Machine generated contents note: Preface; Using this book; Notes for instructors; Part I. Bioethics and Ethics: 1. Biotechnology and bioethics: what it's all about; 2. Ethics in general: ethics, action and freedom; 3. Ethics in the context of society: ethics, society and the law; 4. Ethical theories: virtue, duty and happiness; 5. Identifying and evaluating arguments: logic and morality; 6. General arguments: unnatural, disgusting, risky, only opinion; Part II. The Beginning and End of Life: Section 1. Cloning: 7. Therapeutic cloning: (...) the moral status of embryos; 8. Reproductive cloning: science and science fiction; Section 2. Reproduction: 9. Reproductive freedom: rights, responsibilities and choice; 10. The resources of reproduction: eggs, sperm and wombs for sale; 11. Screening and embryo selection: eliminating disorders or people?; Section 3. Ageing and Death: 12. Ageing and immortality: the search for longevity; 13. Death and killing: the quality and value of life; Part III. In The Midst of Life: Section 4. Our Duties to Ourselves: 14. Human enhancement: the more the better?; 15. Bio-information: databases, privacy and the fight against crime; 16. Security and defence: security sensitivity, publication and warfare; Section 5. Our Duties to Each Other: 17. Food and energy security: GM food, biofuel and the media; 18. Bio-ownership: who owns the stuff of life?; 19. Human justice: the developed and developing worlds; Section 6. Our Duties to Nature: 20. Non-human animals: consciousness, rationality and animal rights; 21. The living and non-living environment: spaceship Earth; Index. (shrink)
One mainstream approach to philosophy involves trying to learn about philosophically interesting, non-mental phenomena—ethical properties, for example, or causation—by gathering data from human beings. I call this approach “wide tent traditionalism.” It is associated with the use of philosophers’ intuitions as data, the making of deductive arguments from this data, and the gathering of intuitions by eliciting reactions to often quite bizarre thought experiments. These methods have been criticized—I consider experimental philosophy’s call for a move away from the use of (...) philosophers’ intuitions as evidence, and recent suggestions about the use of inductive arguments in philosophy—and these criticisms point out important areas for improvement. However, embracing these reforms in turn gives wide-tent traditionalists strong reasons to maintain other traditional approaches to philosophy. Specifically, traditionalists’ commitment to using intuitions and to gathering them with bizarre thought experiments is well founded, both philosophically and empirically. I end by considering some problems with gathering trustworthy intuitions, and give suggestions about how best to solve them. (shrink)
Recently, a number of philosophers have turned to folk intuitions about mental states for data about qualia and phenomenal consciousness. In this paper I argue that current research along these lines does not tell us about these subjects. I focus on a series of studies, performed by Justin Sytsma and Edouard Machery, to make my argument. Folk judgments studied by these researchers are mostly likely generated by a certain cognitive system – System One – that will generate the same data (...) whether or not we experience phenomenal consciousness. This is a problem for a range of current experimental philosophy research into consciousness or our concept of it. If experimental philosophy is to shed light into phenomenal consciousness, it needs to be better founded in an understanding of how we make judgments. (shrink)
There is widespread controversy about the use of intuitions in philosophy. In this paper I will argue that there are legitimate concerns about this use, and that these concerns cannot be fully responded to using the traditional methods of philosophy. We need an understanding of how intuitions are generated and what it is they are based on, and this understanding must be founded on the psychological investigation of the mind. I explore how a psychological understanding of intuitions is likely to (...) impact a range of philosophical projects, from conceptual analysis to the study of (non-conceptual) "things themselves" to experimental philosophy. (shrink)
Sometimes a belief that p promotes having true beliefs, whether or not p is true. This gives reasons to believe that p, but most epistemologists would deny that it gives epistemic reasons, or that these reasons can epistemically justify the belief that p. Call these reasons to believe “truth promoting non-evidential reasons for belief.” This paper argues that three common views in epistemology, taken together, entail that reasons of this sort can epistemically justify beliefs. These three claims are: epistemic oughts (...) are normative, epistemic oughts have a source, and the source of epistemic oughts is an end that has true belief as a necessary component. These claims would be hard for many epistemologists to deny, but accepting them, and thus accepting that truth promoting non-evidential reasons can justify beliefs, has significant consequences for epistemology. The paper considers accounts of epistemic oughts that endorse these claims but might seem to avoid the consequence that truth promoting non-evidential reasons generate real epistemic oughts, and shows that none do. (shrink)
Like literature and art, music has "works". But not every piece of music is called a work, and not every musical performance is made up of works. The complexities of this situation are explored in these essays, which examine a broad swathe of western music. From plainsong to the symphony, from Duke Ellington to the Beatles, this is at root an investigation into how our minds parcel up the music that we create and hear.
Believing that traditional Christian theism implies there is something epistemically wrong with religious unbelief, I examine John Calvin’s claim that everybody would believe in God if it weren’t for sin. I show why this claim ought to be more common than it is; develop it in terms of our naturally having certain reliable epistemic sets; utilize that development to specify exactly what is wrong with unbelief; and then argue that even unbelievers have some reason to think it is true.
La photographie, dès sa naissance, entretint des relations tout à la fois difficiles et opaques avec l’art. En France notamment, et cela jusqu’à l’aube du xxe siècle, nombre d’écrivains et artistes se liguèrent pour affirmer qu’entre les deux, seuls prévalaient des rapports de subordination de la première au second. L’intérêt et la possible reconnaissance de la photographie en tant qu’art ne se manifesta donc qu’assez tardivement, une fois marginalisées les productions du premier « pictorialisme » visant à aligner l’esthétique du (...) nouveau médium sur celle de la peinture. Au cours de la première moitié du xxe siècle, en partie grâce au surréalisme, la photographie entra progressivement dans le champ de l’art avant qu’au cours des années 1970, un emballement se produise, autorisant des légitimations rétrospectives rehaussées de justifications théoriques et esthétiques. L’entrée en scène du numérique contribua à l’accélération de ce mouvement de fusion – absorption par l’art contemporain, dont il n’est pas inutile de se demander s’il n’est pas une autre manière de soumettre la photographie à une identité rétrécie et réductrice. (shrink)