The canonical history of mathematics suggests that the late 19th-century “arithmetization” of calculus marked a shift away from spatial-dynamic intuitions, grounding concepts in static, rigorous definitions. Instead, we argue that mathematicians, both historically and currently, rely on dynamic conceptualizations of mathematical concepts like continuity, limits, and functions. In this article, we present two studies of the role of dynamic conceptual systems in expert proof. The first is an analysis of co-speech gesture produced by mathematics graduate students while proving a theorem, (...) which reveals a reliance on dynamic conceptual resources. The second is a cognitive-historical case study of an incident in 19th-century mathematics that suggests a functional role for such dynamism in the reasoning of the renowned mathematician Augustin Cauchy. Taken together, these two studies indicate that essential concepts in calculus that have been defined entirely in abstract, static terms are nevertheless conceptualized dynamically, in both contemporary and historical practice. (shrink)
This article integrates theory and concepts from the business and society, business ethics, and labor relations literatures to offer a conceptualization of labor union social responsibility that includes activities geared toward three primary objectives: economic equity, workplace democracy, and social justice. Economic, workplace, and social labor union stakeholders are identified, likely issues are highlighted, and the implications of labor union social responsibility for labor union strategy are discussed. It is noted that, given the breadth of labor unions in a (...) global work environment, labor union social responsibility also has implications for NGOs, corporations, and how corporate social responsibility is viewed going forward. This article concludes by noting that the nexus of labor relations and corporate social responsibility warrants more attention in management and labor relations literatures. (shrink)
A longstanding problem with the study of empathy is the lack of a clear and agreed upon definition. A trend in the recent literature is to respond to this problem by advancing a broad and all-encompassing view of empathy that applies to myriad processes ranging from mimicry and imitation to high-level perspective taking. I argue that this response takes us in the wrong direction and that what we need in order to better understand empathy is a narrower conceptualization, not (...) a broader one. I propose that empathy be conceptualized as a complex, imaginative process through which an observer simulates another person's situated psychological states while maintaining clear self–other differentiation. I defend my view through an examination of three processes: emotional contagion, a process of self-oriented perspective taking that I call “pseudo-empathy,” and empathy proper. Drawing on recent findings in social neuroscience, I highlight the differences among these processes and discuss conceptual, empirical, and normative reasons for keeping them theoretically and conceptually distinct. (shrink)
We perform conceptual acts throughout our daily lives; we are always judging others, guessing their intentions, agreeing or opposing their views and so on. These conceptual acts have phenomenological as well as formal richness. This paper attempts to correct the imbalance between the phenomenal and formal approaches to conceptualization by claiming that we need to shift from the usual dichotomies of cognitive science and epistemology such as the formal/empirical and the rationalist/empiricist divides—to a view of conceptualization grounded in (...) the Indian philosophical notion of valid cognition . Methodologically, our paper is an attempt at cross-cultural philosophy and cognitive science; ontologically, it is an attempt at marrying the phenomenal and the formal. (shrink)
We perform conceptual acts throughout our daily lives; we are always judging others, guessing their intentions, agreeing or opposing their views and so on. These conceptual acts have phenomenological as well as formal richness. This paper attempts to correct the imbalance between the phenomenal and formal approaches to conceptualization by claiming that we need to shift from the usual dichotomies of cognitive science and epistemology such as the formal/empirical and the rationalist/empiricist divides—to a view of conceptualization grounded in (...) the Indian philosophical notion of “valid cognition”. Methodologically, our paper is an attempt at cross-cultural philosophy and cognitive science; ontologically, it is an attempt at marrying the phenomenal and the formal. (shrink)
The clinical application of the concept of patient autonomy has centered on the ability to deliberate and make treatment decisions (decisional autonomy) to the virtual exclusion of the capacity to execute the treatment plan (executive autonomy). However, the one-component concept of autonomy is problematic in the context of multiple chronic conditions. Adherence to complex treatments commonly breaks down when patients have functional, educational, and cognitive barriers that impair their capacity to plan, sequence, and carry out tasks associated with chronic care. (...) The purpose of this article is to call for a two-component re-conceptualization of autonomy and to argue that the clinical assessment of capacity for patients with chronic conditions should be expanded to include both autonomous decision-making and autonomous execution of the agreed-upon treatment plan. We explain how the concept of autonomy should be expanded to include both decisional and executive autonomy, describe the biopsychosocial correlates of the two-component concept of autonomy, and recommend diagnostic and treatment strategies to support patients with deficits in executive autonomy. (shrink)
Conceptualization and measurement of organizational commitment involve different dimensions that include economic, affective, as well as moral aspects labelled in the literature as: ‘continuance’, ‘affective’ and ‘normative’ commitment. This multidimensional framework emerges from the convergence of different research lines. Using Aristotle’s philosophical framework, that explicitly considers the role of the will in human commitment, it is proposed a rational explanation of the existence of mentioned dimensions in organizational commitment. Such a theoretical proposal may offer a more accurate definition (...) of ‘affective commitment’ that distinguishes feelings from rational judgments. The use of a philosophical explanation coherent with psychological findings also allows the discovery of a wider moral concept of ‘normative commitment’. (shrink)
I am very grateful to Toby Williamson and Ajit Shah for their insightful commentaries on my paper on mental competence. By linking their commentaries to the Mental Capacity Act of 2005, they both reflect a strong embeddedness in clinical practice, which I very much appreciate. Both authors seem, more or less, to agree on the need for an anthropological conceptualization of mental competence beyond a rather “mechanistic decision-making ability.” However, they do disagree on the pace (Williamson) and direction (Shah) (...) of my approach. I, therefore, use this opportunity to clarify some issues that were raised by my approach to mental competence, rather than discussing again the need for an anthropological approach. .. (shrink)
Marketers have traditionally evaluated products and practices on the basis of whether something could be sold. It is also important to evaluate products and practices from a societal perspective, "Should a product be sold?" The first idea reflects a managerial orientation and what must be done to sell a product; the second idea reflects a societal orientation and the impact of selling a product. In relation to the second idea, the societal marketing concept was introduced in 1972. There has been (...) little advancement in our understanding of a societal orientation since that time. The current study presents a conceptualization of a societal orientation based on a review of literature and qualitative interviews. The construct was conceptualized as "attention to the long-term well-being of individuals and society at large by enhancing positive impacts from and reducing negative effects associated with production and consumption of a product." Five domains comprising a societal orientation are proposed: physical consequences, psychological well-being, social relationships, economic contribution, and environmental consciousness. (shrink)
This paper discusses how we understand and use a concept or the meaningof a general term to identify the objects falling under the term. There aretwo distinct approaches to research on the problems of concepts and meaningthe psychological approach and the formal (or logical) approach. My majorconcern is to consider the possibility of reconciling these two differentapproaches, and for this I propose to build a psychologically plausibleformal system of conceptualization. That is, I will develop a theory-basedaccount of concepts and (...) propose an explanation of how an agent activates aperspective (which consists of theories) in response to a situation in whichreasoning using a concept is called for. Theories are represented as sets offacts and rules, both strict and defeasible. Each theory is organized in acoherent perspective which stands for an agent's mental state or an agent'smodel of another agent's perspective. Perspectives are organized intohierarchies and the theory for a concept in one perspective may defeat thetheory for the same concept in another perspective. Which perspective issuperior is context-dependent. (shrink)
This commentary connects some of Glenberg's ideas to similar ideas from artificial intelligence. Second, it briefly discusses hidden assumptions relating to meaning, representations, and projectable properties. Finally, questions about mechanisms, mental imagery, and conceptualization in animals are posed.
