In this article I argue against Ronald Dworkin's rejection of the labour auction in his ‘Equality of Resources’. I criticize Dworkin's claims that the talented would envy the untalented in such an auction, and that the talented in particular would be enslaved by it. I identify some ways in which the talent auction is underdescribed and I compare the results for the condition of the talented of different further descriptions of it. I conclude that Dworkin's deviation from the ‘envy test’ (...) criterion results in an inequality between the talented and the untalented which cannot be justified in egalitarian terms. Correspondence:c1 email@example.com. (shrink)
In these essays, we are concerned with virtue in journalism and the media but are mindful of the tension between the commercial foundations of publishing and broadcasting, on the one hand, and journalism's democratic obligations on the other. Adam outlines, first, a moral vision of journalism focusing on individualistic concepts of authorship and craft. Next, Craft attempts to bridge individual and organizational concerns by examining the obligations of organizations to the individuals working within them. Finally, Cohen discusses the importance (...) of resisting the powerful corporate logic that pervades the news media in the United States and calls on journalists to be courageous. (shrink)
In ?The Labour Theory of Value and the Concept of Exploitation? I distinguished between two ways in which the labour theory of value is formulated, both of which are common. In the popular formulation, the amount of value a commodity has depends on how much labour was spent producing it. In the strict formulation, which is so called because it formulates the labour theory of value proper, the amount of value a commodity has depends on nothing about its history but (...) only on how much labour would (now) be required to produce something just like it. I argued that strict and popular formulations are often wrongly treated as substantially equivalent, and that the practice of conflating them sustains two false impressions: that the labour theory of value is a basis for saying that capitalists exploit workers, and that the labour theory of value is true. The present paper is a reply to Nancy Holmstrom's recent attempt, in ?Marx and Cohen on Exploitation and the Labor Theory of Value?, to refute the theses of the article referred to above. (shrink)
Color relationalism is the view that colors are constituted in terms of relations between subjects and objects. The most historically important form of color relationalism is the classic dispositionalist view according to which, for example red is the disposition to look red to standard observers in standard conditions (mutatis mutandis for other colors).1 However, it has become increasingly apparent in recent years that a commitment to the relationality of colors bears interest that goes beyond dispositionalism (Cohen, 2004; Matthen, 1999, (...) 2001, 2005; Thompson, 1995). Accordingly, it is an important project for those interested in the metaphysics of color to sort through and assess different forms of color relationalism. There is, however, a powerful and general cluster of objections that has been thought by many to amount to a decisive refutation of any and all forms of color relationalism. Although this idea has been developed in a number of ways, the basic thought is that relationalism — qua theory of color — is at odds with the manifest evidence of color phenomenology, and that this clash between theory and data should be resolved by giving up the theory. (shrink)
But Hardin hasn’t contented himself with reframing traditional philosoph- ical issues about color in a way that is sensitive to relevant empirical con- straints. In addition, he has been a staunch defender of color eliminativism — the view that there are no colors, qua properties of tables, chairs, and other mind-external objects, and a vociferous critic of several varieties of re- alism about color that have been defended by others (e.g., [Hardin, 2003], [Hardin, 2005]). These other views include the so-called (...) color physical- ism of [Hilbert, 1987], [Byrne and Hilbert, 1997a], [Byrne and Hilbert, 2003], and [Tye, 2000],1 and, inconveniently, even the relationalist view defended in [Cohen, 2003a], [Cohen, 2004a], [Cohen, 2003b], [McLaughlin, 2003], and [Jakab and McLaughlin, 2003]. (shrink)
What is the relationship between sounds and time? More specifically, is there something essentially or distinctively temporal about sounds that distinguishes them from, say, colors, shapes, odors, tastes, or other sensible qualities? And just what might this distinctive relation to time consist in? Apart from their independent interest, these issues have a number of important philosophical repercussions. First, if sounds are temporal in a way that other sensible qualities are not, then this would mean that standard lists of paradigm secondary (...) qualities offered by Locke, Galileo, and other modern philosophers — lists which include colors, odors and sounds without any significant distinctions — overlook significant metaphysical differences. This, in turn, would threaten to undermine the coherence of the modern understanding