In this memorial essay on Sir Frank Kermode (1919–2010), the author focuses on his own exchange of views with Kermode during the 1970s. In Kermode's book The Sense of an Ending (1966), he had criticized Frank's essay “Spatial Form in Modern Literature” (1945) as part of a larger critique of what the Romantic-Symbolist tradition of English poetry had become in the twentieth century. Yeats, Pound, Eliot, and other late Symbolists had turned artists into advocates of an irrational wisdom (...) superior to reason and common sense, thus isolating—so Kermode argued—the world of art from that of ordinary human concerns. Rejecting their view of art, he turned instead to a pre-Romantic tradition (including Spenser and Milton) that the Symbolists had rejected. Among modern writers, Kermode turned to Wallace Stevens, who became his foil for Yeats, Eliot, and Pound, as well as the most important influence on his own later thinking. Joseph Frank, in this essay, recalls the combination of acerbic intelligence, social concern, gentility, and finally friendship that characterized his debate over these questions with Kermode. Frank recalls as an indication of his respect and admiration for Kermode that he wrote, in 1977, that, even if his own theory of spatial form were to be shown worthless, it would still have value in having provided some of the stimulus for Kermode to write The Sense of an Ending. (shrink)
Structural equation modelling (SEM) is outlined and compared with two non-linear alternatives, artificial neural networks and ''fast and frugal'' models. One particular non-linear decision-making situation is discussed, that exemplified by a lexicographic semi-order. We illustrate the use of SEM on a dataset derived from 539 volunteers' responses to questions about food-related risks. Our conclusion is that SEM is a useful member of the armoury of techniques available to the student of human judgement: it subsumes several multivariate statistical techniques and permits (...) their flexible combination, and it provides robust goodness-of-fit statistics and is available in (generally) easy-to-use computer packages. Although the number of tasks for which SEM provides a persuasive psychological model is small, it is very useful in identifying the important variables and their inter-relations that contribute to task performance, and thus can constitute a valuable intermediate staging point between raw data and a fully fledged psychological theory. (shrink)
In At the Will of the Body , Arthur Frank told the story of his own illnesses, heart attack and cancer. That book ended by describing the existence of a "remission society," whose members all live with some form of illness or disability. The Wounded Storyteller is their collective portrait. Ill people are more than victims of disease or patients of medicine they are wounded storytellers. People tell stories to make sense of their suffering when they turn their diseases (...) into stories, they find healing. Drawing on the work of authors such as Oliver Sacks, Anatole Broyard, Norman Cousins, and Audre Lorde, as well as from people he met during the years he spent among different illness groups, Frank recounts a stirring collection of illness stories, ranging from the well-known--Gilda Radner's battle with ovarian cancer--to the private testimonials of people with cancer, chronic fatigue syndrome, and disabilties. Their stories are more than accounts of personal suffering: they abound with moral choices and point to a social ethic. Frank identifies three basic narratives of illness in restitution, chaos, and quest. Restitution narratives anticipate getting well again and give prominence to the technology of cure. In chaos narratives, illness seems to stretch on forever, with no respite or redeeming insights. Quest narratives are about finding that insight as illness is transformed into a means for the ill person to become someone new. (shrink)
The metaphysical importance of the compatibility question: comments on Mark Balaguer’s Free Will as an Open Scientific Problem Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-12 DOI 10.1007/s11098-012-9897-4 Authors Michael McKenna, University of Arizona, Tucson, AZ, USA Journal Philosophical Studies Online ISSN 1573-0883 Print ISSN 0031-8116.
