76 found
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  1. Neil C. Manson (2007). Rethinking Informed Consent in Bioethics. Cambridge University Press.
    Informed consent is a central topic in contemporary biomedical ethics. Yet attempts to set defensible and feasible standards for consenting have led to persistent difficulties. In Rethinking Informed Consent in Bioethics Neil Manson and Onora O'Neill set debates about informed consent in medicine and research in a fresh light. They show why informed consent cannot be fully specific or fully explicit, and why more specific consent is not always ethically better. They argue that consent needs distinctive communicative transactions, by which (...)
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  2. Neil A. Manson (2009). The Fine-Tuning Argument. Philosophy Compass 4 (1):271-286.
    The Fine-Tuning Argument (FTA) is a variant of the Design Argument for the existence of God. In this paper the evidence of fine-tuning is explained and the Fine-Tuning Design Argument for God is presented. Then two objections are covered. The first objection is that fine-tuning can be explained in terms of the existence of multiple universes (the 'multiverse') plus the operation of the anthropic principle. The second objection is the 'normalizability problem'– the objection that the Fine-Tuning Argument fails because fine-tuning (...)
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  3.  34
    Neil A. Manson (2002). Formulating the Precautionary Principle. Environmental Ethics 24 (3):263-274.
    In part one, I identify the core logical structure of the precautionary principle and distinguish it from the various key concepts that appear in the many different formulations of the principle. I survey these concepts and suggest a program of further conceptual analysis. In part two, I examine a particular version of the precautionary principle dubbed “the catastrophe principle” and criticize it in light of its similarities to the principle at work in Pascal’s Wager. I conclude with some suggestions for (...)
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  4. Neil Manson (2003). Fine-Tuning, Multiple Universes, and the 'This Universe' Objection. Pacific Philosophical Quarterly 84 (1):67 - 83.
  5. Neil A. Manson (2000). There is No Adequate Definition of ?Fine-Tuned for Life? Inquiry 43 (3):341 – 351.
    The discovery that the universe is fine-tuned for life ? a discovery to which the phrase ?the anthropic principle? is often applied ? has prompted much extra-cosmic speculation by philosophers, theologians, and theoretical physicists. Such speculation is referred to as extra-cosmic because an inference is made to the existence either of one unobservable entity that is distinct from the cosmos and any of its parts (God) or of many such entities (multiple universes). In this article a case is mounted for (...)
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  6. Neil Campbell Manson (2001). The Limitations and Costs of Lycan's 'Simple' Argument. Analysis 61 (4):319-323.
  7.  22
    Neil A. Manson (2002). Formulating the Precautionary Principle. Environmental Ethics 24 (3):263-274.
    In part one, I identify the core logical structure of the precautionary principle and distinguish it from the various key concepts that appear in the many different formulations of the principle. I survey these concepts and suggest a program of further conceptual analysis. In part two, I examine a particular version of the precautionary principle dubbed “the catastrophe principle” and criticize it in light of its similarities to the principle at work in Pascal’s Wager. I conclude with some suggestions for (...)
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  8.  89
    Neil A. Manson (ed.) (2003). God and Design: The Teleological Argument and Modern Science. Routledge.
    Recent discoveries in physics, cosmology and biochemistry have captured the public imagination and made the Design Argument - the theory that God created the world according to a specific plan - the object of renewed scientific and philosophical interest. This accessible but serious introduction to the design problem brings together new perspectives from prominent scientists and philosophers including Paul Davies, Richard Swinburne, Sir Martin Rees, Michael Behe, Elliot Sober and Peter van Inwagen.
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  9.  4
    Neil C. Manson (forthcoming). Permissive Consent: A Robust Reason-Changing Account. Philosophical Studies:1-18.
    There is an ongoing debate about the “ontology” of consent. Some argue that it is a mental act, some that it is a “hybrid” of a mental act plus behaviour that signifies that act; others argue that consent is a performative, akin to promising or commanding. Here it is argued that all these views are mistaken—though some more so than others. We begin with the question whether a normatively efficacious act of consent can be completed in the mind alone. Standard (...)
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  10. Neil C. Manson & Onora O'Neill (2007). Rethinking Informed Consent in Bioethics. Cambridge University Press.
