This article argues that Vico’s theory of history should be construed as an ontological constructionist account as opposed to its usual realist interpretation. In support of this interpretation I draw upon two important concepts issuing from the body of the Scienza nuova: the notion of ‘‘storia’’ and the verum ipsum factum principle. Both concepts are not only consistent with an ontological constructionist interpretation of Vico’s theory of history but function as powerful explanatory devices in the context of such an interpretation. (...) I show the advantage this interpretation holds for overcoming one of the main charges brought against the Scienza nuova when it is interpreted as presenting a realist conception of history. In highlighting the possibility and, indeed, textual advantages of construing Vico’s theory of history as an ontological constructionist account I claim that Vico may have anticipated the constructionist tradition by some 200 years and may be considered as the founder of constructionism in the philosophy of history. (shrink)
Ecological research and conservation practice frequently raise difficult and varied ethical questions for scientific investigators and managers, including duties to public welfare, nonhuman individuals (i.e., animals and plants), populations, and ecosystems. The field of environmental ethics has contributed much to the understanding of general duties and values to nature, but it has not developed the resources to address the diverse and often unique practical concerns of ecological researchers and managers in the field, lab, and conservation facility. The emerging field of (...) “ecological ethics” is a practical or scientific ethics that offers a superior approach to the ethical dilemmas of the ecologist and conservation manager. Even though ecological ethics necessarily draws from the principles and commitments of mainstream environmental ethics, it is normatively pluralistic, including as well the frameworks of animal, research, and professional ethics. It is also methodologically pragmatic, focused on the practical problems of researchers and managers and informed by these problems in turn. The ecological ethics model offers environmental scientists and practitioners a useful analytical tool for identifying, clarifying, and harmonizing values and positions in challenging ecological research and management situations. Just as bioethics provides a critical intellectual and problem-solving service to the biomedical community, ecological ethics can help inform and improve ethical decision making in the ecology and conservation communities. (shrink)
cis is presented of Randall Collins's book, The Sociology of Philosophies: A Global Theory of Intellectual Change. It presents a sociological theory of intellectual networks that connect thinkers in chains of masters and pupils, colleagues and rivals, and of the internalized conversations that constitute the social processes of thinking. The theory is used to analyze long-term developments of the intellectual communities of philosophers in ancient Greece, ancient and medieval China and India, medieval and modern Japan, medieval Islam and Judaism, (...) medieval Christendom, and modern Europe through the early 20th century. (shrink)
Sociology, then, should prove to be relevant to a host of issues within the traditional purview of philosophy: Epistemology and philosophy of science, of course; the issue of solipsism and other minds (as Habermas has already seen, invoking Mead); ontological issues of the mind/body relation, of person/self/identity (on which there is a wealth of untapped materials, from Goffman, Mead, and in the lineage of Durkheim and Mauss now being rediscovered); Michael Carrithers, Steven Collins, and Steven Lukes, editors, The Category (...) of the Person (Cambridge and New York: Cambridge University Press, 1985); Norbert Wiley, “The Sacred Self: Durkheim's Anomaly,” paper presented at the Annual Meeting of the American Sociological Association, New York, 1986. and more deeply the questions of materialism/idealism, realism and anti-realism. All questions in the philosophy of ethics, ranging from conceptual analysis to critical and constructive ethics, make sense realistically only if handled with a sociological understanding of where moral ideals and feelings emerge from. The extent of possible success of sociological explanations is a crucial point for any discussion of determinism and indeterminism, and relatedly for the notion of will, free or otherwise. (Obviously the sociology of the self is implicated in the free-will issue as well.) The micro/ macro issue is a wonderful ground on which to consider questions of universals and particulars, of the different orders of causality, of reification and reductionism. Though it may seem presumptious to say so, sociology has implications right across the board in philosophy, even in its stronghold of metaphysics: space and time, existence and non-existence, the Ideal and the immediacy of lived experience are all parts of our current sociological controversies. As yet we have not been very bold in bringing such implications of sociology to attention. But there is recent work such as that of Preston David Preston, Constructing Trans-cultural Reality: the Social Organization of Zen Practice (New York: Cambridge University Press, 1988). on the sociology of Zen practice, which is relevant to a philosophy of ontology at its deepest levels. Furthermore, I feel optimistic about sociology's capacity to contribute to these issues philosophically, that is to say within the problem-space of philosophy itself. Tools like Goffmanian frame analysis, with a nested and grounded relation among levels, should cast light even on tricky issues such as infinities and logical indeterminacies, ontological foundations and unfoundedness. After all, if reality is socially constructed, why shouldn't our professional understanding of society reveal something central about the universe? Sal Restivo (personal communication) suggests that this Une of argument can go even farther: “You [Collins] seem to fall into the same sort of trap that people like Rorty fall into. Everything you say spells the end of