While there have been many essays devoted to comparing the work of Maurice Merleau-Ponty with that of Jacques Derrida, there has been no sustained book-length treatment of these two French philosophers. Additionally, many of the essays presuppose an oppositional relationship between them, and between phenomenology and deconstruction more generally. -/- Jack Reynolds systematically explores their relationship by analyzing each philosopher in terms of two important and related issues—embodiment and alterity. Focusing on areas with which they are not commonly associated (...) (e.g., Derrida on the body and Merleau-Ponty on alterity) makes clear that their work cannot be adequately characterized in a strictly oppositional way. Merleau-Ponty and Derrida: Intertwining Embodiment and Alterity proposes the possibility of a Merleau-Ponty-inspired philosophy that does not so avowedly seek to extricate itself from phenomenology, but that also cannot easily be dismissed as simply another instantiation of the metaphysics of presence. Reynolds argues that there are salient ethico-political reasons for choosing an alternative that accords greater attention to our embodied situation. (shrink)
This book presents an innovative analysis of the role of imagination as a central concept in both literary and art criticism. Dee Reynolds brings this approach to bear on works by Rimbaud, Mallarme;, Kandinsky, and Mondrian. It allows her to redefine the relationship between Symbolism and abstract art, and to contribute new methodological perspectives to comparative studies of poetry and painting. The late nineteenth and early twentieth century was a crucial period in the emergence of new modes of representation, (...) and is currently at the forefront of critical enquiry. This is the first book to examine Symbolism and abstraction in this way, and the first to treat these poets and painters together. It is an original contribution to interdisciplinary scholarship in art history, literary history, and comparative aesthetics. (shrink)
In this introductory essay, the authors develop implications for ethical theory which relate to the three studies of cosmogony and ethics in the Focus articles by Guberman, Campany, and Read. They suggest that the dialogue between theory and description which Green and C. Reynolds urge in their Focus article should be understood as a search for adequate forms of ethical theory that must go on in both ethics and comparative studies, as well as in interdisciplinary conversations between them. (...) In considering the descriptive studies in this focus section, and in the collection "Cosmogony and Ethical Order," the authors conclude that the type of ethical theory which will prove most useful for further studies in comparative ethics will be a form of ethical naturalism. (shrink)
This paper will seek firstly to understand Deleuze’s main challenges to phenomenology, particularly as they are expressed in The Logic of Sense (1968) and What is Philosophy? (1991), although reference will also be made to Pure Immanence (1994) and Difference and Repetition (1968). We will then turn to a discussion of one of the few passages in which Deleuze (with Guattari) directly engages with Merleau-Ponty, which occurs in the chapter on art in What is Philosophy? In this text, he and (...) Guattari offer a critique of what they call the “final avatar” of phenomenology – that is, the “fleshism” that Merleau-Ponty proposes in his unfinished but justly famous work, The Visible and the Invisible (1964). It will be argued that both Deleuze’s basic criticisms of phenomenology, as well as he and Guattari’s problems with the concept of the flesh, do not adequately come to grips with Merleau-Ponty’s later philosophy. Merleau-Ponty is not obviously partisan to what Deleuze finds problematic in this tradition, despite continuing to identify himself as a phenomenologist, and is working within a surprisingly similar framework in certain key respects. In fact, in the more positive part of this paper, we will compare Merleau-Ponty’s notion of flesh, and Deleuze’s equally infamous univocity of being, as a means to consider the broader question of the ways in which the two philosophers consider ontological thought, its meaning and its conditions. It is our belief that through properly understanding both positions, a rapprochement, or at least the foundation for one, can be established between these two important thinkers. (shrink)
In an attempt to revive discussion of the argument from illusion this paper amends the classic version of the argument to avoid Austin's main objection. It then develops and defends a version of the intentional object reply to the argument, arguing that an "unendorsed story" account of reports of dreams and hallucinations avoids commitment to nonexistent objects.