    Informed consent is a central topic in contemporary biomedical ethics. Yet attempts to set defensible and feasible standards for consenting have led to persistent difficulties. In Rethinking Informed Consent in Bioethics, first published in 2007, Neil Manson and Onora O'Neill set debates about informed consent in medicine and research in a fresh light. They show why informed consent cannot be fully specific or fully explicit, and why more specific consent is not always ethically better. They argue that consent needs distinctive (...)
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  11.  92
    Neil C. Manson (2011). Why “Consciousness” Means What It Does. Metaphilosophy 42 (1-2):98-117.
    Abstract: “Consciousness” seems to be a polysemic, ambiguous, term. Because of this, theorists have sought to distinguish the different kinds of phenomena that “consciousness” denotes, leading to a proliferation of terms for different kinds of consciousness. However, some philosophers—univocalists about consciousness—argue that “consciousness” is not polysemic or ambiguous. By drawing upon the history of philosophy and psychology, and some resources from semantic theory, univocalism about consciousness is shown to be implausible. This finding is important, for if we accept the univocalist (...)
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  12.  8
    Mairi Levitt & Neil Manson (2007). My Genes Made Me Do It? The Implications of Behavioural Genetics for Responsibility and Blame. Health Care Analysis 15 (1):33-40.
    The idea of individual responsibility for action is central to our conception of what it is to be a person. Behavioural genetic research may seem to call into question the idea of individual responsibility with possible implications for the criminal justice system. These implications will depend on the understandings of the various agencies and professional groups involved in responding to violent and anti-social behaviour, and, the result of negotiations between them over resulting practice. The paper considers two kinds of approaches (...)
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  13.  58
    Neil Manson (2002). Epistemic Consciousness. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science 33 (3):425-441.
    Philosophers, especially in recent years, have engaged in reflection upon the nature of experience. Such reflections have led them to draw a distinction between conscious and unconscious mentality in terms of whether or not it is like something to have a mental state. Reflection upon the history of psychology and upon contemporary cognitive science, however, identifies the distinction between conscious and unconscious mental states to be primarily one which is drawn in epistemic terms. Consciousness is an epistemic notion marking the (...)
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  14.  17
    Neil C. Manson (2003). Freud's Own Blend: Functional Analysis, Idiographic Explanation, and the Extension of Ordinary Psychology. Proceedings of the Aristotelian Society 103 (2):179–195.
    If we are to understand why psychoanalysis extends ordinary psychology in the precise ways that it does, we must take account of the existence of, and the interplay between, two distinct kinds of explanatory concern: functional and idiographic. The form and content of psychoanalytic explanation and its unusual methodology can, at least in part, be viewed as emerging out of Freud's attempt to reconcile these two types of explanatory concern. We must also acknowledge the role of the background theoretical context (...)
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  15.  72
    Neil Campbell Manson (2000). State Consciousness and Creature Consciousness: A Real Distinction. Philosophical Psychology 13 (3):405-410.
    It is widely held that there is an important distinction between the notion of consciousness as it is applied to creatures and, on the other hand, the notion of consciousness as it applies to mental states. McBride has recently argued in this journal that whilst there may be a grammatical distinction between state consciousness and creature consciousness, there is no parallel ontological distinction. It is argued here that whilst state consciousness and creature consciousness are indeed related, they are distinct properties. (...)
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  16.  31
    Neil Manson, Why Do Patients Want Information, If Not to Make Decisions?
    There is empirical evidence that many patients want information about treatment options even though they do not want to take a full part in decision‐making about treatment. Such evidence may have considerable ethical implications but is methodologically problematic. It is argued here that, in fact, it is not at all surprising that patients’ informational interests should be separable from their interests in decision‐making. A number of different reasons for wanting information are offered, some to do with the content of information; (...)
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  17.  28
    Neil C. Manson (2006). What is Genetic Information, and Why is It Significant? A Contextual, Contrastive, Approach. Journal of Applied Philosophy 23 (1):1-16.
    Is genetic information of special ethical significance? Does it require special regulation? There is considerable contemporary debate about this question . Genetic information is an ambiguous term and, as an aid to avoiding conflation in the genetic exceptionalism debate, a detailed account is given of just how and why genetic information is ambiguous. Whilst ambiguity is a ubiquitous problem of communication, it is suggested that genetic information is ambiguous in a particular way, one that gives rise to the problem of (...)
