HR/AL: Professor Taylor, what are you working on these days? CT: Well, several things. One of the things I am working on is something I was lecturing this fall at the New School University, and that I have called ‘modern social imaginaries’. It is an attempt to understand western modernity in terms of the different ways in which people imagine their social existence. These imaginaries are a condition for new kinds of practices that are characteristic of modernity. This research is (...) an internal part of a larger project to understand modern secular civilization, the modern west as a secular civilization. What does that notion exactly mean? What does it amount to? How did it happen? (shrink)
It is still a popular philosophical position to call for a strict “separationism” concerning the private and the public sphere when it comes to religious convictions. Richard Rorty is one prominent supporter of this claim. The traditional critique against this division is mostly built on a particular characterization of religion that is at odds with Rortian assumptions. In this article, however, Rorty is criticized on his own terms turning pragmatically the objection to a fully internal one. What Rorty values most, (...) namely a tolerant and ironic liberalism as the capacity to describe oneself in new and interesting ways is precisely the role, I argue, that religious faith could play under “neo-liberal” conditions. (shrink)
Although Weber's path-breaking work on the Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism has received much attention ever since it first appeared in 1904-5, recent research has uncovered important new aspects. This volume, the result of an international, interdisciplinary effort, throws new light on the intellectual and cultural background of Weber's work, debates recent criticism of Weber's thesis, and confronts new historical insight on the seventeenth century with Weber's interpretation. Revisiting Weber's thesis serves to deepen our understanding of Weber as (...) much as it will stimulate further research. (shrink)
In this paper one aspect of Leibniz' optical ideas, the law of refraction, is the main topic. This law had been formulated before him by Snellius, Descartes and Fermat. Their mathematical equations are analogous in the relations between the geometrical parameters and the optical resistances, but they differ concerning the velocities of light. From the Leibnitian point of view this situation has its reasons in uncompletely developed principles. Leibniz had shown that the solution of this problem requires a new metaphysics (...) as well as other mathematical, namely infinitesimal methods, which are connected in Leibniz by his dynamics. As one of the influences of his dynamical statement, the beginning of a new type of physical explanation will be demonstrated, which replaced the construction of mechanical models in the 18th century. (shrink)
Am 14. Juli 1995 berichteten die angesehene Wissenschaftszeitschrift Science sowie die berühmte amerikanische Tageszeitung New York Times – auf dem Titelblatt – gleichzeitig über die erstmalige experimentelle Erzeugung eines Bose-Einstein-Kondensates aus einem Gas schwach wechselwirkender Alkaliatome am Joint Institute for Laboratory Astrophy- sics (JILA) in Boulder/Colorado (USA). Was war an dieser Leistung so bedeutsam, dass man sich entschloss, sie auf jene Weise bekannt zu geben?
We argue that van der Velde's & de Kamps's model does not solve the binding problem but merely shifts the burden of constructing appropriate neural representations of sentence structure to unexplained preprocessing of the linguistic input. As a consequence, their model is not able to explain how various neural representations can be assigned to sentences that are structurally ambiguous.
Universalism in Greek and Roman antiquity and Christian political philosophy -- Universalistic thinking from early modern times to Enlightenment -- The emergence of particularism in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries -- The triumph of particularism in twentieth-century international relations theory -- Instead of a conclusion : towards renewed ontology(ies).