philosophy, but somehow philosophy gets saved in the end. Once Durkheim enters the picture, what's left of ‘ultimate questions’? Doesn't the sociology of religion reveal that philosophy's concern with ‘ultimate questions’ (like religion's) is a strategy and a sham - and that it is sociology and anthropology ultimately that realistically address ‘ultimate questions’? It seems to me that sociologizing philosophy FEARLESSLY destroys philosophy. So in this view sociologizing philosophy can't lead to a ‘philosophy’ of sociology, but only a sociology of sociology. ‘Philosophy without mirrors’ (Rorty) is sociology/ anthropology; ‘philosophy with a hammer’ (Nietzsche) is sociology/ anthropology. In a very real sense, sociologizing philosophy is like trying to sociologize religion - either sociology has to dilute its explanatory power, or philosophy/religion has to evaporate as an intellectual strategy. The death of philosophy is another step in the Death of God process.” For a more extensive argument, see Sal Restivo, “The End of Epistemology,” Department of Science and Technology Occasional Papers 1 (1984), Renssalaer Polytechnic Institute, Troy N.Y.As of now, these implications remain only potential. But to buttress my claim for the relevance of sociology in just one area, epistemology and the reflexive issues that arise within it, let me close with a brief reflection on what the sociology of science implies about the nature of philosophy itself. We can hardly expect that sociology will give a final and definitive answer to philosophy's problems. I say that, not because of any pessimism about our intellectual tools, but because of the very nature of intellectual communities. Intellectuals make careers by gaining fame for their original contributions; there must be problems to solve if there is to be something to contribute. This of course is true of all areas of science and scholarship. But whereas the empirical disciplines can go on to create new specialties and research areas, philosophers do not have the same way out of the professional problem posed by a field's own past success.Philosophy has handled this problem in a deeper way. For philosophers have taken as their turf precisely those problems that are themselves inherently deep and, in some sense, intractable. Philosophers have traditionally been concerned with the understanding of knowledge itself, with the most fundamental categories of existence and experience, with the bases of value. These are the boundary problems of all the other fields of intellectual inquiry, and of human life itself. They are intractable, not because significant things cannot be said about them, but because they are located at the open edges of everything; they reveal themselves full of reflexivities, which constantly reemerge at a new level whenever a conceptual solution is proposed, much as in Gödel's incompleteness theorem - and in the most highly transformed level of Goffmanian frames.It is for this reason that the history of philosophy is full of complaints that previous philosophers have come to no agreement, along with new beginnings that attempt to finish its business at last. There is a striking repetitiveness to these claims: we hear them from Descartes, and again from Kant, from the Logical Positivists, from Wittgenstein, in their different ways; there is more than an echo of this intellectual strategy in today's extremists, such as Rorty and Derrida, who again are abolishing philosophy. But philosophy has not been abolished; each previous claim to bring the uselessly warring sects of the past into a final resolution has failed to stifle philosophy's perennial inquiries. Just as strikingly, each such effort at ending philosophy has given rise to a period of renewed philosophical creativity.I think this is not an accident. It is because the structure of the intellectual field in general (across the disciplines, not only philosophy) is being restructured at a particular historical time that figures like Descartes, Kant, and others appear; the crisis of intellectual restructuring is what gives them the intellectual capital (and the creative energy) to reconceptualize the fundamental boundary problems in a new way. In this sense, philosophy is indeed “foundational”; it concerns itself with the ultimate questions, the borderlines of all inquiry and all of life. But there is another sense of “foundational,” the claim that philosophy is the discipline necessary for putting all other knowledge upon a secure foundation. This is certainly not true in a practical and historical sense; the other disciplines have gone ahead quite well without guidance from philosophy. Kant's claim to provide a secure foundation for the physical sciences against Hume's scepticism was really a rhetorical ploy, a way of building up the importance of what philosophy is doing; it really made no difference to the growth of science in Hume's day, or in Kant's, just what the philosophers said about the foundations of their knowledge. The same is true for all such claims about the significance of foundational issues.But this is not to dismiss the importance of what philosophers are doing. Theirs is the great intellectual adventure into the edges of things. The rest of the disciplines, the rest of what we consider to be knowledge, nestled in a pragmatic acceptance of whatever seems to work for us as intellectual practitioners, do not rest upon philosophy. The structural relation among intellectual fields is more the other way around, as far as the dynamics of intellectual change are concerned. But philosophy has nevertheless positioned itself in the intellectual space where the deepest explorations are launched. This will continue to be so, even as sociology adds its own impetus to the philosophical project. (shrink)
The commentaries on our target article address three main areas: (1) the relative importance of extraversion and other related traits to DA functioning, (2) how the long-term stability of extraversion can be conceptualized within a highly plastic central nervous system, and (3) the nature of DA functioning in the MOC network and in extraversion. We have organized our Response, therefore, into three major sections.