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  18.  90
    Neil A. Manson (2004). Review of Niall Shanks, God, the Devil, and Darwin: A Critique of Intelligent Design Theory. [REVIEW] Notre Dame Philosophical Reviews 2004 (5).
    In this book Niall Shanks aims to debunk thoroughly “intelligent design theory” (henceforth IDT). The aim of proponents of IDT, Shanks warns us (p. xi), “is to insinuate into public consciousness a new version of science – supernatural science – in which the God of Christianity (carefully not directly mentioned for legal and political reasons) is portrayed as the intelligent designer of the universe and its contents.” He thinks the answer to the two basic questions about IDT – “Is intelligent (...)
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  19.  65
    Neil A. Manson, Cosmic Fine-Tuning, 'Many Universe' Theories, and the Goodness of Life.
    This volume addresses the role value judgments play in science. It is my contention that a particular research programme in modern physical cosmology rests crucially on a value judgment. Before making my case, let me introduce the following abbreviations for the following propositions.
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  20.  21
    Neil C. Manson (2004). Reason Explanation a First-Order Rationalizing Account. Philosophical Explorations 7 (2):113 – 129.
    How do reason explanations explain? One view is that they require the deployment of a tacit psychological theory; another is that even if no tacit theory is involved, we must still conceive of reasons as mental states. By focusing on the subjective nature of agency, and by casting explanations as responses to 'why' questions that assuage agents' puzzlement, reason explanations can be profitably understood as part of our traffic in first-order content amongst perspectival subjects. An outline is offered of such (...)
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  21.  4
    Neil A. Manson (2009). The 'Why Design?' Question. In Yujin Nagasawa & Erik J. Wielenberg (eds.), New Waves in Philosophy of Religion. Palgrave Macmillan 68.
  22.  4
    Neil C. Manson (2013). Normative Consent Is Not Consent. Cambridge Quarterly of Healthcare Ethics 22 (1):33-44.
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  23.  39
    Neil A. Manson (2000). Anthropocentrism and the Design Argument. Religious Studies 36 (2):163-176.
    The design argument for the existence of God is often criticized for resting on anthropocentrism. Some critics maintain that anthropocentrism explains the origin of the design argument. Such critics commit the genetic fallacy. Others say anthropocentrism explains the appeal of the belief that human beings are ends especially worthy of creation. They fail to appreciate that the design argument need not be framed in terms of the fitness of the universe for humanity. Lastly, some say the design argument requires a (...)
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  24.  33
    Neil C. Manson (2012). Epistemic Restraint and the Vice of Curiosity. Philosophy 87 (02):239-259.
    In recent years there has been wide-ranging discussion of epistemic virtues. Given the value and importance of acquiring knowledge this discussion has tended to focus upon those traits that are relevant to the acquisition of knowledge. This acquisitionist focus ignores or downplays the importance of epistemic restraint: refraining from seeking knowledge. In contrast, in many periods of history, curiosity was viewed as a vice. By drawing upon critiques of curiositas in Middle Platonism and Early Christian philosophy, we gain useful insights (...)
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  25.  16
    Neil C. Manson (2006). What is Genetic Information, and Why is It Significant? A Contextual, Contrastive, Approach. Journal of Applied Philosophy 23 (1):1–16.
    Is genetic information of special ethical significance? Does it require special regulation? There is considerable contemporary debate about this question (the genetic exceptionalism debate). Genetic information is an ambiguous term and, as an aid to avoiding conflation in the genetic exceptionalism debate, a detailed account is given of just how and why genetic information is ambiguous. Whilst ambiguity is a ubiquitous problem of communication, it is suggested that genetic information is ambiguous in a particular way, one that gives rise to (...)
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  26.  48
    Neil Campbell Manson (2002). Consciousness-Dependence and the Explanatory Gap. Inquiry 45 (4):521-540.
    Contrary to certain rumours, the mind-body problem is alive and well. So argues Joseph Levine in Purple Haze: The Puzzle of Consciousness . The main argument is simple enough. Considerations of causal efficacy require us to accept that subjective experiential, or 'phenomenal', properties are realized in basic non-mental, probably physical properties. But no amount of knowledge of those physical properties will allow us conclusively to deduce facts about the existence and nature of phenomenal properties. This failure of deducibility constitutes an (...)
