Part of the Blackwell Readings in the History of Philosophy series, this survey of late modern philosophy focuses on the key texts and philosophers of the period whose beliefs changed the course of western thought. Gathers together the key texts from the most significant and influential philosophers of the late modern era to provide a thorough introduction to the period. Features the writings of Locke, Berkeley, Hume, Leibniz, Kant, Rousseau, Bentham and other leading thinkers. Examines such topics as empiricism, rationalism, (...) and the existence of God. Readings are accompanied by expert commentary from the editors, who are leading scholars in the field. (shrink)
Most naturalists think that the belief/desire model from Hume is the best framework for making sense of motivation. As Smith has argued, given that the cognitive state (belief) and the conative state (desire) are separate on this model, if a moral judgment is cognitive, it could not also be motivating by itself. So, it looks as though Hume and Humeans cannot hold that moral judgments are states of belief (moral cognitivism) and internally motivating (moral internalism). My chief claim is that (...) the details of Hume’s naturalistic philosophy of mind actually allow for a conjunction of these allegedly incompatible views. This thesis is significant, since readers typically have thought that Hume’s view that motivation is not produced by representations, coupled with his view that moral judgments motivate on their own, imply that moral judgments could never take the form of beliefs about, or representations of, the moral (virtue and vice). (shrink)
Rachel Cohon's Hume is a moral sensing theorist, who holds both that moral qualities (virtue and vice) are mind-dependent and that there is such a thing as moral knowledge. He is an anti-rationalist about motivation, arguing that reason alone does not motivate, but allows that both beliefs and passions are motivating. (That is, some beliefs cause passions and some passions cause action.) And he is both a descriptive and a normative moral theorist who, despite having resources for putting checks on (...) our sentimentally-based moral evaluations, does end up with a kind of a relativistic account of the virtues and vices. Professor Cohon's arguments in Hume's Morality1 are tight and vigorous. Anyone working on these .. (shrink)
Hume’s thesis that reason alone does not motivate is taken as the ground for this theory: Reason produces beliefs only, and beliefs are mere representations of fact, which, without passions for the objects the beliefs concern, cannot move anyone at all. Discussions of the Humean theory of motivation usually begin with the motivating passions in place without asking about their genesis. This emphasis, I think, overlooks a good deal of what Hume’s thesis concerning the motivational impotence of reason is about: (...) It concerns the incapacity of reason to generate the motivating passions in the first place, and not just the ineffectiveness of beliefs, without passions, to produce action. [...] In this paper, I will offer an interpretation of Hume's theory of motive formation and show how it provides crucial support for a famous claim in his argument against the moral rationalists[...]. As it turns out, reason does play a necessary role in motive formation even for Hume, but the answer why it is not sufficient is a telling difference between a rationalist moral psychology and Hume's. (shrink)
A radical implication of Hume’s theory of motivation is that it makes no sense, strictly speaking, to call actions rational or irrational. So, he claims, it is not contrary to reason for me to prefer the destruction of the world to getting a scratch on my finger.
Humeans about practical reasoning have tried to explain how some of our desires are reason-giving and some are not. On one account, we act from reasons only when we act on desires that cohere in a consistent set. On another account, we act on reasons only when we act on desires that do not undermine our values. Both accounts are problematic. First, the notion of a consistent set of desires is vague and introduces a criterion not necessarily rooted in the (...) agent's own motivations. Second, valuing is a matter of degree: we cannot divide desires into those that reflect values and those that don't. I maintain instead that (1) all desires are reason-giving, but we have best reason to do what we most care about, and (2) the rationality of desires derives from the normative perspective we take on our desires in attempting to determine their relative importance to us. (shrink)
In this paper, I discuss the implications of Hutcheson’s and Hume’s sentimentalist theories for the question of whether and how we can offer reasons to be moral. Hutcheson and Hume agree that reason does not give us ultimate ends. Because of this, on Hutcheson’s line, the possession of affections and of a moral sense makes practical reasons possible. On Hume’s view, that reason does not give us ultimate ends means that reason does not motivate on its own, and this makes (...) practical reasons, strictly speaking, impossible. For Hutcheson, those who are good people (benevolent people) have reasons to continue in that way. While he has nothing to say to those who are thoroughly self-interested, he thinks there are no such persons. Hume’s theory implies that one can have a motive to behave morally when one’s character does not so incline, since he believes that morality is at least sometimes in the interest of the agent. One interesting source of their differences is that Hume subscribes to an internal connection between justification and motivation, while Hutcheson argues that motivating reasons and justifying reasons are logically distinct. -/- . (shrink)
Equality in Difference: Hierarchical Multiculturalism and Membership Illusions Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 489-494 DOI 10.1007/s10746-011-9193-x Authors Ella Schmidt, Department of Anthropology, Criminology, and Interdisciplinary Social Sciences, University of South Florida-St. Petersburg, St. Petersburg, FL, USA Journal Human Studies Online ISSN 1572-851X Print ISSN 0163-8548 Journal Volume Volume 34 Journal Issue Volume 34, Number 4.