of secondary qualities itself. Moreover, a number of authors have recently urged that the essential temporality of sounds makes it impossible to understand sounds as properties (except on a trope theory of properties; see note 3). If true, and given the more or less universal view that colors are properties, this last conclusion would make potentially inapplicable to sounds much of the comparatively well-developed philosophical taxonomy and apparatus that has arisen in philosophical disputes over the status of colors (for presentations of this taxonomy and apparatus see, for example, Byrne and Hilbert (2003); Cohen (2008b)).1 Therefore, the conclusion that sounds are distinctively temporal would be a serious blow to hopes for a theoretically unified treatment of the sensory qualities.2 For all these reasons, quite a lot seems to hang on the question of the temporality of sounds. (shrink)
The author comments on the article “The neurobiology of addiction: Implications for voluntary control of behavior,‘ by S. E. Hyman. The author agrees with Hyman that debate persists whether addiction is a brain disease or a moral condition. The author states that Hyman has not fully answered the question of when addicted persons are responsible for what they do. The author also suggests that addiction is a brain disease and therapy can improve the symptoms of this life-threatening syndrome. Accession Number: (...) 24077918; Authors: Cohen, Peter J. 1; Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org; Affiliations: 1: Georgetown University Law Center; Subject: EDITORIALS; Subject: ADDICTIONS; Subject: BRAIN -- Diseases; Subject: SYNDROMES; Subject: HYMAN, S. E.; Number of Pages: 3p. (shrink)
The reputation and influence of Emmanuel Levinas (1906-96) have grown powerfully in recent years. Well known in France in his lifetime, he has since his death become widely regarded as a major European moral philosopher profoundly shaped by his Jewish background. A pupil of Husserl and Heidegger, Levinas pioneered new forms of exegesis with his postmodern readings of the Talmud, and as an ethicist brought together religious and non-religious, Jewish and non-Jewish traditions of contemporary thought. Richard A. Cohen has (...) written a book which uses Levinas' work as its base but goes on to explore broader questions of interpretation in the context of text-based ethical thinking. Levinas' reorientation of philosophy is considered in critical contrast to alternative contemporary approaches such as those found in modern science, psychology, Nietzsche, Freud, Husserl, Heidegger, Sartre, Merleau-Ponty, Derrida and Ricoeur. Cohen explores a manner of philosophizing which he terms 'ethical exegesis'. (shrink)
Instructor: Jonathan Cohen (joncohenREMOVETHIS@aardvark.ucsd.edu (omit text in caps, which reduces automated spam)) office: (732) 445 6163 home: (718) 499 1213 Office hours: Tuesday, 12:30 to 2:00, in Psychology A132 , on Busch Campus.
Flexible work arrangements (FWAs) are widely offered in public accounting as a tool to retain valued professional staff. Previous research has shown that participants in FWAs are perceived to be less likely to succeed in their careers in public accounting than individuals in public accounting who do not participate in FWAs (Cohen and Single, 2001). Research has also documented an increasing backlash against family–friendly policies in the workplace as placing unfair burdens on individuals without children. Building directly on a (...) previous study in this journal (Cohen and Single, 2001), this study addresses the issue of whether the documented perceptions toward FWA participants are the result of electing to take part in the FWA or the result of bias against employees with children. The research questions are addressed in a 3 × 2 experimental setting in which we manipulate FWA participation, along with family status and gender of a hypothetical manager in a public accounting firm. Our findings indicate that FWA participants are viewed as less likely to advance and as less committed than individuals without children or individuals who had children but who were not taking part in a FWA. Male FWA participants are viewed as less likely to succeed than female FWA participants. This effect appears to arise from a perception that FWA participants are willing to make sacrifices in their careers to accommodate family needs and thus may not be as committed to making the sacrifices perceived as necessary to meet the rigorous demands of the public accounting environment. This raises the ethical question of what could be done to change the culture in public accounting to foster a substantive support system for individuals who want to balance a family and a career. (shrink)
: In this essay, Miriam argues for a phenomenological-hermeneutic approach to the radical feminist theory of sex-right and compulsory heterosexuality. Against critics of radical feminism, she argues that when understood from a phenomenological-hermeneutic perspective, such theory does not foreclose female sexual agency. On the contrary, men's right of sexual access to women and girls is part of our background understanding of heteronormativity, and thus integral to the lived experience of female sexual agency.
