Literary critic and essayist Karl Heinz Bohrer offers a Eurosceptic perspective on the German commitment to a united Europe. This article is a reconstruction of Bohrer's argument. It identifies two distinct critiques. The first is a somewhat prosaic observation that the differences between the national traditions of Europe are simply too great for a united Europe to be viable. The other is a more complex reflection on ?European decadence?: Europeans lack the will that is required to project power, and power (...) is a precondition for cultural achievements. Protestantism?the ?Protestant mind??plays a central role in this second critique. The two critiques are connected through Bohrer's conception of the nation-state as an entity that integrates in an agonistic way legal and cultural power. (shrink)
Summary: The aim of this collection is to provide a two-fold access to von Foerster's legacy and his work at the Biological Computer Laboratory, the institution he founded and directed at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign from 1958 to 1976. It represents a precious contribution for the understanding of BCL, a crucial but still not properly understood chapter in the history of cybernetics and, more generally, of cognitive science. It is greatly recommended.
Zwischen 1987 und 1994 sandte ich 20 Briefe an Karl Popper. Die meisten betrafen Fragen bezüglich seiner Antiinduktionsbeweise und seiner Wahrscheinlichkeitstheorie, einige die organisatorische und inhaltliche Vorbereitung eines Fachgesprächs mit ihm in Kenly am 22. März 1989 (worauf hier nicht eingegangen werden soll), einige schließlich ganz oder in Teilen nicht-fachliche Angelegenheiten (die im vorliegenden Bericht ebenfalls unberücksichtigt bleiben). Von Karl Popper erhielt ich in diesem Zeitraum 10 Briefe. Der bedeutendste ist sein siebter, bestehend aus drei Teilen, geschrieben am 21., 22. (...) und 23. Oktober 1992, in dem er eine Vorform jener Definition der probabilistischen Unabhängigkeit entwickelte, die er 1994 im neuen Anhang *XX der 10. Auflage seiner Logik der Forschung (LdF) der wissenschaftstheoretischen Forschergemeinde vorstellte. Der berührendste ist sein letzter, geschrieben am 26. Juli 1994, in dem er trotz Erschöpfung mit Humor schildert, wie mühselig der Druck des Anhangs *XX verlaufen ist. Mein Bericht ist zugleich chronologisch und systematisch gegliedert: die ersten, vergleichsweise wenigen Briefe, großteils 1987 geschrieben, handeln von der Induktion; der große Rest, zeitlicher Schwerpunkt 1992, beschäftigt sich mit der Wahrscheinlichkeitstheorie. Das Kapitel 1 über Induktion ist in vier Abschnitte unterteilt: 1.1 Das Popper/Miller-Argument: eine Nachkonstruktion 1.2 Karl Poppers Brief vom 25.8.1987: Deduktive Stützung 1.3 Karl Poppers Brief vom 29.9.1987: Nochmals zur deduktiven Stützung 1.4 Echt induktive Stützung und Schwächung: zwei eigene Beweise Das Kapitel 2 über Wahrscheinlichkeit ist ebenfalls in vier Abschnitte unterteilt: 2.1 Ein Mangel an Überschußgesetzen in der Logic of Scientific Discovery 2.2 Probabilistische Unabhängigkeit 2.3 Wahrscheinlichkeitstheorie und Wahrscheinlichkeitssemantik 2.4 Die neue Unabhängigkeitsdefinition im Anhang *XX der LdF. (shrink)
Popper first developed his theory of scientific method – falsificationism – in his The Logic of Scientific Discovery, then generalized it to form critical rationalism, which he subsequently applied to social and political problems in The Open Society and Its Enemies. All this can be regarded as constituting a major development of the 18th century Enlightenment programme of learning from scientific progress how to achieve social progress towards a better world. Falsificationism is, however, defective. It misrepresents the real, problematic aims (...) of science. We need a new conception of scientific method, a meta-methodology which provides a framework for the improvement of the aims and methods of science as scientific knowledge improves. This aim-oriented empiricist idea can be generalized to form a conception of rationality – aim-oriented rationality – which helps us improve problematic aims and methods whatever we may be doing. In this way, Popper’s version of the Enlightenment programme can be much improved, indeed transformed. (shrink)
There are two motivations commonly ascribed to historical actors for taking up statistics: to reduce complicated data to a mean value (e.g., Quetelet), and to take account of diversity (e.g., Galton). Different motivations will, it is assumed, lead to different methodological decisions in the practice of the statistical sciences. Karl Pearson and W. F. R. Weldon are generally seen as following directly in Galton’s footsteps. I argue for two related theses in light of this standard interpretation, based on a reading (...) of several sources in which Weldon, independently of Pearson, reflects on his own motivations. First, while Pearson does approach statistics from this "Galtonian" perspective, he is, consistent with his positivist philosophy of science, utilizing statistics to simplify the highly variable data of biology. Weldon, on the other hand, is brought to statistics by a rich empiricism and a desire to preserve the diversity of biological data. Secondly, we have here a counterexample to the claim that divergence in motivation will lead to a corresponding separation in methodology. Pearson and Weldon, despite embracing biometry for different reasons, settled on precisely the same set of statistical tools for the investigation of evolution. (shrink)
