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Nick Smith [31]Nick G. C. Smith [1]
  1. Guyora Binder & Nick Smith, Framed: Utilitarianism and Punishment of the Innocent.
    The most widely repeated retributivist argument against the utilitarian theory of punishment is that utilitarianism permits punishment of the innocent. While defenders of utilitarianism have shown that a publicly announced policy of punishing the innocent is unlikely to serve utility, critics have insisted that utilitarianism morally obliges officials to deceive the public by framing the innocent. Yet philosophers and legal scholars have heretofore failed to test this claim against the writings of the theory's originators. We directly examine the writings of (...)
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  2. Nick Smith, Apologies in Law.
    In 2008 I published I Was Wrong: The Meanings of Apologies with Cambridge University Press. I Was Wrong provides a nuanced framework for the ethical meanings of apologies from individuals and collectives, considering along the way the historical and cultural traditions that inform modern acts of contrition. I have discussed I Was Wrong on NPR (an hour-long interview with Diane Rehm), CNN, BBC, CBC, Philosophy Talk, and various other national and international programs.I am now working on the follow-up book, (...)
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  3. Nick Smith, Incommensurability and Alterity in Contemporary Jurisprudence.
    The argument and purpose of this comment will be to cross-pollinate value incommensurability theory and Levinasian deconstruction so as to begin to develop a social and legal theory that (1) is motivated by an ethical commitment to the irreducibility of human subjects, institutions, and goods and (2) negotiates between those incommensurable subjects and values through democratic procedural mechanisms. This hybridization of the two schools of thought will provide ethical grounding for legal incommensurability theorists, and political grounding for Levinasian critical theory.
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  4. Nick Smith, I Was Wrong: The Meanings of Apologies.
    Apologies pervade our news headlines and our private affairs, but how should we evaluate these often vague and deceptive rituals? Discussing numerous examples from ancient and recent history, I Was Wrong: On The Meanings of Apologies argues that we suffer from considerable confusion about the moral meanings and social functions of these complex interactions. Rather than asking whether a speech act "is or is not" an apology, Smith offers a nuanced theory of apologetic meaning. Smith leads us with a clear (...)
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  5. Nick Smith, Review of Giovanna Borradori's. [REVIEW]
    Review of Giovanna Borradori's Philosophy in a Time of Terror: Dialogues with Jurgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida.
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  6. Nick Smith, The Splinter in Your Ear: Noise as the Semblance of Critique.
    Noise appears to critique the prevailing cognitive and social habits of modernity by providing concrete and particular art objects that demand attention and jar us from one-dimensional life. Noise sounds, for a moment, like a true alternative not only to contemporary music but to a whole way of thinking through abstract generalisation and living through commercial mediation. Understood in this way, noise makes sense. Once noise is no longer inscrutable, however, it is assimilated into popular culture and becomes a commercial (...)
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  7. Nick Smith, Why Hardcore Goes Soft: Adorno, Japanese Noise, and the Extirpation of Dissonance.
    I argue that Japanese noise could only become meaningful and articulate at a time when thought and language have become somehow inarticulate. I very briefly recount T.W. Adorno's controversial claims that we live in a wholly abstract and instrumental world, where each object we encounter holds meaning only as 1) a representative of the class to which it belongs and 2) a tool for our use. As is now the convention in Adorno scholarship and cultural studies generally, I name ordering (...)
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  8. Nick Smith, EPIPHENOMENALISM Keith Campbell and Nicholas J.J. Smith December 1993.
    Epiphenomenalism is a theory concerning the relation between the mental and physical realms, regarded as radically different in nature. The theory holds that only physical states have causal power, and that mental states are completely dependent on them. The mental realm, for epiphenomenalists, is nothing more than a series of conscious states which signify the occurrence of states of the nervous system, but which play no causal role. For example, my feeling sleepy does not cause my yawning — rather, both (...)
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  9. Nick Smith, Punishment.
    @FP=Punishment in the contemporary United States is a massive and costly enterprise. As of 2001, approximately 5.6 million living adult residents of the United States had served time in a federal or state prison. In that same year, federal, state, and local governments in the United States spent $57 billion punishing these individuals, which does not include $72 billion to provide police protections and $38 billion to maintain the court system. An American resident is more than eight times more likely (...)