This article addresses the importance of client conceptualization skills in counseling as well as the limitations of child conceptualization skills in counseling. Furthermore, the article provides a rough overview of the applicable points in Piaget’s theory of cognitive development and a discussion of how these points relate to conceptualization skills in counseling.
I this paper, I draw on recent research on the radically embodied and perceptual bases of conceptualization in linguistics and cognitive science to develop a new way of reading and evaluating abstract concepts in social theory. I call this approach Sociological Idea Analysis. I argue that, in contrast to the traditional view of abstract concepts, which conceives them as amodal “presuppositions” removed from experience, abstract concepts are irreducibly grounded in experience and partake of non-negotiable perceptual-symbolic features from which a (...) non-propositional “logic” naturally follows. This implies that uncovering the imagistic bases of allegedly abstract notions should be a key part of theoretical evaluation of concepts in social theory. I provide a case study of the general category of “structure” in the social and human sciences to demonstrate the analytic utility of the approach. (shrink)
I show that Nietzsche's puzzling and seemingly inconsistent claims about consciousness constitute a coherent and philosophically fruitful theory. Drawing on some ideas from Schopenhauer and F.A. Lange, Nietzsche argues that conscious mental states are mental states with conceptually articulated content, whereas unconscious mental states are mental states with non-conceptually articulated content. Nietzsche's views on concepts imply that conceptually articulated mental states will be superficial and in some cases distorting analogues of non-conceptually articulated mental states. Thus, the claim that conscious states (...) have a conceptual articulation renders comprehensible Nietzsche's claim that consciousness is "superficial" and "falsifying.". (shrink)
This book is a philosophical study of the relations between hearing and thinking about music. The central problem it addresses is as follows: how is it possible to talk about what a listener perceives in terms that the listener does not recognise? By applying the concepts and techniques of analytic philosophy the author explores the ways in which musical hearing may be described as nonconceptual, and how such mental representation contrasts with conceptual thought. The author is both philosopher and musicologist (...) and uniquely combines the perspectives of both disciplines. Exploring the philosophical questions of mental representation in the relatively neglected, nonverbal domain of music, this study is a major contribution to the philosophical understanding of music perception and cognitive theory. (shrink)
Hegel had taken the Kantian categories of thought to be merely formal, without content, since, he argued, Kant abstracted the conditions of thought from the world. The Kantian categories can, as such, only be understood subjectively and so are unable to secure a content for themselves. Hegel, following Fichte, tried to provide a content for the logical categories. In order to reinstate an objective status for logic and conceptuality he tries to affirm the unity of thought and being. The idea (...) that this unity is established by reinstating a pre-Kantian metaphysics has in most of the recent Hegel literature been discredited. In the wake of this non-metaphysical Hegel there is a concern that the architectonic of concepts which is taken as the organizing principle of consciousness offers an account of experience which is too schematic. While Hegel disputes the intuition/concept distinction as it is played out in Kant and Fichte, he does nevertheless retain some residue of a notion of intuition in his theory of the Concept. This is central to understanding his notion of experience as it can't simply be equated with rule governed conceptuality. Satisfying the demands of reason for Hegel requires more than conceiving our experience solely as judgments. (shrink)
This article presents a descriptive conceptual framework comprising four different company configurations with respect to orientations toward corporate social responsibility (CSR). The four types are Skeptical, Pragmatic, Engaged, and Idealistic. The framework is grounded in instrumental and normative stakeholder theory, and a company’s configuration is based on its instrumental and/or normative stance toward stakeholders. Its configuration indicates what position a company adopts in relation to CSR. This article argues that there is no one formula to fit all companies, descriptively or (...) prescriptively, but the potential variety in approaches to CSR is not infinite, as it can be distilled logically into a few fundamental approaches, embodied in the four organizational configurations presented in the conceptual framework. Each configuration constitutes a middle-range theory of interlocking characteristics in terms of CSR, and so each type of company will assume responsibilities to civil society in ways consistent with its configurational characteristics. The framework incorporates previous empirical findings and theoretical explanations. It is intuitively clear and reasonable to managers, and thus, has practical value in organizational management. (shrink)
There are various sources of the human conceptual system that pertain to causation. According to the realism of René Thom the attention network is attuned to existing patterns of singularities in space/time. According to cognitive linguistics the conceptual system is determined by the neural wiring and the embodied experience of the cognizer. Our concepts do therefore not necessarily reflect objective properties of space and time. In this paper I discuss the two positions and their relation. Following Len Talmy, I present (...) a comparison between how causation is conceived in language and how it is conceived in science. Finally, the notion of agency and its relation to a basic causative sequence is discussed in more detail. (shrink)
This research examines benevolent leadership and makes three key contributions to organizational research. The first contribution is a theoretical one; the development of a theory-grounded conceptual model of benevolent leadership based on four streams of creating common good in organizations: morality, spirituality, vitality, and community. The second contribution is the development of an instrument (Benevolent Leadership Scale) to measure the construct of benevolent leadership. This scale is composed of four dimensions: Ethical Sensitivity, Spiritual Depth, Positive Engagement, and Community Responsiveness. The (...) third contribution is of empirical nature: the exploration of potential outcomes of benevolent leadership in organizations, affective commitment, and organizational citizenship behavior. (shrink)