An exposition of Karl Marx’s argument in the Grundrisse for the logical development of money, this essay is divided into three parts. Since Marx is concerned to distinguish himself and his method from that of the seventeenth century political economists, I begin my paper with a brief reflection on “the scientifically correct method” or the “theoretical method” (Grundrisse 101 and 102). The second part of this paper considers how Marx justifies beginning his reflection with the concept of production in general. (...) To understand the importance that Marx attributes to production, one must also appreciate the way in which distribution, exchange, and consumption belong to the sphere of production. In the remaining pages of this section of my paper, then, I attempt to reconstruct Marx’s argument for the way in which these concepts (distribution, exchange, and consumption) are to be understood in relation to the sphere of production. (shrink)
Karl Christian Friedrich Krause war ein bemerkenswerter Denker des Deutschen Idealismus. Seine Schriften können ohne Zweifel mit denen Hegels, Schellings und Fichtes konkurrieren. Gerade im Bereich der theoretischen Philosophie bietet das Krausesche Œuvre eine Fundgrube an Einsichten und Argumenten, die der heutigen, oftmals betont postmodernen oder atheistischen Philosophie eine dringend benötigte Kontrastfolie sein können. Sinn und Zweck der Arbeit ist es, den Panentheismus Krauses zeitgemäß darzustellen und Brückenschläge zur heutigen religionsphilosophischen Debatte aufzuzeigen.
In the book under review, Walter Reese-Schafer provides a concise Introduction to the sources, themes and conclusions of the philosophy of Karl-Otto Apel, Emeritus Professor at Frankfurt and close colleague of Jurgen Habermas. There are both Kantian and Peircean themes in Apel, with the chief focus on the concept of discourse ethics.
When Western Marxist sociologists, such as Jean Buadrillard, constructed their critical theory of consumer society, they took the consumer society as an objective fact and methodologically restricted themselves to the non-historical method of sociology, making them unable to grasp the correct meaning of Karl Marx's historical materialist methodology. Thus, they were unable to adequately critique and transcend consumer society. After spending the early 1850s building a theoretical foundation, Marx pointed out in 1857–1858 Economical Manuscript and 1861–1863 Economical Manuscript that the (...) governing model of capital was so complicated that it made consumption very important to the socio-economic form. Moreover, he explained the way of surpassing the conscious form of fetishism developed in consumer society from the perspective of the development of capitalist production. (shrink)
In 1967, American biologist Adrian Wenner (1928-) launched an extensive challenge to Karl von Frisch's (1886-1982) theory that bees communicate to each other the direction and distance of food sources by a symbolic dance language. Wenner and various collaborators argued that bees locate foods solely by odors. Although the dispute had largely run its course by 1973 -- von Frisch was awarded a Nobel Prize, while Wenner withdrew from active bee research -- it offers us a rare window into mid-twentieth (...) century discussions about animals, language, and cognition. Historians, sociologists, and scientists have commented on the debate and its outcome, but none has seriously questioned why von Frisch and Wenner pursued such different explanations of the bees' dances. In this paper, I explore von Frisch and Wenner's differing visions of animals and their behaviors and show how these contributed to their respective positions. Von Frisch's early-twentieth-century training in experimental physiology disposed him to focus on individual animals, their abilities, and their behaviors' evolutionary significance. Wenner, by contrast, was trained in mathematics and statistics and the Schneirla school of behavior. He viewed the bees' behaviors probabilistically with an eye toward the entire hive and its surroundings and ultimately explained them in terms of simple stimulus--response conditioning. Finally, while the debate was resolved in von Frisch's favor, he neither waged nor won the battle by himself. Instead, I show that practitioners, whose agendas ranged from the nascent fields of sociobiology to cognitive ethology, took up the cause of the communicating bees. (shrink)