     
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  10. Nick Smith, Rehabilitation.
    @FP= Although rehabilitation is often considered a type of punishment for criminal offenders, its objectives are therapeutic rather than punitive. While some theories of punishment claim that criminals deserve to suffer for their crimes, the rehabilitative ideal views criminal behavior more like a disease that should be treated with scientific methods available to cure the offender. Many convicts suffer from mental and physical illness, drug addiction, and limited opportunities for economic success and these problems increase the likelihood that they will (...)
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  11. Ángel Pinillos, Nick Smith, G. Shyam Nair, Cecilea Mun & Peter Marchetto (2011). Philosophy's New Challenge: Experiments and Intentional Action. Mind and Language 26 (1):115-139.
    Experimental philosophers have gathered impressive evidence for the surprising conclusion that philosophers' intuitions are out of step with those of the folk. As a result, many argue that philosophers' intuitions are unreliable. Focusing on the Knobe Effect, a leading finding of experimental philosophy, we defend traditional philosophy against this conclusion. Our key premise relies on experiments we conducted which indicate that judgments of the folk elicited under higher quality cognitive or epistemic conditions are more likely to resemble those of the (...)
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  12. Nick Smith (2010). Kantian Restorative Justice? Criminal Justice Ethics 29 (1):54-69.
  13. Nick Smith (2010). Expressivism in Brandom and Taylor. In James Williams (ed.), Postanalytic and Metacontinental: Crossing Philosophical Divides. Continuum. 145--156.
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  14. Nick Smith (2009). Commodification in Law: Ideologies, Intractabilities, and Hyperboles. [REVIEW] Continental Philosophy Review 42 (1):101-129.
    In this paper I first aim to identify, from a perspective mindful of both analytic and Continental traditions, the central normative issues at stake in the various debates concerning commodification in law. Although there now exists a wealth of thoughtful literature in this area, I often find myself disoriented within the webs of moral criteria used to analyze the increasingly ubiquitous practice of converting legal goods into monetary values. I therefore attempt to distinguish and organize these often conflated conceptual distinctions (...)
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  15. Nick Smith (2009). Introduction to the Special Issue on Continental Philosophy of Law. Continental Philosophy Review 42 (1):1-4.
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  16. Nick Smith (2008). Questions for a Reluctant Jurisprudence of Alterity. In Desmond Manderson (ed.), Essays on Levinas and Law: A Mosaic. Palgrave Macmillan.
    Levinas and Adorno both refuse to translate their stringent ethical convictions into a programmatic social theory because translating their theories of non-identity into models of governance would necessarily perpetrate, en masse, the very subsumptive violence they denounce. Although Levinas and Adorno have come to provide ethical guidance to Continental philosophers, their outright refusal to be drawn into applied theory has caused innumerable difficulties for progressive theorists compelled by their critiques of instrumental reason but handcuffed by their skepticism toward practical reform. (...)
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  17. Nick Smith (2008). Commentary: The Penitent and the Penitentiary: Questions Regarding Apologies in Criminal Law. Criminal Justice Ethics 27 (2):2-85.
    Apologies in Law will consider apologies in various legal contexts, but in this commentary outline what I consider the most significant questions arising regarding expressions of contrition within criminal justice.
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  18. Nick Smith (2007). Adorno Vs. Levinas: Evaluating Points of Contention. [REVIEW] Continental Philosophy Review 40 (3):275-306.
    Although Adorno and Levinas share many arguments, I attempt to sharpen and evaluate their disagreements. Both held extreme and seemingly opposite views of art, with Adorno arguing that art presents modernity’s highest order of truth and Levinas denouncing it as shameful idolatry. Considering this striking difference brings to light fundamental substantive and methodological incompatibilities between them. Levinas’ assertion of the transcendence of the face should be understood as the most telling point of departure between his and Adorno’s critiques of instrumental (...)
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  19. Nick Smith (2006). Semantic Regularity and the Liar Paradox. The Monist 89 (1):178 - 202.