Suggesting that phenomenology results in an “imperialism of the same” that considers the other only in terms of their effect upon the subject rather than in their genuine alterity, Levinas initiates a line of thought that can still be discerned in the work of Foucault, Derrida and Claude Lefort. However, this paper argues that Merleau-Ponty’s work is capable of avoiding this line of criticism, and that his position is an important alternative to the more dominant Derridean and Levinasian conceptions of (...) alterity. Moreover, this essay will also extricate Merleau-Ponty from Levinas’ claim that his philosophy is “sustained by an unaccountable affection”. Rather than ignoring the alterity of the other, and also without presupposing some primordial affectionate bond with the other, Merleau-Ponty explicates an interesting conception of what responsibility towards the ‘otherness of the other’ should consist in. Basically, he insists upon the way in which self and other are always already intertwined together (or reversible), and suggests that respecting the alterity of the other should involve the imperative to further immerse oneself in this transformative bond – to transform what we think of as self, and also what we think of as ‘other’. (shrink)
Stakeholder theory is widely recognized as a management theory, yet very little research has considered its implications for individual managerial decision-making. In the two studies reported here, we used stakeholder theory to examine managerial decisions about balancing stakeholder interests. Results of Study 1 suggest that indivisible resources and unequal levels of stakeholder saliency constrain managers’ efforts to balance stakeholder interests. Resource divisibility also influenced whether managers used a within-decision or an across-decision approach to balance stakeholder interests. In Study 2 we (...) examined instrumental and normative implications of these two approaches. We conclude by considering the contributions of this research. (shrink)
Various considerations are adduced toshow that we require that a testifier know hertestimony. Such a requirement apparentlyimproves testimony. It is argued that the aimof improving testimony explains why we have anduse our concept of knowledge. If we were tointroduce a term of praise for testimony, usingit at first to praise testimony that apparentlyhelped us in our practical projects, it wouldcome to be used as we now use the word``know''.
A new account of the semantic function (character) of ‘real’ and ‘really’ is defended. ‘Really’ as a sentential operator typically indicates that a report of what has been represented elsewhere ends and subsequent discourse is to be taken as making claims about the world. ‘Real’ and ‘really’ as applied to nouns or predicate phrases indicate that something is not being called an F merely because it represents an F. A way of drawing the distinction between realism and anti-realism based on (...) this new account is also defended. (shrink)
The philosophical relationship that obtains between the work of Merleau-Ponty and Derrida has continued to intrigue and preoccupy many of us despite, or perhaps even partly because of, the fact that Derrida did not accord the work of Merleau-Ponty much attention during his remarkably prolific career. Two relatively recent books of Derrida’s have addressed this gap: Memoirs of the Blind and, more recently, On Touching. However, although Derrida proposes an “entire re-reading” of the later Merleau-Ponty in Memoirs of the Blind, (...) with the clear implication that there are hitherto unaccessed and invaluable resources to be mined in this body of work, I will suggest that the actual reading of Merleau-Ponty propounded in On Touching falls well short of this ambition. While this chapter will raise some critical questions about the interpretation that Derrida offers of Merleau-Ponty in ‘Exemplary Stories of the Flesh: Tangent 3’, including the implication that his work on the senses and intersubjectivity remains mired in theological prejudices, it will also be concerned to examine the transcendental philosophy of time (or philosophy of the contretemps that breaks open time but nonetheless pertains to it) that undergirds and motivates Derrida’s engagement with the philosophies of touch. In this latter respect, I will argue that Derrida’s philosophy is itself ‘touched’ by time, in the peculiar sense of ‘touched’ that connotes affected and wounded. On my reading, his work instantiates an ethics of non-presentist time, an ethics of that time which is the transcendental condition of the present and any event of touch. I ask whether this prevarication on the issue of the transcendental and the ethical is reason to look for a different understanding of both time and the transcendental to Derrida’s, and I end this chapter by once more proposing a dialectic between the disjunctive and conjunctive aspects of time that does not accord any kind of a priori privilege to the one over the other. (shrink)
This paper discusses Plato’s question from the Meno : Why should we prefer knowledge that p over mere true belief that p? I find I just do prefer knowledge, and not for any further benefit that I am aware of in the particular case. But I should have that preference, because given our practice of approving of testimony only if uttered with knowledge, I could fail to prefer knowledge, when other things seem to me to be equal, only by having (...) the sorts of serious social or psychological defects that would make me unresponsive to the approval of others. Finally, the social practice that produces this particular preference is good for all of us because it improves the average quality of the testimony we receive, which results in greater success in our projects. (shrink)
The psychological concept of illusion is defined as a process involving an interaction of logical and empirical considerations. Common usage suggests that an illusion is a discrepancy between one's awareness and some stimulus. Following preliminary definitions of classes of stimuli, five definitions of illusion are considered, based upon the possible discrepancies between awareness and a stimulus. It is found that each of these definitions fails to make important distinctions, even to the point of equating all illusory and perceptual phenomena. This (...) dilemma is resolved by redefining illusion without reference to truth or falsity, but relative to the functioning of a given perceptual system under different conditions. The definition accepted as best is 'a discrepancy between one's perceptions of an object or event observed under different conditions'. Conditions may differ in terms of stimulus exposure, stimulus context, or experiental context. The philosophical and psychological implications are discussed of accepting a definition of illusion not based on a discrepancy between awareness and a stimulus. (shrink)
“Historicism” has become a ubiquitous and equivocal term. A classification is given here of five separate uses of the term currently in vogue, each provided with a unique qualifying adjective to help keep them distinct. I then offer a few objections to some of the more radical conclusions which have been drawn by proponents of a specific version of historicism, one associated with “postmodernism “. The positions of Rorty and Putnam are contrasted as examples of strong and weak degrees of (...) historicism, respectively. (shrink)
Non-propositional experiences can help justify beliefs, contrary to recent claims made by Donald Davidson and Laurence Bonjour. It is argued that a perceptual belief is justified if there are no undermining beliefs and it was arrived at in response to an experience through an adequate exercise of properly learned recognitional skills.