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  27.  25
    Ned Block & Neil Manson (1998). Demystifying Consciousness. The Philosophers' Magazine 2 (2):36-39.
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  28.  29
    Neil Manson, 14 Addiction and the Diagnostic Criteria for Pathological Gambling.
    A philosophical question divides the field of addiction research. Can a psychological disorder count as an addiction absent a common underlying physical basis (neurological or genetic) for every case of the disorder in the category? Or is it appropriate to categorize a disorder as an addiction if the symptoms of and diagnostic criteria for it are sufficiently similar to those of other disorders also classified as addictions—regardless of whether there is some underlying physical basis common to each case of the (...)
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  29.  21
    Neil Manson, Normative Consent is Not Consent.
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  30.  4
    Neil Manson (1996). Review. [REVIEW] British Journal for the Philosophy of Science 47 (4):633-635.
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  31.  37
    Neil Campbell Manson (2000). 'A Tumbling-Ground for Whimsies'? The History and Contemporary Role of the Conscious/Unconscious Contrast. In Tim Crane & Sarah A. Patterson (eds.), History of the Mind-Body Problem. New York: Routledge
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  32.  19
    Neil C. Manson (2012). Making Sense of Spin. Journal of Applied Philosophy 29 (3):200-213.
    “Spin” is a pejorative term for a ubiquitous form of communication. Spin is viewed by many as deceptive, and by others as bending or twisting the truth. But spin need not be deceptive and the metaphors are less than clear. The aim here is to clarify what spin is: spin is identified as a form of selective claim-making, where the process of selection is governed by an intention to bring about promotional perlocutionary effects. The process of selection may pertain to (...)
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  33.  19
    Neil C. Manson (2012). First-Person Authority: An Epistemic-Pragmatic Account. Mind and Language 27 (2):181-199.
    Some self-ascriptions of belief, desire and other attitudes exhibit first-person authority. The aim here is to offer a novel account of this kind of first-person authority. The account is a development of Robert Gordon's ascent routine theory but is framed in terms of our ability to bring it about that others know of our attitudes via speech acts which do not deploy attitudinal vocabulary but which nonetheless ‘show’ our attitudes to others. Unlike Gordon's ascent routine theory, the theory readily applies (...)
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  34.  17
    Neil A. Manson (2004). John Leslie, Infinite Minds. Religious Studies 40:499-502.
    Due to his laborious efforts, there are two strands of contemporary philosophical literature with which John Leslie is closely identified. The first concerns cosmic fine-tuning, the design argument, and the anthropic principle ; the second, the so-called ‘Doomsday Argument ’ to the effect that we have good grounds for expecting the human race soon to perish. In this book – just released in paperback – Leslie concentrates on ideas he first began pursuing over thirty years ago, most notably in Value (...)
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  35.  29
    Neil Campbell Manson (2005). Consciousness-Dependence, and the Conscious/Unconscious Contrast. [REVIEW] Philosophical Studies 126 (1):115-129.
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  36.  13
    Neil A. Manson (2012). Anthropocentrism, Exoplanets, and the Cosmic Perspective. Environmental Ethics 34 (3):275-290.
    Nonanthropocentric environmental philosophy is a response to two kinds of anthropocentrism: personal anthropocentrism, according to which being human involves the possession of some or all of a set of properties typical of persons, and biological anthropocentrism, according to which being a human involves being a member of the species Homo sapiens. Nonanthropocentric environmental philosophy itself becomes problematic when it is viewed in terms of two arguments that it often seems to imply: the “Planetary Perspective Argument,” which rejects both forms of (...)
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  37.  16
    Neil Manson, Informed Consent.
    Informed consent is a central concept of contemporary medical ethics. Clinicians and medical researchers are under an obligation to inform patients and research subjects about the nature, purposes, risks, and side effects of proposed courses of action. A vast body of literature has been produced, over the past 30 years or so, about the nature, justification, scope, and limits of informed consent. Here we will focus on what informed consent is, how it came to have a central place in medical (...)
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  38.  7
    Neil C. Manson (2015). Transitional Paternalism: How Shared Normative Powers Give Rise to the Asymmetry of Adolescent Consent and Refusal. Bioethics 29 (2):66-73.