In this second edition of his best-selling introduction to philosophy, Martin Cohen combines new and topical problems with humorous and engaging discussion. The new edition includes an updated glossary of helpful terms, possible new solutions to the problems, as well as many classic problems and new contemporary problems taken from the media to physics, medical ethics to artificial intelligence. 101 Philosophy Problems, Second Edition combines wit with philosophical scholarship and is ideal for anyone interested in this exciting and stimulating (...) topic. Examples of problems included: * Protagoras' Problem * The Lost Kingdom and the Pesky-Fly Problem * Life on Sirius * Achilles and the Tortoise * The Value of Stamps and Potatoes * The Cube and the Triangle * The Microworld Time Forgot * A Problem Arranging Ship Battles * But Will the Waterfall? * Kant's Problem * A Sinister Transplant Problem * The Evangelist * Problems with the Speed of Light * Schopenhauer's Problem. (shrink)
This is the second of three volumes of posthumously collected writings of G. A. Cohen, who was one of the leading, and most progressive, figures in contemporary political philosophy. This volume brings together some of Cohen's most personal philosophical and nonphilosophical essays, many of them previously unpublished. Rich in first-person narration, insight, and humor, these pieces vividly demonstrate why Thomas Nagel described Cohen as a "wonderful raconteur." The nonphilosophical highlight of the book is Cohen's remarkable account (...) of his first trip to India, which includes unforgettable vignettes of encounters with strangers and reflections on poverty and begging. Other biographical pieces include his valedictory lecture at Oxford, in which he describes his philosophical development and offers his impressions of other philosophers, and "Isaiah's Marx, and Mine," a tribute to his mentor Isaiah Berlin. Other essays address such topics as the truth in "small-c conservatism," who can and can't condemn terrorists, and the essence of bullshit. A recurring theme is finding completion in relation to the world of other human beings. Engaging, perceptive, and empathetic, these writings reveal a more personal side of one of the most influential philosophers of our time. (shrink)
The diagnosis of attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder is a subject of controversy, for a host of reasons. This paper seeks to explore the manner in which children's interests may be subsumed to those of parents, teachers, and society as a whole in the course of diagnosis, treatment, and labeling, utilizing a framework for children's citizenship proposed by Elizabeth Cohen. Additionally, the paper explores aspects of discipline associated with the diagnosis, as well as distributional pathologies resulting from the application of the (...) diagnosis in potentially biased ways. (shrink)
The following text is an introduction to Ed Cohen’s book A Body Worth Defending: Immunity, Biopolitics and the Apotheosis of the Modern Body. Author investigates the way in which immunology influences the perception of both the human body, and political entities, demonstrating that contemporary conceptualizations of these phenomena exist in a double bind. The historical framework Cohen applies allows for tracing the history of the metaphor of immunity in politics and medicine.
"The central advantages of this book are undoubtedly its lucidity, range and unorthodox approach to presenting key thinkers who have deeply influenced political philosophy. ... This wide range is covered with surprising agility and clarity. The book offers an engaging account of political philosophy where great schools of thought are audaciously summarized in a paragraph or two." --- Times Higher Education Supplement "Reliable and fair... Clear, relaxed, jargon-free and often attractively witty." --- The Philosopher "A handbook of the history of (...) political philosophy." --- Choice Guiding the reader through the key arguments of the classic figures of Western political philosophy, from Plato through to the modern era, this revised edition includes new essays on Aristotle's "Politics", Confucianism, Islamic social philosophy, and Nazism as well as additional material on "Roman Law", Anarchism and "anti-capitalism". Cohen moves chronologically through the development of political philosophy presenting it as a series of "key texts", which (after setting in context) he allows to speak in their own terms before offering short, precise analyses of their strengths, weaknesses and influence. The book finishes with a discussion of modern liberalism and conservatism. Providing both a broad overview and precise summaries of key ideas, this guide will be invaluable for all students of political thought. (shrink)