The paper focuses on one central aspect of Karl Mannheim’s sociology of knowledge: his exemption of the contents of mathematics and the natural sciences from sociological investigations. After emphasizing the importance of Mannheim’s contribution and his exemption-thesis to the history and development of the field and the problem of relativism, I survey several interpretations of the thesis – especially those put forward by proponents of the so-called ‘Strong Programme’. I argue that these interpretations do not get the philosophical background and (...) impetus of Mannheim’s contribution right. By distinguishing between naturalistic and anti-naturalistic strands in Mannheim’s work I propose a new reading on which Mannheim did not exempt the contents of the areas in question principally or because of a lack of nerve and will. It is argued that Mannheim’s exemption-thesis rather is a consequence of his own sketchy sociological investigations of ‘the paradigm of the natural sciences’. (shrink)
Panentheism is an often-discussed alternative to Classical theism, and almost any discussion of panentheism starts by way of acknowledging Karl Christian Friedrich Krause (1781–1832) as the person who coined the term.1 However, apart from this tribute, Krause's own panentheism is almost completely unknown. In what follows, I first present a brief overview of Krause's life and correct some misconceptions of his work before I turn to the core ideas of Krause's own panentheistic system of philosophy. In brief, Krause elaborates a (...) scientific holism that is anchored in intellectual intuition of the Absolute as the one principle of being and recognition. The task of philosophical speculation consequently is twofold: the analytic-ascending part of philosophy proceeds by way of transcendental reflection and according to Krause enables us to obtain intellectual intuition. The synthetic-descending part of philosophy starts by way of showing that science as a whole is an explication of the original union of the Absolute as apprehended in intellectual intuition. Once this is achieved, Krause argues that the emerging philosophy of science is most adequately referred to as “panentheism” since everything is what it is “in and through” the Absolute, while the Absolute itself is not reducible to anything in particular. I end by showing how to relate Krause's panentheism to recent philosophical discussion. (shrink)
The present contribution aims at defining the relation between cybernetics and social theory from the perspective of society as order. After an historical framework of the cybernetic movement, a careful reading of the works of Norbert Wiener, in which he introduced the concept of feed-back and the idea of information society, has revealed a keen awareness about the social effects of technological innovation. Among the social scientists who had made use of cybernetic concepts, it has been considered the work of (...) Karl Deutsch, which was one of the first completely cybernetic perspective for the study of political and social phenomena. The main conclusion is that cybernetics, as a meeting point between different disciplines, has produced an image of self-regulated society in line with the image of society as order. (shrink)
Der Begriff der Vernunft gehört zu den Begriffen, die für Jaspers‘ philosophisches Denken und schriftliche verfaßte Philosophie eine besonders wichtige Rolle spielen. Gleichwohl kann es im Folgenden nicht um Jaspers‘ ganze Philosophie gehen, sondern nur um seinen Begriff der Vernunft. Sein Begriff der Vernunft ist jedoch für die wesentlichen Grundzüge seiner Philosophie konstitutiv und charakteristisch. Im ersten Teil werde ich kurz auf die Entwicklung der Schriften eingehen, in denen Jaspers hauptsächlich sein Verständnis von Vernunft dargelegt hat. Im zweiten Teil werde (...) ich dann Jaspers‘ Begriff der Vernunft anhand einiger wichtiger Aussagen in den genannten Werken rekonstruieren. Dabei kann jedoch nur der wesentliche Gehalt seines Begriffes der Vernunft berücksichtigt werden und nicht alle Strukturen, Formen und Funktionen der Vernunft, die dann für seine Philosophie charakteristisch und konstitutiv sind. Im dritten Teil werde ich dann kurz den systematischen Ort und Stellenwert von Jaspers‘ Begriff der Vernunft in seiner Vernunftphilosophie beleuchten. (shrink)
The two principal models of design in methodological circles in architecture—analysis/synthesis and conjecture/analysis—have their roots in philosophy of science, in different conceptions of scientific method. This paper explores the philosophical origins of these models and the reasons for rejecting analysis/synthesis in favour of conjecture/analysis, the latter being derived from Karl Popper’s view of scientific method. I discuss a fundamental problem with Popper’s view, however, and indicate a framework for conjecture/analysis to avoid this problem.