Contemporary health care often lacks generosity of spirit, even when treatment is most efficient. Too many patients are left unhappy with how they are treated, and too many medical professionals feel estranged from the calling that drew them to medicine. Arthur W. Frank tells the stories of ill people, doctors, and nurses who are restoring generosity to medicine--generosity toward others and to themselves. The Renewal of Generosity evokes medicine as the face-to-face encounter that comes before and after diagnostics, pharmaceuticals, (...) and surgeries. Frank calls upon the Roman emperor Marcus Aurelius, philosopher Emmanuel Levinas, and literary critic Mikhail Bakhtin to reflect on stories of ill people, doctors, and nurses who transform demoralized medicine into caring relationships. He presents their stories as a source of consolation for both ill and professional alike and as an impetus to changing medical systems. Frank shows how generosity is being renewed through dialogue that is more than the exchange of information. Dialogue is an ethic and an ideal for people on both sides of the medical encounter who want to offer more to those they meet and who want their own lives enriched in the process. The Renewal of Generosity views illness and medical work with grace and compassion, making an invaluable contribution to expanding our vision of suffering and healing. (shrink)
This essay begins where Alasdair MacIntyre's After Virtue begins: facing a moral world in ruin. MacIntyre argues that this predicament leaves us with a choice: we can follow the path of Friedrich Nietzsche, accepting this moral destruction and attempting to create lives in a rootless, uncertain world, or the path of Aristotle, working to reclaim a world in which close-knit communities sustain human practices that make it possible for us to flourish. Jeff Frank rejects MacIntyre's framework and in this (...) essay attempts to create an alternative path, one of moral repair. Through a close reading of several poems from Robert Frost's North of Boston, Frank develops the notion of moral repair and describes its ethical and educational implications. (shrink)
Feminism and Farming: A Response to Paul Thompson’s the Agrarian Vision Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-6 DOI 10.1007/s10806-011-9328-0 Authors Erin McKenna, Department of Philosophy, Pacific Lutheran University, Tacoma, WA, USA Journal Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics Online ISSN 1573-322X Print ISSN 1187-7863.
The effect of prism adaptation on movement is typically reduced when the movement at test (prisms off) differs on some dimension from the movement at training (prisms on). Some adaptation is latent, however, and only revealed through further testing in which the movement at training is fully reinstated. Applying a nonlinear attractor dynamic model (Frank, Blau, & Turvey, 2009) to available data (Blau, Stephen, Carello, & Turvey, 2009), we provide evidence for a causal link between the latent (or secondary) (...) aftereffect and an additive force term that is known to account for symmetry breaking. The evidence is discussed in respect to the hypothesis that recalibration aftereffects reflect memory principles (encoding specificity, transfer-appropriate processing) oriented to time-translation invariance—when later testing conserves the conditions of earlier training. Forgetting or reduced adaptation effects follow from the loss of this invariance and are reversed by its reinstatement. (shrink)
Introduction, by G. Holton.--Three eighteenth-century social philosophers: scientific influences on their thought, by H. Guerlac.--Science and the human comedy: Voltaire, by H. Brown.--The seventeenth-century legacy: our mirror of being, by G. de Santillana.--Contemporary science and the contemporary world view, by P. Frank.--The growth of science and the structure of culture, by R. Oppenheimer.--The Freudian conception of man and the continuity of nature, by J. S. Bruner.--Quo vadis, by P. W. Bridgman.--Prospects for a new synthesis: science and the humanities as (...) complementary activities, by C. Morris.--A humanist looks at science, by H. M. Jones. (shrink)
The following letters were written by the distinguished British chemist Professor Brian G. Gowenlock in response to Tibor Frank’s article on “Networking, Cohorting, Bonding: Michael Polanyi in Exile,” Tradition and Discovery 23:2 (2001-2002): 5-19. The two letters contribute to the history of the Manchester years of Michael Polanyi with interesting details concerning several of his colleagues and contemporaries. These informative comments by a former student of Michael Polanyi will improve our knowledge of the last years of Polanyi as a (...) physical chemist. (shrink)
Sympathy and other moral emotions described by David Hume (1740/1978) and Adam Smith (1759/1966) motivate people to incur a host of costs they could easily avoid. Such emotions pose a challenge to evolutionary biologists, who have long stressed the primacy of narrow self-interest in Darwinian selection. In earlier work, I argued (Frank, 1987, 1988) that natural selection might have favored moral sentiments because of their capacity to facilitate solutions to one-shot social dilemmas. Here, I present a capsule summary of (...) the basic argument. (shrink)
This paper and its subsequent parts (Part II and Part III) build on an earlier publication (McKenna 1986). They suggest that important clinical data on the relationship between infantile constitutional deficits and microenvironmental factors relevant to SIDS can be acquired by examining the physiological regulatory effects (well documented among nonhuman primates) that parents assert on their infants when they sleep together.I attempt to show why access to parental sensory cues (movement, touch, smell, sound) that induce arousals in infants while (...) they sleep could possibly help one of many different subclasses of infants either to override certain kinds of sleep-induced breathing control errors suspected to be involved in SIDS or to avoid them altogether. I do not suggest that solitary nocturnal sleep “causes” SIDS, that all parents should sleep with their infants, or that traditional SIDS research strategies should be abandoned. However, using evolutionary data, I do suggest that an adaptive fit exists between parent-infant sleep contact and the natural physiological vulnerabilities of the neurologically immature human infant, whose breathing system is more complex than that of other mammals owing to its speech-breathing abilities. This “fit” is best understood, it is argued, in terms of the 4–5 million years of human evolution in which parent-infant contact was almost certainly continuous during at least the first year of an infant’s life. Thus, to dismiss the idea that solitary sleep has no physiological consequences for infants does not accord with scientific facts. (shrink)
A thoroughly revised edition of the much-sought-after early work by Terence and Dennis McKenna that looks at shamanism, altered states of consciousness, and the organic unity of the King Wen sequence of the I Ching.
