: The importance of Hegel to the philosophy of Simone de Beauvoir, both to her early philosophical texts and to The Second Sex, is usually discussed in terms of the master-slave dialectic and a Kojève–influenced reading, which some see her as sharing with Sartre, others persuasively describe as divergent from and corrective to Sartre's. Altman shows that Hegel's influence on Beauvoir's work is also wider, both in terms of what she takes on board and what she works through and (...) rejects, and that her reading of Hegel is crucially inflected by two additional circumstances that Sartre did not entirely share: the experience of her first serious study of Hegel as a noncombatant in Paris during the German occupation and her earlier direct exposure to an eccentric, idealist reading of Hegel as developed by the group Philosophies in connection with surrealism and the artistic avant-garde. Altman also explores the afterlife of Hegel's influence on Beauvoir on second-wave feminism in the United States and Europe, and suggests continuing relevance to feminist theory today. (shrink)
Fred Dallmayr: Integral Pluralism: Beyond Culture Wars Content Type Journal Article Category Book Review Pages 1-8 DOI 10.1007/s10746-011-9190-0 Authors Megan Altman, Department of Philosophy, University of South Florida, Tampa, FL, USA Journal Human Studies Online ISSN 1572-851X Print ISSN 0163-8548.
When examined critically, Kant's views on sex and marriage give us the tools to defend same-sex marriage on moral grounds. The sexual objectification of one's partner can only be overcome when two people take responsibility for one another's overall well-being, and this commitment is enforced through legal coercion. Kant's views on the unnaturalness of homosexuality do not stand up to scrutiny, and he cannot (as he often tries to) restrict the purpose of sex to procreation. Kant himself rules out marriage (...) only when the partners cannot give themselves to one another equally – that is, if there is inequality of exchange. Because same-sex marriage would be between equals and would allow homosexuals to express their desire in a morally appropriate way, it ought to be legalized. (shrink)
A century after its publication, G.E. Moore''sPrincipia Ethica stands as one of theclassic statements of anti-naturalism inethics. Moore claimed that the most basic ethicalproperties were denoted by `good'' and `bad'' andthat all naturalist accounts of thoseproperties were inadequate. His open-questionargument aimed to refute any proposedidentification of good with some naturalproperty, and Moore concluded from theargument that good must be a nonnaturalproperty.The received view is that the open-questionargument is a failure. In this paper,my aim is to breathe some life back intoMoore''s (...) argument. My plan for doing so beginsby presenting the standard interpretation ofthe argument and then showing that there isan alternative to that interpretation. Thealternative is not developed at any length byMoore and stands in need of some elaboration. Isuggest a way of elaborating theargument and then show that the standardcriticisms of Moore fail to undermine thisalternative version of the open-questionargument. (shrink)
A careful reading of Harvey C. Mansfield's Manlines s (2006) and the recent translation (2007) of Daniel Tanguay's Leo Strauss; une biographie intellectuelle (2003) reveals that neither text supports the view that Leo Strauss was a harmless if qualified friend of liberal democracy. Key Words: Leo Strauss • Straussians • Nietzsche • Carl Schmitt • Heidegger • National Socialism • Liberalism • Redlichkeit • Hobbes • Hegel • Viktor Trivas.
This study shows that despite the fact that Leo Strauss published little about Jacobi, the misunderstood thinker about whom he wrote his doctoral dissertation exercised a crucial influence on what is often thought to be Strauss's most enduring achievement: his rediscovery of exotericism. A consideration of several of Strauss's writings that do mention Jacobi but remained unpublished at the time of his death—in particular his studies on Moses Mendelssohn, who was Jacobi's principal target in the Pantheismusstreit—reveal (...) that Strauss considered Jacobi to be an exoteric writer. Appropriately enough, it is only a Straussian-style reading of Strauss's claims that exotericism lapsed after Lessing's death that reveals Jacobi's influence between the lines. Some consideration is given to the question of why Strauss wrote about Jacobi in this secretive way. (shrink)
Bringing continental sensibilities and skill to his project, David Janssens has abandoned the line of defense heretofore used by North American intellectuals to shield Leo Strauss from criticism: Janssens wastes no time trying to prove Strauss was a liberal democrat, frankly admits his atheism, and emphasizes the continuity and European origins of his thought. Nevertheless committed to defending Strauss even at his most vulnerable points, Janssens is compelled to anchor his new defensive position on a misreading of what he calls (...) "an inconspicuous footnote" in Philosophie und Gesetz (1935). (shrink)
Abstract: Democracy is regularly heralded as the only form of government that treats political subjects as free and equal citizens. On closer examination, however, it becomes apparent that democracy unavoidably restricts individual freedom, and it is not the only way to treat all citizens equally. In light of these observations, we argue that the non-instrumental reasons to support democratic governance stem, not from considerations of individual freedom or equality, but instead from the importance of respecting group self-determination. If this is (...) correct, it implies that a state may choose democracy, but its right to self-determination means that it is also free, in principle, to decide in favor of some nondemocratic alternative. (shrink)
For several decades, Ronald Dworkinhas been one of the most prominent voicesdefending the legality and justifiability ofrace-conscious programs aimed at undoing thecontinuing effects of prejudice. Writingwithin the framework of a liberal legalphilosophy, he has formulated powerfularguments against the view that color-blindpolicies are the only defensible ones. Nonetheless, I argue that a more completeliberal defense of race-conscious policieswould need to develop and modify Dworkin''s lineof argument. Such a defense would go beyondhis policy-based arguments and incorporatearguments of principle. Race-conscious policiesdo not only (...) promote the general good; they arealso required in order to help realize theconstitutional right of equal citizenship. (shrink)