The paper conceptualizes five basic developmental paths the post-Soviet republics followed. The conceptual framework of this paper is expanded theory of real socialism in non-Marxian historical materialism, namely proposed the model of secession from socialist empire. The first developmental path was followed by societies in which an independent civil revolution took place. This path of development bifurcates into two furhter sub-variants. Namely civil revolutions in the Baltic republics (Latvia, Lithuania, Estonia) resulted in the independence and stable democracies. Civil revolution in (...) Caucasus republics (Armenia, Gergia) were partially succesfull because civil movement in these societies were unable to build stable democracies. Countries such as Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova and Ukraine followed next developmental path. Its characteristic feauture is active participation of republican communist nomenclatures in seceding from the Soviet Union and gaining state independence. In this variant of development, democratization - characteristic for the first period of independence was counterbalanced by the growing autocratization of political system. This path of development was divided into two developmental variants: in one group of countries (Ukraine) the growth of autocratization caused civil resistance (Ukraine), in the rest societies of this group (Azerbaijan, Belarus, Moldova) - not. Finally the countries of Central Asia (Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan) followed the fith developmental path. In these societies, independence permitted to preserve dictatorship of local communist nomenclatures. (shrink)
My intent is to paint in rather broad strokes Bill Poteat’s intellectual agenda, as I came to understand it, and how Michael Polanyi fit into that agenda for Poteat alongside other major intellectual mentors. Bill’s agenda was to expose critically and, so far as possible, to counter the fateful consequences of what he called the “prepossessions of the European Enlightenment” regarding human knowing, human doing, and human being. Although his work involved conceptual analysis, the nature of this conceptual-archaeology was far (...) more profound than what usually goes by the name “conceptual analysis” or “cultural conceptual analysis.” In effect it sought first to bring to light how the conceptual resources by which modern intellectuals reflectively consider anything, fatefully result in a state of self-abstractedness – indeed, a kind of culturally constituted insanity – that loses touch with the actual, concrete object of one’s concern, with one’s actual concrete self, and with the wellsprings of one’s intellectual passion and creativity. Second, Bill sought to cure this cultural insanity, person by person, by ushering his students and readers into re-placement of themselves into themselves, in possession of themselves, within the concrete context of their embodied personhood. Poteat called attention to the way that our powers of reflection quite systematically forget their contextual rootedness in this (multi-leveled) cultural matrix and, beneath that, in our lived bodies – ultimately in our personhood. Polanyi served to assist Poteat (and his students) in this endeavor, I believe, as much as, or more than, did any other of Poteat’s several intellectual mentors. (shrink)
We look at the relationship of corporate social responsibility (CSR) and country risk. We conceptualize the relationship first by asking if there is a correlationand then positing the directionality of the relationship. We posit that there is an inverse or negative correlation of implicit CSR with country risk and a positive correlation between explicit CSR and country risk. Understanding this relationship can help firms respond to a variety of external pressures such as those from activist organizations and stockholder disciplining; thus, (...) preventing firms from the need to “bolt” on CSR strategies to existing corporate strategies, as well as to help fulfill social needs within the community, mitigate political risks, and improve firm reputation. (shrink)
This is an examination of the significance of Gandhi's social philosophy for development. It is argued that, when seen in light of Gandhi's social philosophy, the concepts of appropriate technology (A.T.) and basic needs take on new meaning. The Gandhian approach can be identified with theoriginal "basic needs" strategy for international development (Emmerij, 1981). Gandhi's approach helps to provide greater equity, or "distributive justice," by promoting technology that is appropriate to "basic needs" (food, clothing, shelter, health and basic education). (...) Gandhi's social philosophy (Erikson, 1968; Roy, 1985) has been neglected by most development specialists, with only a few exceptions (e.g., Chambers, 1983; Charles, 1983). This analysis attempts to draw out some aspects of M.K. Gandhi's background and his thinking aboutswadeshi (i.e. local self-reliance and use of local knowledge and abilities) andswaraj (i.e. independent development that leads to equity and justice). Gandhi's ideas, which emerged out of an "Indic" meta-cultural background, are based on an emphasis on equity. Gandhi's syncretic Indic background includes a belief in what Bateson (1972), writing about Bali, Indonesia, has called the "steady state." Development activities should be carried out in a phased manner that does not disturb the beneficial aspects of dynamic equilibrium, but that does promote "positive development." A.T. is particularly useful within the context of a basic needs approach to international development because use of A.T. is probably more likely to lead to equitable growth. The "economic growth" strategy, utilizing "advanced technology" (or even "high tech") exclusively, has caused unemployment and has not led to effective "trickle down," much less "high mass consumption." In many developing countries the poorest 20% of the population are worse off in 1990 than they were in 1980. By making use of the "advantage of backwardness" (Veblen, 1966) and viewing development in terms of long-term impacts, a basic needs approach using A.T. is more likely to lead to a positive impact on third world food systems than a pure "economic growth" strategy. (shrink)
In mathematics education, students' difficulties with negative numbers are well known. To explain these difficulties, researchers traditionally refer to obstacles raised by the concept of NEGATIVE NUMBERS itself throughout its historical evolution. In order to improve our understanding, I propose to take into consideration another point of view, based on Vygotsky's principles, which define a strong relationship between signs such as language or symbols and cognitive development. I show how it is of great interest to consider students' difficulties with negatives (...) in the light of the use of symbols, in particular the minus sign. I describe the results of an empirical study about students' strategies in solving arithmetical equations with negatives. My analysis shows that the problems raised by the presence of negatives in the equations are attributable to students' very restricted and often inadequate use of the minus sign, which prevents them from finding a negative solution or making sense of it. (shrink)
This essay attempts to think through the impact of what we call our "transitional age" on organizational life, specifically on organizational regulation, and thus on organizational moral life. It provides notes towards a reconceptualization of organizational moral life that may be helpful to all students and practitioners of organization and business ethics who would want to make sense of the often significant contextuality, unpredictability, and undecidability of contemporary organizational life.
