In Embodied Minds in Action, Robert Hanna and Michelle Maiese work out a unified treatment of three fundamental philosophical problems: the mind-body problem, the problem of mental causation, and the problem of action. This unified treatment rests on two basic claims. The first is that conscious, intentional minds like ours are essentially embodied. This entails that our minds are necessarily spread throughout our living, organismic bodies and belong to their complete neurobiological constitution. So minds like ours are necessarily alive. (...) The second claim is that essentially embodied minds are self-organizing thermodynamic systems. This entails that our mental lives consist in the possibility and actuality of moving our own living organismic bodies through space and time, by means of our conscious desires. The upshot is that we are essentially minded animals who help to create the natural world through our own agency. This doctrine--the Essential Embodiment Theory--is a truly radical idea which subverts the traditionally opposed and seemingly exhaustive categories of Dualism and Materialism, and offers a new paradigm for contemporary mainstream research in the philosophy of mind and cognitive neuroscience. (shrink)
cognitive psychology; given the connection between rationality and logic that Hanna claims, it follows that the nature of logic is significantly revealed to us by cognitive psychology. Hanna's proposed "logical cognitivism" has two important consequences: the recognition by logically oriented philosophers that psychologists are their colleagues in the metadiscipline of cognitive science; and radical changes in cognitive science itself. Cognitive science, Hanna argues, is not at bottom a natural science; it is both an objective or truth-oriented science (...) and a normative human science, as is logic itself. (shrink)
Robert Hanna argues for the importance of Kant's theories of the epistemological, metaphysical, and practical foundations of the "exact sciences"--relegated to the dustbin of the history of philosophy for most of the 20th century. In doing so he makes a valuable contribution to one of the most active and fruitful areas in contemporary scholarship on Kant.
Robert Hanna presents a fresh view of the Kantian and analytic traditions that have dominated continental European and Anglo-American philosophy over the last two centuries, and of the connections between them. But this is not just a study in the history of philosophy, for out of this emerges Hanna's original approach to two much-contested theories that remain at the heart of contemporary philosophy. Hanna puts forward a new 'cognitive-semantic' interpretation of transcendental idealism, and a vigorous defense of (...) Kant's theory of analytic and synthetic necessary truth, making this compelling reading for all who are interested in these fundamental philosophical issues. (shrink)
Robert Hanna and Evan Thompson offer a solution to the Mind-Body-Body Problem. The solution, in a nutshell, is that the living and lived body (Leib) is metaphysically and conceptually basic, in the sense that one’s consciousness, on the one hand, and one’s corporeal being (Körper), on the other, are nothing but dual aspects of one’s lived body. One’s living and lived body can be equated with one’s being as an animal; therefore, this solution to the Mind-Body-Body Problem amounts to (...) an “animalist” version of the dual aspect theory. (shrink)
There are perceptual states whose representational content cannot even in principle be conceptual. If that claim is true, then at least some perceptual states have content whose semantic structure and psychological function are essentially distinct from the structure and function of conceptual content. Furthermore the intrinsically “orientable” spatial character of essentially non-conceptual content entails not only that all perceptual states contain non-conceptual content in this essentially distinct sense, but also that consciousness goes all the way down into so-called unconscious or (...) subpersonal mental states. Both my argument for the existence of essentially non-conceptual content and my theory of its structure and function have a Kantian provenance. (shrink)
? We gratefully acknowledge the Center for Consciousness Studies at the University of Arizona, Tucson, which provided a grant for the support of this work. E.T. is also supported by the Social Sciences and Humanities Research Council of Canada, and the McDonnell Project in Philosophy and the Neurosciences. 1 See David Woodruff Smith,.