Karl Jaspers zählt zu den bedeutendsten Philosophen des 20. Jahrhunderts. Obwohl es bereits eine international etablierte Jaspersforschung gibt, haben die meisten seiner Werke jedoch noch keinen angemessenen Eingang in die historische und systematische Lehre der Philosophie gefunden. Diese Aufsatzsammlung gibt erstmals einen Einblick in die wichtigsten Begriffe seines philosophischen Denkens. Zu diesen Begriffen gehören Begriffe wie Grenzsituation, Freiheit, Menschenbild, Kommunikation, Philosophischer Glaube, Chiffre, Böses, Wahrheit, Vernunft, Gehäuse, Wissenschaft, Logik, Sprachphilosophie, Psychopathologie, Psychologie der Weltanschauung, Ethik, Einsamkeit, Erziehung, Politik, Universität, Achsenzeit, Philosophia (...) perennis und interkulturelle Philosophie. Einige dieser Begriffe wurden von Jaspers geprägt und gingen dauerhaft als neue Begriffe in die Philosophie, die Psychologie und die Psychopathologie ein. Die anderen Begriffe knüpfen zwar dem Wortlaut nach an die klassische Tradition der europäischen Philosophie an, wurden von Jaspers jedoch im Sinne einer Weltphilosophie umgestaltet und erweitert. Dieser Sammelband ist nicht nur ein einführendes Kompendium für Studierende der Philosophie, der verschiedenen Theologien der Weltreligionen sowie der Sozial- und Kulturwissenschaften. Er kann auch philosophisch Interessierten den Zugang zur Philosophie von Jaspers erleichtern. (shrink)
The paper tries to grasp and acquire Karl Jaspers’s philosophical-mental horizons mainly with the terminological and methodological instruments of the musical – primarily symphonic – thematisation. Namely those typically jaspersian tensions and impulses, which in their connections to the Encompassing and to Existence are apparently far from them – turning back (and forth) to the oriental and western meta- physics of Sound and Light. While the “philosophical problems” elevated into themes, now start to inter- weave into spectacle (spectaculum) and – (...) along this – they open up as ciphers. Concomitantly they do not send us – western thinkers – beyond the World, but contrarily, they attach us to the communicative re- sponsibility towards the world, to ourselves respectively to others. (shrink)
"Capital is moved as much and as little by the degradation and final depopulation of the human race, as by the probable fall of the earth into the sun. Apres moi le deluge! is the watchword of every capitalist and of every capitalist nation" (Marx, CAPITAL Vol 1, 380-381).
Seven unknown letters from 1823 to 1831 are published. The famous discoverer of the mammal's egg and founder of the modern embryology Karl Ernst von Baer (1792â1876), born as a German in Estonia and then anatomist and zoologist at KÃ¶nigsberg University, wrote them to his publisher Ludwig F. Froriep in Weimar and his son and successor. Robert F. Baer offered his co-work with a dictionary of natural history (which he criticized), he proposed a map of all research voyages everywhere in (...) the world, and he sent a few small papers about local birds. To Robert F. Baer gave some recommendations concerning his career; he asked for details of a death elephant, and he told that they were awaiting the cholera. (shrink)
The discipline of musicology, like the word itself which the Oxford English Dictionary dates only back to 1909 (or even 1915), is a twentieth-century, specifically Anglo-American, institution echoing the tradition of French musicologie and with analogies to German Musikwissenschaft. As a modern and ineluctably postmodern project, musicology derives from a predominantly Austro-German generation of scholars who translated a continentally European tradition of analysis (Heinrich Schenker and, in London, Donald Francis Tovey and Hans Keller) and formal music theory (routinely articulated by (...) then-contemporary new composers: Arnold Schoenberg, Rudolf Réti, and Theodor Adorno, as well as Karl-Heinz Stockhausen and Pierre Boulez) into English language university contexts. (shrink)
On the occasion of the 100th birthday of the physical chemist Kurt Schwabe the article presents an overview about Schwabeâs activities as president of the Saxon Academy of Science from 1965 to 1980. Main topics of this time which has to be solved by Schwabe were to ensure the further existence of the academy and to reach an agreement about the principles of cooperation between the Saxon Academy of Science and the Berlin Academy of Science as an agreement of equals.