Following the research of Liedtka (1989), this paper examines the impact of her values congruence model on managers'' work attitudes and perceptions of ethical practices within their firms. A nationwide cross-section of managers (N=1,059) provides the sample for the study. Consonance or clarity about both personal value systems and organizational value systems were found to be more important and, in the absence of one or the other, clarity of personal values were shown to have a more positive impact than organizational (...) value clarity. (shrink)
Critics of John Rawls' conception of a reasonable pluralism have raised the question of whether it is justified to demand that religious individuals should 'bracket' their essential, identity-constituting convictions when they enter a political discourse. I will argue that the criterion for religious beliefs of being justified as grounds for political decisions should be their ability of being 'translatable' in secular reasons for the very same decisions. This translation would demand 'epistemic abstinence' from religious believers only on the basis of (...) a rigid distinction between the spheres of private opinions and public reasons. To give a more adequate account of the relation between religious beliefs and political reasons in a pluralistic society it seems to be helpful to make use of Niklas Luhmann's functionalistic theory of religion. Key Words: democracy and religious beliefs philosophy of religion pluralism political liberalism political theory. (shrink)
In the present enterprise we take a look at the meaning of Autonomy, how the word has been employed and some of the consequences of its use in the sciences of the artificial. Could and should robots really be autonomous entities? Over and beyond this, we use concepts from the philosophy of mind to spur on enquiry into the very essence of human autonomy. We believe our initiative, as does Dennett's life-long research, sheds light upon the problems of robot design (...) with respect to their relation with humans. (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)
In order to refute the widely held belief that the game known as ‘Newcomb's paradox’ is physically nonsensical and impossible to imagine (e.g. because it involves backward causation), I tell a story in which the game is realized in a classical, deterministic universe in a physically plausible way. The predictor is a collection of beings which are by many orders of magnitude smaller than the player and which can, with their exquisite measurement techniques, observe the particles in the player's body (...) so accurately that they can predict his choice (in much the same way as we can predict the motion of celestial bodies). I argue that the player, by choosing whether to take only one box or both boxes, influences whether or not, in the past, the predictor put a million pounds into the second box. Yet, I establish that no causal paradox can arise in this set-up. (shrink)
Scientific progress is achieved not only by continuous accumulation of knowledge but also by paradigm shifts. These shifts are often necessitated by anomalous findings that cannot be incorporated in accepted models. Two important methodological principles regulate this process and complement each other: Ockham's Razor as the principle of parsimony and Plato's Life Boat as the principle of the necessity to 'save the appearances' and thus incorporate conflicting phenomenological data into theories. We review empirical data which are in conflict with some (...) presuppositions of accepted mainstream science: Clinical and experimental effects of prayer and healing intention, data from telepathy, psychokinesis experiments and precognition, and anecdotal reports of macro-psychokinesis. Taken together, the now well documented possibility of these events suggests that such phenomena are anomalies that challenge some widely held beliefs in mainstream science. On the other hand, scientists often fear that by accepting the reality of these phenomena they also have to subscribe to world-models invoking ontological dualism or idealism. We suggest accepting the phenomena as real, but without questionable ontologies commonly associated with them. We outline how this might work. (shrink)
The article examines the use made of hegel's dialectic of lordship and bondage in kojeve, sartre and merleau-ponty as a means of discussing the problem of merging a phenomenology of social life with a dialectical conception of philosophical narration. it is argued that neither sartre nor merleau-ponty can reconcile phenomenology and dialectic without an ontologizing of politics which ultimately provides a misleadingly abstract account of political life. while concentrating on the period 1945-1955, the article draws out certain implications for the (...) evaluation of sartre and merleau-ponty's later work. (shrink)
The intention of this paper is to discuss the notion and word "democracy" as a Greek legacy and then to pose the question of the specific challenges to that conception of democracy presented by this historical present, which Heidegger characterizes as the Gestell. Questions concerning the sources of power, the relation of power to peoples and individuals, as well as the shift from power to violence are addressed. Plato, Aristotle, Pericles, Lincoln, Derrida, and Heidegger are the key figures in this (...) discussion. (shrink)