    In many jurisdictions, adolescents acquire the right to consent to treatment; but in some cases their refusals – e.g. of life-saving treatment – may not be respected. This asymmetry of adolescent consent and refusal seems puzzling, even incoherent. The aim here is to offer an original explanation, and a justification, of this asymmetry. Rather than trying to explain the asymmetry in terms of a variable standard of competence – where the adolescent is competent to consent to, but not refuse, certain (...)
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  39.  22
    Neil C. Manson (2009). Epistemic Inertia and Epistemic Isolationism: A Response to Buchanan. Journal of Applied Philosophy 26 (3):291-298.
    abstract Allen Buchanan argues that conventional applied ethics is impoverished and would be enriched by the addition of social moral epistemology. The aim here is to clarify this argument and to raise questions about whether such an addition is necessary about how such enrichment would work in practice. Two broad problems are identified. First, there are various kinds and sources of epistemic inertia, which act as an obstacle to epistemic change. Religion is one striking example and seems to pose a (...)
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  40.  4
    Neil C. Manson, Contemporary Naturalism and the Concept of Consciousness.
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  41.  12
    Neil Manson, Informed Consent and Referential Opacity.
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  42.  13
    Neil A. Manson (2007). Why Shouldn't Insurance Companies Know Your Genetic Information? Journal of Philosophical Research 32 (Supplement):345-356.
    In this paper I state and reject two of the most commonly given arguments for regulating access by insurance companies to the results of genetic tests. I then argue that since we cannot assume a priori that those genetically predisposed to disease will have worse health outcomes than those not so disposed, we cannot know a priori that genetic discrimination will emerge as a major problem in a free market health insurance system. Finally, I explore the possibility of a free-market (...)
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  43.  14
    Neil A. Manson (2005). God and Time. Philosophical Books 46 (1):66-70.
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  44.  18
    Neil Manson, Introduction to God and Design.
    This introduction has two functions. First, it apprises readers of some of the basic data, terminology, and formalisms used in contemporary discussions of the design argument while also giving a sense of the argument's history. Other pieces in this anthology – particularly those of Elliott Sober, John Leslie, Paul Davies, and Michael Ruse – cover some of the same ground. Second, it gives readers some idea of what the various contributors will say and why their contributions are important for understanding (...)
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  45.  15
    Neil Manson, 1 Introduction.
    give just two examples, the Paradox of the Stone is racy’. (1987, p. 106) said to show the impossibility of omnipotence, while an array of arguments try to show the incom-.
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  46.  16
    Neil C. Manson (2004). Brains, Vats, and Neurally-Controlled Animats. Studies in History and Philosophy of Science Part C 35 (2):249-268.
    The modern vat-brain debate is an epistemological one, and it focuses on the point of view of a putatively deceived subject. Semantic externalists argue that we cannot coherently wonder whether we are brains in vats. This paper examines a new experimental paradigm for cognitive neuroscience—the neurally-controlled animat (NCA) paradigm—that seems to have a great deal in common with the vat-brain scenario. Neural cells are provided with a simulated body within an artificial world in order to study the brain both in (...)
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  47.  12
    Neil C. Manson (2010). Consent in the Law – by Deryck Beyleveld & Roger Brownsword. Journal of Applied Philosophy 27 (2):215-217.
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  48.  12
    Neil Manson, The Design Argument.
    If you have taken a college biology class, or just watched Animal Planet, you may have been struck by the startling complexity of living organisms. From the grandest mammal to the lowliest cell, life displays intricacy and structure that would put a high-paid team of engineers to shame. How could such fantastically organized, complex structures arise blindly out of unintelligent matter? Speaking of matter, why is it the way it is? Though unimaginably vast, our universe has precise features, as does (...)
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  49.  12
    Neil A. Manson (2004). John Leslie Infinite Minds (Clarendon Press: Oxford, 2001). Pp. X+234. £27.50 (Hbk), £14.99 (Pbk). ISBN 0 19 924892 3 (Hbk), 0 19 924893 1 (Pbk). [REVIEW] Religious Studies 40 (4):499-502.
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  50.  12
    Neil C. Manson (2009). Rediscovering Empathy: Agency, Folk Psychology, and the Human Sciences – by Karsten R. Stueber. Philosophical Investigations 32 (2):187-191.
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