Alfred North Whitehead (1861–1947) quotably wrote in 1929 that “the safest general characterization of the European philosophical tradition is that it consists of a series of footnotes to Plato.”1 The same could be said, perhaps with even greater accuracy, of the twentieth-century Euro-American philosophical tradition and Immanuel Kant (1724–1804).2 In this sense the twentieth century was the post-Kantian century. Twentieth-century philosophy in Europe and the USA was dominated by two distinctive and (after 1945) officially opposed traditions: the analytic tradition and (...) the phenomenological tradition. Very simply put, the analytic tradition was all about logic and analyticity,3 and the phenomenological tradition was all about consciousness and intentionality.4 (See also “The birth of analytic philosophy,” Chapter 1; “The development of analytic philosophy: Wittgenstein and after,” Chapter 2; “American philosophy in the twentieth century,” Chapter 5; and “Phenomenology,” Chapter 15.) Ironically enough however, despite their official Great Divide, both the analytic and the phenomenological traditions were essentially continuous and parallel critical developments from an earlier dominant neo-Kantian tradition. This, by the end of the nineteenth century had vigorously reasserted the claims of Kant’s transcendental idealism against Hegel’s absolute idealism and the other major systems of post-Kantian German Idealism, under the unifying slogan “Back to Kant!” So again ironically enough, both the analytic and phenomenological traditions were alike founded on, and natural outgrowths from, Kant’s Critical Philosophy. By the end of the twentieth century however, and this time sadly rather than ironically, both the analytic and phenomenological traditions had not only explicitly rejected their own Kantian foundations and roots but also had effectively undermined themselves philosophically, even if by no means institutionally.. (shrink)
Recently, Michael Huemer has defended the Principle of Phenomenal Conservatism: If it seems to S that p, then, in the absence of defeaters, S thereby has at least some degree of justification for believing that p. This principle has potentially far-reaching implications. Huemer uses it to argue against skepticism and to defend a version of ethical intuitionism. I employ a reductio to show that PC is false. If PC is true, beliefs can yield justification for believing their contents in cases (...) where, intuitively, they should not be able to do so. I argue that there are cases where a belief that p can behave like an appearance that p and thereby make it seem to one that p. (shrink)
Moral luck occurs when someone’s moral standing is affected by factors beyond her control, i.e. “luck.” Many philosophers reject moral luck, but I don’t. I think there’s lots of it. Here, I defend a particular kind of it: circumstantial luck. Circumstantial luck is luck in one’s circumstances that affects one’s moral standing, say luck involving the choices and opportunities one has. I’ll criticize the standard argument against circumstantial luck. The argument claims that counterfactuals about what one would do in different (...) circumstances affect one’s moral standing just as much as what one actually does. (shrink)
I criticize an increasingly popular set of arguments for the justifiability of punishment. Some philosophers try to justify punishment by appealing to what Peter Strawson calls the reactive attitudes – emotions like resentment, indignation, remorse and guilt. These arguments fail. The view that these emotions commit us to punishment rests on unsophisticated views of punishment and of these emotions and their associated behaviors. I offer more sophisticated accounts of punishment, of these emotions and of their associated behaviors that are consistent (...) with Abolitionism, the view that punishment is unjustified. (shrink)
I argue that contemporary liberal theory cannot give a general justification for the institution or practice of punishment, i.e., a justification that would hold across a broad range of reasonably realistic conditions. I examine the general justifications offered by three prominent contemporary liberal theorists and show how their justifications fail in light of the possibility of an alternative to punishment. I argue that, because of their common commitments regarding the nature of justification, these theorists have decisive reasons to reject punishment (...) in favor of a non-punitive alternative. I demonstrate the possibility of this alternative by means of a careful examination of the nature of punishment, isolating one essential characteristic—the aim to impose suffering—and showing how this characteristic need not guide enforcement. There is logical space for a forceful and coercive, yet non-punitive method of enforcement. This fact poses difficulties for many classical and contemporary justifications of punishment, but it poses particularly crippling problems for general liberal justifications. (shrink)
Many critics of commercial surrogate motherhood argue that it violates the rights of children. In this paper, I respond to several versions of this objection. The most common version claims that surrogacy involves child-selling. I argue that while proponents of surrogacy have generally failed to provide an adequate response to this objection, it can be overcome. After showing that the two most prominent arguments for the child-selling objection fail, I explain how the commissioning couple can acquire parental rights by paying (...) the surrogate only for her reproductive labor. My explanation appeals to the idea that parental rights are acquired by those who have claims over the reproductive labor that produces the child, not necessarily by those who actually perform the labor. This account clarifies how commercial surrogacy differs from commercial adoption. In the final section of the paper, I consider and reject three further child-based objections to commercial surrogacy: that it establishes a market in children's attributes, that it requires courts to stray from the best interests standard in determining custodial rights, and that it requires the surrogate to neglect her parental responsibilities. Since each of these objections fails, children's rights probably do not pose an obstacle to the acceptability of commercial surrogacy arrangements. (shrink)
