New findings point to a role for mesolimbic DA circuits in the generation of dreaming. We disagree with Solms about these structures having an exclusive role in generating dreams. We review data suggesting that dreaming can be interrupted at different levels of processing and that anterior-subcortical lesions associated with dream cessation are unlikely to produce selective hypodopaminergic dynamic impairments. [Hobson et al.; Nielsen; Solms].
" This Volume tries to cover some important parts of the whole spectrum of European Studies. The essay of Fabrizio Sciacca begins with the issue of human rights. Sciacca relates the development of human rights regimes within the European Union to the general question of human rights education, without which human rights must keep abstract legality" (Hauke Brunkhorst, Preface).
Judgment aggregation problems are language dependent in that they may be framed in different yet equivalent ways. We formalize this dependence via the notion of translation invariance, adopted from the philosophy of science, and we argue for the normative desirability of translation invariance. We characterize the class of translation invariant aggregation functions in the canonical judgment aggregation model, which requires collective judgments to be complete. Since there are reasonable translation invariant aggregation functions, our result can be viewed as a possibility (...) theorem. At the same time, we show that translation invariance does have certain normatively undesirable consequences (e.g. failure of anonymity). We present a way of circumventing them by moving to a more general model of judgment aggregation, one that allows for incomplete collective judgments. (shrink)
The force and the deceptive nature of the fallacy of equivocation lies in its dialectical nature. The speaker redefines a word in order to classify a fragment of reality, while the hearer draws a conclusion based on the ordinary meaning of such a classification. This difference between the interlocutors’ meanings is grounded on a crucial epistemic gap: how is it possible to know our hearer’s mind, and his knowledge of the words we used? Building on Hamblin’s account of equivocation, the (...) speaker’s meaning and the manipulative strategies based on redefinitions can be explained as the conclusion of an implicit reasoning based on a presumption of ordinary meaning. (shrink)
Scholarly research largely converges on the argument that trust is of paramount importance to drive economic agents toward mutually satisfactory, fair, and ethically compliant behaviors. There is, however, little agreement on the meaning of trust, whose conceptualizations differ with respect to actors, relationships, behaviors, and contexts. At present, we know much better what trust does than what trust is . In this article, we present an extensive review and analysis of the most prominent articles on trust in market relationships. Using (...) computer-aided content analysis and network analysis methods, we identify key, recurring dimensions that guided the conceptualization of trust in past research, and show how trust can be developed as a multifaceted and layered construct. Our results are an important contribution to a convergence of research toward a shared and common view of the meaning of trust. This process is important to ensure the body of trust research’s internal theoretical consistency, and to provide reliable and common principles for the management of business relationships – a context in which opportunism and imperfect information may induce economic actors to cheat and stray from fair and ethically compliant behaviors. (shrink)
When Ockham's logic arrives in Italy, some Dominican philosophers bring into question Ockham's ontological reductionist program. Among them, Franciscus de Prato and Stephanus de Reate pay a great attention to refute Ockham's claim that no universal exists in the extra-mental world. In order to reject Ockham's program, they start by reconsidering the notion of 'real', then the range of application of the rational and the real distinction. Generally, their strategy consists in re-addressing against Ockham some arguments extracted from Hervaeus Natalis's (...) works. Franciscus's and Stephanus's basic idea is that some universals are not acts of cognition, but extra-mental, predicable things. Such things are not separable from singulars, nonetheless they are not the same as those singulars. Consequently, it is not necessary to allow, as Ockham does, that if two things are not really identical, they are really different and hence really separable. According to them, it is possible to hold that two things are not really identical without holding that they are also really non-identical and hence really different. Basically, their reply relies on a different notion of the relation of identity. Identity is regarded as an intersection of classes of things, so that it is possible to say that two things are really identical without saying that they also are the same thing. Franciscus and Stephanus, however, do not seem to achieve completely their aim. (shrink)
