Teaching economics has been shown to encourage students to defect in a prisoner's dilemma game. However, can ethics training reverse that effect and promote cooperation? We conducted an experiment to answer this question. We found that students who had the ethics module had higher rates of cooperation than students without the ethics module, even after controlling for communication and other factors expected to affect cooperation. We conclude that the teaching of ethics can mitigate the possible adverse incentives of the prisoner's (...) dilemma, and, by implication, the adverse effects of economics and business training. (shrink)
The historian of philosophy often encounters arguments that are enthymematic: they have conclusions that follow from their explicit premises only by the addition of "tacit" or "suppressed" premises. It is a standard practice of interpretation to supply these missing premises, even where the enthymeme is "real," that is, where there is no other context in which the philosopher in question asserts the missing premises. To do so is to follow a principle of charity: other things being equal, one interpretation is (...) better than another just to the extent that the one produces a better argument than the other. We show that this principle leads to paradoxical conclusions, including the following: there is no objectively correct interpretation of any real enthymeme found in the text of a major philosopher; an interpreter will not regard a real enthymeme of a major philosopher as adequately interpreted until he has found a way of reading it that makes it into a good argument; every classical philosopher is infallible and omniscient; major philosophers never disagree. These conclusions are preposterous, but there are indications that they are in fact being reached, as we show by means of a case study of recent scholarship on Plato's Third Man Argument. To avoid the overinterpretation and anachronism that result from the unrestrained use of the principle of charity, one must employ a counterbalancing principle of parsimony: to seek the simplest explanation for the text under discussion. We study the role of the principle of parsimony by means of a mathematical case study, involving the suppressed premises in Euclid's Elements. Here the principle of parsimony plays a larger role than it does in the interpretation of philosophical texts, leading to a sharper distinction between Euclid's geometry and Euclidean geometry than we find between Plato and Platonism. We conclude by comparing two models of interpretation, which we call prospective and retrospective. Although the prospective model of interpretation leads to Platonism rather than to Plato, we argue that it still has a place in Platonic scholarship. (shrink)
Aristotle's claim in Metaphysics Z.6 that "each substance is the same as its essence" has long puzzled commentators. For it seems to conflict with two other Aristotelian theses: (1) primary substances are individuals (e.g., Socrates and Callias), and (2) essences are universals (e.g., Man and Horse). Three traditional solutions to this difficulty are considered and rejected. Instead, to make the Z.6 equation consistent with (1) and (2), I propose that it be interpreted to be making something other than a straightforward (...) identity claim. Callias is the same as his essence in the sense that to be identical to Callias is to be the same man as Callias (where Man is the essence of Callias). In general, x is identical to y if, and only if, x and y are the same E (where E specifies the "what it is to be" for x, i.e., the essence of x). So each of Socrates and Callias is the same as his essence, and Man is that essence, but Socrates and Callias are not identical, for they are not the same man. (shrink)
The first major work in the history of philosophy to bear the title "Metaphysics" was the treatise by Aristotle that we have come to know by that name. But Aristotle himself did not use that title or even describe his field of study as 'metaphysics'; the name was evidently coined by the first century C.E. editor who assembled the treatise we know as Aristotle's Metaphysics out of various smaller selections of Aristotle's works. The title 'metaphysics' -- literally, 'after the Physics' (...) -- very likely indicated the place the topics discussed therein were intended to occupy in the philosophical curriculum. They were to be studied after the treatises dealing with nature (ta phusika). In this entry, we discuss the ideas that are developed in Aristotle's treatise. (shrink)
This is an investigation of Aristotle's conception of accidental compounds (or "kooky objects," as Gareth Matthews has called them)—entities such as the pale man and the musical man. I begin with Matthews's pioneering work into kooky objects, and argue that they are not so far removed from our ordinary thinking as is commonly supposed. I go on to assess their utility in solving some familiar puzzles involving substitutivity in epistemic contexts, and compare the kooky object approach to more modern approaches (...) involving the notion of referential opacity. I conclude by proposing that Aristotle provides an implicit role for kooky objects in such metaphysical contexts as the Categories and Metaphysics. (shrink)
