant protection (...) that would be grounded on the careful investigation of the effects of research on human participants. We offer an analysis of evidence-based protection and then focus on Canadian examples of research on evidence-based protection. We consider the prospects for such research being put into practice in Canada. Finally we connect our remarks to the theme of “the changing landscape of human participant protection.”. (shrink)
Jones (1991) has proposed an issue-contingent model of ethical decision making by individuals in organizations. The distinguishing feature of the issue was identified as its moral intensity, which determines the moral imperative in the situation. In this study, we adapted three scenarios from the literature in order to examine the issue-contingent model. Findings, based on a student sample, suggest that (1) the perceived and actual dimensions of moral intensity often differed; (2) perceived moral intensity variables, in the aggregate, significantly affected (...) an individual''s moral judgments; and (3) some dimensions of moral intensity (namely, perceived social consensus and perceived magnitude of consequences) mattered more than others. (shrink)
In the wake of the First World War, a new form of commemoration emerged internationally, but in each case focused upon a new kind of national “hero”—the unknown soldier or warrior. The first instances appeared in France and Britain in 1920, followed by the United States in 1921, and Belgium in 1922. Other nations followed suit over the years, with the most recent WWI Unknown Soldier monument dedicated in 2004, in New Zealand. The motivational calculus of these national tombs was, (...) of course, the massive number of combatant dead whose remains could not be identified. This paper takes up the two very different arguments composed by these commemorative sites. The first argument was directed to surviving family members and was articulated most explicitly by the French as a hypothetical enthymeme “this could be your husband, your father, your brother,” etc. The second argument has been directed to national and international collectives as a constitutive proclamation of legitimated nation-state or Empire Although this argument is particularly explicit in postcolonial gestures of independence on the part of former dominions of old empires, it was evident in even the earliest cases of the tombs of the unknown. (shrink)
: This paper examines the ethical status of animals and nature within the thought of Mary Whiton Calkins. Though Calkins held that her self-psychology and absolute personalistic idealism were compatible in many ways, the two schools of thought offer different conceptions of personhood with respect to animals and nature. On the one hand, Calkins's self-psychology classified animals and nature as non-persons, due to the fact that self-psychology viewed animals and nature as physical entities bereft of the psychical qualities necessary for (...) personhood. On the other hand, Calkins's absolute personalistic idealism classified animals and nature as persons, due to the absolute personalistic idealist understanding of the universe as ultimately mental and personal. Because Calkins's ethics requires the ethical individual to will for the benefit of all human beings, an ethics that adopts Calkins's psychological conception of personhood promotes an anthropocentrism that views animals and nature as possessing merely instrumental value, while an ethics that adopts Calkins's philosophical conception of personhood views animals and nature as possessing intrinsic value. (shrink)
– We present a new paradigm extending the Iterated Prisoner's Dilemma to multiple players. Our model is unique in granting players information about past interactions between all pairs of players – allowing for much more sophisticated social behaviour. We provide an overview of preliminary results and discuss the implications in terms of the evolutionary dynamics of strategies.
The theology of Joseph Smith remains controversial and at times divisive in the broader Christian community. This paper takes Smith’s trinitarian theologyas its point of departure and seeks to accomplish four interrelated goals: (1) to provide a general defense of “social trinitarianism” from some of the major objections raised against it; (2) to express what we take to be Smith’s understanding of the Trinity; (3) to analyze the state of modern ST and (4) to argue that, as a form of (...) ST, Smith’s views contribute to the present discussion amongst proponents of ST. (shrink)
The paper's thesis is that dialogue is not an adequate model for all types of argument. The position of Walton is taken as the contrary view. The paper provides a set of descriptions of dialogues in which arguments feature in the order of the increasing complexity of the argument presentation at each turn of the dialogue, and argues that when arguments of great complexity are traded, the exchanges between arguers are turns of a dialogue only in an extended or metaphorical (...) sense. It argues that many of the properties of engaged back-and-forth exchanges of paradigmatic argument dialogues are not found in âsoloâ arguments, and that at least some of the norms appropriate to the former type of argument, such as some of the pragma-dialectical rules of van Eemeren and Grootendorst's model, do not apply to the latter. (shrink)
In 1989, the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada established a strategic research theme on applied ethics -- a theme which has been characterized by its welcome emphasis on the integration of theory and practice and interdisciplinarity. In the six competitions in that theme for research funding, bioethics has received more support than other areas of applied ethics including business ethics. Nonetheless, I argue that Canadian research in business and professional ethics has made significant strides over the past (...) six years. (shrink)
: Understanding Helmholtz's philosophy of science requires attention to his experimental practice. I sketch out such a project by showing how experiment shapes his theory of perception in three ways. One, the theory emerged out of empirical and experimental research. Two, the concept of experiment fills a critical conceptual gap in his theory of perception. Experiment functions not merely as a scientific technique, but also as a general epistemological strategy. Three, Helmholtz's experimental practice provides essential clues to the interpretation of (...) his theory of perception. A case study from experimental investigation of hearing shows how he designed such studies in accordance with the epistemological commitments of the theory of perception. Yet, while the theory was important to his experiments, the soundness of the experimental strategy was epistemically independent of those commitments. Secondly, the case study illustrates how Helmholtz consistently held that causal inferences underwrite reference to a real, but indirectly experienced external world. (shrink)