The material elements of writing have long been undervalued, and have been dismissed by recent historicising trends of criticism; but analysis of these elements - sound, signature, letters - can transform our understanding of literary texts. In this book Tom Cohen shows how, in an era of representational criticism and cultural studies, the role of close reading has been overlooked. Arguing that much recent criticism has been caught in potentially regressive models of representation, Professor Cohen undertakes to counter (...) this by rethinking the 'materiality' of the text itself. Through a series of revealing new readings of the work of writers including Plato, Bakhtin, Poe, Whitman and Conrad, Professor Cohen exposes the limitations of new historicism and neo-pragmatism, and demonstrates how 'the materiality of language' operates to undo the representational models of meaning imposed by the literary canon. (shrink)
Two new philosophical problems surrounding the gradation of certainty began to emerge in the 17th century and are still very much alive today. One is concerned with the evaluation of inductive reasoning, whether in science, jurisprudence, or elsewhere; the other with the interpretation of the mathematical calculus of change. This book, aimed at non-specialists, investigates both problems and the extent to which they are connected. Cohen demonstrates the diversity of logical structures that are available for judgements of probability, and (...) explores the rationale for their appropriateness in different contexts of application. Thus his study deals with the complexity of the underlying philosophical issues without simply cataloging alternative conceptions or espousing a particular "favorite" theory. (shrink)
Major Philosophers of Jewish Prayer in the Twentieth Century addresses the troubling questions posed by the modern Jewish worshiper, including such obstacles to prayer as the inability to concentrate on the words and meanings of formal liturgy, the paucity of emotional involvement, the lack of theological conviction, the anthropomorphic and particularly the masculine emphasis of prayer nomenclature, and other matters. In assessing these difficultites, Cohen brings to the reader the writings on prayer of some seminal 20th century Jewish theologians. (...) These include Herman Cohen, Franz Rosenzweig, Avraham Yitzhak, Hoakohen Kook, Mordecai M. Kaplan, R. Arele, Aaron Rote, Elie Munk, Abraham J. Heschel, Jakob J. Petuchowski, Eugene B. Borowitz, and Lawrence A. Hoffman. (shrink)
G. A. Cohen was one of the most gifted, influential, and progressive voices in contemporary political philosophy. At the time of his death in 2009, he had plans to bring together a number of his most significant papers. This is the first of three volumes to realize those plans. Drawing on three decades of work, it contains previously uncollected articles that have shaped many of the central debates in political philosophy, as well as papers published here for the first (...) time. In these pieces, Cohen asks what egalitarians have most reason to equalize, he considers the relationship between freedom and property, and he reflects upon ideal theory and political practice. Included here are classic essays such as "Equality of What?" and "Capitalism, Freedom, and the Proletariat," along with more recent contributions such as "Fairness and Legitimacy in Justice," "Freedom and Money," and the previously unpublished "How to Do Political Philosophy." On ample display throughout are the clarity, rigor, conviction, and wit for which Cohen was renowned. Together, these essays demonstrate how his work provides a powerful account of liberty and equality to the left of Ronald Dworkin, John Rawls, Amartya Sen, and Isaiah Berlin. (shrink)
This article explores the problem of the political responsibilities of intellectuals and philosophers through an appraisal of Michael Walzer's work on the idea of “connected criticism.” The author elaborates the main elements of this theory, shows how it approaches various thinkers, like Herbert Marcuse and Jean-Paul Sartre, and shows where it fits into American intellectual life, particularly the intellectual history of Dissent Magazine and the democratic Left. Walzer's idea of a connected social critic contrasts to Sartre's idea of an “engaged (...) critic.” The article also examines Walzer's theory in light of some of the arguments made by “commonsense” moral philosophy, such as those of Irving Howe, John Rawls, Theodor Adorno, and Leo Strauss. Cohen defines Walzer's theory as part of a social democratic approach that also can serve in part as an antidote to intellectual hubris. Finally, this article presents a critique of Edward Said's understanding of intellectuals in his Representations of the Intellectual. The author argues that Said's book misrepresents Turgenev's novel Fathers and Sons. Cohen suggests that there are radical differences between Said's description of this novel's central character, Bazarov, and the world in which he lives, and those created by Turgenev. Said's approach is evaluated in relation to the notion of connected criticism and some criticisms of connected criticism are offered. (shrink)
Johnathan Cohen's book provides a lucid and penetrating treatment of the fundamental issues of contemporary analytical philosophy. This field now spans a greater variety of topics and divergence of opinion than fifty years ago, and Cohen's book addresses the presuppositions implicit to it and the patterns of reasoning on which it relies.