Abstract: In this paper we (i) identify the notion of ‘essentially non-conceptual content’ by critically analyzing the recent and contemporary debate about non-conceptual content, (ii) work out the basics of broadly Kantian theory of essentially non-conceptual content in relation to a corresponding theory of conceptual content, and then (iii) demonstrate one effective application of the Kantian theory of essentially non-conceptual content by using this theory to provide a ‘minimalist’ solution to the problem of perceptual self-knowledge which is raised by Strong (...) Externalism. (shrink)
Some philosophers think that the challenge of justifying punishment can be met by a theory that emphasizes the expressive character of punishment. A particular type of theories of this sort - call it Expressive Retributivism [ER] - combines retributivist and expressivist considerations. These theories are retributivist since they justify punishment as an intrinsically appropriate response to wrongdoing, as something wrongdoers deserve, but the expressivist element in these theories seeks to correct for the traditional obscurity of retributivism. Retributivists often rely on (...) appeals to controversial intuitions involving obscure concepts. While retributive intuitions can be compelling, some worry that the justificatory challenge cannot be met merely by appealing to them. ER tries to enhance the clarity and justificatory power of these intuitions and the concepts they invoke by appealing to an expressive conception of punishment. I argue that these theories fail to justify punishment and that there is reason to think that they cannot, in principle, justify punishment. (shrink)
I raise a problem for Retributivism, the view that legal punishment is justified on the basis of desert. I focus primarily on Mitchell Berman's recent defense of the view. He gives one of the most sophisticated and careful statements of it. And his argument is representative, so the problem I'll raise for it will apply to other versions of Retributivism. His insights about justification also help to make the problem particularly obvious. I'll also show how the problem extends to non-retributive (...) justifications of punishment. I'll argue that Berman's argument makes a questionable assumption about the standard of justification that justifications of punishment must meet to be successful. If we think about what it takes to justify punishment and reflect on the intuitions that retributivists appeal to, it turns out that the intuitions aren't obviously up to the task. (shrink)
The distinction between explanation and prediction has received much attention in recent literature, but the equally important distinction between explanation and description (or between prediction and description) remains blurred. This latter distinction is particularly important in the social sciences, where probabilistic models (or theories) often play dual roles as explanatory and descriptive devices. The distinction between explanation (or prediction) and description is explicated in the present paper in terms of information theory. The explanatory (or predictive) power of a probabilistic model (...) is identified with information taken from (or transmitted by) the environment (e.g., the independent, experimentally manipulated variables), while the descriptive power of a model reflects additional information taken from (or transmitted by) the data. Although information is usually transmitted by the data in the process of estimating parameters, it turns out that the number of free parameters is not a reliable index of transmitted information. Thus, the common practice of treating parameters as degrees-of-freedom in testing probabilistic models is questionable. Finally, this information-theoretic analysis of explanation, prediction, and description suggests ways of resolving some recent controversies surrounding the pragmatic aspects of explanation and the so-called structural identity thesis. (shrink)
I argue that voting abstention may be obligatory under certain non-trivial conditions. Following recent work on voting ethics, I argue that the obligation to abstain under certain conditions follows from a duty not to vote badly. Whether one votes badly, however, turns on more than one's reasons for wanting a particular candidate elected or policy implemented. On my account, one's reasons for voting at all also matter, and one can be in a position where there is no way to exercise (...) one's right to vote well. Seriously unfair electoral processes may put one in such a position. Such processes arguably hold in some contemporary western democracies, including the US. (shrink)
In this paper I argue that the Sellarsian Myth of the Given does not apply to all forms of Non-Conceptualism; that Kant is in fact a non-conceptualist of the right-thinking kind and not a Conceptualist, as most Kant-interpreters think; and that an intelligible and defensible Kantian Non-Conceptualism can be developed which supports the thesis that true perceptual beliefs are non-inferentially justified and also normatively funded by direct, embodied, intentional interactions with the manifest world (a.k.a. the Grip of the Given).
