Mazur & Booth's (1998) target article concerns basal and reciprocal relations between testosterone and dominance, and has its roots in Mazur's (1985; 1994) model of primate dominance-submissiveness interactions. Threats are exchanged in these interactions and a psychological stress-manipulation mechanism is suggested to operate, making sure that face-to-face dominance contests are usually resolved without aggression. In this commentary, a recent line of evidence from human research on the relation between testosterone, cortisol, and vigilant (dominant) and avoidant (submissive) responses to threatening “angry” (...) faces is discussed. Findings, to a certain extent, converge with Mazur & Booth's theorizing. However, the strongest relations have been found in subliminal exposure conditions, suggesting that biological instead of psychological mechanisms are involved. (shrink)
Max Bennett is a distinguished Australian neuroscientist, Peter Hacker an Oxford philosopher and a leading authority on Wittgenstein. A book resulting from their collaboration (M. R. Bennett and P. M. S. Hacker, Philosophical Foundations of Neuroscience, Oxford: Blackwell, 2003) has received high praise. According to the Blackwell website, G. H. von Wright asserts that it â€˜will certainly, for a long time to come, be the most important contribution to the mind-body problem that there isâ€™; and Sir Anthony Kenny says it (...) â€˜shows that the claims made on behalf of cognitive science are ill-founded.â€™ Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â The book builds on Wittgensteinâ€™s remark that â€˜Only of a human being and what resembles (behaves like) a living human being can one say: it has sensations; it sees, is blind; hears, is deaf; is conscious or unconsciousâ€™ (quoted at p. 71). The authors identify what they call the mereological fallacy, the fallacy of attributing to a part of something properties that are correctly attributed only to the whole. Much of the book is a development of the claim that most neuroscientists commit this fallacy by attributing to brains properties and activities that can properly be attributed only to persons. Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â Â I wonâ€™t give a general review of the book, which does make valuable points concerning the importance of using language accurately in discussing mental concepts: helpful and laudatory reviews can be found on the Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews website (by Dennis Patterson) and in Philosophy 79, No. 307 (January 2004) 141-46 (by Daniel N. Robinson). However, I believe that some of its basic propositions are themselves fundamentally mistaken, and suggest that this is a consequence of disregard of opposing considerations, and insufficient recognition of the flexibility of language. I will discuss three basic propositions from the book, which are particularly relevant from the â€˜consciousness studiesâ€™ point of view.. (shrink)
Seeking to unlock the secrets of consciousness, neuroscientists have been studying neural correlates of sensory awareness, such as meaningless randomly moving dots. But in the natural world of species' survival, “raw feelings” mediate conscious adaptive responses. Merker connects the brainstem with vigilance, orientating, and emotional consciousness. However, depending on the brain's phylogenetic level, raw feeling takes particular forms. (Published Online May 1 2007).
Behrendt & Young (B&Y) propose an explanation for schizophrenia in terms of a cortical default in the interaction between consciousness and cognition. However, schizophrenia more likely involves miscommunication between subcortical and cortical affective circuits in the brain, a default in the interaction between consciousness and emotion. The typical “affective” nature of hallucinations in schizophrenia provides compelling evidence for subcortical involvement.
Much of the current discussion of evil within business and professions locates evil within the individual employee. Dennis Moberg (1997) has argued for conceiving of employee viciousness as a lack of self-control. This paper argues, that while some evil behaviorsmay be well-modelled as instances of low self-control, this model does not fit much of what might qualify as evil (e.g., child-caregiversfalsely accusing their fellow employees of ritual child abuse). The paper examines three alternative models of evil, two drawn fromliterature, one (...) from theology, and shows why these alternative models are just as relevant for thinking about the nature and cause of evil as the low self-control model drawn from the criminology literature. (shrink)
This, the twenty-seventh volume in the annual series of publications by the American Society for Political and Legal Philosophy, features a number of distinguised contributors addressing the topic of criminal justice. Part I considers "The Moral and Metaphysical Sources of the Criminal Law," with contributions by Michael S. Moore, Lawrence Rosen, and Martin Shapiro. The four chapters in Part II all relate, more or less directly, to the issue of retribution, with papers by Hugo Adam Bedau, Michael Davis, Jeffrie G. (...) Murphy, and R. B. Brandt. In the following part, Dennis F. Thompson, Christopher D. Stone, and Susan Wolf deal with the special problem of criminal responsibility in government-one of great importance in modern society. The fourth and final part, echoing the topic of NOMOS XXIV, Ethics, Economics, and the Law , addresses the economic theory of crime. The section includes contributions by Alvin K. Klevorick, Richard A. Posner, Jules L. Coleman, and Stephen J. Schulhofer. A valuable bibiography on criminal justice by Andrew C. Blanar concludes this volume of NOMOS. (shrink)
The people and the value of their experience, by N. T. Pratt.--From kingship to democracy, by J. P. Harland.--Democracy at Athens, by G. M. Harper.--Athens and the Delian League, by B. D. Meritt.--Socialism at Sparta, by P. R. Coleman-Norton.--Tyranny, by M. Mac Laren.--Federal unions, by C. A. Robinson.--Alexander and the world state, by O. W. Reinmuth.--The Antigonids, by J. V. A. Fine.--Ptolemaic Egypt: a planned economy, by S. L. Wallace.--The Seleucids: the theory of monarchy, by G. Downey.--The political status of (...) the independent cities of Asia Minor in the Hellenistic period, by D. Magie.--The ideal states of Plato and Aristotle, by W. J. Oates.--Epilogue, by A. C. Johnson.--Bibliography (p. 225-233).--Index, by H. V. M. Dennis, III. (shrink)