Kant is gaining popularity in business ethics because the categorical imperative rules out actions such as deceptive advertising and exploitative working conditions, both of which treat people merely as means to an end. However, those who apply Kant in this way often hold businesses themselves morally accountable, and this conception of collective responsibility contradicts the kind of moral agency that underlies Kant's ethics. A business has neither inclinations nor the capacity to reason, so it lacks the conditions necessary for constraint (...) by the moral law. Instead, corporate policies ought to be understood as analogous to legal constraints. They may encourage or discourage certain actions, but they cannot determine a person's maxim - which for Kant is the focus of moral judgment. Because there is no collective intention apart from any intentions of the individual agents who act as members of the corporation, an organization itself has no moral obligations. This poses a dilemma: either apply the categorical imperative to the actions of particular businesspeople and surrender the notion of collective responsibility, or apply a different moral theory to the actions of businesses themselves. Given the diffusion of responsibility in a bureaucracy, the explanatory usefulness of collective responsibility may force business ethicists to abandon Kant's moral philosophy. (shrink)
This book advances a novel theory of international justice that combines the orthodox liberal notion that the lives of individuals are what ultimately matter morally with the putatively antiliberal idea of an irreducibly collective right of self-governance. The individual and her rights are placed at center stage insofar as political states are judged legitimate if they adequately protect the human rights of their constituents and respect the rights of all others. Yet, the book argues that legitimate states have a moral (...) right to self-determination and that this right is inherently collective, irreducible to the individual rights of the persons who constitute them. Exploring the implications of these ideas, the book addresses issues pertaining to democracy, secession, international criminal law, armed intervention, political assassination, global distributive justice, and immigration. A number of the positions taken in the book run against the grain of current academic opinion: there is no human right to democracy; separatist groups can be morally entitled to secede from legitimate states; the fact that it is a matter of brute luck whether one is born in a wealthy state or a poorer one does not mean that economic inequalities across states must be minimized or even kept within certain limits; most existing states have no right against armed intervention; and it is morally permissible for a legitimate state to exclude all would-be immigrants. (shrink)
Genocide and crimes against humanity are among the core crimes of international law, but they also carry great moral resonance due to their indissoluble link to the atrocities of the Nazi regime and to other egregious episodes of mass violence. However, the concepts of genocide and crimes against humanity are not well understood, even by the international lawyers and jurists who are most concerned with them. A conceptual fog hovers around the discussion of these two categories of crime. In this (...) paper, I draw a number of distinctions aimed at clarifying the concepts. I distinguish three concepts of genocide, two legal and one moral, and two concepts of crimes against humanity, a legal and a moral one. I criticize the current legal concept of genocide and, using the idea of discrimination, propose a model for developing a more adequate legal concept and for better understanding the moral concept. I also criticize the moral concept of crimes against humanity, which many thinkers have conflated with the legal concept of such crimes. (shrink)
The war on terror is remaking conventional warfare. The protracted battle against a non-state organization, the demise of the confinement of hostilities to an identifiable battlefield, the extensive involvement of civilian combatants, and the development of new and more precise military technologies have all conspired to require a rethinking of the law and morality of war. Just war theory, as traditionally articulated, seems ill-suited to justify many of the practices of the war on terror. The raid against Osama Bin Laden's (...) Pakistani compound was the highest profile example of this strategy, but the issues raised by this technique cast a far broader net: every week the U.S. military and CIA launch remotely piloted drones to track suspected terrorists in hopes of launching a missile strike against them. -/- In addition to the public condemnation that these attacks have generated in some countries, the legal and moral basis for the use of this technique is problematic. Is the U.S. government correct that nations attacked by terrorists have the right to respond in self-defense by targeting specific terrorists for summary killing? Is there a limit to who can legitimately be placed on the list? There is also widespread disagreement about whether suspected terrorists should be considered combatants subject to the risk of lawful killing under the laws of war or civilians protected by international humanitarian law. Complicating the moral and legal calculus is the fact that innocent bystanders are often killed or injured in these attacks. This book addresses these issues. Featuring chapters by an unrivalled set of experts, it discusses all aspects of targeted killing, making it unmissable reading for anyone interested in the implications of this practice. (shrink)
Using the concept of purposeful action, I define the necessary and sufficient aspects of any property. These qualities are derived though noticing that property is those things which are the object of a set of past, present, and future actions of individuals. The result is that property is the result of [...].