Proponents of non-conceptual content have recruited it for various philosophical jobs. Some epistemologists have suggested that it may play the role of “the given” that Sellars is supposed to have exorcised from philosophy. Some philosophers of mind (e.g., Dretske) have suggested that it plays an important role in the project of naturalizing semantics as a kind of halfway between merely information bearing and possessing conceptual content. Here I will focus on a recent proposal by Jerry Fodor. In a recent paper (...) he characterizes non-conceptual content in a particular way and argues that it is plausible that it plays an explanatory role in accounting for certain auditory and visual phenomena. So he thinks that there is reason to believe that there is non-conceptual content. On the other hand, Fodor thinks that non-conceptual content has a limited role. It occurs only in the very early stages of perceptual processing prior to conscious awareness. My paper is examines Fodor’s characterization of non-conceptual content and his claims for its explanatory importance. I also discuss if Fodor has made a case for limiting non-conceptual content to non-conscious, sub-personal mental states. (shrink)
Conceptual analysis is undergoing a revival in philosophy, and much of the credit goes to Frank Jackson. Jackson argues that conceptual analysis is needed as an integral component of so-called serious metaphysics and that it also does explanatory work in accounting for such phenomena as categorization, meaning change, communication, and linguistic understanding. He even goes so far as to argue that opponents of concep- tual analysis are implicitly committed to it in practice. We show that he is wrong on all (...) of these points and that his case for conceptual analysis doesn. (shrink)
My aim here is threefold: (a) to show that conceptual facts play a more significant role in justifying explanatory reductions than most of the contributors to the current debate realize; (b) to furnish an account of that role, and (c) to trace the consequences of this account for conceivability arguments about the mind.
It would be nice if good old a priori conceptual analysis were possible. For many years conceptual analysis was out of fashion, in large part because of the excessive ambitions of verificationist theories of meaning._ _However, those days are over._ _A priori conceptual analysis is once again part of the philosophical mainstream._ _This renewed popularity, moreover, is well-founded. Modern philosophical analysts have exploited developments in philosophical semantics to formulate analyses which avoid the counterintuitive consequences of verificationism, while vindicating our ability (...) to know a priori precisely what it is our words and thoughts represent._ _Despite its apparent promise, however, I. (shrink)
This article is a modified version in translation of the original Dutch version that appeared in Tijdschrift voor Filosofie 4 (2010) / * Inspired by Kant's account of intuition and concepts, John McDowell has forcefully argued that the relation between sensible content and concepts is such that sensible content does not severally contribute to cognition but always only in conjunction with concepts. This view is known as conceptualism. Recently, Robert Hanna and Lucy Allais, among others, have brought against this view (...) the charge that it neglects the possibility of the existence of essentially non-conceptual content that is not conceptualized or subject to conceptualization. Their defence against McDowell amounts to non-conceptualism. Both views believe that intuition is synthesized content in Kant's sense. In this article I am particularly interested in how their views are true to Kant. I argue that although McDowell is right that intuition is only epistemically relevant in conjunction with concepts, I also believe that Hanna and Allais are right with regard to the existence of essentially non-conceptual content, but that they are wrong with regard to intuition being synthesized content in Kant's sense. I also point out the common failure to take account of the modal nature of Kant's argument for the relation between intuition and concept. (shrink)
It is easy to become battle-weary in metaphysics. In the face of seemingly unresolvable disputes and unanswerable questions, it is tempting to cast aside one’s sword, proclaiming: “there is no fact of the matter who is right!” Sometimes that is the right thing to do. As a case study, consider the search for the criterion of personal identity over time. I say there is no fact of the matter whether the correct criterion is bodily or psychological continuity.1 There exist two (...) candidate meanings for talk of persisting persons, one corresponding to each criterion, and there is simply no fact of the matter which candidate we mean. An argument schema for this sort of “no fact of the matter” thesis will be constructed. An instance of the schema will be defended in the case of personal identity. But scrutiny of this instance will reveal limits of the schema. Questions not settled by conceptual analysis—in particular, some very difficult questions of fundamental ontology—have answers. So do certain questions that can be settled by conceptual analysis, namely those that would be answered definitively by ideal philosophical inquiry. Whether there is a fact of the matter is not easily ascertained merely by looking to see whether disputes seem unresolvable or questions unanswerable: sometimes the truth is out there, however hard (or even impossible) it may be to discover. (shrink)
In this paper, I explore the implications of recent empirical research on concept representation for the philosophical enterprise of conceptual analysis. I argue that conceptual analysis, as it is commonly practiced, is committed to certain assumptions about the nature of our intuitive categorization judgments. I then try to show how these assumptions clash with contemporary accounts of concept representation in cognitive psychology. After entertaining an objection to my argument, I close by considering ways in which conceptual analysis might be altered (...) to accord better with the empirical work. (shrink)
Semantic externalism about a class of expressions is often thought to make conceptual analysis about members of that class impossible. In particular, since externalism about natural kind terms makes the essences of natural kinds empirically discoverable, it seems that mere reflection on one's natural kind concept will not be able to tell one anything substantial about what it is for something to fall under one's natural kind concepts. Many hold the further view that one cannot even know anything substantial about (...) the reference-fixers of one's natural kind concepts by armchair reflection. In this paper I want to question this latter view and claim that, because of the way our standard methodology of doing theories of reference relies on semantic intuitions, typical externalists in fact presuppose that one can know the reference-fixers of one's natural kind concepts by mere armchair reflection. The more interesting question is how substantial such knowledge can be. I also take some steps toward answering this question. (shrink)
This paper outlines a new approach to the task of giving an account of the meaning of moral statements: a sort of "conceptual role semantics", according to which the meaning of moral terms is given by their role in practical reasoning. This role is sufficient both to distinguish the meaning of any moral term from that of other terms, and to determine the property or relation (if any) that the term stands for. The paper ends by suggesting reasons for regarding (...) this "conceptual role semantics" approach as preferable to noncognitivism, the causal theory of reference, and noncircular conceptual analysis. (shrink)
This paper surveys and evaluates the answers that philosophers and animal researchers have given to two questions. Do animals have thoughts? If so, are their thoughts conceptual? Along the way, special attention is paid to distinguish debates of substance from mere battles over terminology, and to isolate fruitful areas for future research.