The author comments on the article “The neurobiology of addiction: Implications for voluntary control of behavior,‘ by S. E. Hyman. The author agrees with Hyman that debate persists whether addiction is a brain disease or a moral condition. The author states that Hyman has not fully answered the question of when addicted persons are responsible for what they do. The author also suggests that addiction is a brain disease and therapy can improve the symptoms of this life-threatening syndrome. Accession Number: (...) 24077918; Authors: Cohen, Peter J. 1; Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org; Affiliations: 1: Georgetown University Law Center; Subject: EDITORIALS; Subject: ADDICTIONS; Subject: BRAIN -- Diseases; Subject: SYNDROMES; Subject: HYMAN, S. E.; Number of Pages: 3p. (shrink)
In the face of ubiquitous information communication technology, the presence of blogs, personal websites, and public message boards give the illusion of uncensored criticism and discussion of the ethical implications of business activities. However, little attention has been paid to the limitations on free speech posed by the control of access to the Internet by private entities, enabling them to censor content that is deemed critical of corporate or public policy. The premise of this research is that transparency alone will (...) not achieve the desired results if ICT is used in a one way system, controlled by the provider of information. Stakeholders must have an avenue using the same technology to respond to and interact with the information. We propose a model that imposes on corporations a public trust, requiring these gatekeepers of communication technology to preserve individual rights to criticism and review. (shrink)
In these essays, we are concerned with virtue in journalism and the media but are mindful of the tension between the commercial foundations of publishing and broadcasting, on the one hand, and journalism's democratic obligations on the other. Adam outlines, first, a moral vision of journalism focusing on individualistic concepts of authorship and craft. Next, Craft attempts to bridge individual and organizational concerns by examining the obligations of organizations to the individuals working within them. Finally, Cohen discusses the importance (...) of resisting the powerful corporate logic that pervades the news media in the United States and calls on journalists to be courageous. (shrink)
In ?The Labour Theory of Value and the Concept of Exploitation? I distinguished between two ways in which the labour theory of value is formulated, both of which are common. In the popular formulation, the amount of value a commodity has depends on how much labour was spent producing it. In the strict formulation, which is so called because it formulates the labour theory of value proper, the amount of value a commodity has depends on nothing about its history but (...) only on how much labour would (now) be required to produce something just like it. I argued that strict and popular formulations are often wrongly treated as substantially equivalent, and that the practice of conflating them sustains two false impressions: that the labour theory of value is a basis for saying that capitalists exploit workers, and that the labour theory of value is true. The present paper is a reply to Nancy Holmstrom's recent attempt, in ?Marx and Cohen on Exploitation and the Labor Theory of Value?, to refute the theses of the article referred to above. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to argue that Kant's philosophy of biology has crucial implications for our understanding of his philosophy of history, and that overlooking these implications leads to a fundamental misconstruction of his views. More precisely, I will show that Kant's philosophy of history is modelled on his philosophy of biology due to the fact that the development of the human species shares a number of peculiar features with the functioning of organisms, these features entailing important methodological (...) characteristics. From this main claim will follow three further claims: (1) Kant's teleological view of history is not simply based on ethical considerations that have to do with the moral progress of the human species; rather, it stems from his conception of teleology as developed in his philosophy of biology. (2) Kant's philosophy of history allows for the practice of scientific history. In this sense, Kant's view of history is not merely teleological but involves a mechanical (and thus empirical) element. (3) Just as teleology is useful for furthering mechanical accounts of biological phenomena, teleological history is useful for scientific history. (shrink)