We give a complete characterization of the class of upward monotone generalized quantifiers Q1 and Q2 over countable domains that satisfy the scheme Q1 x Q2 y φ → Q2 y Q1 x φ. This generalizes the characterization of such quantifiers over finite domains, according to which the scheme holds iff Q1 is ∃ or Q2 is ∀ (excluding trivial cases). Our result shows that in infinite domains, there are more general types of quantifiers that support these entailments.
The conception of subjectivity that dominates the Western philosophical tradition, particularly during the Enlightenment, sets up a simple dichotomy: either the subject is ultimately autonomous or it is merely a causally determined thing. Fichte and Freud challenge this model by formulating theories of subjectivity thattranscend this opposition. Fichte conceives of the subject as based in absolute activity, but that activity is qualified by a check for which it is not ultimately responsible. Freud explains the behavior of the self in terms (...) of biological drives and social pressures, yet both forces are actively interpreted by the subject itself. The tensions that arise from these very different approaches show that both Fichte and Freud are trying to overcome this deeply imbedded dichotomy between freedom and determinism. Although some would respond to these tensions by trying to forge a Hegelian synthesis, such a resolution covers over the paradoxical nature of finite subjectivity. (shrink)
Celebrando o papel de Newton da Costa na história da paraconsistência, este trabalho examina o uso e abuso da deliberada auto-contradição. Iniciado por Parmênides, desenvolvido por Platão, e continuado por Cícero, uma antiga tradição filosófica usava deliberadamente discursos paraconsistentes para revelar a verdade. Nos tempos modernos, o decisionismo tem usado uma deliberada auto-contradição contra a revelação Judaico-Cristã. DOI:10.5007/1808-1711.2010v14n1p1.
In addition to preparing students for graduate school or emphasizing transferable skills that are useful in any career, philosophy departments ought to give majors the education and work experience that will train them to become ethics officers outside of academia. This is a growing field that allows students to engage non-philosophers in setting corporate policies and addressing morally significant social issues. Using a course in medical ethics as an example, I show how incorporating service-learning into philosophy classes benefits students both (...) academically and professionally, and also demonstrates the value of philosophy to the community and to academic administrators. (shrink)
Fichte develops his idealism through a higher-level critique: only through the Fichtean fact of reason can one justify a systematic transcendental idealism, thereby making possible the self-sufficiency of theoretical reason. By examining the metaphilosophical implications of our immediate consciousness of the moral law, Fichte is able to assert the necessary metaphilosophical primacy of practical reason for any possible wissenschaftlich philosophy as well as the philosophical unity of theory and practice within such a system.
Animal suffering and moral character -- Kant's strategic importance for environmental ethics -- Moral and legal arguments for universal health care -- The scope of patient autonomy -- Subjecting ourselves to capital punishment -- Same-sex marriage as a means to mutual respect -- Consent, mail-order brides, and the marriage contract -- Individual maxims and social justice -- The decomposition of the corporate body -- On becoming a person -- Conclusion: emerging from Kant's long shadow.
Since their Puritan origins in the 17th century, American politicians have tended to speak in the language of divinely given morality. George W. Bush is not unique in his frequent references to the language of good and evil, just as he is not the first US politician to mangle the language.
I examine the new analysis of gay community and liberation offered by Dennis Altman in The Homosexualization of America. Three distinctive theoretical constructs are analyzed and criticized: (1) a new view of psychosocial development; (2) a new concept of gay identity; and (3) A set of causal hypotheses designed to explain the new direction of the gay subculture.
This paper attempts to nudge the reader in the direction of an enlightened account of democratic choice, a sense of reflective choice which undermines our present support of discriminatory sectarian doctrine. I use Gutmann’s and Altman’s views as prologues to my own, though they might well reject my conclusions about discriminatory religion. I contrast my view with Macedo’s, Gray’s, Larmore’s, Rosenblum’s, and Galston’s.My argument utilizes common sense and relatively uncontroversial metaphysical principles to make it more difficult to dismiss as (...) being on an ontic par with the discriminatory doctrines which it challenges. I argue that discriminatory religion might be allowed to continue to be practiced and expressed by those who would pay their own way, much as with hate groups generally, but I view our continued public subsidization of it as a failure to recognize it for what it is. (shrink)