Thomas Aquinas's account of the semantics of names is based on two fundamental distinctions: the distinction between a name's mode of signifying and the signified object, and that between the cause and the goal of a name's signification, i.e. that from which a name was instituted to signify and that which a name actually signifies. Thomas endows names with a two-layer signification: names are introduced into language to designate primarily conceptions of extramental things and secondarily the particular extramental things referred (...) to by such conceptions. On such a `conceptualistic' account of names' signification, Thomas recognizes that a generic acquaintance with external things is a sufficient condition for imposing names to signify things. Following this intuition, Thomas at times dwells on the role that pragmatic factors such as the common usage of names by a linguistic community ( usus loquendi ) and the speakers' intention ( intentio loquentium ) play in explaining both the formation and semantic function of conventional language. This paper will focus on what Thomas had to say about such factors. (shrink)
In this paper we present an analysis of persuasive definition based on argumentation schemes. Using the medieval notion of differentia and the traditional approach to topics, we explain the persuasiveness of emotive terms in persuasive definitions by applying the argumentation schemes for argument from classification and argument from values. Persuasive definitions, we hold, are persuasive because their goal is to modify the emotive meaning denotation of a persuasive term in a way that contains an implicit argument from values. However, our (...) theory is different from Stevenson’s, a positivistic view that sees emotive meaning as subjective, and defines it as a behavioral effect. Our proposal is to treat the persuasiveness produced by the use of emotive words and persuasive definitions as due to implicit arguments that an interlocutor may not be aware of. We use congruence theory to provide the linguistic framework for connecting a term with the function it is supposed to play in a text. Our account allows us to distinguish between conflicts of values and conflicts of classifications. (shrink)
This paper shows how reasoning from best explanation combines with linguistic and factual presumptions during the process of retrieving a speaker’s intention. It is shown how differences between presumptions need to be used to pick the best explanation of a pragmatic manifestation of a dialogical intention. It is shown why we cannot simply jump to an interpretative conclusion based on what we presume to be the most common purpose of a speech act, and why, in cases of indirect speech acts, (...) we need to depend on an abductive process of interpretation. (shrink)
This paper attempts to provide a general reconstruction of Francis of Marchia's doctrine of accidental being. The paper is divided into two parts. (1) In the first part, I begin by reconstructing the debate on the nature of accidents held before Marchia, showing that such a debate is characterised by a progressive shift concerning the way to understand accidents. While the first Aristotelian interpreters regard accidents especially as inhering modes of being of substances, the majority of theologians and philosophers in (...) the second half of the thirteenth century regard accidents as absolute beings. For them, the problem is no longer to explain if and, if so, how accidents can be distinct from substances, but how accidents and substances can make some one thing. Metaphysically, their primary focus is on explaining what the ontological status of inherence is. Although it is especially the consideration of the Eucharistic case that induces this change, I point out that many philosophers and theologians find in Aristotle's texts the philosophical support for taking this step. (2) In the second part, I focus more closely on Marchia's doctrine, arguing that Marchia's position is a slightly revised version of Scotus's. Unlike Aquinas and Bonaventure, Marchia explains Aristotle's metaphysics of accidents by way of the metaphysics of the Eucharist and not vice versa. So, in order to explain the philosophical consistency of this miraculous case, Marchia maintains that one does not need to modify the notion of inherence by distinguishing actual from potential inherence and including the latter in the accident's essence; rather it is necessary to take the case of the Eucharist seriously and, on this basis, to remove inherence totally from an accident's essence. In conclusion, the Eucharist shows that accidents are absolute beings to which actual inherence pertains contingently, potential inherence necessarily. But like Scotus's, Marchia's doctrine faces some difficulties that remain unresolved. (shrink)
In this paper we use a series of examples to show how oppositions and dichotomies are fundamental in legal argumentation, and vitally important to be aware of, because of their twofold nature. On the one hand, they are argument structures underlying various kinds of rational argumentation commonly used in law as a means of getting to the truth in a conflict of opinion under critical discussion by two opposing sides before a tryer of fact. On the other hand, they are (...) argument structures underling moves made in strategic advocacy by both sides that function as platforms for different kinds of questionable argumentation tactics and moves that are in some instances tricky and deceptive. (shrink)
Proceedings of 6th CMNA (Computational Models of Natural Argument)Workshop, ECAI (European Conference on Artificial Intelligence), Rivadel Garda, Italy, August 28 - September 1, Trento, Italy, University of Trento, 2006, 48-51.
