David Lindberg presents the first critical edition of the text of Roger Bacon's classic work Perspectiva, prepared from Latin manuscripts, accompanied by a facing-page English translation, critical notes, and a full study of the text. Also included is an analysis of Bacon's sources, influence, and role in the emergence of the discipline of perspectiva. -/- About Roger Bacon: Roger Bacon (c.1220-c.1292) is one of the most renowned thinkers of the Middle Ages, a philosopher-scientist praised and mythologized for his attack (...) on authority and his promotion of what he called experimental science. He was a leading figure in the intellectual life of the thirteenth century, a campaigner for educational reform, and a major disseminator of Greek and Arabic natural philosophy and mathematical science. -/- About Perspectiva: The science that Roger Bacon most fully mastered was perspectiva, the study of light and vision (what would later become the science of optics). His great treatment of the subject, the Perspectiva, written in about 1260, was the first book by a European to display a full mastery of Greek and Arabic treatises on the subject, and through it Bacon was instrumental in defining this scientific discipline for the next 350 years. (shrink)
After a brief review of the notions of necessity and a priority, this paper scrutinizes Kripke's arguments for supposedly contingent a priori propositions and necessary a posteriori propositions involving proper names, and reaches a negative conclusion, i.e. there are no such propositions, or at least the propositions Kripke gives as examples are not such propositions. All of us, including Kripke himself, still have to face the old question raised by Hume, i.e. how can we justify the necessity and universality of (...) general statements on the basis of sensory or empirical evidence? (shrink)
This article systematically challenges Kripke's modal argument and Soames's defence of this argument by arguing that, just like descriptions, names can take narrow or wide scopes over modalities, and that there is a big difference between the wide scope reading and the narrow scope reading of a modal sentence with a name. Its final conclusions are that all of Kripke's and Soames's arguments are untenable due to some fallacies or mistakes; names are not “rigid designators”; if there were rigid designators, (...) description(s) could be rigidified to refer fixedly to objects; so names cannot be distinguished in this way from the corresponding descriptions. A descriptivist account of names is still correct; and there is no justification for Kripke's theory of rigid designation and its consequences. (shrink)
The so-called ‘morning-after pill’ is a drug that prevents pregnancy if taken no later than 72 hours after presumably fertile sexual intercourse. This article argues against a right of conscientious objection for pharmacists with regard to dispensing this drug. Some arguments that might be advanced in support of this right will be considered and rejected. Section 2 argues that from a philosophical point of view, the most relevant question is not whether the morning-after pill prevents implantation nor is it whether (...) preventing implantation is tantamount to abortion. Section 3 suggests a more general philosophical question as most pertinent, namely whether and to what extent a pharmacist can justifiably be exempted from dispensing the morning-after pill when to do so would entail participating in something that goes against his or her deepest moral or religious convictions. Section 4 explains why, within liberal institutions, pharmacists should not have the right to conscientious objection to dispensing the morning-after pill. (shrink)
This essay is a comparison between Schelling's and Blanchot's conceptions of the night of the imaginary. Schelling is the most romantic of the German idealist philosophers and Blanchot the most extreme of the French “deconstructionists.“ Their historical link is actually indirect, but they offer two complementary views on the “same“ impersonal nocturnal experience of the imaginary, the approach of which requires a certain self-overcoming of philosophy towards literature.
Jin Yuelin (1895?1984), a Chinese logician and philosopher, is greatly influenced by Hume's and Russell's philosophies. How should we respond to Hume's problem of induction? This is an important clue to understand Jin's whole philosophical career. The first section of this paper gives a brief historical review of Russell and Jin. The second section outlines Hume's skeptical arguments against causality and induction. The third section expounds Russell's justification of induction by discussing his views on Hume's skepticism, causality, principle of induction, (...) and empirical postulates. The fourth section clarifies Jin's justification of induction by discussing his critique of Hume's epistemology and his arguments for the reliability of causality and the eternal truth and apriority of the principle of induction. The final section compares Jin's justification of induction with Russell's and concludes that there are similarities and differences between their projects and that both their attempts fail. This paper takes the similar responses to the problem of induction by Jin and Russell to demonstrate the communication that there has been between Chinese philosophers and the Western ones. (shrink)
This comprehensive anthology offers influential works of philosophy written in the last 125 years in Northern and Central Europe and in the United States'durable contributions that have shaped the contemporary philosophical landscape in English-speaking countries. Substantial yet readable selections represent leading American pragmatists, the early Cambridge analysts, members of the Vienna Circle, the so-called "ordinary language" philosophers, along with recent analytic and post-analytic philosophers.
