Time belongs to a handful of categories (like form, symbol, cause) that are genuinely transdisciplinary. Time touches every dimension of our being, every object of our attention - including attention itself. It therefore can belong to no single field of study. Of course, this universalist view of time is not itself universal but rather is a product of the modern age, an age that conceived of itself as the 'new' time. Time has thus gained new importance as a theme of (...) general research with the 'post-modern turn' now manifest in many areas of intellectual endeavor, especially in the humanities and social sciences. 'Chronotypes' are models or patterns through which time assumes practical or conceptual significance. Time is not given but (as the subtitle indicates) fabricated in an ongoing process. Chronotypes are themselves temporal and plural, constantly being made and remade at multiple individual, social, and cultural levels. They interact, they change over time, and they have histories, whose construal is itself an act of temporal construction. This book - an interdisciplinary collaboration of philosophers, historians, literary critics, and anthropologists - examines the ways individuals, societies, and cultures make sense of time by constructing it in diverse patterns. Its title intentionally echoes a concept of narrative theory, Mikhail Bakhtin's 'chronotype', because narrative recurs as a chief form within which we build temporality. The topics treated by these essays range from story-telling to cross-cultural communication, from epistemological debates to concepts of historical periodization, from the construction of life stories to the stratification of social time. (shrink)
Peer review is a widely accepted instrument for raising the quality of science. Peer review limits the enormous unstructured influx of information and the sheer amount of dubious data, which in its absence would plunge science into chaos. In particular, peer review offers the benefit of eliminating papers that suffer from poor craftsmanship or methodological shortcomings, especially in the experimental sciences. However, we believe that peer review is not always appropriate for the evaluation of controversial hypothetical science. We argue that (...) the process of peer review can be prone to bias towards ideas that affirm the prior convictions of reviewers and against innovation and radical new ideas. Innovative hypotheses are thus highly vulnerable to being “filtered out” or made to accord with conventional wisdom by the peer review process. Consequently, having introduced peer review, the Elsevier journal Medical Hypotheses may be unable to continue its tradition as a radical journal allowing discussion of improbable or unconventional ideas. Hence we conclude by asking the publisher to consider re-introducing the system of editorial review to Medical Hypotheses. (shrink)
According to Keith Lehrer’s coherence theory, knowledge is true acceptance whose justification is undefeated by a falsehood. It has recently become clear that Lehrer’s handling of important Gettier-inspired problems depends upon his position that only falsehoods accepted by the subject can act as defeaters of knowledge. I argue against this and present an example in which an unreckoned truth---one neither believed nor believed to be false by the subject---defeats knowledge. I trace the negative implications of this matter for the coherence (...) theory. (shrink)
We have synthesized a 582,970-base pair Mycoplasma genitalium genome. This synthetic genome, named M. genitalium JCVI-1.0, contains all the genes of wild-type M. genitalium G37 except MG408, which was disrupted by an antibiotic marker to block pathogenicity and to allow for selection. To identify the genome as synthetic, we inserted "watermarks" at intergenic sites known to tolerate transposon insertions. Overlapping "cassettes" of 5 to 7 kilobases (kb), assembled from chemically synthesized oligonucleotides, were joined by in vitro recombination to produce intermediate (...) assemblies of approximately 24 kb, 72 kb ("1/8 genome"), and 144 kb ("1/4 genome"), which were all cloned as bacterial artificial chromosomes in Escherichia coli. Most of these intermediate clones were sequenced, and clones of all four 1/4 genomes with the correct sequence were identified. The complete synthetic genome was assembled by transformation-associated recombination cloning in the yeast Saccharomyces cerevisiae, then isolated and sequenced. A clone with the correct sequence was identified. The methods described here will be generally useful for constructing large DNA molecules from chemically synthesized pieces and also from combinations of natural and synthetic DNA segments. 10.1126/science.1151721. (shrink)
Abstract John McKnight's The Careless Society tellingly exposes the ways the professionalized welfare state creates dependency. But McKnight is too quick to condemn this result as the product of professional self?interest, and to posit as the alternative a selfless, republican model of community. He overlooks the more realistic possibility that the pursuit of their interests by social groups empowered to take care of themselves would better serve those interests, and would simultaneously create a feeling of interdependence and civic responsibility.
In this paper, I hope to reintroduce debate on the issue of aesthetic supervenience, especially in light of work undertaken by metaphysicians in recent years. After providing a brief walkthrough of some of the major views on supervenience generally, including several important metaphysical distinctions, I build upon views by Jerrold Levinson, JohnBender, Nick Zangwill, and Gregory Currie, to develop a realist thesis of strong local supervenience, such that aesthetic properties of artworks and other objects depend upon their (...) formal/structural properties and reduce to powers to produce aesthetic effects of particular kinds in suitable perceivers under suitable conditions. (shrink)
Horgan believes that the truth of the statement “Beethoven’s fifth symphony has four movements” does not require that there be some “dedicated object” answering to the term “Beethoven’s fifth simphony”. To the contrary, the relevant language/world correspondence relation is less direct than this. Especially appropriate is the behavior by Beethoven that we would call “composing his fifth symphony”. Our objections go along two directions: (1) is the process ontology (a) really a right kind of ontology for artworks (symphonies, novels) and, (...) (b) more important, is this kind of ontology compatible with Parmenidian approach to ontology? The answer to (a) is negative. With reference to point (1b) we might say that Parmenides was a typical staunch advocate of substance metaphysics rather than process metaphysics. Traditionally, substances are individuated by their properties, namely, there are assumed two sorts of properties: primary and secondary. Primary properties describe the substance as it is in and by itself; secondary properties underlie the impact of substances upon others and the responses they elicit from them. (2) The claim that it is most unlikely to suppose that we can have some kind of cognitive contact “with an entity which has no spatio-temporal location and does not causally interact with anything” does not hold. We underpin the claim that there is some cognitive access to entity such as Beethoven’s fifth symphony with Bender’s theory of realization relation between musical work and performance. (shrink)
In agreement with Behrendt & Young (B&Y), we considered the role of perception disturbances in schizophrenia in our first clinical approaches, using the Bender test with schizophrenic patients. Following this, we reproduced nuclear symptoms of schizophrenia in animal models, showing that perceptual disturbances, acquisition disturbances, and decrease in affective levels can be induced by glutamatergic blockade within the nucleus accumbens septi. Our results link the proposed corticostriatal dysfunction with the thalamocortical disturbances underlying perceptual problems reviewed by B&Y.