But Hardin hasn’t contented himself with reframing traditional philosoph- ical issues about color in a way that is sensitive to relevant empirical con- straints. In addition, he has been a staunch defender of color eliminativism — the view that there are no colors, qua properties of tables, chairs, and other mind-external objects, and a vociferous critic of several varieties of re- alism about color that have been defended by others (e.g., [Hardin, 2003], [Hardin, 2005]). These other views include the so-called (...) color physical- ism of [Hilbert, 1987], [Byrne and Hilbert, 1997a], [Byrne and Hilbert, 2003], and [Tye, 2000],1 and, inconveniently, even the relationalist view defended in [Cohen, 2003a], [Cohen, 2004a], [Cohen, 2003b], [McLaughlin, 2003], and [Jakab and McLaughlin, 2003]. (shrink)
In this article, I describe the need for tomorrow's scientists to be tutored in a personal ethic that values ethical responsiveness as the core, organizing principle for guiding research, teaching, application, and career direction. To address this need, I describe a teaching approach that instills science students with an understanding that moral reflection and action are the core tenets of scientific thinking and practice. The approach empowers students to reflect openly and discuss ongoing, ethical concerns as they face them in (...) their research and scholarship. Out of this, students naturally see the urgency to explore ethical issues and thinking from multiple perspectives, to develop and refine their ethical thinking, and to make moral choices in their routine scientific activities. (shrink)
The main lines of interpretation offered to date of the Third Man Argument in Plato's Parmenides (132a1-b2) are considered and rejected. A new, set-theoretic, reconstruction of the argument is offered. It is concluded that the philosophical point of the argument is different from what it has been generally supposed to be: Plato is pointing out the logical shortcomings in his earlier formulated principle of One-Over-Many.
Quine, in an influential passage, characterizes a certain kind of metaphysical view as "Aristotelian essentialism." Recent work on Aristotle suggests that he may not have been an essentialist in Quine's sense. This paper examines the question whether, and to what extent, Aristotle is committed to the kind of essentialism Quine discusses. Various promising areas of Aristotle's thought (alteration vs. coming-to-be and passing-away, kath' hauto predication) are examined and found wanting as sources of essentialism. Instead, Aristotle is found to be committed (...) to essentialism in the hylomorphic conception of substance featured in the late books of the Metaphysics, despite the superficially anti-essentialistic appearance of the conception of matter as the ultimate subject of predication. Essentialism is part and parcel of Aristotle's conception of substances as the basic individuals. (shrink)
Color relationalism is the view that colors are constituted in terms of relations to perceiving subjects. Among its explanatory virtues, relation- alism provides a satisfying treatment of cases of perceptual variation. But it can seem that relationalists lack resources for saying that a representa- tion of x’s color is erroneous. Surely, though, a theory of color that makes errors of color perception impossible cannot be correct. In this paper I’ll argue that, initial appearances notwithstanding, relationalism contains the resources to account (...) for errors of color perception. I’ll conclude that worries about making room for error are worries the relationalist can meet. (shrink)
This is a survey of Aristotle's development of the concept of substance in the Categories and Book VII (Zeta) of the Metaphysics. We begin with the Categories conception of a primary substance as that which is not "in a subject" -- i.e., not ontologically dependent on anything else -- and also not "said of a subject" -- i.e., not predicated of any item beneath it in its categorial tree. This gives us the idea of primary substances as ontologically basic individuals, (...) the fundamental subjects of predication and of change. We then examine the conception of substance in Metaphysics Zeta, where Aristotle is interested not just in the question of what the primary substances are, but in the question of what makes them substances, or, as he would put it, what the "substance OF something" is. The conception of substance that Aristotle ends up with seems (as has been frequently noted) to be threatened with inconsistency, in that Aristotle seems to want to maintain, simultaneously, that (i) substance is form, (ii) form is universal, and (iii) no universal is a substance. Two main approaches toward resolving this inconsistency are considered, and a sketch is provided of how one of these approaches might be fleshed out. On the line I propose, the substantial form of a material compound is predicated accidentally and universally of the matter of that compound, but it is not the substance of the matter of which it is predicated. Rather, it is the substance of itself; but since it is the cause of the compound's being essentially the kind of thing that it is, the substantial form is, in a derivative way, the substance of the compound as well. (shrink)
