The ‘Precautionary Principle’ provides a somewhat ill-defined guide, often of uncertain normative status, for those exercising administrative decision-making power in circumstances where that may create potential risks to human health or the environment. This paper seeks to explore to what extent the precautionary principle should have been and was in fact utilised by the Australian Therapeutic Goods Administration (TGA) in its decision to approve the marketing of sunscreens containing titanium dioxide (TiO2) and zinc oxide (ZnO) in nanoparticulate form. In particular, (...) this article assesses to what extent better application of that principle might have altered the TGA’s decision that TiO2 and ZnO ENPs in sunscreens do not require new safety testing, because they are considered to be functionally equivalent to their bulk counterparts. (shrink)
The paper distinguishes between two different senses of ‘genius’ found in Kant's Critique of Judgement, and criticizes an argument commonly attributed to Kant. The argument is in support of the conclusion that an agent must possess and employ genius in the ‘productive faculty’ sense in order to produce an artwork. It is shown that Kant did not in fact make this argument. He defended a different claim concerning the need to employ the concept of a productive faculty of genius in (...) order to make pure judgements of taste concerning artworks. I conclude with the suggestion that there are indications in Kant's theory of a significant departure from a tradition of thought according to which there is something essentially mysterious about the possibility of the production of fine art. (shrink)
And in Jesus Christ his only Son our Lord; who was conceived by the Holy Ghost, born of the Virgin Mary, suffered under Pontius Pilate, was crucified, dead, and buried; he descended into hell; the third day he rose again from the dead; he ascended into heaven, and sitteth on the right hand of God the Father Almighty; from thence he shall come to judge the quick and the dead.
This article argues that traditional, regulative principles of research ethics offer insufficient guidance for research in the narrative study of lives. These principles presuppose an implicit epistemology that conceives of research participants as data sources, a conception that is argued not tenable for narrative research. The case is made by drawing on recent discussions of research ethics in the qualitative and narrative research literature. This article shows that narrative ethics is inextricably entwined with epistemological issues--namely, issues of narrative ownership and (...) the multiplicity of narrative meaning. Finally, practical recommendations are made for the ethical treatment of research participants in narrative research. The article concludes by situating our approach with respect to the broad range of contemporary perspectives on research ethics. (shrink)
Problems of and explanations for evil -- Neo-cartesianism -- Animal suffering and the fall -- Nobility, flourishing, and immortality : animal pain and animal well-being -- Natural evil, nomic regularity, and animal suffering -- Chaos, order, and evolution -- Combining CDs.
The existence and extent of animal suffering provides grounds for a serious evidential challenge to theism. In the wake of the Darwinian revolution, this strain of natural atheology has taken on substantially greater significance. In this essay we argue that there are at least four neo-Cartesian views on the nature of animal minds which would serve to deflect this evidential challenge.
Over the last decade a handful of cognitive models of religious belief have begun to coalesce in the literature. Attempts to offer “scientific explanations of religious belief ” are nothing new, stretching back at least as far as David Hume, and perhaps as far back as Cicero. What is also not new is a belief that scientific explanations of religious belief serve in some way to undermine the justification for those beliefs.
Recent Christian reflection on the relation of religion and ethics has focused a great deal on establishing a conception of ethics in which God plays a central role. The numerous attempts to respond to Plato's "Euthyphro Dilemma" and the various defenses of the divine command theory provide two examples of this phenomenon. But much of this ethical reflection has gone on in a way that is largely “defensive.” That is, those engaged in such discussions typically describe an ethical theory which (...) provides God with a central role, and then seek to deflect potentially fatal objections. While there is surely a place for this sort of defensive reflection, these discussions fail to address a deeper and perhaps more pressing question, namely: what positive reasons are there for preferring a religiously grounded ethical theory to the non-religious competitors. Are there argument or considerations, we might wonder, that can explain just why grounding an ethical theory in theism is superior to grounding it non-theistically? And if there are, what would such arguments or considerations look like? (shrink)
The belief that God responds to prayer is widespread. According to a recent Newsweek survey 87% of Americans said that they believe that God answers prayers. In fact, they believe so heartily in the efficacy of prayer that nearly one third of those polled said that they prayed to God more than once a day. What is even more interesting about this belief among ordinary Americans is that it has been denied by so many theologians. One might think such denials (...) would be found only among contemporary liberal theologians who deny that miracles are possible or that God would deign to interfere in human affairs. But in fact, such denials can be found in the writings of the founding fathers of many religious traditions. Of course, these theologians do not thereby deny that prayer is important or meaningful. Instead, the argue that it is meaningful because it brings about certain internal, psychological benefits for the petitioner. (shrink)
Attributes of God : independence, goodness, and power -- Attributes of God : eternity, knowledge, and providence -- God triune and incarnate -- Faith and rationality -- Theistic arguments -- Anti-theistic arguments -- Religion and science -- Religion, morality, and politics -- Mind, body, and immortality.
