Illusions of control and fantasies of power are important themes in human history and culture. The first objective of this paper is to explore Zarathustran fantasies in the information society, and our dreams of God-like control and mastery over ourselves and the Universe. This paper does not try to be faithful to Nietzschean philosophical concepts of Zarathustra, but instead explore cultural themes, which can be related to a mythology of God-like control and omniscient perception. It draws together strands from science (...) fiction, anthropology, philosophy, technology development, systems engineering, socio-technical systems, finance and e-business to set out how we have fallen for the technocultural illusions we have created. The paper then shifts gear, and in an attempt to address these technocultural problems, identifies an intellectual trajectory centred on an anthropological perspective. Using examples from e-business and Schwartz’s universal model of human values, applied into a technocultural context, the paper shows how it is possible to create meaningful systems of organisation that utilise advanced technologies to help provide a deeply value-laden cultural system. Our world is changing fundamentally and dramatically, and we desperately need new approaches to help us understand these transitions. The paper’s primary contribution is to critique both human-centred thinking, and mechanistic, Taylorist views of organisation and technology. It stimulates debate concerning the relationship between technology and culture as it is worked out in the information society. Shifting the perspective from humans as social, functioning creatures, this paper offers a new human-centred approach based upon humans as cultural, valuing beings. (shrink)
In the context of technology development and systems engineering, knowledge is typically treated as a complex information structure. In this view, knowledge can be stored in highly sophisticated data systems and processed by explicitly intelligent, software-based technologies. This paper argues that the current emphasis upon knowledge as information (or even data) is based upon a form of rationalism which is inappropriate for any comprehensive treatment of knowledge in the context of human-centred systems thinking. A human-centred perspective requires us to treat (...) knowledge in human terms. The paper sets out the particular importance of tacit knowledge in this regard. It sets out two case studies which reveal the critical importance of a careful treatment of tacit knowledge for success in two complex, technology-driven projects. (shrink)
The definition of 'Englishness' has become the subject of considerable debate, and in this important contribution tto Ideas in Context Julia Stapleton looks at the work of one of the most wide-ranging and influential theorists of the English nation, Ernest Barker. The first holder of the Chair of Political Science at Cambridge, Barker wrote prolifically on the history of political thought and contemporary political theory, and his writings are notable for fusing three of the dominant strands of late-nineteenth and (...) early-twentieth century political thought, Whiggism, Idealism and Pluralism. Infused with a strong cultural sense of nationhood, Barker's writings influenced a broad non-academic audience, and their subsequent neglect graphically demonstrates the fate of a certain vision of Liberal England in the generation after World War One. With, however, the erosion of a particular sense of Englishness, Barker's ideas have begun to assume renewed resonance. (shrink)
This paper explores some of the differences between the enactive approach in cognitive science and the extended mind thesis. We review the key enactive concepts of autonomy and sense-making . We then focus on the following issues: (1) the debate between internalism and externalism about cognitive processes; (2) the relation between cognition and emotion; (3) the status of the body; and (4) the difference between ‘incorporation’ and mere ‘extension’ in the body-mind-environment relation.
Cognitive systems research has predominantly been guided by the historical distinction between emotion and cognition, and has focused its efforts on modelling the “cognitive” aspects of behaviour. While this initially meant modelling only the control system of cognitive creatures, with the advent of “embodied” cognitive science this expanded to also modelling the interactions between the control system and the external environment. What did not seem to change with this embodiment revolution, however, was the attitude towards affect and emotion in cognitive (...) science. This paper argues that cognitive systems research is now beginning to integrate these aspects of natural cognitive systems into cognitive science proper, not in virtue of traditional “embodied cognitive science”, which focuses predominantly on the body’s gross morphology, but rather in virtue of research into the interoceptive, organismic basis of natural cognitive systems. (shrink)
We present a specific elaboration and partial defense of the claims that cognition is enactive, embodied, embedded, affective and (potentially) extended. According to the view we will defend, the enactivist claim that perception and cognition essentially depend upon the cognizer’s interactions with their environment is fundamental. If a particular instance of this kind of dependence obtains, we will argue, then it follows that cognition is essentially embodied and embedded, that the underpinnings of cognition are inextricable from those of affect, that (...) the phenomenon of cognition itself is essentially bound up with affect, and that the possibility of cognitive extension depends upon the instantiation of a specific mode of skillful interrelation between cognizer and environment. Thus, if cognition is enactive then it is also embodied, embedded, affective and potentially extended. (shrink)
This commentary (1) raises the question about the possible conﬂation of core affect with the neural representation of interoceptive changes in regard to whether biological value is subpersonal or must be experienced, and (2) proposes that Wundt’s third dimension of core affect – strain-relaxation – can be accounted for in the target model under a generalised predictive model of attention.