abstract Intuitively, all killings are equally wrong, no matter how old one's victim. In this paper we defend this claim — The Equal Wrongness of Killings Thesis — against a challenge presented by Kasper Lippert-Rasmussen. Lippert-Rasmussen shows The Equal Wrongness of Killings Thesis to be incompatible with two further theses: The Unequal Wrongness of Renderings Unconscious Thesis and The Equivalence Thesis. Lippert-Rasmussen argues that, of the three, The Equal Wrongness of Killings Thesis is the least defensible. He suggests that the (...) most convincing considerations apparently in favour of the Equal Wrongness thesis may be satisfied just as well if we adopt an alternative principle, a 'Prioritarian View' about the wrongness of killing. We argue that The Prioritarian View does not resolve the trilemma: it too is inconsistent with the other two theses. Instead, we argue, the most plausible resolution of the trilemma involves a rejection, rather, of The Unequal Wrongness of Renderings Unconscious Thesis. In its place, we offer an attractive principle that is compatible with both The Equal Wrongness of Killings Thesis as well as The Equivalence Thesis. (shrink)
We discuss Aristotle's "Categories" as an answer to Plato's One-over-Many argument. For Plato, F-ness is something "over against" particular F things; to predicate "F" of these things is to assert that they all stand in a certain relation to F-ness. Aristotle answers that predication is classification; and there being a classification of a certain sort is a fact correlative with there being things classifiable in the way the classification in question would classify them.
Cotard's syndrome is a psychotic condition that includes delusion of a supernatural nature. Based on insights from recovered patients who were convinced of being immortal, we can (1) distinguish biographical experiences from cultural and evolutionary backgrounds; (2) show that cultural significance dominates biographical experiences; and (3) support Bering's view of a cognitive system dedicated to forming illusory representations of immortality.
In September 2007, more than 100 philosophers came to Prague with the determination to approach Karl Popper's philosophy as a source of inspiration in many areas of our intellectual endeavor. This volume is a result of that effort.
Corporate social responsibility (CSR) is a dramatically expanding area of activity for managers and academics. Consumer demand for responsibly produced and fair trade goods is swelling, resulting in increased demands for CSR activity and information. Assets under professional management and invested with a social responsibility focus have also grown dramatically over the last 10 years. Investors choosing social responsibility investment strategies require access to information not provided through traditional financial statements and analyses. At the same time, a group of mainstream (...) institutional investors has encouraged a movement to incorporate environmental, social, and governance information into equity analysis, and multi-stakeholder groups have supported enhanced business reporting on these issues. The majority of research in this area has been performed on European and Australian firms. We expand on this literature by exploring the CSR disclosure practices of a size-and industry-stratified sample of 50 publicly traded U. S. firms, performing a content analysis on the complete identifiable public information portfolio provided by these firms during 2004. CSR activity was disclosed by most firms in the sample, and was included in nearly half of public disclosures made during that year by the sample firms. Areas of particular emphasis are community matters, health and safety, diversity and human resources (HR) matters, and environmental programs. The primary venues of disclosure are mass media releases such as corporate websites and press releases, followed closely by disclosures contained in mandatory filings. Consistent with prior research, we identify industry effects in terms of content, emphasis, and reporting format choices. Unlike prior research, we can offer only mixed evidence on the existence of a size effect. The disclosure frequency and emphasis is significantly different for the largest one-fifth of the firms, but no identifiable trends are present within the rest of the sample. There are, however, identifiable size effects with respect to reporting format choice. Use of websites is positively related to firm size, while the use of mandatory filings is negatively related to firm size. Finally, and also consistent with prior literature, we document a generally self-laudatory tone in the content of CSR disclosures for the sample firms. (shrink)