This essay examines Deleuze's account of time and the wound in The Logic of Sense and, to a lesser extent, in Difference and Repetition. As such, it will also explicate his understanding of the event, as well as the notoriously opaque ethics of counter-actualisation that are bound up with it, before raising certain problems that are associated with the transcendental and ethical priority that he accords to the event and what he calls the time of Aion. I will conclude by (...) proposing a dialectic between the two aspects of time that he counterposes (Aion and Chronos, roughly the disjunctive and the conjunctive) that does not instantiate any kind of a priori privilege of the one over the other. (shrink)
One of the more important and under-thematized philosophical disputes in contemporary European philosophy pertains to the significance that is given to the inter-related phenomena of habituality, skilful coping, and learning. This paper examines this dispute by focusing on the work of the Merleau-Ponty and Heidegger-inspired phenomenologist Hubert Dreyfus, and contrasting his analyses with those of Gilles Deleuze, particularly in Difference and Repetition. Both Deleuze and Dreyfus pay a lot of attention to learning and coping, while arriving at distinct conclusions about (...) these phenomena with a quite different ethico-political force. By getting to the bottom of the former, my hope is to problematize aspects of the latter in both philosophers' work. In Deleuze's case, it will be argued that he adopts a problematic position on learning that is aptly termed 'empirico-romanticism'. While I will agree with the general thrust of Dreyfus' foregrounding of habit and skilful coping, even in the political realm, it will also be argued that there are some risks associated with his view, notably of devolving into a conservative communitarianism. (shrink)
We present an axiomatisation for the first-order temporal logic with connectives Until and Since over the class of all linear flows of time. Completeness of the axiom system is proved.We also add a few axioms to find a sound and complete axiomatisation for the first order temporal logic of Until and Since over rational numbers time.
There has recently been a plethora of attempts to understand the key differences that separate the analytic and continental traditions of philosophy, often involving either painstaking descriptions of the divergent argumentative techniques and methodologies that concern them, or comparatively examining in detail the work of certain major theorists in both traditions (e.g. Rawls and Derrida, Lewis and Deleuze). While partly drawing on these two approaches, in this particular essay I instead propose a rather more speculative way of teasing out the (...) differences between them, interpreting them through the lens of Gilles Deleuze’s non-oppositional typology of sadism and masochism, as it is expressed in Difference and Repetition and ‘Coldness and Cruelty’. (shrink)
: Bernard Rollin argues that it is permissible to change an animal's telos through genetic engineering, if it doesn't harm the animal's welfare. Recent attempts to undermine his argument rely either on the claim that diminishing certain capacities always harms an animal's welfare or on the claim that it always violates an animal's integrity. I argue that these fail. However, respect for animal dignity provides a defeasible reason not to engineer an animal in a way that inhibits the development of (...) those functions that a member of its species can normally perform, even if the modification would improve the animal's welfare. (shrink)
This paper examines voluntary corporate social responsibility (CSR) reporting as a form of moral discourse. It explores how alternative stakeholder perspectives lead to differing perceptions of the process and content of responsible reporting. We contrast traditional stakeholder theory, which views stakeholders as external parties having a social contract with corporations, with an emerging perspective, which views interaction among corporations and constituents as relational in nature. This moves the stakeholder from an external entity to one that is integral to corporate activity. (...) We explore how these alternative stakeholder perspectives give rise to different normative demands for stakeholder engagement, managerial processes, and communication. We discuss models of CSR reporting and accountability: EMAS, the ISO 14000 series, SA8000, AA1000, the Global Reporting Initiative, and the Copenhagen Charter. We explore how these models relate to the stakeholder philosophies and find that they are largely consistent with the traditional atomistic view but fall far short of the demands for moral engagement prescribed by a relational stakeholder perspective. Adopting a relational view requires stakeholder engagement not only in prescribing reporting requirements, but also in discourse relating to core aspects of the corporation such as mission, values, and management systems. Habermas’ theory of communicative action provides guidelines for engaging stakeholders in this moral discourse. (shrink)
This paper examines the case of the internal auditor from a sociological and ethical perspective. Is it appropriate to extend the designation of professional to internal auditors? The discussion includes criteria from the sociology literature on professionalism. Further, professional ethical codes are compared. Internal auditors' code of ethics is found to have a strong moral approach, contrasting to the more instrumental approach of certified professional accountants. Internal auditors are noted as using their code of ethics to help resolve professional ethical (...) dilemmas. (shrink)