Embodied cognitive science has argued that cognition is embodied principally in virtue of grossmorphological and sensorimotor features. This thesis argues that cognition is also internally embodied in affective and fine-grained physiological features whose transformative roles remain mostlyunnoticed in contemporary cognitive science. I call this ‘proper embodiment’. I approach this larger subject by examining various emotion theories in philosophy and psychology. These tend to emphasiseone of the many gross components of emotional processes, such as ‘feeling’ or ‘judgement’ to thedetriment of the (...) others, often leading to an artificial emotion-cognition distinction even within emotionscience itself. Attempts to reconcile this by putting the gross components back together, such as JessePrinz’s “embodied appraisal theory”, are, I argue, destined to failure because the vernacular concept of emotion which is used as the explanandum is not a natural kind and is not amenable to scientificexplication.I examine Antonio Damasio’s proposal that emotion is involved in paradigmatic ‘cognitive’ processingsuch as rational decision making, and argue (1) that the research he discusses does not warrant the particular hypothesis he favours, and (2) that Damasio’s account, though in many ways a step in theright direction, nonetheless continues to endorse a framework which sees affect and cognition asseparate (though now highly interacting) faculties. I further argue that the conflation of ‘affect’ and‘emotion’ may be the source of some confusion in emotion theory and that affect needs to be properlydistinguished from ‘emotion’. I examine some dissociations in the pain literature which give us further empirical evidence that, as with the emotions, affect is a distinct component along with more cognitive elements of pain. I then argue that affect is distinctive in being grounded in homeostatic regulativeactivity in the body proper.With the distinction between affect, emotion, and cognition in hand, and the associated grounding of affect in bodily activity, I then survey evidence that bodily affect is also involved in perception and in paradigmatic cognitive processes such as attention and executive function. I argue that this relation isnot ‘merely’ casual. Instead, affect (grounded in fine-grained details of internal bodily activity) is partially constitutive of cognition, participating in cognitive processing and contributing to perceptualand cognitive phenomenology. Finally I review some work in evolutionary robotics which reaches asimilar conclusion, suggesting that the particular fine details of embodiment, such as molecular signalling between both neural and somatic cells matters to cognition. I conclude that cognition is‘properly embodied’ in that it is partially constituted by the many fine-grained bodily processesinvolved in affect (as demonstrated in the thesis) and plausibly by a wide variety of other fine-grained bodily processes that likewise tend to escape the net of contemporary cognitive science. (shrink)
Building on an existing framework concerning ethical intention, this research explores how Thai business people perceive the importance of ethics in various scenarios. This study investigates the relative influences of personal characteristics and the organizational environment underlying the Thai business people’s ethical perception. Corporate ethical values and idealism are shown to positively influence a Thai manager’s perceptions about the importance of ethics. While their ability to perceive the existence of an ethical problem is negatively influenced by relativism, it is positively (...) impacted by their existing perceptions about the importance of ethics. Results also suggest positive relationships between perceived importance of ethics and perceived ethical problems with ethical intention. These results extend research in understanding the relationship between the antecedents and consequences of perceived importance of ethics within an economically growing non-Western culture. (shrink)
(A) Larry Shiner address some central issues about architecturein particular, he is interested in the extent to which architectural beauty is dependent on, or independent of, various functions of buildings. What role does or should our knowledge of the functions of a building play in our aesthetic appreciation of it? I would say that a building may have various functions in addition to its aesthetic functions. One crucial question is over the way that the aesthetic and nonaesthetic functions may (...) be interwoven, so that there may be the “aesthetic expression” of nonaesthetic functions, which is also an aesthetic function of the building. I think that there are important unsolved and unresolved issues here, of great importance in aesthetics. What exactly is it to be beautiful as something with a function. What, exactly, is the aesthetic realization of a nonaesthetic function? I hoped to make a start on these matters by invoking the notion of “dependent beauty”, roughly as Kant described it, but perhaps with some recasting. I am pleased that Shiner appreciates the utility of the Kantian dependent beauty framework for thinking about certain substantive debates about architecture. A theoretical framework should have fruitful and illuminating application in particular cases. Recasting the form/function debates in architecture as debates about different kinds of function, I think, is helpful, especially because the framework allows for more or less aesthetically significant interaction between pure aesthetic and nonaesthetic functions. Shiner pursues some architectural debates in this frameworkhe is especially insightful on issues about the reuse of buildings. (B) In Aesthetic Creation, I raised a worry about how to specify exactly which functions are relevant to the aesthetic assessment of architecture. Architectural assessment is broader than aesthetic assessment; leaking roofs are an architectural defect but not (usually) an aesthetic defect of a building.. (shrink)