I describe how relativistic field theory generalizes the paradigm property of material systems, the possession of mass, to the requirement that they have a mass–energy–momentum density tensor T µ associated with them. I argue that T µ does not represent an intrinsic property of matter. For it will become evident that the definition of T µ depends on the metric field g µ in a variety of ways. Accordingly, since g µ represents the geometry of spacetime itself, the properties of (...) mass, stress, energy, and momentum should not be seen as intrinsic properties of matter, but as relational properties that material systems have only in virtue of their relation to spacetime structure. (shrink)
This narrative review summarizes the empirical literature on children's competence for consent and assent in research and treatment settings. Studies varied widely regarding methodology, particularly in the areas of participant sampling, situational context studied (e.g., psychological versus medical settings), procedures used (e.g., lab-based vs. real-world approaches), and measurement of competence. This review also identified several fundamental dilemmas underlying approaches to children's informed consent. These dilemmas, including autonomy versus best interests approaches, legal versus psychological or ethical approaches, child- versus family-based approaches, (...) and approaches that emphasize consent versus those that emphasize assent, have implications for the measurement of children's competence and interpretation of findings. Recommendations for future research in the area of children's informed consent include the use of diverse samples and control groups, development of multidimensional and standardized measures of competence, utilization of observational methods and longitudinal designs, examination of noncognitive aspects of children's competence, and comparison of children's competence for treatment and research decisions. (shrink)
The existing literature on the relationship between organizational commitment and ethical decision making suggests that ethical decision makers with higher organizational commitment are less likely to engage in ethically questionable behaviors. The ethical behaviors previously studied in an organizational commitment context have been organization-harm issues in which the organization was harmed and the individual benefited (e.g., overstating an expense report). There is another class of ethical issues in an organizational context, however. These other issues, termed organization-gain issues, focus on the (...) organization obtaining a benefit while outsiders, such as investors, are harmed (e.g., overstating reported revenue). We explore whether individuals with higher organizational commitment are more or less likely to engage in questionable behaviors that benefit the organization. Results of our study indicate that individuals with higher organizational commitment are less likely to engage in ethically questionable behaviors, regardless of whether the behaviors are organization-harm or organizational-gain issues. (shrink)
A burgeoning policy shift from neo-liberal economics is underway, with leadership by presidential candidate Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio). His platform positions stem in part from his negative experiences with neo-liberalism when he was Mayor of Cleveland more than 30 years ago. Although his response as Mayor was based on confrontation politics, examples of community-based economies built on collaborative planning, ownership, and management have since become more widely known. We can now show that the successful Grameen Bank and the Mondragon Cooperatives were (...) constructed on principles consistent with Integral Science. (shrink)
If Solomon is correct in labeling businesses as community citizens because they “are part and parcel of the communities in which they live and flourish, and the responsibilities that they bear are ... intrinsic to their very existence as social entities,” then it follows that other community citizens have reciprocal duties toward them that they, as community citizens, have to any other community citizen. One of these duties is not to harm needlessly another community citizen without its permission. One issue (...) affecting business is genetically engineering children to have characteristics, e.g., deafness, which render them disabled in work environments. Since business is a very large part of society, citizen responsibilities toward it in regard to intentionally creating deaf children should be examined. It is my contention that designing disabled offspring is unethical on the grounds that it causes undue injury to businesses without their permission in any form. (shrink)
Using the example of Newton's Opticks, the author develops the concept of 'classic' as applied to landmark works in the history of the sciences. A discussion of themes drawn from H.-G. Gadamer and T. Kuhn is followed by an introduction of the notions of the texture and contexture of scientific works, conceived as the result of an author's weaving together foreground and background concerns. These notions assist in understanding how certain works can exercise a continuing appeal to both specialists and (...) nonspecialists. The essay concludes with reflections on the pedagogical purpose of using classic scientific texts in university education. (shrink)
As predicted by Duverger’s Law, the UK has two-party competition in each electoral district. However, there can be different patterns of two-party competition in different districts (currently there are five), so that there have usually been more than two effective parties in the Commons. Since 1874 it has always contained parties fighting seats in only one of the non-English parts of the Union. These parties wish to change the Union by strengthening, weakening, or dissolving it. By calculating the Penrose power (...) index for all parties in the House of Commons for all General Elections since 1874, we identify the occasions on which a party that wished to modify the Union was pivotal. We explain various acts (e.g, the Crofters Act 1886; the first three Irish Home Rule Bills; the Parliament Act 1911) and non-acts (e.g. the failure to enact female suffrage before 1914) by reference to the Penrose indices of the non-English parties. The indices also explain how and why policy towards Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland changed, and did not change, in the 1970s. (shrink)