    My task here is the first one. I do present a consistent formal system and claim that it provides a perfect model of natural languages such as English, but this system involves no surprises. It is none other than the standard framework of classical logic and model theory. The real weight of the argument lies in the claim that the classical framework—without alteration or addition—contains the resources to model what happens when we say in English ‘This sentence is not true’.
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  20. Nick Smith (2005). The Categorical Apology. Journal of Social Philosophy 36 (4):473–496.
    Much of our private and public ethical discourse occurs in the giving, receiving, or demanding of an apology, yet we suffer deep confusion regarding what an apology actually is. Most of us have never made explicit precisely what we expect from a full apology and therefore apologizing has become a vague and clumsy ritual. Full apologies can be morally and emotionally powerful, but, as with most valuable things, frauds masquerade as the genuine article. These semblances of apologies often deceive and (...)
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  21. Nick Smith (2005). Why Would Time Travelers Try to Kill Their Younger Selves? The Monist 88 (3):388-395.
    In this note I raise a new problem for backwards time travel, and make some first suggestions as to how it might be solved. I call it the motivation problem. It is not a logical or a metaphysical problem, but a psychological one. It does not impact upon the possibility, or even the likelihood, of backwards time travel. Yet it is deeply puzzling, and we will have no idea what time travel would actually be like until we explore it. Thus, (...)
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  22. Nick Smith (2004). When Selling Your Soul Isn’T Enough. Social Theory and Practice 30 (4):599-612.
    Georg Simmel wamed in 1900 that capitalism creates not only a market economy but also a market culture in which money becomes the central and absolute value.' Some cultural critics seem to take the root of all evil claim seriously, asserting with rhetorical flourishes filled with normative hyperbole that commodification is the primary cause of all social problems. Our anxieties about money, however, are often vague and tempered by our sense that it appears to be more or less the best (...)
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  23. Nick Smith (2003). Adorno: Disenchantment and Ethics: Adorno: A Critical Reader. [REVIEW] Social Theory and Practice 29 (3):487.
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  24. Nick Smith (2003). Giovanna Borradori, Philosophy in a Time of Terror: Dialogues with Jürgen Habermas and Jacques Derrida. [REVIEW] Continental Philosophy Review 36 (3):335-343.
  25. Nick Smith (2003). Making Adorno’s Ethics and Politics Explicit. Social Theory and Practice 29 (3):487-498.
    Review essay of Making Adorno's Ethics and Politics Explicit, Social Theory and Practice 29/3 (2003): 487-498.
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  26. Nick Smith & Mike Mogie (2000). The Utility of Popper's Philosophy in Biology. Bioessays 22 (3):309-309.
  27. Nick G. C. Smith, Robert Knight & Laurence D. Hurst (1999). Vertebrate Genome Evolution: A Slow Shuffle or a Big Bang? Bioessays 21 (8):697-703.
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  28. Nick Smith (1994). Justification and Application: Remarks on Discourse Ethics. Cogito 8 (3):288-290.
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  29. Nick Smith (1994). Taylor, Charles, Strong Hermeneutics and the Politics of Difference. Radical Philosophy 68:19-27.
     
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  30. Nick Smith (1994). The Entwinement of Reason and Violence: The Frankfurt School. Cogito 8 (3):241-248.
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  31. Nick Smith (1993). Social Power and the Domination of Nature. History of the Human Sciences 6 (3):101-110.
    Axel Honneth, The Critique of Power: Reflective Stages in a Critical Social Theory, translated by Kenneth Baynes. Cambridge, MA and London: MIT Press, 1991. £24.75, xxxii + 340 pp., 0 262 08202 0.
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  32. Nick Smith (1952). Introduction. Tulane Studies in Philosophy 1:5-19.
    Although they might not express themselves in quite this way, non-philosophers tend to think that mereological composition is a vague matter : sometimes it occurs, sometimes it does not, and sometimes it sort of occurs. For example, when I am building a boat, at first the timbers that I have acquired for the job do not jointly compose an entity; in the end they do—they compose the boat that I have built; and in between they sort of or more or (...)
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