The paper examines how Brandom can respond to two objections raised against another sort of inferentialism, conceptual role semantics. After a brief explanation of the difference between the motivations and the nature of the two accounts (I), I argue that externalism can be accommodated within Brandomian inferentialism (II). Then I offer a reconstruction of how Brandom tries to explain mutual understanding (III-IV). Finally I point out a problem in Brandom’s account, which is this. Brandom’s inferential roles are social and normative, (...) but he also seeks to explain cases of understanding which involve novelty and individual ingenuity which cannot be reduced to social norms (V). (shrink)
In recent times, Evans’ idea that mental states could have non-conceptual contents has been attacked. McDowell (Mind and World, 1994) and Brewer (Perception and reason, 1999) have both argued that that notion does not have any epistemological role because notions such as justification or evidential support, that might relate mental contents to each other, must be framed in conceptual terms. On his side, Brewer has argued that instead of non-conceptual content we should consider demonstrative concepts that have the same fine (...) grainess of non-conceptual contents while having conceptual structure. In what follows I will argue that, first, that the notion of demonstrative concept is not viable and, second, that there is an epistemological role for non-conceptual content. (shrink)
In this paper I will do three things. One, to explain why conceptual role semantics seems an attractive theory of meaning (I). Two, to sketch a version of it which has a good chance of withstanding some of the standard objections (II-III). Three, to see what follows from this version with respect to the naturalization of meaning (IV).
In this paper I discuss the claim (advanced in various ways by Joseph Levine, Frank Jackson and David Chalmers) that the successful reduction of qualitative to physical states requires some sort of intelligible connection between our qualitative and physical concepts, which in turn requires a conceptual analysis of our qualitative concepts in causal-functional terms. While I defend this claim against some of its recent critics, I ultimately dispute it, and propose a different way to get the requisite intelligible connection between (...) qualitative and physical concepts. (shrink)
This essay concerns the question of how we make genuine epistemic progress through conceptual analysis. Our way into this issue will be through consideration of the paradox of analysis. The paradox challenges us to explain how a given statement can make a substantive contribution to our knowledge, even while it purports merely to make explicit what one’s grasp of the concept under scrutiny consists in. The paradox is often treated primarily as a semantic puzzle. However, in “Sect. 1” I argue (...) that the paradox raises a more fundamental epistemic problem, and in “Sects.1 and 2” I argue that semantic proposals—even ones designed to capture the Fregean link between meaning and epistemic significance—fail to resolve that problem. Seeing our way towards a real solution to the paradox requires more than semantics; we also need to understand how the process of analysis can yield justification for accepting a candidate conceptual analysis. I present an account of this process, and explain how it resolves the paradox, in “Sect. 3”. I conclude in “Sect. 4” by considering the implications for the present account concerning the goal of conceptual analysis, and by arguing that the apparent scarcity of short and finite illuminating analyses in philosophically interesting cases provides no grounds for pessimism concerning the possibility of philosophical progress through conceptual analysis. (shrink)
Conceptual analysis, like any exclusively theoretical activity, is far from overrated in current psychology. Such a situation can be related both to the contingent influences of contextual and historical character and to the more essential metatheoretical reasons. After a short discussion of the latter it is argued that even within a strictly empirical psychology there are non-trivial tasks that can be attached to well-defined and methodologically reliable, conceptual work. This kind of method, inspired by the ideas of Ludwig Wittgenstein, Peter (...) Strawson (conceptual grammar), and Gilbert Ryle (conceptual geography), is proposed and formally depicted as being holistic, descriptive, and connective. Finally, the newly presented framework of connective conceptual analysis is defended against the “Charge from Psychology,” in a version developed by William Ramsey, claiming that conceptual analysis is based on psychological assumptions that have already been refuted by empirical psychology. (shrink)
Starting with a discussion of what I call Koyré’s paradox of conceptual novelty, I introduce the ideas of Damerow et al. on the establishment of classical mechanics in Galileo’s work. I then argue that although the view of Damerow et al. on the nature of Galileo’s conceptual innovation is convincing, it misses an essential element: Galileo’s use of the experiments described in the first day of the Two New Sciences. I describe these experiments and analyze their function. Central to my (...) analysis is the idea that Galileo’s pendulum experiments serve to secure the reference of his theoretical models in actually occurring cases of free fall. In this way Galileo’s experiments constitute an essential part of the meaning of the new concepts of classical mechanics. (shrink)
The conceptual spaces approach has recently emerged as a novel account of concepts. Its guiding idea is that concepts can be represented geometrically, by means of metrical spaces. While it is generally recognized that many of our concepts are vague, the question of how to model vagueness in the conceptual spaces approach has not been addressed so far, even though the answer is far from straightforward. The present paper aims to fill this lacuna.
