Institutions create their own internal cultures, including the culture of ethics that pervades scientific research, academic policy, and administrative philosophy. This paper addresses some of the issues involved in institutional enhancement of its culture of research ethics, focused on individual empowerment and strategies that individuals can use to initiate institutional change.
: Many feminist and democratic theorists share the presumption that politics requires a pregiven subject ("women" or "the people") whose identity is grounded in commonality. Drawing on Linda Zerilli's interventions in feminist debates, Ferguson develops an alternative account of collective identity that emerges instead from multiple, overlapping, and discontinuous social practices. This reconceptualization of identity demands a corresponding reconceptualization of democracy, characterized by the ongoing contestation of the very subject ("the people") whose existence it presupposes.
We propose a model mechanism for the initiation and spatial positioning of teeth primordia in the alligator, Alligator mississippiensis. Detailed embryological studies by Westergaard and Ferguson (1986, 1987, 1990) have shown that jaw growth plays a crucial role in the developmental patterning of the tooth initiation process. Based on biological data we develop a dynamic patterning mechanism, which crucially includes domain growth. The mechanism can reproduce the spatial pattern development of the first seven teeth primordia in each half (...) jaw of A. mississippiensis. The results for the precise spatio-temporal sequence compare well with experiment. Simulation of the model also predicts that certain transplantations can alter the spatial sequence of teeth primordia initiation. (shrink)
The essays in Daring to Be Good challenge the private/public split that assumes ethics is a private, individual concern and politics is a public, group concern. This collection addresses philosophical issues and controversies of interest to feminists, including prostitution, the ethics of the Human Genome research project as it impacts Native Americans, and reproductive technology. Contributors include:Bat-Ami Bar On, Sandra Lee Bartky, Chris Cuomo, Ann Ferguson, Jane Flax, Lori Gruen and Maria Lugones.
By definition, the subjective probability distribution of a random event is revealed by the (‘rational’) subject's choice between bets — a view expressed by F. Ramsey, B. De Finetti, L. J. Savage and traceable to E. Borel and, it can be argued, to T. Bayes. Since hypotheses are not observable events, no bet can be made, and paid off, on a hypothesis. The subjective probability distribution of hypotheses (or of a parameter, as in the current ‘Bayesian’ statistical literature) is therefore (...) a figure of speech, an ‘as if’, justifiable in the limit. Given a long sequence of previous observations, the subjective posterior probabilities of events still to be observed are derived by using a mathematical expression that would approximate the subjective probability distribution of hypotheses, if these could be bet on. This position was taken by most, but not all, respondents to a ‘Round Robin’ initiated by J. Marschak after M. H. De-Groot's talk on Stopping Rules presented at the UCLA Interdisciplinary Colloquium on Mathematics in Behavioral Sciences. Other participants: K. Borch, H. Chernoif, R. Dorfman, W. Edwards, T. S. Ferguson, G. Graves, K. Miyasawa, P. Randolph, L. J. Savage, R. Schlaifer, R. L. Winkler. Attention is also drawn to K. Borch's article in this issue. (shrink)
: Gay marriage highlights a contradiction in American national identity: if gay marriage is supported, the normative status of the heterosexual nuclear family is undermined, while if not, the civil rights of homosexuals are undermined. This essay discusses the feminist dilemma of whether to support gay marriage to promote these individual civil rights or whether to critique marriage as a part of the patriarchal system that oppresses women.