The actuarial profession has a long history of providing critical expertise to society. The services delivered are some of the most complex and mysterious to outsiders of all professions but little has been written about the professional responsibilities of actuaries in the academic literature beyond that of the profession itself. This paper makes the case that the issues surrounding professional independence of actuaries are, in principle, similar to those that faced the audit profession before the scandals and resultant regulatory changes (...) early this century. It is argued that, despite the position taken by the actuarial profession and management, the status quo raises genuine concerns about conflicts of interest and independence and that the risks that arise are of sufficient magnitude that they should at least be the subject of a full debate. (shrink)
This article examines Derrida’s insistence on the contretemps that breaks open time, paying particular attention to Politics of Friendship and the way in which this book envisages the ‘untimely’ as both interrupting, and making possible, friendship. Although I suggest that Derrida’s temporal deconstruction of the Aristotelian distinction between utility and ‘perfect’ friendships is convincing, I also argue that Derrida’s own account of friendship is itself touched by time, in the peculiar sense of ‘touched’ that connotes affected and wounded. Derrida’s work (...) instantiates what Husserl might call a transcendental pathology, in that it intermittently instantiates an ethics of non-presentist time (the time which is also the transcendental condition for the event of friendship), and, by contrast, disparages the significance of what we might call an ethics of phronesis, a ‘lived’ friendship of ‘omni-temporal’ dispositions, and embodied and habitual patterns. I end this article by proposing a dialectic between the disjunctive and conjunctive aspects of time that does not accord any kind of a priori privilege to the one over the other. (shrink)
Maurice Merleau-Ponty’s work is commonly associated with the philosophical movement called existentialism and its intention to begin with an analysis of the concrete experiences, perceptions, and difficulties, of human existence. However, he never propounded quite the same extreme accounts of radical freedom, being-towards-death, anguished responsibility, and conflicting relations with others, for which existentialism became both famous and notorious in the 1940s and 1950s. Perhaps because of this, he did not initially receive the same amount of attention as his French contemporaries (...) and friends, Jean-Paul Sartre and Simone de Beauvoir. These days though, his phenomenological analyses are arguably being given more attention than either, in both France and in the Anglo-American context, because they retain an ongoing relevance in fields as diverse as cognitive science, medical ethics, ecology, sociology and psychology. Although it is difficult to summarize Merleau-Ponty’s work into neat propositions, we can say that he sought to develop a radical re-description of embodied experience (with a primacy given to studies of perception), and argued that these phenomena could not be suitably understood b y the philosophical tradition because of its tendency to drift between two flawed and equally unsatisfactory alternatives: empiricism and, what he called, intellectualism. This article will seek to explain his understanding of perception, bodily movement, habit, ambiguity, and relations with others, as they were expressed in his key early work, Phenomenology of Perception, before exploring the enigmatic ontology of the chiasm and the flesh that is so evocatively described in his unfinished book, The Visible and the Invisible. (shrink)
This essay examines the relationship that obtains between Merleau-Ponty and Derrida through exploring an interesting point of dissension in their respective accounts of decision-making. Merleau-Ponty's early philosophy emphasizes the body-subject's tendency to seek an equilibrium with the world (by acquiring skills and establishing what he refers to as 'intentional arcs'), and towards deciding in an embodied and habitual manner that minimizes any confrontation with what might be termed a decision-making aporia. On the other hand, in his later writings, Derrida frequently (...) points towards a constitutive 'undecidability' involved in decision-making. He insists that a decision, if it is genuinely to be a decision, must involve a leap beyond all prior preparations, and this ensures that an aporia surrounds any attempt to decide. One must always decide without any equilibrium or stability, and yet these are precisely the things that Merleau-Ponty claims that our body moves us towards. Most of this essay will explore the significance of this disparity, and it will be argued that many of Merleau-Ponty's insights challenge the Derridean conception of the undecidability involved in decision-making. This becomes most obvious when comparing the decision-making processes of those expert in a particular field to those who are merely competent (for example chess), and this essay will attempt to establish that the aporia that Derrida discerns can actually be seen to constrict. (shrink)