The man behind the New York Times Magazine ’s immensely popular column “The Ethicist”–syndicated in newspapers across the United States and Canada as “Everyday Ethics”–casts an eye on today’s manners and mores with a provocative, thematic collection of advice on how to be good in the real world. Every week in his column on ethics, Randy Cohen takes on conundrums presented in letters from perplexed people who want to do the right thing (or hope to get away with doing (...) the wrong thing), and responds with a skillful blend of moral authority and humor. Cohen’s wisdom and witticisms have now been collected in The Good, the Bad & the Difference , a collection of his columns as wise and funny as a combination of “Dear Abby,” Plato, and Mel Brooks. The columns are supplemented with second thoughts on (and sometimes complete reversals of) his original replies, follow-up notes on how his advice affected the actions of various letter writers, reactions from readers both pro and con, and observations from such “guest ethicists” as David Eggers and the author’s mom. Each chapter also features an “Ethics Pop Quiz,” and readers will be invited to post their answers on the book’s Web site. The best of them will appear in a future paperback edition of the book. The Good, the Bad & the Difference is divided into seven sections: •Civic Life (what we do in public) •Family Life (what we do at home) •Social Life (what we do in other people’s homes) •Commercial Life (what we do in situations where money is a factor) •Medical Life (the rights and obligations of patients and caregivers) •Work Life (ethics for the professional sphere) •School Life (moral questions from and about kids) Each section provides a window into how we live today, shedding light on the ways in which a more ethical approach to the decisions we make, and to our daily behavior, can make a big difference in how we feel about ourselves tomorrow. (shrink)
What does it mean to"do theory" in America? In what ways has "French Theory" changed American intellectual and artistic life? How different is it from what French intellectuals themselves conceived, and what does all this tell us about American intellectual life? Is "French Theory" still a significant force in America, raising conceptual questions not easily answered? In this volume of new work--including the French writers Julia Kristeva, Jacques Derrida, Jean Baudrillard, and Gilled Delezue, as well as essays by Sylvere Lotringer (...) and Sande Cohen, Mario Biagoli, Elie During, Chris Kraus, Alison Gingeras, and Kriss Ravetto, among others--French theorists assess the impact and reception of their work in America, and American-based critics account for their effects in different areas of cultural criticism and art over the last thirty years. (shrink)
Let us now suppose that I have sold the product of my own labour for money, and have used the money to hire a labourer, i.e., I have bought somebody else's labour-power. Having taken advantage of this labour-power of another, I turn out to be the owner of value which is considerably higher than the value I spent on its purchase. This, from one point of view, is very just, because it has already been recognized, after all that I can (...) use what I have secured by exchange as is best and most advantageous to myself...1 Persons, who under a vicious order of things have obtained a competent share of social enjoyments, are never in want of arguments to justify to the eye of reason such a state of society; for what may not admit of apology when exhibited in but one point of view? If the same individuals were tomorrow required to cast anew the lots assigning them a place in society, they would find many things to object to.2. (shrink)
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Many people, including many egalitarian political philosophers, professa belief in equality while enjoying high incomes of which they devotevery little to egalitarian purposes. The article critically examinesways of resolving the putative inconsistency in the stance of thesepeople, in particular, that favouring an egalitarian society has noimplications for behaviour in an unequal one; that what''s bad aboutinequality is a social division that philanthropy cannot reduce; thatprivate action cannot ensure that others have good lives; that privateaction can only achieve a ``drop in (...) the ocean''''; that private effortis not called for, since justice is a matter for the state to enforce;that private effort cannot remove the fundamental injustice, whichis inequality of power; and that private effort involves an unreasonablylarge psychological burden. (shrink)
A right, unlike an interest, is a valid claim, or potential claim, made by a moral agent, under principles that govern both the claimant and the target of the claim. Animals cannot be the bearers of rights because the concept of rights is essentially human; it is rooted in and has force within a human moral world.
The central argument in the Euthyphro is the one Socrates advances against the definition of piety as "what all the gods love." The argument turns on establishing that a loved thing (philoumenon) is 1) a loved thing because it is loved (phileitai), not 2) loved because it is a loved thing. I suggest that this claim can be understood and found acceptable if we take "because" to be used equivocally in it. Despite the equivocation, Socrates' argument is valid, showing that (...) Euthyphro cannot offer this definition consistently with his view that the gods have as a reason for loving pious things that they are pious things. (shrink)
It is shown that quantum mechanics cannot be formulated as a stochastic theory involving a probability distribution function of position and momentum. This is done by showing that the most general distribution function which yields the proper quantum mechanical marginal distributions cannot consistently be used to predict the expectations of observables if phase space integration is used. Implications relating to the possibility of establishing a "hidden" variable theory of quantum mechanics are discussed.