This paper offers a novel way of reconstructing conceptual change in empirical theories. Changes occur in terms of the structure of the dimensions—that is to say, the conceptual spaces—underlying the conceptual framework within which a given theory is formulated. Five types of changes are identified: (1) addition or deletion of special laws, (2) change in scale or metric, (3) change in the importance of dimensions, (4) change in the separability of dimensions, and (5) addition or deletion of dimensions. Given this (...) classification, the conceptual development of empirical theories becomes more gradual and rationalizable. Only the most extreme type—replacement of dimensions—comes close to a revolution. The five types are exemplified and applied in a case study on the development within physics from the original Newtonian mechanics to special relativity theory. (shrink)
The main purpose of this article is to undertake a conceptual investigation of the Berlin Wisdom Paradigm: a psychological project initiated by Paul Baltes and intended to study the complex phenomenon of wisdom. Firstly, in order to provide a wider perspective for the subsequent analyses, a short historical sketch is given. Secondly, a meta-theoretical issue of the degree to which the subject matter of the Baltesian study can be identified with the traditional philosophical wisdom is addressed. The main result yielded (...) by a careful conceptual analysis is that the philosophical and psychological concepts of wisdom, though not entirely the same, are at least parallel. Finally, one of the revealed aspects of the Berlin Wisdom Paradigm, i.e. its relative neglect of the non-cognitive and personal aspects of wisdom is brought to the fore. This deficiency, it is suggested, can be remedied by the application of the virtue ethics' conceptual framework. (shrink)
Scholarly research largely converges on the argument that trust is of paramount importance to drive economic agents toward mutually satisfactory, fair, and ethically compliant behaviors. There is, however, little agreement on the meaning of trust, whose conceptualizations differ with respect to actors, relationships, behaviors, and contexts. At present, we know much better what trust does than what trust is . In this article, we present an extensive review and analysis of the most prominent articles on trust in market relationships. Using (...) computer-aided content analysis and network analysis methods, we identify key, recurring dimensions that guided the conceptualization of trust in past research, and show how trust can be developed as a multifaceted and layered construct. Our results are an important contribution to a convergence of research toward a shared and common view of the meaning of trust. This process is important to ensure the body of trust research’s internal theoretical consistency, and to provide reliable and common principles for the management of business relationships – a context in which opportunism and imperfect information may induce economic actors to cheat and stray from fair and ethically compliant behaviors. (shrink)
The aim of this article is to present a conceptualization of cultural groups and cultural difference that provides a middle course between the Scylla of essentialism and the Charybdis of reductionism. The method I employ is the social mechanism approach. I argue that cultural groups and cultural difference should be understood as the result of cognitive and social processes of categorization. I describe two such processes in particular: categorization by others and self- categorization. Categorization by others is caused by (...) processes of ascription: the attribution by outsiders of certain characteristics, beliefs, and practices to indi- viduals who share a specific attribute. Self-categorization is caused by processes of inscription and community-building: the adoption of certain beliefs and practices as a result of socialization and enculturation. I therefore shift the focus from groups to categories, and from categories to processes of categorization. I show that this analytical distinction between categorization by others and self-categorization can clarify an ambiguity in dominant debates in contemporary multiculturalism. I conclude by indicating how injustices, commonly associated with multiculturalism, can better be understood as socially generated injustices, and how government should deal with these injustices. (shrink)
This paper introduces a new conceptual framework for studying moral climate in business firms, offering an alternative to other theoretical models currently in the literature. The framework integrates recent advances in organizational climate theory into a new conceptualization of the moral climate construct that explains how moral climates evolve in organizations and suggests moral climate change.
After decades of postcolonial development planning in the former colonies of Africa, one question that has been asked over and over again concerns how much has changed in Africa since the launch of what used to be called the first, second, third and other development decades. There is no doubt that national development policies and plans have played significant roles in influencing the direction of the post-political-independence development processes in Africa. This paper argues, however, that far more serious attention needs (...) to be paid by the African public to the important contributions that the nature of their development plans can make in the transformations of their lives. This paper uses development plans as an exemplar of social mechanisms in critical realist philosophy and argues that the development planning authorities in Africa need to take seriously the nature of the relations between their ‘informal’ and ‘formal’ sectors in the formulation and implementation of their development plans. (shrink)
The recent development and growth oforganic livestock farming and the relateddevelopment of national and internationalregulations has fueled discussions amongscientists and philosophers concerning theproper conceptualization of animal welfare.These discussions on livestock welfare inorganic farming draw on the conventionaldiscussions and disputes on animal welfare thatinvolve issues such as different definitions ofwelfare (clinical health, absence of suffering,sum of positive and negative experiences,etc.), the possibility for objective measuresof animal welfare, and the acceptable level ofwelfare. It seems clear that livestock welfareis a value-laden concept (...) and that animalwelfare science cannot be made independent ofquestions of values and ethics. The questioninvestigated here is whether those values thatunderpin organic farming, in particular, alsoaffect the interpretation of livestock welfare,and, if so, how. While some of the issuesraised in connection with organic farming arerelatively uncontroversial, others are not. Theintroduction of organic farming values seems tointroduce new criteria for what counts as goodanimal welfare, as well as a different ethicalbasis for making moral decisions on welfare.Organic farming embodies distinctive systemicor communitarian ethical ideas and the organicvalues are connected to a systemic conceptionof nature, of agriculture, of the farm, and ofthe animal. The new criteria of welfare arerelated to concepts such as naturalness,harmony, integrity, and care. While the organicvalues overlap with those involved in theconventional discussion of animal welfare, someof them suggest a need to set new prioritiesand to re-conceptualize animal welfare – forexample, with respect to ``naturalness,'''' inrelation to the possibilities for expression ofnatural behavior and in relation to animalintegrity as a concept for organismic harmony.The organic perspective also seems to suggest awider range of solutions to welfare problemsthan changes in farm routines or operations onthe animals. The systemic solutions include thechoice and reproduction of suitable breeds,changes in the farm structure, and changes inthe larger production and consumption system – including consumer perceptions andpreferences. But the organic values may alsocall for sacrifices of individual welfare in aconventional sense in order to advance welfarefrom the perspective of organic farming.Whether this is good or bad cannot be decidedwithout entering into an inquiry and discussionof the values and ethics involved. (shrink)