What exactly is the unconscious? Although this question has not been sufficiently addressed, the notion of the unconscious is often used in philosophy, literary and cultural theory, and of course psychology, as if it provided a relatively solid foundation or basis for the stories we tell about our culture and ourselves. This article is part of a larger project in which I argue that ‘the unconscious’ is not a basis for our narratives of self and culture, but is, itself, a (...) narrative development - a way of organizing, and thus creating, knowledge. In my discussion, here, of HegeI and Nietzsche, I concur with the supposition that something like the unconscious appeared in Nietzsche’s work (while being absent from Hegel’s); but instead of maintaining that Nietzsche discovered this principle, I suggest that he invented it. More specifically, Nietzsche needed a narrative principle that would help free cultural values that he thought important from their ‘entrapment’ in the Hegelian dialectic.Qu’est au juste I’inconscient? Malgré son indéterminité, la notion d’inconscient est souvent utilisée en philosophie, dans la théorie culturelle et littéraire, et évidemment en psychologie, comme si elle pouvait servir de fondement è la narration culturelle et personnelle. Cet article s’insère dans un projet plus large qui cherche à montrer que “I’inconscient” ne peux servir de fondement aux narrations de soi et de la culture, mais qu’il représente lui-même un développement narratif - une fatçon d’organiser et, de ce fait, de créer la connaissance. Dans la présente discussion sur Hegel et Nietzsche, je concède que I’inconscient est apparu dans l’oeuvre de Nietzsche (alors qu’elle est absente de l’oeuvre de Hegel); mais loin de I’avoir découvert, je prétend que Nietzsche I’a inventé. En effet, ce dernier devait recourir à un principe narratif qui libérerait les valeurs culturelles qu’il croyait importantes de leur emprisonnement dans la dialectique hégélienne. (shrink)
In the concluding section of the Minos (318c ff), Socrates praises the oldest law, that given to Crete by Minos, who in Socrates's characterization obtained this law as a result of his status as confidant of Zeus, Minos's father (319d-e). The law that is unchanging, permanent, is therefore the best law, and arguably the only law that truly reflects the “lawness” of law, other possible senses of law being incomplete, as the dialogue shows. There is, moreover, something divine about the (...) character of the best law—though this divinity would seem to have little to do with its tenuous relationship to…. (shrink)
The approximate number system (ANS) is assumingly related to mathematical learning but evidence supporting this assumption is mixed. The inconsistent findings might be attributed to the fact that different measures have been used to assess the ANS and mathematical skills. Moreover, associations between the performance on a measure of the ANS and mathematical skills may be discontinuous, i.e. stronger for children with lower math scores than for children with higher math scores, and may change with age. The aim of the (...) present study was to examine the development of the ANS and arithmetic skills in elementary school children and to investigate how the relationship between the ANS and arithmetic skills develops. Individual markers of children’s ANS (internal Weber fractions and mean reaction times in a non-symbolic numerical comparison task) and addition skills were assessed in their first year of school and one year later. Children showed improvements in addition performance and in the internal Weber fractions, whereas mean reaction times in the non-symbolic numerical comparison task did not change significantly. While children's addition performance was associated with the internal Weber fractions in the first year, it was associated with mean reaction times in the non-symbolic numerical comparison task in the second year. These associations were not found to be discontinuous and could not be explained by individual differences in reasoning, processing speed, or inhibitory control. The present study extends previous findings by demonstrating that addition performance is associated with different markers of the ANS in the course of development. (shrink)
Abstract During 1745?1755 Bo?kovi? explicitly used the concept of scientific theory in three cases: the theory of forces existing in nature, the theory of transformations of geometric loci, and the theory of infinitesimals. The theory first mentioned became the famous theory of natural philosophy in 1758, the second was published in the third volume of his mathematical textbook Elementorum Universae Matheseos (1754), and the third theory was never completed, though Bo?kovi? repeatedly announced it from 1741 on. The treatment of continuity (...) and infinity in natural philosophy, geometry and infinitesimal analysis brought about inter?theory relations in Bo?kovi?'s work during his Roman period. The two constructed theories of Bo?kovi?, the theory of forces and the theory of geometric transformations, directly influenced the idea for the construction of his third theory. These written theories refer to understanding and effective application of continuity and infinity in natural philosophy and geometry, and this task, according to Bo?kovi?, requires methodological support from the theory of infinitesimals. (shrink)
Proxies of mate value must be evolutionarily salient. Gangestad & Simpson (G&S) have made a good case that fluctuating asymmetry is an important proxy of male mate value that correlates well with genetic and developmental quality. The use of financial variables as proxies for male investment ability by Gangestad, Simpson, and virtually every other investigator of human mating in evolutionary perspective, is, however, more problematic. Correspondence:a1 Address correspondence to the first author. Department of Anthropology, University of California, Santa Barbara, CA (...) 93106 firstname.lastname@example.org www.anth.ucsb.edu/faculty/hagen. (shrink)