The anti- Humean proposal of constructing desire as belief about what would be good must be abandoned on pain of triviality. Our central result shows that if an agent's belief- desire state is represented by Jeffrey's expected value theory enriched with the Desire as Belief Thesis (DAB), then, provided that three pairwise inconsistent propositions receive non- zero probability, the agent must view with indifference any proposition whose probability is greater than zero. Unlike previous results against DAB our Opinionation or Indifference (...) Theorem is a purely synchronic one that depends in no way of the properties of Jeffrey conditionalization. (shrink)
Among the many philosophers who hold that causal facts1 are to be explained in terms of—or more ambitiously, shown to reduce to—facts about what happens, together with facts about the fundamental laws that govern what happens, the clear favorite is an approach that sees counterfactual dependence as the key to such explanation or reduction. The paradigm examples of causation, so advocates of this approach tell us, are examples in which events c and e—the cause and its effect—both occur, but: had (...) c not occurred, e would not have occurred either. From this starting point ideas proliferate in a vast profusion. But the remarkable disparity among these ideas should not obscure their common foundation. Neither should the diversity of opinion about the prospects for a philosophical analysis of causation obscure their importance. For even those philosophers who see these prospects as dim—perhaps because they suffer post-Quinean queasiness at the thought of any analysis of any concept of interest—can often be heard to say such things as that causal relations among events are somehow “a matter of” the patterns of counterfactual dependence to be found in them. It was not always so. Thirty-odd years ago, so-called “regularity” analyses (so-called, presumably, because they traced back to Hume’s well-known analysis of causation as constant conjunction) ruled the day, with Mackie’s Cement of the Universe embodying a classic statement. But they fell on hard times, both because of internal problems—which we will review in due course—and because dramatic improvements in philosophical understanding of counterfactuals made possible the emergence of a serious and potent rival: a counterfactual analysis of causation resting on foundations firm enough to be repel the kind of philosophical suspicion that had formerly warranted dismissal.. (shrink)
I argue that the dispute between two leading theories of interpretation of legal texts, textual originalism and textual evolutionism, depends on the false presupposition that changes in the way a word is used necessarily require a change in the wordâ€™s meaning. Semantic externalism goes a long way towards reconciling these views by showing how a wordâ€™s semantic properties can be stable over time, even through vicissitudes of usage. I argue that temporal externalism can account for even more semantic stability, however. (...) Temporal externalism is the theory that the content of an utterance at time t may be determined by developments in linguistic usage subsequent to t . If this semantic theory is correct, then the originalist and evolutionist positions effectively collapse. Originalism is correct in that the original meaning of the text is the meaning that is binding on jurists, but evolutionism is vindicated, as it is the current practices and standards that determine the meaning the text now has, and has always had . Objections to temporal externalism, and to its application to the interpretation of legal texts, are considered and addressed. (shrink)
This paper has as its topic two recent philosophical disputes. One of these disputes is internal to the project known as decision theory, and while by now familiar to many, may well seem to be of pressing concern only to specialists. It has been carried on over the last twenty years or so, but by now the two opposing camps are pretty well entrenched in their respective positions, and the situation appears to many observers (as well as to some of (...) the parties involved) to have reached a sort of stalemate. The second of these two disputes is, on the other hand, very much alive. While it has been framed in decision theoretic terms, it is definitely not a dispute internal to that enterprise. It is, rather, a debate about the very coherence of the notion of objective value, and as such touches on issues of central importance to, for example, meta–ethics and moral psychology. (shrink)