The Niemi-Frank definition of sophisticated voting can now be evaluated on two grounds. First, we can compare our definition to Farquharson's. For the most part, the two definitions yield identical outcomes. Both pickCondorcet winners a very high proportion of the time and prevent the selection of Condorcet losers. The major differences are in the logic underlying the two definitions and in the rate of determinacy of outcomes. Here there is a tradeoff. The logic underlying the Farquharson model is especially (...) persuasive, although it is our feeling that the Niemi-Frank definition comes closer to mirroring the way in which voters might actually analyze a plurality situation. In any case, the price paid by the Farquharson definition for its ironclad logic is a much higher rate of indeterminacy. In over half of the cases, the Farquharson logic fails to lead to any conclusion whatsoever. The Niemi-Frank definition yields many more determinate situations, with mostly Condorcet winners and with strategies that make good, if not completely unassailable sense.A second way of evaluating the Niemi-Frank definition is in comparison with sincere voting. A commonly-cited shortcoming of plurality voting is that often fails to choose a Condorcet winner. As we notedearlier, sophisticated plurality voting, unlike binary voting, is imperfect in this respect. Nonetheless, even taking account of the indeterminacy thatremains in the Niemi-Frank definition, sophisticated voting picked a Condorcet winner about 10 percent more frequently than did sincere voting as well as eliminating the possibility of a Condorcet loser being chosen. By this measure, the Niemi-Frank definition is not only acceptable but suggests that this form of strategic behavior actually leads tobetter outcomes.By proposing and now by testing a new definition of sophisticated voting under plurality rule, we have begun to make some headway on understanding strategic behavior and its effects in an outwardly simple yet deceptively complex voting system. We are, of course, far from finished. Most significantly, our definition applies to only three alternatives, and Farquharson's (even if one is willing to live with its high indeterminacy) becomes extraordinarily cumbersome with more than three alternatives? In any event, the results of this foray into sophisticated nonbinary voting suggests once again that strategic behavior, rather than making things worse, improves the chances that the outcome will be the one most favored by the majority criterion. (shrink)
P.F. Strawson defends compatibilism by appeal to our natural commitment to the interpersonal community and the reactive attitudes. While Strawson''s compatibilist project has much to recommend it, his account of moral agency appears incomplete. Gary Watson has attempted to fortify Strawson''s theory by appeal to the notion of moral address. Watson then proceeds to argue, however, that Strawson''s theory of moral responsibility (so fortified) would commit Strawson to treating extreme evil as its own excuse. Watson also argues that the reactive (...) attitudes do not lend unequivocal support to Strawsonian compatibilism and that the reactive attitudes are sometimes sensitive to considerations which suggest an incompatibilist or skeptical diagnosis. Watson attempts to provide a Strawsonian defense against these difficulties, but he ultimately concludes that the skeptical threats raised against Strawsonian compatibilism cannot be sufficiently silenced. I believe that Watson has done Strawsonian compatibilism a great service by drawing upon the notion of moral address. In this paper I attempt to defend the Strawsonian compatibilist position, as Watson has cast it, against the problems raised by Watson. I argue against Watson that Strawson''s theory of responsibility, as well as the notion of moral address, does not commit the Strawsonian to treating extreme evil as its own excuse. I also argue that Watson misinterprets the point of certain reactive attitudes and thereby wrongly assumes that these attitudes are evidence against Strawsonian compatibilism. (shrink)
For each $n > 0$ , two alternative axiomatizations of the theory of strings over n alphabetic characters are presented. One class of axiomatizations derives from Tarski's system of the Wahrheitsbegriff and uses the n characters and concatenation as primitives. The other class involves using n character-prefixing operators as primitives and derives from Hermes' Semiotik. All underlying logics are second order. It is shown that, for each n, the two theories are synonymous in the sense of deBouvere. It is further (...) shown that each member of one class is synonymous with each member of the other class; thus that all of the theories are synonymous with each other and with Peano arithmetic. Categoricity of Peano arithmetic then implies categoricity of each of the above theories. (shrink)
