Feminist strong substantive autonomy (FSSA), as presented by Natalie Stoljar and Anita Superson, pronounces judgment on the autonomy status of certain women living under oppression. These women act on deformed desires, Superson explains, and as deformed desires cannot be the agent's own, the women are heteronomous. Stoljar argues that some women's choices violate the Feminist Intuition; by acting on false and oppressive values, these women render themselves heteronomous. I argue against Stoljar and Superson on epistemological grounds. I present six different (...) ways in which agents' choices can be related to deformed desires, with varying results for their autonomy statuses. I show that Stoljar and Superson are not able to distinguish properly among the differing autonomy statuses in these six cases, because doing so requires attention to agents' inner processes of decision-making, as those processes are enacted in the agents' social and temporal contexts. Stoljar and Superson judge others' autonomy statuses based on abstract generalizations rather than via empirical attention to agents' actual decision-making processes. Consequently, their judgments are not adequate to the lived self-direction of real persons. Assessing others' autonomy status requires consideration of agents' inner choice-making in sociotemporal context, which favors a procedural or weak substantive account of autonomy. (shrink)
I bring together three philosophical accounts to argue that differential social shaping puts agents’ autonomy status outside their complete control, thanks to specific forms of good and bad luck generated by agents’ membership in socially privileged and socially oppressed groups. Oppression generates psychological harms and external damages, all of which can impede autonomy. Relational Autonomy analyses suggest that agents become autonomous only through relationships with others and further enact that autonomy in social contexts. Moral Luck theorists examine the apparent paradoxes (...) involved in our being held responsible for states and results outside our control; I consider the import of constitutive luck, situational luck, and resultant luck. We have limited control—hence, luck—with reference to beneficial and harmful ways in which relationships and social institutions affect our autonomy. (shrink)
This paper explores R. W. Sperry's view that consciousness is ?causally? effective in directing voluntary human behaviour. This view, formulated in the course of his split brain research, presupposes an earlier theory that motor behaviour is the sole output of the brain and that mental phenomena were developed for regulation of overt response. His view of the ?causal? effectiveness of consciousness is shown to be based on a theory of emergent properties like that of Bunge. It is also shown (...) that Sperry, like Bunge, is a materialist; appearances to the contrary are due to occasional use of standard terms such as ?materialism? and ?interaction? in unusual senses. It is argued, with specific reference to Chisholm and Searle, that Sperry's hypothesis is helpful towards elucidating the structure and dynamics of action. It is also argued that it is not, as Sperry thinks, a consequence of his position that moral values are part of brain science. (shrink)
The received view of multiple personality disorder (MPD) presupposes a form of realism, according to which the 'secondary personality' is an independent conscious entity joined to the psyche of the host. The received view of MPD is endorsed by the majority of psychologists, as are the major diagnostic criteria for MPD. Realism of this type, gives rise to a certain problem concerning the personal identity of the secondary personality, namely, who this individual is. It is argued that three broad answers (...) to the Question of Who in the context of MPD have been proposed in the history of psychology and psychiatry: psychological realism (Janet and the Dissociationist School); psychological anti-realism (Freud and the Psychoanalytic School), and neural realism (Wigan, Sperry and Gazzaniga). These views are examined. In addition, the relationship of the Question of Who to the traditional problem of personal identity is examined. It is argued that philosophers such as Locke, Reid and Parfit have either overlooked or presupposed the Question of Who. (shrink)
Recent developments in nonlinear dynamics have found wide application in many areas of science from physics to neuroscience. Nonlinear phenomena such as feedback loops, inter-level relations, wholes constraining and modifying the behavior of their parts, and memory effects are interesting candidates for emergence and downward causation. Rayleigh–Bénard convection is an example of a nonlinear system that, I suggest, yields important insights for metaphysics and philosophy of science. In this paper I propose convection as a model for downward causation in classical (...) mechanics, far more robust and less speculative than the examples typically provided in the philosophy of mind literature. Although the physics of Rayleigh–Bénard convection is quite complicated, this model provides a much more realistic and concrete example for examining various assumptions and arguments found in emergence and philosophy of mind debates. After reviewing some key concepts of nonlinear dynamics, complex systems and the basic physics of Rayleigh–Bénard convection, I begin that examination here by (1) assessing a recently proposed definition for emergence and downward causation, (2) discussing some typical objections to downward causation and (3) comparing this model with Sperry’s examples. (shrink)
The startling empirical data that concern us here are well known. Severing the corpus callosum produces a kind of mental bifurcation (Sperry 1968). In one experiment, a garlic smell is presented to a patient.
Preface, by F. L. Windolph.--A modern concept of God, by A. H. Compton.--The immortality of man, by J. Maritain.--The idea of God in the mind of man, by M. Royden.--Psychical research and the life beyond death, by H. Hart.--Religion and modern knowledge, by R. Niebuhr.--Immortality in the light of science and philosophy, by W. E. Hocking.--"To whom shall ye liken God?" By C. E. Park.--Man's destiny in eternity, by W. L. Sperry.--The idea of God as affected by modern knowledge, (...) by F. S. C. Northrop. (shrink)
Introduction to sensory psychology, by C. Mueller.--Some reflections on brain and mind, by R. Brain.--In search of the engram, by K. Lashly.--Cerebral organization and behavior, by R. W. Sperry.--Relations between the central nervous system and the peripheral organs, by E. von Holst.--Effects of the Gestalt revolution, by J. E. Hochberg.--Seeing in depth, by R. L. Gregory.--The stimulus variables for visual depth perception, by J. J. Gibson.--The elaboration of the universe, by J. Piaget.--Visual perception approached by the method of stabilized (...) images, by R. M. Pritchard, W. Heron, and D. O. Hebb.--Philosophy as rigorous science, by E. Husserl.--The "sensation" as a unit of experience, by M. Merleau-Ponty.--The phenomenology of perception: perceptual implications, by A. Gurwitsch.--The expression of thinking, by E. W. Straus.--The concept of group and the theory of perception, by E. Cassirer.--Norm and pathology of I-world relations, by E. W. Straus.--The metaphysical in man, by M. Merleau-Ponty.--Cultural differences in the perception of geometric illusions, by M. H. Segall, D. T. Campbell, and M. J. Herskovits.--The interpretive cortex, by W. Penfield.--Recovery from early blindness: a case study, by R. L. Gregory and J. G. Wallace.--Visual disturbances after perceptual isolation, by W. Heron, B. K. Doane, and T. H. Scott. (shrink)