Discussion about the application of scientific knowledge in robotics in order to build people helpers is widespread. The issue herein addressed is philosophically poignant, that of robots that are “people”. It is currently popular to speak about robots and the image of Man. Behind this lurks the dialogical mind and the questions about the significance of an artificial version of it. Without intending to defend or refute the discourse in favour of ‘recreating’ Man, a lesser familiar question is brought forth: (...) “and what if we were capable of creating a very convincible replica of man (constructing a robot-person), what would the consequences of this be and would we be satisfied with such technology?” Thorny topic; it questions the entire knowledge foundation upon which strong AI/Robotics is positioned. The author argues for improved monitoring of technological progress and thus favours implementing weaker techniques. (shrink)
For much of the last 50 years, a key platform animating public sector reform in Canada and elsewhere has been that efficiency and effectiveness can be achieved by adapting private sector financial management methods and practices. We argue that the recent re-establishment of the Office of the Comptroller General (OCG) of Canada represents a key element of a program of strengthening financial accountability that has emerged within the Canadian Federal Government. Although this program is longstanding and is associated Canada’s implementation (...) of new public management initiatives, it has recently drawn particular sustenance from the sponsorship scandal in Canada. We demonstrate that the reincarnated OCG, re-established amid a rhetoric of “modernization” and of “strengthening” accountability, has a wide-ranging mandate to enhance financial and audit controls, create financial standards, nurture professional development, and oversee government spending. We explore some of the consequences of this development and of the broader financial accountability mechanisms introduced in response to the Sponsorship scandal within the Canadian public sector. (shrink)
This article contributes to the analysis of refusal to license cases as abuse of a dominant position pursuant Article 82 EC from an economic perspective. In the Microsoft case, the European Commission introduced an "Incentives Balance Test" to assess whether the refusal to give access to interface information can be justified by arguing that this information is protected by Intellectual Property Rights (IPRs): The Commission argued that if the overall innovative effects evoked by a compulsory license are significantly higher than (...) without this access, the IPR owner is obliged to license. This should be assessed through balancing the different incentives to innovate between the dominant firm and its competitors. In the paper we pursue two objectives: Firstly, we analyze to what extent the decision of the Court of First Instance, which confirmed the decision of the Commission, helps to clarify the criteria in refusal to license cases; in fact, it is disappointing in this regard. Secondly, we demonstrate that the basic idea of the Incentives Balance Test can be interpreted as a test whether the specific IPRs of the dominant firm can be defended from the perspective of the economics of IPRs. This implies that Article 82 allows competition law to correct economically not optimal IPRs through a specific economic analysis. This is followed by a broad overview on theoretical and empirical insights from economics of IPRs, innovation economics and competition and network economics that can help to develop a more general and sophisticated Innovation Effects Test that can be applied in Article 82 refusal to license cases. (shrink)
A typical view of Hegel's Phenomenology of Spirit takes the view that it traces the forward march of spirit and that this forward moving education outlines a path of pure progress. My contention is that what most needs to be said about spirit is that it is indeed a slow learner: lessons must be learned over and over again, structures get repeated, the same mistakes are made in different contexts. Repetition, not progress, is the rule of spirit's education. Two questions (...) are addressed in this essay. First, what is it about spirit that makes it such a slow learner of the lessons it must learn? Second, how is it that the crisis of tragedy and its resolution in the form of comedy represent a new stage in the education of spirit, one in which there is some hope of finally learning the lessons it must suffer? (shrink)
This study investigated several issues with 1498 managers nationwide regarding, for example, how ethical they felt their organizations were and whether their personal principles must be compromised for the organization's sake. In addition their decision criteria for two scenarios involving ethical implications were articulated.