The key question in this three way debate is the role of the collectivity and of agency. Collins and Shrager debate whether cognitive psychology has, like the sociology of knowledge, always taken the mind to extend beyond the individual. They agree that irrespective of the history, socialization is key to understanding the mind and that this is compatible with Clark’s position; the novelty in Clark’s “extended mind” position appears to be the role of the material rather than the role (...) of other minds. Collins and Clark debate the relationship between self, agency, and the human collectivity. Collins argues that the Clark’s extended mind fails to stress the asymmetry of the relationship between the self and its material “scaffolding.” Clark accepts that there is asymmetry but that an asymmetrical ensemble is sufficient to explain the self. Collins says that we know too little about the material world to pursue such a model to the exclusion of other approaches including that both the collectivity and language have agency. The collectivity must be kept in mind! (Though what follows is a robust exchange of views it is also a cooperative effort, authors communicating “backstage” with each other to try to make the disagreements as clear and to the point as possible.). (shrink)
There is an incompatibility between the deflationist approach to truth, which makes truth transparent on the basis of an antecedent grasp of meaning, and the traditional endeavour, exemplified by Davidson, to explicate meaning through of truth. I suggest that both parties are in the explanatory red: deflationist lack a non-truth-involving theory of meaning and Davidsonians lack a non-deflationary account of truth. My focus is on the attempts of the latter party to resolve their problem. I look in detail at Davidson's (...) more recent work and suggest that it seeks to articulate a primitive notion of truth that may balance between a notion that collapses into deflationism and one that is wholly subsumed under a general theory of interpretation. I conclude that this tightrope walk is ultimately unsuccessful. Equally, however, some reasons are provided for thinking that deflationism might be equally unsuccessful with its problem. 'Truth or meaning?' remains an open question. (shrink)
In recent years, a number of philosophers have argued against a biological understanding of the innate in favor of a narrowly psychological notion. On the other hand, Ariew ((1996). Innateness and canalization. Philosophy of Science, 63, S19-S27. (1999). Innateness is canalization: in defense of a developmental account of innateness. In V. Hardcastle (Ed.), Where biology meets psychology: Philosophical essays (pp. 117-138). Cambridge, MA: MIT.) has developed a novel substantial account of innateness based on developmental biology: canalization. The governing thought of (...) this paper is that the notion of the innate, as it re-emerged with the work of Chomsky, is a general notion that applies equally to all biological traits. On this basis, the paper recommends canalization as a promising candidate account of the notion of the innate. (shrink)
Moral hypocrisy is motivation to appear moral yet, if possible, avoid the cost of actually being moral. In business, moral hypocrisy allows one to engender trust, solve the commitment problem, and still relentlessly pursue personal gain. Indicating the power of this motive, research has provided clear and consistent evidence that, given the opportunity, many people act to appear fair (e.g., they flip a coin to distribute resources between themselves and another person) without actually being fair (they accept the flip only (...) if it favors themselves). New evidence also indicates the power of moral hypocrisy in a situation more obviously relevant to business, resource allocation when one party has information about relative resource value that the other does not. Characteristics of modern business situations likely to encourage moral hypocrisy are outlined. We conclude that moral hypocrisy is not only a pragmatic virtue in modern business but is also fast becoming a prescriptive one. (shrink)
"It as little occurs to me to get involved in the philosophical quarrels and arguments of my times as to go down an ally and take part in a scuffle when I see the mob fighting there." — Arthur Schopenhauer, 1828-30, Adversaria' in Manuscript Remains, Vol. 3: Berlin Manuscripts (1818-1830). Oxford: Berg Publishers.
