Response inhibition plays a critical role in adaptive functioning and can be assessed with the Stop-signal task, which requires participants to suppress prepotent motor responses. Evidence suggests that this ability to inhibit a motor response that has already been initiated (reflected as Stop-signal reaction time (SSRT)) is a quantitative and heritable measure of interindividual variation in brain function. In order to examine the reliability of this measure, we pooled data across three separate studies and examined the influence of multiple SSRT (...) calculation methods and outlier calling on reliability (using Intra-class correlation). Our results suggest that an approach which uses the average of all available sessions, all trials of each session, and excludes outliers based on predetermined lenient criteria yields reliable SSRT estimates, while not excluding too many participants. Our findings support the reliability of SSRT as an index of inhibitory control, and provide support for its continued use as a neurocognitive phenotype. (shrink)
Georg Lukács's recently discovered defense of Geschichte und Klassenbewusstsein, written in 1925 or 1926 in reply to critical attacks by László Rudas and Abram Deborin, is of a piece with that earlier work and his Lenin of 1924. In its emphasis on the pivotal role and absolute authority of the Communist Party as the incarnation of the class consciousness of the proletariat, it is Leninist to the core. For many contemporary Marxist theorists, including the Lukács disciple István Mészáros, such an (...) apotheosis is precisely what is dead in Lukács's thought. (shrink)
Before he joined the Communist Party, the young György Lukács published an outstanding history of the modern drama in which he combined sociological analysis with aesthetic judgment. By doing so he called his countrymen's attention to a new and insightful approach to the study of literature. At the same time, he made a strong case for the superiority of neoclassical tragedy—largely inspired by personal experience.
The scene of philosophical interest in nonhuman animal life seems to have always been lacking in robust theoretical resources. The philosophical canon from ancient Greece onward contains only a few rare exceptions, and even in the past century, when research on nonhuman animals seems to have gained new momentum, this interest has remained confined primarily to conversations having to do with the moral status of animal life, with these discussions roughly divided into two major camps: animal rights discourse and a (...) utilitarian critique (à la Peter Singer) of that rights discourse. Against this historical backdrop, Jacques Derrida's The Animal That…. (shrink)
In what we might call its particularly Christian manifestation, “guilt” denotes the feeling or fact of having offended, the failure to uphold an ethical code. Under such terms, “guilt” connotes negative consequences: shame, punishment, and estrangement. Yet, penetrating further into its meaning and value, one finds that guilt extends beyond this narrow classification, playing a productive, necessary, and ineluctable role for recognitive sociality. This paper examines guilt as it appears in Hegel’s thinking. I find that Hegel’s understanding of Schuld (guilt) (...) in the Phenomenology , undergoes a crucial development over the course of the chapter titled, “Spirit,” culminating in a robust understanding of guilt that represents not a hopelessly broken bond, but a bond that awaits its fulfillment, its very incompleteness exerting a palpable pull upon the guilty party towards its fulfillment. I examine three key moments in “Spirit”: Hegel’s treatments of Antigone , the French Revolution, and the confession and forgiveness of evil. By comparing these moments, I distinguish between “abstract guilt,” guilt that only brings about shame and punishment, and what we might call “determinate guilt”: guilt that brings about action, reminds one of her/his indebtedness to the other. Understanding the development of guilt from the beginning to end of “Spirit” provides an entryway into a discussion of the social and political relevance of Hegel’s conception of the subject as—in a certain sense—always already guilty. I go on to argue that guilt as indebtedness and responsibility only exists as embedded within an already recognitive social structure. Re-thinking guilt as responsibility is not, therefore, a call to a new objective a priori moral system. Rather, it invites us to think through our recognitive being-together in a way that shakes off its metaphysical fetters. Such an ethics of recognitive intersubjectivity is an infinite task—not in the futile sense of the “unhappy consciousness”—but in the sense that we are responsible for constantly understanding, critiquing, and reforming ethical commitments that can only be (understood as) ours. (shrink)
Among other important things, William T. Scott and Martin X. Moleski’s biography of Michael Polanyi raises questions concerning the scientist-Philosopher’s religious convictions. Despite his profound respect for Christianity, he suffered from an inability to believe.
This short source describes the history of the kalam and how it was adopted by Muslims. Furthermore it outlines an argument made by al-Ghazali in defense of the existence of a Creator. The chapter as a whole concerns the kalam cosmological argument, which holds that there is a reason for the existence of the universe.
This article explores the Polanyi brothers’ publicly-stated views--and private debates--concerning the nature and origin of fascism and communism. In that connection, it examines their rival estimates of the Soviet regime.