In “Control, Responsibility, and Moral Assessment” Angela Smith defends her nonvoluntarist theory of moral responsibility against the charge that any such view is shallow because it cannot capture the depth of judgments of responsibility. Only voluntarist positions can do this since only voluntarist positions allow for control. I argue that Smith is able to deflect the voluntarists’ criticism, but only with further resources. As a voluntarist, I also concede that Smith’s thesis has force, and I close with a compromise position, (...) one that allows for direct moral responsibility for the nonvoluntary, but also incorporates a reasonable control condition. (shrink)
The article presents the nature of shared intentions and collective responsibility in simultaneous discussion of individualism, which views that collective agents and shared intentions are to be analyzed in relation between individual agents who are members of the collectives. It discusses as well the agent meaning theory that states that an agent moves against the interpretive background of action evaluation shared by the agent and the moral community.
Quality of work life affects the quality of life. By applying amoral paradigms in decision making managers of business enterprises can cause a poor quality work life and reduce the quality of life. The explanation and prediction of ethical/unethical business behaviour should not always be attributed to individual managers, as it may result from strong culture and decision making systems. It is argued that the causes and the solutions to ethical dilemmas can often be found in a theory based on (...) integration of models of moral reasoning, decision schema, value congruence and corporate decision structures. The impact of exclusion of moral principles from the decision making process is illustrated by way of a case study. (shrink)
This paper presents the findings of a study of purchasing and supply management professionals in India conducted to identify the key ethical issues they face in carrying out their work related responsibilities as well as to determine the extent to which various factors appear to be helpful or to present challenges to their efforts to act ethically in the course of their work. The Indian findings are then compared to those for studies conducted among purchasing and supply management professionals in (...) the United States, United Kingdom and Canada. Key findings for the four studies are summarized and implications for business and the professions are presented. (shrink)
We trace the genealogy of wisdom to show that its status in epistemological and management discourse has gradually declined since the Scientific Revolution. As the status of wisdom has declined, so the status of rational science has grown. We argue that the effects on the practice of management of the decline of wisdom may impede management practice by clouding judgment, degrading decision making and compromising ethical standards. We show that wisdom combines transcendent intellection and rational process with ethics to provide (...) a balanced and integrated way of knowing, deciding and acting for managers in a complex and uncertain business environment. Finally, we discuss the role and value of wisdom across a range of business functions including knowledge management, strategic management, leadership and international business. (shrink)
. This paper presents the findings of two surveys conducted in April 2003 of Chartered Life Underwriters (CLUs) and Chartered Financial Consultants (ChFCs) who are members of the Society of Financial Service Professionals. The first survey of 3000 CLUs and ChFCs – the life insurance industry’s most highly regarded professionals – was aimed at identifying the key ethical issues faced by professionals working in the life insurance industry today. A comparison of these findings with those of earlier studies conducted in (...) 1990 and 1995 suggests that while the key ethical issues facing those working in the life insurance business today are essentially the same as those encountered during industry’s highly troubled ethical environment of the early 1990s, these issues are perceived as presenting somewhat less serious problems than in the past. The second survey of 3000 CLUs and ChFCs was aimed at determining the extent to which these professionals perceive the industry created Insurance Marketplace Standards Association (IMSA) as having contributed to any change in the ethical environment that has taken place. The findings suggest that IMSA has played an important role in influencing senior managers to more strongly encourage and support ethical market conduct, a critical step in improving the industry’s ethical environment. (shrink)