Realism, defined as a justified belief in the existence of the external world, is jeopardized by ‘meaning rationalism,’ the classic theory of meaning that sees the extension of words as a function of the intensions of individual speakers, with no way to ensure that these intensions actually correspond to anything in the external world. To defend realism, Ruth Millikan ( 1984 , 1989a , b , 1993 , 2004 , 2005 ) offers a biological theory of meaning called ‘teleosemantics’ in (...) which words, without requiring any contribution from the speaker’s intensions, are supposedly matched directly with their extensions by external norms. But even if one granted as a theoretical possibility that word meaning might possibly be stabilized through an external process, nonetheless, realists who wish to appeal to teleosemantics for a semantic proof of the external world must be capable of identifying these external norms, something that Millikan describes as highly fallible. Furthermore, because they can be aware of these norms only as these are internally represented, it would also be necessary for realists to verify that these internal representations accurately reflect the norms as they occur in the external world. But given that this is virtually the same stumbling block to realism found in meaning rationalism, it is concluded that teleosemantics is not likely to restore faith in this worldview. (shrink)
This study provides empirical evidence in relation to a growing body of literature concerned with the ‘socialisation’ effects of accounting and business education. A prevalent criticism within this literature is that accounting and business education in the United Kingdom and the United States, by assuming a ‘value-neutral’ appearance, ignores the implicit ethical and moral assumptions by which it is underpinned. In particular, it has been noted that accounting and business education tends to prioritise the interests of shareholders above all other (...) stakeholder groups. This paper reports on the results of a set of focus group interviews with both undergraduate accounting students and students commencing their training with a professional accounting body. The research explores their perceptions about the purpose of accounting and the objectives of business. The findings suggest that both university and professional students' views on these issues tend to be informed by an Anglo-American shareholder discourse, whereby the needs of shareholders are prioritised. Moreover, this shareholder orientation appeared to be more pronounced for professional accounting students. (shrink)
In a recent paper, José Luis Bermúdez argues that Locke's claim that all simple ideas are adequate is inconsistent with other claims he makes in the Essay concerning the nature of such ideas. In particular, Bermúdez argues that Locke is unjustified in claiming that all simple ideas are adequate, because simple ideas of secondary qualities are in fact not. In this paper I argue that Bermúdez has missed an essential aspect of Locke's distinction and has therefore misconstrued his claims.
Ruth Millikan and others adopt a normative definition of biological functions that is heavily used in areas such as Millikan’s teleosemantics, and also for emerging efforts to naturalize other areas of philosophy. I propose an experiment called the Lapse Test to determine exactly what form of normativity, if any, truly applies to biological functions. Millikan has not gone far enough in playing down as “impersonal” or “quasi” the precise mode of normativity that she attributes to biological functions. Further, her mode (...) fails to qualify as genuine normativity at all, lacking an essential feature: some lapse of responsibility on the part of any entity or system that is charged with failing to do as it is “supposed.” Nor, as we will see, is there anything in English idioms used to describe biological functions that can provide a persuasive argument to rehabilitate Millikan’s normative definition. (shrink)
Melancholy and The Critique of Modernity examines the connections between the emergence of modern society and the experience of melancholy. The idea of "sadness without a cause" has played an important part in human self-understanding throughout the development of Western society. But with the emergence of modernity melancholy has become its most pervasive and significant experience. The affinity between melancholy and modernity is examined through a comprehensive re-examination of the writings of Soren Kierkegaard. The whole range of Kierkegaard's work is (...) set in the context of a social and historical theory of melancholy. From this perspective Kierkegaard emerges as the most important, and the most typical, psychologist of the modern era. Melancholy and The Critique of Modernity makes Kierkegaard's rich and insightful writings accessible to a new audience and establishes him as a central figure for contemporary debates on the nature of modernity. (shrink)
What is phenomenological sociology? Why is it significant? This innovative and thought-provoking book argues that phenomenology was the most significant, wide-ranging and influential philosophy to emerge in the twentieth century. The social character of phenomenology is explored in its relation to the concern in twentieth century sociology with questions of modern experience. Phenomenology and sociology come together as 'ethnographies of the present'. As such, they break free of the self-imposed limitations of each to establish a new, critical understanding of contemporary (...) life. By reading phenomenology sociologically and sociology phenomenologically, this book reconstructs a phenomenological sociology of modern experience. Erudite and assured, this book opens up a series of new questions for contemporary social theory that theorists and students of theory can ill-afford to ignore. The text contains a treasure trove of insights and propositions that will stimulate debate and research in both sociology and philosophy. (shrink)
: This paper on Ofelia Schutte's work discusses five main themes: gender oppression in the context of Latin American theories of social liberation; normative heterosexuality in Beauvoir and Irigaray; Schutte's analysis of women and capitalist globalization processes; her work on cultural identities; and the possibility of feminist transnational identities. I conclude with a comment on her postcolonial epistemological method in addressing cultural incommensurability and the possibility of a common agenda for transnational feminism.
`I would encourage undergraduates students to read it, for it does summarise well a classical Marxist analysis of social policy and welfare' - Social Policy The anti-capitalist movement is increasingly challenging the global hegemony of neo-liberalism. The arguments against the neo-liberal agenda are clearly articulated in Rethinking Welfare. The authors highlight the growing inequalities and decimation of state welfare, and use Marxist approaches to contemporary social policy to provide a defence of the welfare state. Divided into three main sections, the (...) first part of this volume looks at the growth of inequality, and social and environmental degradation. Part Two centres on the authors' argument for the relevance of core Marxists concepts in aiding our understanding of social policy. This section includes Marxist approaches to a range of welfare issues, and their implications for studying welfare regimes and practices. Issues covered include: · Class and class struggle · Opression · Alienation and the family The last part of the book explores the question of globalization and the consequences of international neo-liberalism on indebted countries as well as the neo-liberal agenda of the Conservative and New Labour governments in Britain. The authors conclude with the prospect of an alternative welfare future which may form part of the challenge against global neo-liberalism. (shrink)
The aim of this essay is to rethink classic issues of freedom and moral responsibility in the context of feminist and antiracist theories of male and white domination. If personal identities are socially constructed by gender, race and ethnicity, class and sexual orientation, how are social change and moral responsibility possible? An aspects theory of selfhood and three reinterpretations of identity politics show how individuals are morally responsible and nonessentialist ways to resist social oppression.