Historically, those who are committed to libertarianism are usually so committed for at least one of two reasons. First, some are convinced that the very idea of an agent acting freely and responsibly is incoherent when sufficient conditions for the choice obtain, whether internal or external to the agent. If, it is claimed, the choice of the agent can be traced back to states of affairs which are sufficient for the choice, the choice is simply a consequence of those conditions, (...) and this not an act of the agent himself. As a result, such choices are neither free nor something for which the agent is morally responsible. (shrink)
According to a familiar objection to Davidson's causal theory of action, reasons are not causes qua reasons unless explanations of actions fit reason and action into a nomic nexus. The focus of this criticism should really be redirected to the issue of whether or not Davidson's theory provides an account of the explanatory force of explanations of actions.
Over the last two decades, scientific accounts of religion have received a great deal of scholarly and popular attention both because of their intrinsic interest and because they are widely as constituting a threat to the religion they analyse. The Believing Primate aims to describe and discuss these scientific accounts as well as to assess their implications. The volume begins with essays by leading scientists in the field, describing these accounts and discussing evidence in their favour. Philosophical and theological reflections (...) on these accounts follow, offered by leading philosophers, theologians, and scientists. This diverse group of scholars address some fascinating underlying questions: Do scientific accounts of religion undermine the justification of religious belief? Do such accounts show religion to be an accidental by-product of our evolutionary development? And, whilst we seem naturally disposed toward religion, would we fare better or worse without it? Bringing together dissenting perspectives, this provocative collection will serve to freshly illuminate ongoing debate on these perennial questions. (shrink)
Recent non-representationalists and metaphysical anti-realists (such as Goodman, Putnam, Rorty, etc.) have argued that the “Enlightenment notion” of a “God’s eye” point of view of the world is unsustainable. Deployment of conceptual schemes and/or intersubjective assent both constitute the world and fix the truth value of our statements about it. Many theists, on the contrary, hold an equally extreme realist position according to which God has a view of the world as it is “in itself" which provides (...) an exhaustive description of the world. Furthermore, on this view, God has access to this exhaustive picture because the world exists and is what it is in virtue of its being the object of divine creative intentions. For these theistic realists, truths about the world must ultimately be able to be cashed out in terms of an ontology consisting only of simple and composite substances—substances which exist in virtue of the ontological structure set out in the world via God's creative activity. As a result, on this view, the world is constituted in a way that is independent of the activity of created cognizers and their conceptualizing activity. The truth of our assertions must ultimately find its grounding in this independently constituted world. (shrink)
Since the end of the Cold War, the scope and study of diplomacy has expanded. In the modern diplomatic environment, novel terms such as pipeline diplomacy, coercive diplomacy, diplomacy by sanction and citizen diplomacy are common, alongside the more traditional view of diplomacy as state-to-state activity, monopolized by professional, official diplomats. With such a broad range of views, the scholar can become confused as to what actually constitutes modern diplomacy? In this article, it is argued that the disparity of views (...) in the diplomacy studies field must be classified and consolidated before the enhanced role of diplomacy in the twenty-first century can be better understood. In this article, three different classifications or schools of diplomatic thought are introduced and constructed: the Traditional School, the Nascent School, and the Innovative School. (shrink)
It is no surprise to discover that few (if any) have found the existence of God to be an obvious fact about the world. At least this is so in the sense in which we normally use the word "obvious," as when we say that it is obvious that the World Trade Center weighs more than a deck of cards or that it is obvious that VanGogh is a better painter than I. Despite St. Paul's claim that God's (...) eternal power and divine nature "have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made" (Romans 1:20), few (if any) think that such is as "clearly seen" as the book you now hold in your hand. (shrink)
Why Agamben? -- Key ideas -- Language and the negativity of being -- Infancy and archaeological method -- Potentiality and the task of the coming philosophy -- Politics : bare life and sovereign power -- The homeland of gesture : art and cinema -- The laboratory of literature -- Bearing witness and messianic time -- After Agamben.
This paper explores a novel philosophy of ethical care in the face of burgeoning biomedical technologies. I respond to a serious challenge facing traditional bioethics with its roots in analytic philosophy. The hallmarks of these traditional approaches are reason and autonomy, founded on a belief in the liberal humanist subject. In recent years, however, there have been mounting challenges to this view of human subjectivity, emerging from poststructuralist critiques, such as Michel Foucault's, but increasingly also as a result of advances (...) in biotechnology itself. In the face of these developments, I argue that the theoretical relevance and practical application of mainstream bioethics is increasingly under strain. Traditionalists will undoubtedly resist. Together, professional philosopher-bioethicists, public health policymakers, and the global commercial healthcare industry tend to respond conservatively by shoring up the liberal humanist subject as the foundation for medical ethics and consumer decision-making, appealing to the familiar tropes of reason, autonomy, and freedom. (shrink)