Larry Horn is justifiably famous for his work on the semantics of the English conjunction or and both its relationship to the formal logic truth functions ∨ and @ (“inclusive” and “exclusive” disjunction respectively1) and its relationship to the ways people employ or in natural discourse. These interests have been present since his 1972 dissertation, where he argued for a “scalar implicature-based” account of many of these relationships as opposed to a presuppositional account. They have surfaced in his “Greek (...) Grice” paper (Horn 1973) as well as in his Negation book (Horn 1989) and his recent “Border Wars” paper (Horn, forthcoming) where he defends the position that there are two types of implicatures at work here: Q- implicatures based on Grice’s first maxim of Quantity (“Say Enough”) and R-implicatures based on Grice’s second maxim of Quantity (“Don’t Say Too Much”). In a nutshell, the idea is that when a speaker employs a sentence with a disjunction, the meaning (that is, the semantic value) of the or is inclusive. With careful and judicious use of the Q- and R-implicatures, Larry’s theory allows the hearer (often) to infer that the speaker wanted to convey an exclusive disjunction. (shrink)
Abstract I am honoured that you asked me to give the Kohlberg Memorial Lecture and grateful for this occasion to remember Larry and speak about his work. For me, it means coming back into a conversation that I was intensely involved in a long time ago. I have not talked publicly about Larry or my relationship with him since the time of his death, and it has now been over 10 years. I want to say how I remember (...)Larry and also how it came to pass that I became involved in a conversation with him and how my work flowed through the area of moral development for a period of time. In doing so, I will bring my first?person voice into a place where I have tended to appear in the third person, as ?Gilligan?, I will talk about Carol and Larry and Kohlberg and Gilligan, but first I want to begin in the present, with where I am now and with an observation about boys that led me back to the beginning of Larry's theory. (shrink)
The aim of the paper is to reconstruct the essential content and main sources of Larry Laudan's position in the philosophy of science. A background for the reconstruction is provided by the controversy about the nature of changes in science and by the controversy about so called „scientific realism”.
Thirty years after the publication of Thomas Kuhn’s The Structure of Scientific Revolutions, sharp disagreement persists concerning the implications of Kuhn’s "historicist" challenge to empiricism. I discuss the historicist movement over the past thirty years, and the extent to which the discourse between two branches of the historical school has been influenced by tacit assumptions shared with Rudolf Carnap’s empiricism. I begin with an examination of Carnap’s logicism --his logic of science-- and his 1960 correspondence with Kuhn. I focus on (...) problems in the analysis applied to the unit of metascientific study or appraisal, arguing for a reassessment of historicist treatment of the internal/external distinction and historiographic meta-methodology. The critique of objectivism and relativism that eventuates from this re-assessment is a double-edged blade, undercutting both objectivist and relativist treatments of cognitive evaluation and scientific change. I use it to cut across an otherwise diverse group of historicist-influenced writers, including Imre Lakatos, Larry Laudan, H. M. Collins, Stephen Stich. I. Introduction.. (shrink)
Ethicists and economists commonly assume that if A is all things considered better than B, and B is all things considered better than C, then A is all things considered better than C. Call this principle Transitivity. Although it has great conceptual, intuitive, and empirical appeal, I argue against it. Larry S. Temkin explains how three types of ethical principle, which cannot be dismissed a priori, threaten Transitivity: (a) principles implying that in some cases different factors are relevant to (...) comparing A to C than to comparing A to B or B to C; (b) principles of limited scope; (c) principles implying that morally relevant differences in degree can amount to differences in kind. My counterexamples employ a principle of type (c): pleasures and pains enormously different in intensity differ in kind. Temkin has also endorsed this type of counterexample, using arguments based on earlier drafts of this paper. (shrink)