Our objective is to understand how parents and children perceive their roles in decision making about research participation. Forty-five children (ages 4-15 years) with or without a chronic condition and 21 parents were the participants. A semistructured interview assessed perceptions of up to 4 hypothetical research scenarios with varying levels of risk, benefit, and complexity. Children were also administered the Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test, Third Edition, to assess verbal ability, as a proxy for the child's cognitive development. The audiotaped interviews (...) were transcribed and analyzed for themes related to parent and child decision-making roles. Both parents and children varied in their perceptions of decision-making roles. Child perceptions of parental influence on decision making as knowledge-based increased with cognitive development, whereas perceptions of parental influence as power-based decreased. Both children and parents commented that they would collaborate with each other when making decisions. Collaborative decision making appeared to increase with cognitive development. These findings suggest that approaches to child assent and parent permission should consider the parent-child relationship and how children and families typically make decisions. Future research is necessary to explain variation in the process of research decision making across children and families, explore the role of collaboration on children's decision-making skills, and understand developmental trajectories and mechanisms related to research decision making. (shrink)
In the legal judgement reason demands that it extend itself beyond the mere subjective limits of the self in order that it might fashion a judgement that speaks for the other. This is the universal necessity of the judgement. No claim of truth or the moral law can guarantee that others will agree with this judgement: thus disputation is the risk which reason takes in order to judge at all. The author examines this audacity of judgement by reference to Kant's (...) autonomy of reason, which risks itself in the thought that thinks. (shrink)
A traditional diagnosis of the error in the Cartesian skeptical arguments holds that they exploit our tendencies to take a representationalist view of perception. Thinking (perhaps not too clearly) that we perceive only our own sensory states, it seems to us that our perceptual beliefs about physical objects must be justified qua explanations of those sensory states. Such justification requires us to have reasons to reject rival explanations, such as the skeptical hypotheses, which we lack. However, those who adopt the (...) direct realist view of perception still find these arguments plausible, although, according to this diagnosis, they shouldn't. To avoid this objection, I argue that the Cartesian skeptical arguments exploit, not our representationalist tendencies, but our habits for evaluating causal explanatory justifications. (shrink)
Having initially not had the attention of Sartre or Heidegger, Merleau-Ponty's work is arguably now more widely influential than either of his two contemporaries. "Merleau-Ponty: Key Concepts" presents an accessible guide to the core ideas which structure Merleau-Ponty's thinking as well as to his influences and the value of his ideas to a wide range of disciplines. The first section of the book presents the context of Merleau-Ponty's thinking, the major debates of his time, particularly existentialism, phenomenology, the history of (...) philosophy and the philosophy of history and society. The second section outlines his major contributions and conceptual innovations. The final section focuses upon how his work has been taken up in other fields besides philosophy, notably in sociology, cognitive science, health studies, feminism and race theory. (shrink)
Although Descartes apparently needs first person authority for his anti-skeptical project, his scattered remarks on it appear to be inconsistent. Why did he neglect this issue? According to E M Aurley, Descartes was answering Pyrrhonian skeptics, who could not consistently challenge him on it. This paper argues instead that Descartes assumed that his first person premises were certain qua clear and distinct perceptions, leaving first person authority a side issue.
Scholars have suggested that the tendency for an individual to perceive him- or herself as more ethical than others might influence the individual''s perceptions of his or her organization''s ethics. The purpose of this study is to consider if and/or when such a relationship exists. A thorough consideration of the nature of perceptions of relative ethicality suggests that a positive self-bias would negatively influence perceptions of organizational ethicality. The results of an empirical study involving working managers and employees of a (...) hospital support that argument. Furthermore, the results indicate that organizational identification, perceived organizational cohesion, and an individual''s insulation also influence individual perceptions of relative organizational ethicality. The findings illuminate this particular phenomenon and further our understanding of the relationship between the individual and the organization, more generally. (shrink)