A tradition among certain Hume scholars, best known as the ‘New Humeans’, proposes a novel reading of Hume’s work, and in particular of his conception of causality.2 The purpose of this paper is to conduct a similar move regarding Hume’s historical method. It is similar for two reasons: firstly, it is intended to reintegrate Hume’s theory into present-day debates on the nature of history; and secondly, the reading I propose is directed against the standard interpretation of Hume’s history. This interpretation (...) claims that in spite of being a historian, Hume misunderstands the nature of both historical knowledge and the historical enterprise. In other words, the Humean methodology would be incompatible with a genuine historical practice. This censure is based upon three particular criticisms: (1) The criticism of ahistoricalism: Hume believes human nature is an unchangeable substratum, and thus cannot account for historical change. (2) The criticism of parochialism: Hume is trapped in his own historical province3, and thus understands other times in the light of his own. (3) The criticism of moral condescension: Hume presumes the same standard is applicable throughout history, and thus judges the past according to his own moral standard. I shall argue that these criticisms are the result of a misunderstanding of what Hume means to accomplish through his investigation of history and that moreover, he is aware of these pitfalls. (shrink)
Commentators have often held that aristotle's general doctrine of change commits him to a persisting material substrate for every change, And to an indeterminate material substrate (prime matter) for elemental transformation. I argue that though aristotle accepts a common matter for the four elements, Both these claims are false.
Leibniz's claim that a substance which is simple perceives is examined in terms of the cartesian model of mind which leibniz adopted. This examination helps to explain some of leibniz's claims about perception. Although leibniz can account for perception while maintaining that the substance which perceives is simple, He cannot adapt the cartesian model to encompass his broadened understanding of perception which includes unconscious perceptions in monads which apperceive nothing.
Recent years have featured a spate of regulatory action pertaining to the development and/or disclosure of corporate governance structures in response to financial scandals resulting in part from governance failures. During the same period, corporate governance activists and institutional investors increasingly have called for increased voluntary governance disclosure. Despite this attention, there have been relatively few comprehensive studies of governance disclosure practices and response to the regulation. In this study, we examine a sample of 50 U.S. firms and their public (...) disclosure packages from 2004. We find a high degree of variability in the presentation and reporting format choices for many elements of the governance structure. This variability includes several items for which disclosure is mandated by regulators or legislative action. In particular, smaller firms offer fewer disclosures pertaining to independence, board selection procedures, and oversight of management (including whistleblowing procedures). There are also trends associated with board characteristics: boards that are less independent offer fewer disclosures of independence and management oversight matters. Moreover, large firms provide more disclosures of independence standards, board selection procedures, audit committee matters, management control systems, other committee matters, and whistleblowing procedures but do not appear to have a strictly superior information environment when compared to smaller firms. The findings raise questions about compliance with regulatory requirements and the degree to which conflicts of interest between managers and directors are being controlled. While there have been notable improvements in the information environment of governance disclosures, there remain structural issues that may possess negative ramifications for stakeholders. (shrink)
A is for Alice and astronomers arguing about acceleration -- B is for Bernard's body-exchange machine -- C is for the Catholic cannibal -- D is for Maxwell's demon -- E is for evolution (and an embarrassing problem with it) -- F is for the forms lost forever to the prisoners of the cave -- G is for Galileo's gravitational balls -- H is for Hume's shades -- I is for the identity of indiscernibles -- J is for Henri Poincaré (...) and alternative geometries -- K is for the Kritik and Kant's kind of thought experiments -- L is for Lucretius' spear -- M is for Mach's motionless chain -- N is for Newton's bucket -- O is for Olbers' paradox -- P is for Parfit's person -- Q is for the questions raised by thought experiments quotidiennes -- R is for the rule-ruled room -- S is for Salvatius' ship, sailing along its own space-time line -- T is for the time-travelling twins -- U is for the universe, and Einstein's attempts to understand it -- V is for the vexed case of the violinist -- W is for Wittgenstein's beetle -- X is for xenophanes and thinking by examples -- Y is for counterfactuals and a backwards approach to history -- Z is for Zeno and the mysteries of infinity. (shrink)