The paper considers our ordinary mentalistic discourse in relation to what we should expect from any genuine science of the mind. A meta-scientific eliminativism is commended and distinguished from the more familiar eliminativism of Skinner and the Churchlands. Meta-scientific eliminativism views folk psychology qua folksy as unsuited to offer insight into the structure of cognition, although it might otherwise be indispensable for our social commerce and self-understanding. This position flows from a general thesis that scientific advance is marked by an (...) eschewal of folk understanding. The latter half of the paper argues that, contrary to the received view, Chomsky's review of Skinner offers not just an argument against Skinner's eliminativism, but, more centrally, one in favour of the second eliminativism. (shrink)
Griffiths and Machery (2008) argue that innateness is a ?folk biological? notion, which, as such, has no useful reconstruction in contemporary biology. If this is so, not only is it wrong to identify the vernacular notion with the precise theoretical concept of canalization, but worse, it would appear that many of the putative scientific claims for particular competences and capacities being innate are simply misplaced. The present paper challenges the core substantive claim of Griffiths and Machery's position, namely, that innateness (...) understood on canalization lines as environment-independent development (somehow and to some degree) is a confused, outmoded notion. It will be contended that the modality-independence of language offers a prima facie case against Griffiths and Machery's general position. (shrink)
In July 2008, Pacific Rim Mining, a socially responsive Canadian gold mining Multinational Corporation (MNC) with $77 million invested in El Salvador, experienced a 30% decline in stock price when it suspended exploration drilling for gold there. In April 2009, the company filed a lawsuit against the government of El Salvador through Central American Free Trade Agreement to recover its investments plus damages. This corporate failure is explored based on: (1) four globalization economic development models, (2) the social, political, and (...) economic history of El Salvador, (3) the El Salvador gold mining industry, and (4) social movement reactions to international mining companies. MNCs must carefully engage "Social Justice" Nongovernment Organizations when pursuing economic development projects to ensure a nation's successful integration into the global economy. (shrink)
The American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) is responsible for the Code of Professional Conduct that governs the actions of CPAs. In 1988, the Code was revised by the AICPA, but a number of issues still remain unresolved or confounded by the new Code. These issues are examined in light of the profession''s stated commitment to the public good, a commitment that is discussed at length in the new Code.Specifically, this paper reviews the following issues: (1) client confidentiality and (...) whistleblowing, (2) limited liability, and (3) auditor independence. We argue that, in each of these areas, the AICPA promotes a position that is potentially harmful to the public good. (shrink)
Between formal propositional knowledge and embodied skill lies ‘interactional expertise’—the ability to converse expertly about a practical skill or expertise, but without being able to practice it, learned through linguistic socialisation among the practitioners. Interactional expertise is exhibited by sociologists of scientific knowledge, by scientists themselves and by a large range of other actors. Attention is drawn to the distinction between the social and the individual embodiment theses: a language does depend on the form of the bodies of its members (...) but an individual within that community can learn the language without the body. The idea has significance for our understanding of colour-blindness, deafness and other abilities and disabilities. They say that love's a word. (shrink)
This study builds upon the top management literature to predict and test antecedents to firms’ engagement in corruption. Building on a survey of 341 executives in India, we find that if executives have social ties with government officials, their firms are more likely to engage in corruption. Further, these executives are likely to rationalize engaging in corruption as a necessity for being competitive. The results collectively illustrate the role that executives’ social ties and perceptions have in shaping illegal actions of (...) their respective firms. (shrink)
This fascinating study in the sociology of science explores the way scientists conduct, and draw conclusions from, their experiments. The book is organized around three case studies: replication of the TEA-laser, detecting gravitational rotation, and some experiments in the paranormal. "In his superb book, Collins shows why the quest for certainty is disappointed. He shows that standards of replication are, of course, social, and that there is consequently (...) no outside standard, no Archimedean point beyond society from which we can lever the intellects of our fellows."--Donald M. McCloskey, Journal of Economic Psychology "Collins is one of the genuine innovators of the sociology of scientific knowledge. . . . Changing Order is a rich and entertaining book."-- Isis "The book gives a vivid sense of the contingent nature of research and is generally a good read."--Augustine Brannigan, Nature "This provocative book is a review of [Collins's] work, and an attempt to explain how scientists fit experimental results into pictures of the world. . . . A promising start for new explorations of our image of science, too often presented as infallibly authoritative."--Jon Turney, New Scientist. (shrink)