We commonly identify something seriously defective in a human life that is lived in ignorance of important but unpalatable truths. At the same time, some degree of misapprehension of reality may be necessary for individual health and success. Morally speaking, it is unclear just how insistent we should be about seeking the truth. Robert Sparrow has considered such issues in discussing the manufacture and marketing of robot ‘pets’, such as Sony’s doglike ‘AIBO’ toy and whatever more advanced devices may supersede (...) it. Though it is not his only concern, Sparrow particularly criticizes such robot pets for their illusory appearance of being living things. He fears that some individuals will subconsciously buy into the illusion, and come to sentimentalize interactions that fail to constitute genuine relationships. In replying to Sparrow, I emphasize that this would be continuous with much of the minor sentimentality that we already indulge in from day to day. Although a disposition to seek the truth is morally virtuous, the virtue concerned must allow for at least some categories of exceptions. Despite Sparrow’s concerns about robot pets (and robotics more generally), we should be lenient about familiar, relatively benign, kinds of self-indulgence in forming beliefs about reality. Sentimentality about robot pets seems to fall within these categories. Such limited self-indulgence can co-exist with ordinary honesty and commitment to truth. (shrink)
I discuss an argument given by Dorothy Edgington for the conclusion that indicative conditionals cannot express propositions. The argument is not effective against Robert Stalnaker's context-dependent propositional theory. I isolate and defend the feature of Stalnaker's theory that allows it to evade the argument.
: This paper addresses the appropriation of theories of evolution by nineteenth-century feminists, focusing on the critical response to Darwin's The Descent of Man by Eliza Burt Gamble (The Evolution of Woman, 1893) and Antoinette Brown Blackwell (The Sexes Throughout Nature, 1875) and Charlotte Perkins Gilman's social evolutionism. For Gilman, evolutionism was a revolutionary resource for feminism, one of its greatest hopes. Gamble and Blackwell revisit Darwin's data with the aim of locating, amidst his ostensive conclusions to the contrary, (...) his implicit "defense" of either the equality (Blackwell) or the superiority (Gamble) of women. This article identifies the reasons for, and limitations of, this enthusiasm. To some extent, the basis of this feminism is provided by its keen perception of disparities between what a text does, and what it says it is doing. But these feminists did not think through the implications for their own rhetoric about race hierarchy. Darwin's trope of the "savage" would return in the work of some of these feminists, occasionally displaced or rejected, but usually reiterated, and sometimes integral to the feminism in question. (shrink)
In this short article I proudly present ARSECOG: The Ariel Rubinstein Seminar Comment Generator. This is an AI program in the style of ELIZA. However, instead of simulating a psychotherapist, it simulates the eminent economist Ariel Rubinstein. Prof. Rubinstein is renowned for his insightful and penetrating comments during research seminars. I am sure many of us, who envy his capabilities in this department, would find a program such as ARSECOG quite useful.
The present studies examined whether implied tactile properties during language comprehension influence subsequent direct tactile perception, and the specificity of any such effects. Participants read sentences that implicitly conveyed information regarding tactile properties (e.g., Grace tried on a pair of thick corduroy pants while shopping) that were either related or unrelated to fabrics and varied in implied texture (smooth, medium, rough). After reading each sentence, participants then performed an unrelated rating task during which they felt and rated the texture of (...) a presented fabric. Results demonstrated that the texture properties implied in sentences influence direct tactile perception. Specifically, after reading about a smooth or rough texture, subsequent fabric ratings became notably smoother or rougher, respectively. However, we also show that there was some specificity to these effects: Fabric-related sentences elicited more specific and interactive effects on subsequent ratings. Together, we demonstrate that under certain circumstances, language comprehension can prime tactile representations and affect direct tactile perception. Results are discussed with regard to the nature and scope of multimodal mental simulation during reading. (shrink)
Researchers have wondered how the brain creates emotions since the early days of psychological science. With a surge of studies in affective neuroscience in recent decades, scientists are poised to answer this question. In this target article, we present a meta-analytic summary of the neuroimaging literature on human emotion. We compare the locationist approach (i.e., the hypothesis that discrete emotion categories consistently and specifically correspond to distinct brain regions) with the psychological constructionist approach (i.e., the hypothesis that discrete emotion categories (...) are constructed of more general brain networks not specific to those categories) to better understand the brain basis of emotion. We review both locationist and psychological constructionist hypotheses of brain–emotion correspondence and report meta-analytic findings bearing on these hypotheses. Overall, we found little evidence that discrete emotion categories can be consistently and specifically localized to distinct brain regions. Instead, we found evidence that is consistent with a psychological constructionist approach to the mind: A set of interacting brain regions commonly involved in basic psychological operations of both an emotional and non-emotional nature are active during emotion experience and perception across a range of discrete emotion categories. (shrink)
This article re-contextualizes Sigmund Freud's interest in the idea of the inheritance of acquired characteristics in terms of the socio-political connotations of Lamarckism and Darwinism in the 1930s and 1950s. Many scholars have speculated as to why Freud continued to insist on a supposedly outmoded theory of evolution in the 1930s even as he was aware that it was no longer tenable. While Freud's initial interest in the inheritance of phylogenetic memory was not necessarily politically motivated, his refusal to abandon (...) this theory in the 1930s must be understood in terms of wider debates, especially regarding the position of the Jewish people in Germany and Austria. Freud became uneasy about the inheritance of memory not because it was scientifically disproven, but because it had become politically charged and suspiciously regarded by the Nazis as Bolshevik and Jewish. Where Freud seemed to use the idea of inherited memory as a way of universalizing his theory beyond the individual cultural milieu of his mostly Jewish patients, such a notion of universal science itself became politically charged and identified as particularly Jewish. The vexed and speculative interpretations of Freud's Lamarckism are situated as part of a larger post-War cultural reaction against Communism on the one hand (particularly in the 1950s when Lamarckism was associated with the failures of Lysenko), and on the other hand, against any scientific concepts of race in the wake of World War II. (shrink)
Poor Eliza -- Pax Americana : the case of Show boat -- National brands, national body : Imitation of life -- Uncle Sam needs a wife : citizenship and denegation -- Remembering love, forgetting everything else : Now, voyager -- "It's not the tragedies that kill us, it's the messes" : femininity, formalism, and Dorothy Parker -- The compulsion to repeat femininity : Landscape for a good woman and The life and loves of a she-devil.