In this second edition of his best-selling introduction to philosophy, Martin Cohen combines new and topical problems with humorous and engaging discussion. The new edition includes an updated glossary of helpful terms, possible new solutions to the problems, as well as many classic problems and new contemporary problems taken from the media to physics, medical ethics to artificial intelligence. 101 Philosophy Problems, Second Edition combines wit with philosophical scholarship and is ideal for anyone interested in this exciting and stimulating (...) topic. Examples of problems included: * Protagoras' Problem * The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problem * Life on Sirius * Achilles and the Tortoise * The Value of Stamps and Potatoes * The Cube and the Triangle * The Microworld Time Forgot * A Problem Arranging Ship Battles * But Will the Waterfall? * Kant's Problem * A Sinister Transplant Problem * The Evangelist * Problems with the Speed of Light * Schopenhauer's Problem. (shrink)
Anthony Kenny says it is impossible to want what one already has and knows one has. We present a counter-example and then suggest that Kenny may have been misled by the fact that wanting expresses itself in goal-directed behavior. From the truism that one's behavior cannot be directed toward a goal that one knows one has already attained, Kenny may have been led to suppose that behavior directed toward an as yet unattained goal cannot express one's desire for what one (...) has and knows one has. (shrink)
This is the second of three volumes of posthumously collected writings of G. A. Cohen, who was one of the leading, and most progressive, figures in contemporary political philosophy. This volume brings together some of Cohen's most personal philosophical and nonphilosophical essays, many of them previously unpublished. Rich in first-person narration, insight, and humor, these pieces vividly demonstrate why Thomas Nagel described Cohen as a "wonderful raconteur." The nonphilosophical highlight of the book is Cohen's remarkable account (...) of his first trip to India, which includes unforgettable vignettes of encounters with strangers and reflections on poverty and begging. Other biographical pieces include his valedictory lecture at Oxford, in which he describes his philosophical development and offers his impressions of other philosophers, and "Isaiah's Marx, and Mine," a tribute to his mentor Isaiah Berlin. Other essays address such topics as the truth in "small-c conservatism," who can and can't condemn terrorists, and the essence of bullshit. A recurring theme is finding completion in relation to the world of other human beings. Engaging, perceptive, and empathetic, these writings reveal a more personal side of one of the most influential philosophers of our time. (shrink)
Alternative oppositions to “infinity” and “totality” are suggested, examined and shown to be inadequate by comparison to the sense of the opposition contained in title Totality and Infinity chosen by Levinas. Special attention is given to this opposition and the priority given to ethics in relation Kant’s distinction between understanding and reason and the priority given by Kant to ethics. The book’s title is further illuminated by means of its first sentence, and the first sentence is illuminated by means of (...) the book’s title. Special attention is given to explicating the nature and significance of the hitherto unnoticed “informal” fallacy contained in the first sentence. (shrink)
This paper explores the influence of operationalism and its corollary, descriptivism, on Paul Samuelson's revealed preference theory as it developed between 1937 and 1948. Samuelson urged the disencumbering of metaphysics from economic theory. As an illustration, he showed how utility could be operationally redefined as revealed preference, and, furthermore, how from hypotheses such as maximizing behavior, operationally meaningful theorems could be deduced, thereby satisfying his demand for a scientific, empirical approach toward consumer behavior theory. In this paper I discuss the (...) ensuing debate during the 1950s and 1960s on Samuelson's operationalism that raised doubts about its efficacy. In addition, I argue that certain concepts (revealed preference, equilibrium) and theorems (e.g., weak and strong axioms) that are supposedly operational in revealed preference theory, lack operational meaning, not withstanding their mathematical implications. Finally, I suggest that, although Samuelson's methodological rhetoric did not correspond with his implicit aprioristic theorizing, he possibly thought that his methodology and theorizing would converge in the long run. (shrink)