According to Edmund Husserl in the Prolegomena to Pure Logic,<span class='Hi'></span> which constitutes the preliminary rational foundation for <span class='Hi'></span>– and also the entire first volume of <span class='Hi'></span>– his Logical Investigations,<span class='Hi'></span> pure logic is the a priori theoretical,<span class='Hi'></span> nomological science of <span class='Hi'></span>„demonstration“<span class='Hi'></span> (LI 1,<span class='Hi'></span> 57;<span class='Hi'></span> Hua XVIII,<span class='Hi'></span> 23)<span class='Hi'></span>.1 For him,<span class='Hi'></span> demonstration includes both consequence and provability.<span class='Hi'></span> Consequence is the defining property of all and only formally valid arguments,<span class='Hi'></span> i.<span (...) class='Hi'></span> e.<span class='Hi'></span>, arguments that cannot lead from true premises to false conclusions.<span class='Hi'></span> And provability <span class='Hi'></span>(a.<span class='Hi'></span> k.<span class='Hi'></span> a.<span class='Hi'></span> „completeness“<span class='Hi'></span>) is the property of a logical system such that,<span class='Hi'></span> for every truth of logic in that system,<span class='Hi'></span> there is,<span class='Hi'></span> at least in principle,<span class='Hi'></span> a rigorous step-by-step logically valid procedure demonstrating its validity according to strictly universal,<span class='Hi'></span> ideal,<span class='Hi'></span> and necessary logical laws.<span class='Hi'></span> In this way,<span class='Hi'></span> the laws of pure logic completely determine its internal structure.<span class='Hi'></span> Moreover,<span class='Hi'></span> these laws and these proofs are all knowable a priori,<span class='Hi'></span> with selfevident insight <span class='Hi'></span>(LI 1,<span class='Hi'></span> 196;<span class='Hi'></span> Hua XVIII,<span class='Hi'></span> 185–195)<span class='Hi'></span>. So not only is pure logic independent of any other theoretical science,<span class='Hi'></span> in that it requires no other science in order to ground its core notion of demonstration,<span class='Hi'></span> it also provides both epistemic and semantic foundations for every other theoretical science,<span class='Hi'></span> as well as every practical discipline or <span class='Hi'></span>„technology.<span class='Hi'></span>“ To the extent that pure logic is the foundation of every other.<span class='Hi'></span>. (shrink)
Abstract In this essay I argue that a broadly Kantian strategy for demonstrating and explaining the existence, semantic structure, and psychological function of essentially non-conceptual content can also provide an intelligible and defensible bottom-up theory of the foundations of rationality in minded animals. Otherwise put, if I am correct, then essentially non-conceptual content constitutes the semantic and psychological substructure, or matrix, out of which the categorically normative a priori superstructure of epistemic rationality and practical rationality ? Sellars?s ?logical space of (...) reasons? ? grows. (shrink)
I propose an alternative interpretation of the Crito. The arguments that are typically taken to be Socrates’ primary arguments against escape are actually supplementary arguments that rely on what I call the Superiority Thesis, the thesis that the state and its citizens are members of a moral hierarchy where those below are tied by bonds of obligation to those above. I provide evidence that Socrates holds this thesis, demonstrate how it resolves a number of apparent difficulties and show why my (...) interpretation is preferable to competing interpretations. (shrink)
Abstract This paper is about the nature of the relationship between (1) the doctrine of Non-Conceptualism about mental content, (2) Kant?s Transcendental Idealism, and (3) the Transcendental Deduction of the Pure Concepts of the Understanding, or Categories, in the B (1787) edition of the Critique of Pure Reason, i.e., the B Deduction. Correspondingly, the main thesis of the paper is this: (1) and (2) yield serious problems for (3), yet, in exploring these two serious problems for the B Deduction, we (...) also discover some deeply important and perhaps surprising philosophical facts about Kant?s theory of cognition and his metaphysics. (shrink)
In “Practical Knowledge of Language”, C.-h. Tsai criticizes the arguments in “Swimming and Speaking Spanish” (this issue, pp. 331–341), on the grounds that its account of knowledge of language as knowledge-how is mistaken. In its place, he proposes an alternative account in terms of Russell’s concept “knowledge-by-acquaintance”. In this paper, I show that this account succeeds neither in displacing the account in Swimming and Speaking Spanish nor in addressing Tsai’s main concern: solving the “delivery problem”.