This paper evaluates an argument from Donald Davidson against alternative conceptual schemes. The argument can be divided into two stages. In the first stage it is argued that only pluralities can be organized. In the second stage it is argued that if our conceptual scheme organizes a plurality and someone else’s scheme also organizes that plurality, there must be a set of common concepts, hence someone else’s scheme can never be an alternative scheme to ours. I object to the first (...) stage of the argument. (shrink)
Vacillating and mixed emotional experiences are often difficult to explore and understand because they confront the limits of our language's ability to capture private experiences in extreme or abnormal circumstances. In this paper, we build upon remarks by Wittgenstein (1953) to present a conceptual-discursive perspective based on naturalistic examples of individuals vacillating between pride and other emotions. This perspective is used to show how relevant emotion theories contain conceptual errors of the sort identified by Wittgenstein. The “assembled reminders” of shifts (...) between pride and other emotions are presented in contrast to analyses that focus on people's identification of causes of emotions, an approach which leads to theoretical speculation about underlying appraisal set changes or discussion of the empirical justification of cognitive ontology. We bypass a direct confrontation on these issues by examining how people's talk about the content of vacillating and mixed emotional experiences (i.e., aspect shifts) augments a shared “emotionology” with creative expressions and poetic comparisons. This last point is illustrated by the emotional instability experienced by individuals with Borderline Personality Disorder (BPD). Support for the conceptual-discursive perspective is provided by the success of a particular therapeutic approach, the Conversational Model, in ameliorating the developmental disruption of BPD by encouraging participation in empathic conversations. We conclude that a conceptual-discursive perspective undermines the cognitive appraisal “picture” of vacillating emotions and adds to our understanding. (shrink)
I The area between sensation and conceptualization is gray and confusing. Despite abundant philosophical and empirical research, results about how to understand this area that command widespread assent are very scarce. One contributory source to this impasse is the fact that, for mature and intact humans, the sensory, the perceptual, and the conceptual seem merged in consciousness. Perception is phenomenally so "cognitively penetrable" - so infused for humans by discursive understanding - that experimental and theoretical efforts to distinguish between (...) it and conceptualization, and consequently between it and sensation, often seem constrained only by whatever favored theory drives the effort. In what follows, I consider reasons for distin- guishing perceptual from conceptual categories and suggest a way of making the distinction. First, however, some preliminaries will help make clearer just what topic is under discussion. (shrink)
The late scholastics, from the fourteenth to the seventeenth centuries, contributed to many ﬁelds of knowledge other than philosophy. They developed a method of conceptual analysis that was very productive in those disciplines in which theory is relatively more important than empirical results. That includes mathematics, where the scholastics developed the analysis of continuous motion, which fed into the calculus, and the theory of risk and probability. The method came to the fore especially in the social sciences. In legal theory (...) they developed, for example, the ethical analyses of the conditions of validity of contracts, and natural rights theory. In political theory, they introduced constitutionalism and the thought experiment of a “state of nature”. Their contributions to economics included concepts still regarded as basic, such as demand, capital, labour, and scarcity. Faculty psychology and semiotics are other areas of signiﬁ cance. In such disciplines, later developments rely crucially on scholastic concepts and vocabulary. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that the work of the unorthodox Stoic Posidonius - as reported to us by Galen - can be seen as making an interesting contribution to contemporary debates about the nature of emotion. Richard Sorabji has already argued that Posidonius' contribution highlights the weaknesses in some well-known contemporary forms of cognitivism. Here I argue that Posidonius might be seen as advocating a theory of the emotions which sees them as being, in at least some cases, two-level (...) intentional phenomena. One level involves judgments, just as the orthodox Stoic account does. But Posidonius thinks that emotions must also include an element sometimes translated as an "irrational tug". I suggest that we see the "irrational tug" as involving a second level of intentional, but non-conceptual representation. This view satisfies two desiderata: it is a view which would have been available to Posidonius and which is compatible with the views reported to us; and it is a view which is independently attractive. It also makes Posidonius' position less far removed from that of orthodox Stoics than it might otherwise do, while remaining genuinely innovative. (shrink)
The idea that there are conceptual schemes, relative to which we conceptualize experience, and empirical content, the “raw” data of experience that get conceptualized through our conceptual schemes into beliefs or sentences, is not new. The idea that there are neither conceptual schemes nor empirical content, however, is. Moreover, it is so new, that only four arguments have so far been given against this dualism, with Donald Davidson himself presenting versions of all four. In this paper, I show that in (...) both the general and Davidson’s specific form the first three arguments against scheme-content dualism rely on the fourth. From many there is just one. Then I show that the fate of the first three arguments against scheme-content dualism hangs on that of the fourth. Finally I present four reasons why the fourth argument fails. For the sake of the dualism’s detractors, therefore, one can only hope that forthcoming arguments against scheme-content dualism fare better than those given so far. (shrink)
Now that complex Agent-Based Models and computer simulations spread over economics and social sciences - as in most sciences of complex systems -, epistemological puzzles (re)emerge. We introduce new epistemological concepts so as to show to what extent authors are right when they focus on some empirical, instrumental or conceptual significance of their model or simulation. By distinguishing between models and simulations, between types of models, between types of computer simulations and between types of empiricity obtained through a simulation, section (...) 2 gives the possibility to understand more precisely - and then to justify - the diversity of the epistemological positions presented in section 1. Our final claim is that careful attention to the multiplicity of the denotational powers of symbols at stake in complex models and computer simulations is necessary to determine, in each case, their proper epistemic status and credibility. (shrink)
Whenever knowledge of the possible interpretation or conceptualization of some- thing helps in perceiving that thing, we say the processing is conceptually driven. That is, the process starts with conceptualization of what might be present and then looks for confirming evidence, biasing the processing mechanisms to give the expected result... Conceptually driven processing and data-driven processing almost always occur together, with each direction of processing contributing something to the total analysis. (Lindsay and Norman 1977, p. 13).