De George's account of philosophical and theological approaches to business ethics presupposes a particular view of the logic of argumentation. This paper presents an alternative model for describing arguments that has been suggested by Stephen Toulmin. It uses this model to qualify De George's claim that philosophers are justified in their indifference to the work of theologians in business ethics.Consider what you think justice requires, and decide accordingly. But never give your reasons; for your judgment will probably be right, but (...) your reasons will certainly be wrong. (shrink)
The standard model for mereotopological structures are Boolean subalgebras of the complete Boolean algebra of regular closed subsets of a nonempty connected regular T 0 topological space with an additional "contact relation" C defined by xCy x ØA (possibly) more general class of models is provided by the Region Connection Calculus (RCC) of Randell et al. We show that the basic operations of the relational calculus on a "contact relation" generate at least 25 relations in any model of the RCC, (...) and hence, in any standard model of mereotopology. It follows that the expressiveness of the RCC in relational logic is much greater than the original 8 RCC base relations might suggest. We also interpret these 25 relations in the the standard model of the collection of regular open sets in the two-dimensional Euclidean plane. (shrink)
We prove completeness and decidability results for a family of combinations of propositional dynamic logic and unimodal doxastic logics in which the modalities may interact. The kind of interactions we consider include three forms of commuting axioms, namely, axioms similar to the axiom of perfect recall and the axiom of no learning from temporal logic, and a Church–Rosser axiom. We investigate the influence of the substitution rule on the properties of these logics and propose a new semantics for the test (...) operator to avoid unwanted side effects caused by the interaction of the classic test operator with the extra interaction axioms. (shrink)
In his celebrated "Letter on Humanism," Heidegger spoke of the need for an "original ethics" which did not submit itself to the ideal of something like a "subject" or the "human," two notions that he suggested were no longer serviceable for the task of thinking the problems of ethical life. The purpose of this article is to look at how Gadamer's hermeneutics might offer an avenue for developing this original ethics. To this end, Gadamer's discussion of language, in particular the (...) relation of language and freedom, serves as the guideline for unpacking this claim. (shrink)
Many philosophers hold that it is conceptually impossible to form a belief simply by willing it. Noting the failure of previous attempts to locate the presumed incoherence, Dion Scott-Kakures offers a version of the general line that voluntary believing is conceptually impossible becuse it could not qualify as a basic intentional actions. This discussion analyzes his central argument, explaining how it turns on the assumption that a prospective voluntary believer must regard the desired belief as not justified, given her other (...) beliefs. it then shows that this assumption is alse and also that some initially plausible suggestions for weakening the assumption fail to secure Scott-Kakure's conclusion. (shrink)
: In the early twentieth century, psychoanalysis tries to investigate a specific logic of the appearance and the incident of what is taken to be unintended in everyday communication and human behavior. What before hardly seemed to be worth systematic research, now becomes a privileged field, in which the meaningful signs of a hidden and unwelcome past appear. For representing this new field of research Freud often makes use of archaeological metaphors. But in quoting the knowledge and the techniques of (...) archaeology, he evokes imaginary landscapes of a reappearing human past, which is not depraved and repressed but glorious and precious. This contradiction or gap between the character of analytical objects and their representation gives reason for an 'archaeological' investigation of psychoanalysis itself. To this end one of the heroes of nineteenth century archaeology, Heinrich Schliemann, will be confronted with two little works of Rudolf Virchow, in which he follows up the astonishing idea of an archaeology of refuse. Relating treasure troves and rubbish dumps it can be asked whether 'archaeological' practices in the late nineteenth century constituted a type of historical knowledge which runs counter to contemporary historicism and is crucial not only for Freud but also for today's theoretical reflections on archaeological perspectives in cultural studies. (shrink)
This paper considers a new class of agent dynamic logics which provide a formal means of specifying and reasoning about the agents activities and informational, motivational and practical aspects of the behaviour of the agents. We present a Hilbert-style deductive system for a basic agent dynamic logic and consider a number of extensions of this logic with axiom schemata formalising interactions between knowledge and commitment (expressing an agent s awareness of her commitments), and interactions between knowledge and actions (expressing no (...) learning and persistence of knowledge after actions). The deductive systems are proved sound and complete with respect to a Kripke-style semantics. Each of the considered logics is shown to have the small model property and therefore decidable. (shrink)
The purpose of this article is to begin to renew the theme of nature as a central, even unavoidable, question for philosophizing today. Furthermore, the argument is made that this question is most productively posed as a question concerning ethical life. Texts by Aristotle, Kant and Höderlin are considered. Attention to Heidegger's concerns with technology also serves to guide the issues here.