The dominant view of the status of knowledge of language is that it is theoretical or what Gilbert Ryle called knowledge-that. Defenders of this thesis may differ among themselves over the precise nature of the knowledge which underlies language, as for example, Michael Dummett and Noam Chomsky differ over the issue of unconscious knowledge; however, they all agree that acquisition, understanding and use of language require that the speaker have access to a theory of language. In this paper, I argue (...) that this view is mistaken. Knowledge of language is properly seen as practical knowledge, knowledge-how. My target is Michael Dummett’s treatment of theory of meaning in The Seas of Language. If my argument goes through, underlying assumptions about the nature of cognition as computational must be adjusted to allow for other forms of knowledge, which are arguably more basic, and which underlie knowledge-that. (shrink)
In this chapter, I present an interpretation of the first twenty or so sections of the Philosophical Investigations. My presentation has three parts. First, I briefly compare and contrast Wittgenstein’s philosophical intentions in the Investigations with his intentions in the earlier Tractatus Logico-Philosophicus. Second, against that first backdrop, I explicate Wittgenstein’s famous thesis that meaning is use. Third and finally, against that second backdrop, I unpack Wittgenstein’s opening argument for the meaning-is-use thesis. This opening argument is a philosophical roadmap for (...) his other arguments in support of the meaning-is-use thesis, in the pregnant sense that the basic concepts and strategies he later deploys are already etched into it and guide his further moves. (shrink)
Many philosophers claim that it is always intrinsically good when people get what they deserve and that there is always at least some reason to give people what they deserve. I highlight problems with this view and defend an alternative. I have two aims. First, I want to expose a gap in certain desert-based justifications of punishment. Second, I want to show that those of us who have intuitions at odds with these justifications have an alternative account of desert at (...) our disposal – one that may lend our intuitions more credibility. (shrink)
In this essay I revisit Kant's much-criticized views on arithmetic. In so doing I make a case for the claim that his theory of arithmetic is not in fact subject to the most familiar and forceful objection against it, namely that his doctrine of the dependence of arithmetic on time is plainly false, or even worse, simply unintelligible; on the contrary, Kant's doctrine about time and arithmetic is highly original, fully intelligible, and with qualifications due to the inherent limitations of (...) his conceptions of arithmetic and logic, defensible to an important extent. (edited). (shrink)
According to Kant in the Prolegomena, the natural kind proposition (GYM) "Gold is a yellow metal" is analytically true, necessary, and a priori. Saul Kripke and Hilary Putnam have argued that on the contrary propositions such as (GYM) are neither analytic, nor necessary, nor a priori. The Kripke-Putnam view is based on the doctrine of "scientific essentialism" (SE). It is a direct consequence of SE that propositions such as (GE) "Gold is the element with atomic number number 79" are metaphysically (...) necessary and a posteriori. Were Kant to travel by time-machine to the present and to consider (GE), however, he would regard it as metaphysically contingent; and even if he were able to admit it as necessary, it would be synthetic a priori, and not a posteriori. In these ways, the conflict between Kant and the scientific essentialists is a sharply-defined one: if the essentialists are right, then the Kantian theory of meaning, necessity, and a priori knowledge is wrong; but if Kant is right, then SE is wrong. As a prolegomenon to the development and defense of Kant's positive theory of natural kind propositions, this paper undertakes a Kantian critique of SE. Following the Introduction, the paper has three sections. The first section spells out the main theses and assumptions of SE. The second section, setting aside the semantic and logical components of SE, focuses on its epistemic and metaphysical components and offers four Kantian arguments against them. The final section offers Kantian "diagnoses" of the flaws in SE exposed by the four critical arguments. (shrink)
Our decision-making is often subject to framing effects: alternative but equally informative descriptions of the same options elicit different choices. When a decision-maker is vulnerable to framing, she may consent under one description of the act, which suggests that she has waived her right, yet be disposed to dissent under an equally informative description of the act, which suggests that she has not waived her right. I argue that in such a case the decision-maker’s consent is simply irrelevant to the (...) permissibility of proceeding. I then consider two alternative views. According to the first, people susceptible to framing are able to give valid consent so long as they are sufficiently informed. This suggestion, I argue, maintains an overly narrow focus on mere quantity of information to the exclusion of other choice-affecting factors. A second response, which appeals to hypothetical consent, is likewise of little use in resolving the moral problem posed by framing effects. I conclude that if susceptibility to framing undermines the validity of consent, we may have good reason to reconsider whether consent has the rights-waiving function commonly attributed to it. (shrink)
(A) Books: (3) Kant, Science, and Human Nature (Oxford: OUP, forthcoming). (2) Rationality and Logic (Cambridge: MIT Press, forthcoming). (1) Kant and the Foundations of Analytic Philosophy (Oxford: Clarendon/OUP, 2001 [pbk., 2004]). (B) Articles: (30) "Kant, Wittgenstein, and the Fate of Analysis," in M. Beaney (ed.), The Analytic Turn (London: Routledge, forthcoming.) (29) "Kant and the Analytic Tradition," in C. Boundas (ed.), A Companion to the Twentieth-Century Philosophies (Edinburgh: Univ. of Edinburgh Press, forthcoming).