Classic deductive logic entails that once a conclusion is sustained by a valid argument, the argument can never be invalidated, no matter how many new premises are added. This derived property of deductive reasoning is known as monotonicity. Monotonicity is thought to conflict with the defeasibility of reasoning in natural language, where the discovery of new information often leads us to reject conclusions that we once accepted. This perceived failure of monotonic reasoning to observe the defeasibility of natural-language arguments has (...) led some philosophers to abandon deduction itself (!), often in favor of new, non-monotonic systems of inference known as `default logics'. But these radical logics (e.g., Ray Reiter's default logic) introduce their desired defeasibility at the expense of other, equally important intuitions about natural-language reasoning. And, as a matter of fact, if we recognize that monotonicity is a property of the form of a deductive argument and not its content (i.e., the claims in the premise(s) and conclusion), we can see how the common-sense notion of defeasibility can actually be captured by a purely deductive system. (shrink)
This paper develops a new feminist paradigm for global justice that includes several components. I deploy a non-ideal ethics approach based on an argumentabout what principle of justice is possible to act on, given a historical and intersectional feminist analysis of what kind of feminist coalitions are possible in the present period. I claim that the time is ripe for a new progressive feminist Solidarity paradigm of justice that supersedes the classical liberal debates between Libertarian Freedom paradigm and the Social (...) Democrat Equality paradigm of Justice. I outline the antiglobalization economic and political networks coming into existence, as evidenced by networks of worker-owned cooperatives, labor unions, fair trade commitments, squatter and other land reform movements. Such movements are creating the material conditions in which North-South women’s coalition movements, based not on essentialist but on transformational identities, can unite around various issues of global gender justice, including reproductive rights, environmental justice, and the feminization of poverty. (shrink)
Virtually all political theory and ethical systems presuppose the primacy of human beings. Abstract human beings have rights, privileges, legal standing, and-it is said-claims to our sympathy. Many political debates, therefore, center on questions of where these lines are to be drawn. But many humans do not behave this way. People, for example, may expend far more love, time, money, and energy on their pets' well-being than on abstract humans. If the choice is between an operation to save their dog's (...) life, or saving a human life through the United Nations, for example, most will choose the former, even if put in such stark terms. This essay argues that people's love for their dogs transcends the human/animal barrier, that this love overturns assumptions about the role of abstraction in our lives, and that such attunement can be understood only via new formulations of the roles of ethics and philosophy. (shrink)
In ''''A Defense of Evolutionary Ethics'''' (1986), Robert J. Richardsendeavors to explain how moral ''oughts'' can be derived from thescience of evolutionary biology without committing the dreadednaturalistic fallacy. First, Richards assumes that ''ought'' as usedin ethical discourse bears the same meaning as ''ought'' used anywherein science, indicating merely that certain results or behaviors arepredicted based on prior structured contexts. To this extent, themoral behavior of animals, what they ''ought'' to do, could arguablybe predicted by evolutionary biology as effectively as, say,molecular (...) behavior may be predicted by chemistry. But afteracknowledging that biological inferences to this limited senseof ''ought'' were never contested by Moore''s naturalistic fallacy,Richard proposes to add to evolutionary ethics a decision procedureto determine which members of a set of predicted behaviors arethose which truly ought to occur – in the genuinelyprescriptive sense intended by ethical discourse. But theprocedure which Richards fabricates for this purpose appealsto such alleged ''facts'' as cultural conventions and moral opinionpolling, hardly a secure foundation for the sort of scientific ethics promised by Richards at the outset. (shrink)
I support Cheshire Calhoun's argument that there is a distinctive type of sexuality injustice addressed to lesbians and gays, but challenge her definitional strategy regarding the concepts of "lesbian" and "gay" and the "universalistic essentialist" distinction that she draws between patriarchy and compulsory heterosexuality. Finally, I take issue with the political implications of her claim that lesbians' and gays' special oppression stems from our exclusion from the legal prerogatives of marriage and parenthood.