This paper investigates the semantics of tense and aspect in Romance languages. Its goal is to develop a compositional, model-theoretic semantics for tense and temporal adverbs which is sensitive to aspectual distinctions. I will consider durative adverbial distributions and aspectual contrasts across different morphological tense forms. I will examine tense selection under habitual meanings, generic meanings and state of result constructions. In order to account for these facts I will argue that temporal homogeneity plays a fundamental role in tense selection (...) in Romance languages. (shrink)
In this paper a theoretical definition that helps to explain how the logical structure of legal presumptions is constructed by applying the Carneades model of argumentation developed in artificial intelligence. Using this model, it is shown how presumptions work as devices used in evidentiary reasoning in law in the event of a lack of evidence to assist a chain of reasoning to move forward to prove or disprove a claim. It is shown how presumptions work as practical devices that may (...) be useful in cases in which there is insufficient evidence to prove the claim to an appropriate standard of proof. (shrink)
The relationship between teaching and argumentation is becoming a crucial issue in the field of education and, in particular, science education. Teaching has been analyzed as a dialogue aimed at persuading the interlocutors, introducing a conceptual change that needs to be grounded on the audience’s background knowledge. This paper addresses this issue from a perspective of argumentation studies. Our claim is that argumentation schemes, namely abstract patterns of argument, can be an instrument for reconstructing the tacit premises in students’ argumentative (...) reasoning and retrieving the background beliefs that are the basis of their arguments. On this perspective, the process of premise reconstruction is followed by a heuristic reasoning process aimed at discovering the students’ previous intuitions that can explain the premises and concepts that are left unexpressed in their arguments. The theoretical insights advanced in this paper are illustrated through selected examples taken from activities concerning predictive claims on scientific issues. (shrink)
We describe in detail the first experimental test that distinguishes between an event-based corpuscular model of the interaction of photons with matter and quantum mechanics. The test looks at the interference that results as a single photon passes through a Mach-Zehnder interferometer. The experimental results, obtained with a low-noise single-photon source, agree with the predictions of standard quantum mechanics.
This paper takes distances from two influential images of Wittgenstein's philosophy: the image of a primarily ethical philosopher defended by the so-called «resolute» interpreters and that of an ascetically "analytical" philosopher transmitted by the standard interpretation. Instead of contrasting images (that of Wittgenstein as an "aesthetic" philosopher and that of the "ethical" Wittgenstein), this paper focuses on the analysis of the fractures and tensions characterizing not only the relationship between Wittgenstein's philosophy and aesthetics, but also the very style of Wittgenstein's (...) thought. Addressing a specific issue from a conceptual and textual standpoint (the unity of Ethics and Aesthetics in the Tractatus) seems to the author to be a fruitful strategy that allows us not only to understand whether and how determinant and central the aesthetic problem is for Wittgenstein, but also to see how aesthetics itself can be radically reshaped through the filter offered by his thought. In the first place, then, it is clarified what the Tractatus claim that ethics and aesthetics «sind eins» might entail. Secondly, it is checked if and how the conceptual consistency of the «being one» of ethics and aesthetics is transformed during the 1930s, to the point that it requires a different configuration: the metamor¬phosis of the logical unity between the two conceptual fields into an analogical affinity. Analyzing this conceptual metamorphosis the paper considers also the idea of an asymmetry of the aesthetic over the ethical as already evident, despite appearances, in the 1929 Lecture on Ethics. This asymmetry is then developed focusing the image of grammatical mechanism with its degrees of freedom of which Wittgensteins writes from 1930. In connection with this image the author outlines finally the idea of an aesthetic mechanism arising from primitive reactions and strictly related with the genesis of language games. (shrink)
The term “globalization” was popularized by Marshall McLuhan in War and Peace in the Global Village. In the book, McLuhan described how the global media shaped current events surrounding the Vietnam War  and also predicted how modern information and communication technologies would accelerate world progress through trade and knowledge development. Globalization now refers to a broad range of issues regarding the movement of goods and services through trade liberalization, and the movement of people through migration. Much has also been (...) written on the global effects of environmental degradation, population growth, and economic disparities. In addition, the pace of scientific development has accelerated, with both negative and positive implications for global health. Concerns for national health transcend borders, with a need for shared human security and an enhanced role for international cooperation and development . These issues have significant bioethical implications, and thus a renewed academic focus on the ethical dimensions of public health is needed. Future developments in science and health policy also require a firm grounding in bioethical principles. These core principles include beneficence; nonmaleficence (to do no harm); respect for persons and human dignity (autonomy); and attention to equity and social justice. According to the World Health Organization , global ethical approaches should (1) monitor and update ethical norms for research, as necessary; (2) anticipate ethical implications of advances in science and technology for health; (3) apply internationally accepted codes of ethics; (4) ensure that agreed standards guide future work on the human genome; and (5) ensure that quality in health systems and services is assessed and promoted. (shrink)
List and Pettit's Group Agency is an extremely important book, spearheading a new wave of work on the metaphysics, epistemology and ethics of group agents. In this article, I focus on the epistemological thread in their discussion. After introducing the apparatus they use in analyzing the epistemic performance of groups, I criticize some elements and point to some ways in which the very same apparatus could be redirected to address them.