It is generally agreed that the method of explication consists in replacing a vague, presystematic notion (the explicandum) with a precise notion (the explicatum) formulated in a systematic context. However, Carnap and others who have used this and related terms appear to hold inconsistent views as to what constitutes an adequate explication. The central feature of the present explication of 'explication' is the correspondence condition: permitting the explicandum to deviate from some established "ordinary-language" conventions but, at the same time, requiring (...) that the explicatum correspond (via an effective translation) to the chosen "definitive intension" of the explicandum. (In effect, the first stages of an explication provide an informal characterization of a vague and possibly inconsistent language convention.) The present account of explication contrasts sharply with that sketched by Quine in Word and Object (although Quine accepts a correspondence condition of a sort). The terms `explication 1 ' and `explication 2 ' are used to indicate these quite different senses of the term. In Kaplan's terminology, explication 1 is intended to remedy "external vagueness" while explication 2 is intended to remedy "internal vagueness.". (shrink)
The aim of this paper is twofold: first to sketch a framework for classifying a wide range of conceptions of scientific objectivity and second to present and defend a conception of scientific objectivity that fills a neglected niche in the resulting hierarchy of viewpoints. Roughly speaking, the proposed ideal of scientific objectivity is effectiveness in the informal but technical sense of an effective method. Science progresses when "higher levels of communicative discourse" are reached by transforming subjective judgments regarding the generation (...) and reduction of data or the testing of theories into objective decision procedures that are automatic or mechanical. (shrink)
Some philosophers defend legal punishment by appealing to a natural right to punish wrongdoers, a right people would have in a state of nature. Many of these philosophers argue that legal punishment can be justified by transferring this right to the state. I’ll argue that such a right may not be transferrable to the state because such a right may not survive the transition out of anarchy. A compelling reason for the natural right claim – that in a state of (...) nature there are few if any viable non-punitive enforcement options – isn’t obviously true in state contexts. (shrink)
Episodic memory is usually regarded in a Conceptualist light, in the sense of its being dependent upon the grasp of concepts directly relevant to the act of episodic recollection itself, such as a concept of past times and of the self as an experiencer. Given this view, its development is typically timed as being in the early school-age years (Perner, 2001; Tulving, 2005). We present a minimalist, Non-Conceptualist approach in opposition to this view, but one that also exists in clear (...) contrast to the kind of minimalism (‘episodic-like’) espoused by Clayton and Dickinson (1998) with regard to memory in food-caching birds. While emphasising the nonconceptual elements of episodic memory (in common with the ‘episodic-like’ approach) we also insist on the essentially phenomenological nature of the memory (as does the Conceptualist approach). We propose the third year of life as a plausible onset period. Our view is rooted in Kantian assumptions about the spatiotemporal content of experience (and thus of re-experience) and about the synthetic unity of experience—and thus of re-experience. We answer two objections to this position. (shrink)
Most people believe that it is permissible to kill a nonresponsible threat, or someone who threatens one's life without exercising agency. Defenders of this view must show that there is a morally relevant difference between nonresponsible threats and innocent bystanders. Some philosophers, including Jonathan Quong and Helen Frowe, have attempted to do this by arguing that one who kills a bystander takes advantage of another person, while one who kills a threat does not. In this paper, I show that the (...) proposals offered by Quong and Frowe have unacceptable implications. I then argue that those who claim that nonresponsible threats may be killed face a dilemma generated by the possibility of a stationary threat, or someone who endangers another person's life without moving. Unless we arbitrarily distinguish between stationary and moving nonresponsible threats, it is unclear how the permission to kill nonresponsible threats is to be explicated. I conclude that nonresponsible threats are not legitimate targets of self-defence. (shrink)
there be an objective modal distinction between the observable and the unobservable.’ My intent is to counter Ladyman's claim that the irreducibly modal character of empirical adequacy is something that is ‘really wrong with constructive empiricism’. I argue that disposition concepts refer to non-modal properties of types rather than to modal properties of tokens of those types. Solubility, for example, is an ‘occurrent’, though unobservable, property of a type of substance (involving the structure of associated atoms); and observability is, similarly, (...) an ‘occurrent’, though unobservable, property of a type of event (involving the structure of associated physical systems). Empirical adequacy, like truth, is an objective, semantic notion; the empirical adequacy of a theory depends upon all actual tokens of the relevant observable type, not just upon the tokens that have actually been observed. Introduction The typical character of disposition concepts Confirmational versus semantic empirical adequacy Conclusion. (shrink)