An integrated overview of history The volume in this series are arranged topically to cover biography, literature, doctrines, practices, institutions, worship, missions, and daily life. Archaeology and art as well as writings are drawn on to illuminate the Christian movement in its early centuries. Ample attention is also given to the relation of Christianity to pagan thought and life, to the Roman state, to Judaism, and to doctrines and practices that came to be judged as heretical or schismatic. Introductions to (...) each volume tie the articles together for an integrated understanding of the history. Offers insights and understanding The aim of the collection is to give balanced and comprehensive coverage, selected on the basis of the following criteria: original and excellent research and writing; subject matter of use to teachers and students; groundbreaking importance for the history of research; background information for issues and opinions. Understanding the development of early Christianity and its impact on Western history and thought offers valuable insights into the modern world and the present state of Christiantiy. It also provides perspective on comparable developments in other periods of history and reveals human nature in its religious dimension. (shrink)
An extensive body of Chinese philosophical thought suggests a redefinition of international security in terms of a non-threatening formulation of Comprehensive Security. In one culture viewed as particularly 'strategic', i.e. Chinese culture, we find strong traditions of inclusive, non-aggressive forms of security. Mo Tzu and the school of Mohism (5th-3rd centuries BC) developed a rigorous body of thought and practice based on universal regard, the protection of small states, and disesteem for aggressive wars. This is paralleled by a more general (...) emphasis in the classical Chinese philosophical and political tradition on the means of civilisation (wen) over the methods of brute warfare (wu). In modem regional crises such as the dispute between Taiwan and the PRC (People's Republic of China), it is crucial to engage the wen (cultured) aspect of the political tradition. In this context, deterrence of aggression by reciprocal threats is only a short-term solution. (shrink)
Since the introduction of drugs to prevent vertical transmission of HIV, the purpose of and approach to HIV testing of pregnant women has increasingly become an area of major controversy. In recent years, many strategies to increase the uptake of HIV testing have focused on offering HIV tests to women in pregnancy-related services. New global guidance issued by the World Health Organization (WHO) and the Joint United Nations Programme on HIV/AIDS (UNAIDS) specifically notes these services as an entry point for (...) provider-initiated HIV testing and counseling (PITC). The guidance constitutes a useful first step towards a framework within which PITC sensitive to health, human rights and ethical concerns can be provided to pregnant women in health facilities. However, a number of issues will require further attention as implementation moves forward. It is incumbent on all those involved in the scale up of PITC to ensure that it promotes long-term connection with relevant health services and does not result simply in increased testing with no concrete benefits being accrued by the women being tested. Within health services, this will require significant attention to informed consent, pre- and post-test counseling, patient confidentiality, referrals and access to appropriate services, as well as reduction of stigma and discrimination. Beyond health services, efforts will be needed to address larger societal, legal, policy and contextual issues. The health and human rights of pregnant women must be a primary consideration in how HIV testing is implemented; they can benefit greatly from PITC but only if it is carried out appropriately. (shrink)
Northern researchers and service providers espousing modernist theories of development in order to understand and aid countries and peoples of the South ignore their own non-universal starting points of knowledge and their own vested interests. Universal ethics are rejected in favor of situated ethics, while a modified empowerment development model for aiding women in the South based on poststructuralism requires building a bridge identity politics to promote participatory democracy and challenge Northern power knowledges.
This is a review essay that also serves as an introduction to the other essays in the issue. It discusses feminist theory's relation to Freud, feminist ethical questions on motherhood and sexuality, the historical question of how systems of socially constructed sexual desire connect to male dominance, the question of the role of the body in feminist theory, and disputes within feminism on self, gender, agency and power.
Although international law and the Charter of the United Nations define a doctrine of just war, some critics have argued that the U.S. has become an empire that can no longer be bound by such doctrine. On the contrary, I maintain that we must retain just war doctrine as a normative base from which to critique the U.S. and its preemptive wars against terrorism. Neither the Afghanistan nor the Iraq war has been a just war. By its imperialist intentions and (...) barbarous actions, the U.S. government has shown itself no longer to be a legitimate authority with the moral justification to begin or conduct a war. Such subversion of democratic deliberation requires a moral force to mobilize resistance from below. Since no war initiated by the undemocratic elite of the U.S. Empire could possibly be just, we have a conscientious obligation to become revolutionary pacifists against any wars called by such an illegitimate government. In contrast to universal pacifism, a context-justified revolutionary pacifism can be defended as a coherent moral and political position. (shrink)