The Chinese room argument is a thought experiment of John Searle (1980a) and associated (1984) derivation. It is one of the best known and widely credited counters to claims of artificial intelligence (AI)—that is, to claims that computers do or at least can (someday might) think. According to Searle’s original presentation, the argument is based on two key claims: brains cause minds and syntax doesn’t suffice for semantics. Its target is what Searle dubs “strong AI.” According to strong AI, Searle (...) says, “the computer is not merely a tool in the study of the mind, rather the appropriately programmed computer really is a mind in the sense that computers given the right programs can be literally said to understand and have other cognitive states” (1980a, p. 417). Searle contrasts strong AI with “weak AI.” According to weak AI, computers just simulate thought, their seeming understanding isn’t real understanding (just as-if), their seeming calculation is only as-if calculation, etc. Nevertheless, computer simulation is useful for studying the mind (as for studying the weather and other things). (shrink)
It has become something of a leitmotif among evangelical apologetes to argue that morality can have no objective foundation if there is no God. Using a strategy that appeals to many people's strong intuitions that there are objective rights and wrongs, they claim seek to convict atheists of being intellectually committed to moral relativism, subjectivism, or nihilism. Those are, of course, ethical positions that have been advocated by some atheists. But others share the intuition that there are objective moral norms, (...) and also that we can, on the whole, come to know what they are. (shrink)
This paper contains an overview of the essays contained in the Mind and morals anthology plus a critical discussion of certain themes raised in many of these essays concerning the bearing of recent work in cognitive science on the traditional project of moral theory. Specifically, I argue for the following claims: (1) authors like Virginia Held, who appear to be antagonistic toward the methodological naturalism of Owen Flanagan, Andy Clark, Paul Churchland, and others, are really in fundamental agreement with the (...) naturalists (at least once the naturalist view is suitably clarified); (2) the prototype theory of moral concepts that is inspired by recent work in cognitive science does not necessarily jeopardize the aim of systematization characteristic of traditional moral theory; (3) nor does it threaten certain widely accepted views about moral rationality that is part of traditional moral theorizing. Moreover, I speculate that (4) recent work in cognitive science can be expected to play a corroborative role in the justification of theories in ethics, but we should probably not expect this work to yield new insights and directions in ethics. Finally, (5) Fodor's recent critique of cognitive science makes clear the perils of methodological ethical naturalism. (shrink)
This paper explores the determiner corner of the ‘any’ land in Romanian, taking Lee and Horn 1994 and Horn 2000a as tour guides. The immediate interest of the task lies in the fact that the work done in English by the over-employed determiner any is carried out in Romanian by a host of more specialized (and, one fears, lower paid) morphemes, which I review in the rest of this section. My aim is to introduce the details of the Romanian facts (...) onto the scene and to show that an ‘indefinitist’ view that generalizes the scalar approach advocated in Horn’s work is useful in helping us understand the much more crowded Romanian field. The theory of any that serves as my starting point is summarized in Section 2. Section 3 proposes a generalization of the scalar view advocated by Horn in terms of an alternative-based approach in the spirit of Krifka 1995, Giannakidou 2001 and Kratzer and Shimoyama 2002, based on a novel way of defining alternatives. Section 4 looks at the consequences of the proposal, Section 5 considers ways of extending it, and Section 6 is a brief conclusion. The approach suggested here falls under what Horn calls quodlibetic theories. Its claim is that the unifying characteristic of both existentially and universally flavored free choice-like items is that they denote a maximal set of alternatives that verify the expression in which the item occurs. The scalar view is the important special case in which these alternatives form an implicational scale with respect to verifying the relevant expression. (shrink)
It seems philosophers often feel compelled to assess the continuing relevance of their chosen fields of specialization and/or their favorite philosophers. While this volume does not set out to prove that the philosophy of John Dewey is of continuing relevance (and it is difficult to imagine how one would prove such a thing), several of the included essays explicitly argue that Dewey's work provides resources to advance contemporary philosophical debates. The collection was assembled from essays presented at a June 2009 (...) conference at the University of Opole in southern Poland, held in honor of the 150th anniversary of Dewey's birth. The very fact that sesquicentennial conferences like this one were held all over .. (shrink)