Based on the findings of several research studies of professionals in both the property-liability insurance industry and the life insurance industry, the paper makes and supports several important points. First, ethical challenges in the insurance industry involve not only a series of ethical dilemmas frequently faced by those working in the business, but also a variety of factors that hinder those working in the industry as they seek to resolve the ethical dilemmas encountered in the course of their work. Both (...) of these two components of ethical challenges must be understood by those in the financial services industry who will deal with insurance operations in the future. Second, whereas the life insurance business and the property-liability insurance business have traditionally been viewed as being quite different from one another and still are in terms of operations and regulation, the research findings show that they are no longer very different in terms of the key ethical challenges faced by those working in the two segments of the industry. The paper shows how during the past decade the ethical challenges in the property-liability insurance industry have become quite similar to those in the more troubled life insurance industry. (shrink)
The issue of boundaries in clinician–patientencounters is considered through narrativeanalysis of four clinical stories in whichboundaries crossings are a self-conscioustopic. One story is by a physician as patient,two are by physicians, and one is by apalliative care nurse. The stories arediscussed using Walter Benjamin''s distinctionbetween the painter, who maintains distance andsees the whole, and the cameraman, who usestechnology to penetrate realities and thenreassembles fragments. The essay argues thatdistance and closeness are ethical issues thatconstitute the possibility of clinicalencounters but the encounter (...) also changes theclinician''s sense of boundaries. The relevantethics of boundary decisions in most clinicalencounters are not procedural ethics but anethics of self-creation: in orienting toboundaries as doctors do, they createthemselves in their relations to others. (shrink)
In recent decades, the individual has become more and more central in both national and world cultural accounts of the operation of society. This continues a long historical process, intensified by the consolidation of a more global polity and the weakening of the primordial sovereignty of the national state. Increasingly, society is culturally rooted in the natural, historical, and spiritual worlds through the individual, rather than through corporate entities or groups. The shift has produced a proliferation and specification of individual (...) roles, accounting for what individuals do in society. It has also produced an expansion in recognized individual personhood, accounting for who individuals are in the extrasocial cosmos and fueling elaborated personal tastes and preferences. Where it has been contested, the shift to the individual has also produced a rise in specializing identities (e.g., in such domains as ethnicity or gender). These offer accounts of individuals' distinctive linkages to the cosmos, and they serve to bolster individual claims to standard roles and personhood. Over time, specializing identities tend to get absorbed into roles and personhood. And in turn, expanded roles and personhood provide further bases for specializing identity claims. Because many theorists mischaracterize the relationship of specializing identities to roles and personhood, the literature often overemphasizes the anomic character of the identity explosion and the closeness of the coupling between social roles and identity claims. On the contrary, specializing identities tend to be edited to remain within general rules of individual personhood and to be disconnected from the obligations involved in institutionalized roles. (shrink)
: If we had set out to make philosophy as irrelevant to the world as possible, and to make the APA as useless to its members or to the purpose of making philosophy influential, I do not think we could have done a better job. The philosophers working on this in the early 1900s could not seem to effectively sort out the purposes and organization of the APA, and I argue we are not much better at it today. We do (...) not have a strong national office and this leaves us less supported and more vulnerable than our counterparts in religion, literature, languages, the social and natural sciences. With the importance of the liberal arts not fully understood by the general public, philosophy stands out as one of the more vulnerable disciplines—again in large part a result of our own attitude and actions. If we don't publicly value teaching, and if our research is considered best when it can be least understood or applied, why are we surprised that many people wonder if there is still a need to teach philosophy. (shrink)
Recently there have been a number of attempts to show that free will is not a necessary condition for moral responsibility. It is argued that moral responsibility can be shown to be compatible with determinism even if free will is not. I assess the two most prominent arguments for this position and conclude that neither is sound. There is, however, an argument which does make a prima facie case for this new form of compatibilism. This argument, however, is not decisive. (...) I maintain that what can be learned from the argument’s short-comings is that the free will problem can only be resolved by appeal to moral theory. We need some method by which competing intuitions about the matter can be adjudicated. (shrink)