Why are personal attacks so powerful? In political debates, speeches, discussions and campaigns, negative character judgments, aggressive charges and charged epithets are used for different purposes. They can block the dialogue, trigger value judgments and influence decisions; they can force the interlocutor to withdraw a viewpoint or undermine his arguments. Personal attacks are not only multifaceted dialogical moves, but also complex argumentative strategies. They can be considered as premises for further arguments based on signs, generalizations or consequences. They involve tactics (...) for arousing emotions such as fear, hate or contempt, or for ridiculing the interlocutor. The twofold level of investigation presented in this paper is aimed at distinguishing the different roles that ad hominem have in a dialogue and bringing to light their hidden dimensions. The reasoning structure of each type of attack will be distinguished from the tactics used to increase its effectiveness and conceal its weaknesses. (shrink)
When we use a word, we face a crucial epistemic gap: we ground our move on the fact that our interlocutor knows the meaning of the word we used, and therefore he can interpret our dialogical intention. However, how is it possible to know the other’s mind? Hamblin explained this dialogical problem advancing the idea of dialectical meaning: on his view, the use of a word is based on a set of presumptions. Building on this approach, the use of a (...) word in a dialogue can be analyzed in terms of presumptive reasoning, while the manipulative strategies based on slanted or loaded terms or redefinitions can be conceived as forms of conflicts of presumptions. A presumptive approach to meaning can also ground different dialectical strategies to solve misunderstanding or definitional disagreements, or tactics to undermine the interlocutor’s arguments by advancing charges of equivocation. (shrink)
Drawing on the work of Rorty and Putnam, I will present an argument for the desirability of an anti-foundationalist approach to cultural difference and intercultural dialogue that gives priority to the ethical and the political over the ontological and the epistemological. It will be formulated in terms of the normative requirements for the fullest realization of the liberal democratic project at all levels of social organisation, from the local to the global. Drawing from both the deliberative turn in democratic theory (...) and the capability approach to human development, I will argue that the normative core of liberal democracy should be identified in the commitment to self-reflexive, open-ended, un-distorted and all-inclusive practice of collective deliberation and decision-making. (shrink)
The Pietro Piovani Foundation for Vico Studies has launched a new series of the Collectio Viciana “Texts” with the anastatic reprint of the 1730 New Science. A discussion of the Foundation’s choice to reproduce the work and of many features of the text of the Second New Science is offered to accompany the publication of the text.
Presupposition has been described in the literature as closely related to the listener’s knowledge and the speaker’s beliefs regarding the other’s mind. However, how is it possible to know or believe our interlocutor’s knowledge? The purpose of this paper is to find an answer to this question by showing the relationship between reasoning, presumption and language. Presupposition is analyzed as twofold reasoning process: on the one hand, the speaker by presupposing a proposition presumes that his interlocutor knows it; on the (...) other hand, the listener reconstructs the propositions taken for granted and assesses them against the shared presumptions. The possibility of reconstructing a presupposition is distinguished from its assessment, where the consistency of the presupposition with the shared or common ground is evaluated, and its reasonableness established. The analysis of presuppositions from an argumentative perspective provides an instrument for evaluating the reasonableness of a presupposition and understanding its dialogical effect. On this view, the dialogical force of a presupposition lies in its presumptive nature, which sets and shifts the burden of proving its unacceptability or unreasonableness. (shrink)