This article draws attention to struggles inherent in discourse about the meaning of participation in a Flemish participatory technology assessment (pTA) on nanotechnologies. It explores how, at the project’s outset, key actors (e.g., nanotechnologists and pTA researchers) frame elements of the process like ‘the public’ and draw on interpretive repertoires to fit their perspective. The examples call into question normative commitments to cooperation, consensus building, and common action that conventionally guide pTA approaches. It is argued that pTA itself must reflect (...) an awareness of competing interests and perspectives inherent in the discourse associated with the meaning of ‘participation’ if it is to incite action beyond vested interests and ensure genuine mutual learning. (shrink)
I critically examine the eliminativist theories of race or racism, and the behavioral theory of racism, which provide the theoretical foundation, respectively, for the nominalist and substantive conceptualizations of the idea of a post-racial era. The eliminativist theories seek to eliminate the concepts of “race” or “racism” from our discourse. Such elimination indicates a nominalist sense of the idea of a post-racial era. The behavioral theory of racism argues that racism must be manifested in obviously harmful actions. And because such (...) harmful actions are not prevalent today, this implies that we are in a post-racial era in a substantive sense. I conceptualize some subtle forms of racism that are prevalent today, which cannot be captured by the behavioral theory, but can best be captured by doxastic theories of racism. I conceptualize a substantive idea of a post-racial era, and then argue based on such conceptualization, that we are not in a post-racial era because subtle forms of racism are still prevalent today. (shrink)
DISSERTAÇÃO DE MESTRADO SANTOS, Ariadna de Oliveira. Discurso pentecostal e diálogo inter-religioso: um estudo sob a perspectiva da metáfora conceptual. 2011. 111 folhas. Dissertação (Mestrado) – Pontifícia Universidade Católica de Minas Gerais, Programa de Pós-graduação em Ciências da Religião, Belo Horizonte.
the world. 1 Whereas the content of our beliefs, thoughts, and judgements necessarily involves "conceptualization" or "concept application", the content of our perceptual experiences is, according to Evans, "non-conceptual". Because Evans takes it for granted that we are often able to entertain thoughts about an object in virtue of having perceived it, a central problem in.
According to Bowden (20121), anorectics’2 bodily experiences are characterized by a “corporealization,” which has notably been described as follows: “The exchange with the environment is inhibited, excretions cease; processes of . . . shrinking, and drying up prevail” (Fuchs 2005, 99). What is described here is melancholia, but a similar characterization would be applicable to anorexia. I think, however, that the notion of ‘corporealization’ is not fine-grained enough to capture the specificity of anorexic/pathological bodily experiences. To develop this point, I (...) here propose to apply some of Heidegger’s key notions to the conceptualization of bodily experience (Caron 2008). As currently defined, the .. (shrink)
There are several important conceptual issues and questions about the practice of healthcare ethics that can, and should, inform the development of any practice standards. This paper provides a relatively short overview of seven of these issues, with the invitation for further critical reflection and examination of their relevance to and implications for practice standards. The seven issues described include: diversity (from the perspective of training and experience); moral expertise and authority/influence; being an insider or outsider; flexibility and adaptability (for (...) local contexts of practice); the relative weighting of procedural and normative aspects of ethics practice; making mistakes or errors; and conflicts of interest in practice. (shrink)
Glenberg offers two different accounts of embodied conceptualization. The first fails in cases where no direct bodily interaction is possible. The second fails in cases where the object in question cannot serve as a discriminative stimulus; moreover, it yields inappropriate content even in cases where it can be applied. Glenberg's disregard for the conceptual agenda set by the social world is also disquieting.
First the rationalist tradition and then the cognitive revolution put limits on the philosophy and social sciences with regard to the analysis of emotion, of irrationality in mental events and actions, to the reduction of our representations to conceptual elements, and so on. This fact caused an increasing interest in these topics. In this paper, we intend to claim the significant relations among these three issues: emotion, selfdeception and non-conceptual content, with two aims: i) to analyse the relation between non-conceptual (...) content of emotion and the phenomenon of self-deception; and ii) to explain how self-deception canbe overcome by the conceptualization of some non-conceptual elements of emotion. (shrink)
The explanatory gap . Consciousness is a mystery. No one has ever given an account, even a highly speculative, hypothetical, and incomplete account of how a physical thing could have phenomenal states. (Nagel, 1974, Levine, 1983) Suppose that consciousness is identical to a property of the brain, say activity in the pyramidal cells of layer 5 of the cortex involving reverberatory circuits from cortical layer 6 to the thalamus and back to layers 4 and 6,as Crick and Koch have suggested (...) for visual consciousness. (See Crick (1994).) Still, that identity itself calls out for explanation! Proponents of an explanatory gap disagree about whether the gap is permanent. Some (e.g. Nagel, 1974) say that we are like the scientifically naive person who is told that matter = energy, but does not have the concepts required to make sense of the idea. If we can acquire these concepts, the gap is closable. Others say the gap is uncloseable because of our cognitive limitations. (McGinn, 1991) Still others say that the gap is a consequence of the fundamental nature of consciousness. (shrink)
The following is a transcript of the interview I (Yasuko Kitano) conducted with Neil Levy (The Centre for Applied Philosophy and Public Ethics, CAPPE) on the 23rd in July 2009, while he was in Tokyo to give a series of lectures on neuroethics at The University of Tokyo Center for Philosophy. I edited his words for publication with his approval.
Philosophers expend considerable effort on the analysis of concepts, but the value of such work is not widely appreciated. This paper principally analyses some arguments, beliefs, and presuppositions about the nature of design and the relations between design and science common in the literature to illustrate this point, and to contribute to the foundations of design theory.