We agree that conceptualisation is key in understanding the brain basis of emotion. We argue that by conflating facial emotion recognition with subjective emotion experience, Lindquist et al. understate the importance of biological predisposition in emotion. We use examples from the anxiety disorders to illustrate the distinction between these two phenomena, emphasising the importance of both emotional hardware and contextual learning.
Os usos do passado e da tradição em uma sociedade pós-tradicional, na perspectiva de Zygmunt Bauman, é resultado dos desdobramentos da modernidade em sua produção da ambivalência. O objetivo do presente artigo é rastrear esse pensamento na obra de Bauman a partir da suturação do conceito de tradição com a obra mais ampla do filósofo. Buscaremos, então, pontos de contato com outros autores que também trabalharam esta temática – notadamente, Hannah Arendt – a partir da ótica de que a modernidade (...) é marcada pela dependência de um passado ressignificado. (shrink)
In this study I examine some uses of connectives, and in particular co-ordinate conjunction, from a critical discourse perspective; these uses, in my view, cannot find a satisfactory explanation within current frameworks. It is suggested that we need to identify a conceptual level at which connectives function as hypo-textual signals, activating systematic law-like conditional statements (IF-THEN), which form default specifications of consistent structured knowledge frames. I argue that an account of connectives at the conceptual level of their function that does (...) not take into consideration such tightly structured background schemata, representing both general knowledge and ideologies, cannot afford any generality. As a result, ¿deviant¿ or ¿subversive¿ uses of these connectives can neither be identified as such nor find an adequately general explication within existing accounts, whereas in the proposed framework such uses find a ready explanation of sufficient generality. This framework lies at the intersection of disciplines: Linguistic pragmatics (empirical pragmatics, critical discourse analysis), on the one hand, and cognitive science, on the other. Consequently, this proposal, too, can be regarded as a plea for crossing boundaries and joining forces. (shrink)
In our response, we clarify important theoretical differences between basic emotion and psychological construction approaches. We evaluate the empirical status of the basic emotion approach, addressing whether it requires brain localization, whether localization can be observed with better analytic tools, and whether evidence for basic emotions exists in other types of measures. We then revisit the issue of whether the key hypotheses of psychological construction are supported by our meta-analytic findings. We close by elaborating on commentator suggestions for future research.
Lindquist et al. convincingly argue that the brain implements psychological operations that are constitutive of emotion rather than modules subserving discrete emotions. However, the nature of such psychological operations is open to debate. I argue that considering appraisal theories may provide alternative interpretations of the neuroimaging data with respect to the psychological operations involved.
This paper addresses the history of late nineteenth century women’s suffrage and the history of the women involved in the struggle for female enfranchisement of Australia, New Zealand, and Colorado, which have recently been the target of fervent postcolonial criticism. The paper will attempt to defend the efforts of white suffragists by deconstructing the groundlessness and, occasion- ally, the falseness of postcolonial criticism.
In this paper I tackle the relationship between language, knowledge and power. To this end, I try to give some reasons for the non-arbitrariness of some words, as well as for the non-arbitrariness of grammatical genders in Romance languages, especially Romanian and French. I focus on several specific linguistic structures and uses of particular words in these two languages. I particularly deal with the construction of a third grammatical gender, the neuter, in Romanian, in comparison to the two grammatical genders (...) existing in French, trying to see how the application of Irigarayís theory on the gender of nouns functions for Romanian language. There is no third grammatical gender in French, and therefore Irigarayís argument is proved to be invalid for Romanian. The questions that lead my analysis are: What corporeality does the third grammatical gender, the neuter in Romanian, point to? How are we to consider neuter words? Is the neuter a necessary and sufficient proof for considering Romanian a less sexist lan- guage? Is the neuter the guarantor of impartiality and equilibrium in a grammatically gendered language? (shrink)