The problem of the unity of the proposition is almost as old as philosophy itself, and was one of the central themes of early analytical philosophy, greatly exercising the minds of Frege, Russell, Wittgenstein, and Ramsey. The problem is how propositions or meanings can be simultaneously unities (single things) and complexes, made up of parts that are autonomous of the positions they happen to fill in any given proposition. The problem has been associated with numerous paradoxes and has motivated general (...) theories of thought and meaning, but has eluded any consensual resolution; indeed, the problem is sometimes thought to be wholly erroneous, a result of atomistic assumptions we should reject. In short, the problem has been thought to be of merely historical interest. Collins argues that the problem is very real and poses a challenge to any theory of linguistic meaning. He seeks to resolve the problem by laying down some minimal desiderata on a solution and presenting a uniquely satisfying account. The first part of the book surveys and rejects extant 'solutions' and dismissals of the problem from (especially) Frege and Russell, and a host of more contemporary thinkers, including Davidson and Dummett. The book's second part offers a novel solution based upon the properties of a basic syntactic principle called 'Merge', which may be said to create objects inside objects, thus showing how unities can be both single things but also made up of proper parts. The solution is defended from both philosophical and linguistic perspectives. The overarching ambition of the book, therefore, is to strengthen the ties between current linguistics and contemporary philosophy of language in a way that is genuinely sensitive to the history of both fields. (shrink)
The ecological crisis is confronting humanity with a need to recognize the interconnectedness of all life, and the Akashic Field as formulated by Ervin Laszlo (2004a) has identified how a universal information field connects humans to a greater transpersonal consciousness. The Akashic Field could provide humanity with a focus to deepen its understanding of a holistic view of life. The global crisis will confront human beings with the need to develop their transpersonal potential and spiritual intelligence, which has the potential (...) to contribute to an ecological actualization of human beings' relationship to the world, and the development of a sustainable future. (shrink)
This article offers a case study of labor relations in a higher education setting. The University of Bridgeport's faculty union was certified in May 1973 and decertified in August 1992. Contract negotiation disputes centered on shared governance, managing faculty reductions during a time of inflation and declining enrollments, and determining fair wages. The private university experienced four faculty strikes, culminating in a two-year faculty strike – the longest in U.S. higher education history. The university was also the first institution of (...) higher education in the United States to hire permanent replacement faculty during a strike. In 1990, leaders of the locked-out striking faculty unsuccessfully lobbied for a state government takeover of the nearly bankrupt university. The case study highlights a plethora of complex ethical issues faced by administrators, faculty, and unions during times of economic decline. (shrink)
The deceased's prior consent to posthumous reproduction is a common requirement in many common law jurisdictions. This paper critically evaluates four arguments advanced to justify the presumption against consent. It is argued that, in situations where death is caused by sudden trauma, not only is there inadequate justification for the presumption against consent, but there are good reasons to reverse the presumption. The article concludes that the precondition of prior consent may be inappropriate in these situations.
The relevance of observations in introducing time dependence into quantum cosmology is discussed, some of the important features being illustrated by a simple example. Although the concept of time arises in a natural way even with a constant wave function, there are some conceptual difficulties in understanding how arguments which are familiar in classical cosmology translate to the quantum case.
This note briefly responds to Devitt’s (2008) riposte to Collins’s (2008a) argument that linguistic realism prima facie fails to accommodate unvoiced elements within syntax. It is argued that such elements remain problematic. For it remains unclear how conventions might target the distribution of PRO and how they might explain hierarchical structure that is presupposed by such distribution and which is not witnessed in concrete strings.
A new approach to developing formulisms of physics based solely on laws of mathematics is presented. From simple, classical statistical definitions for the observed space-time position and proper velocity of a particle having a discrete spectrum of internal states we derive u generalized Schrödinger equation on the space-time manifold. This governs the evolution of an N component wave function with each component square integrable over this manifold and is structured like that for a charged particle in an electromagnetic field but (...) also includes SU(N) gauge field couplings. This construction reveals a new hasis for gauge invariance and new insight into the appearance of spin and other such properties in relativistic quantum mechanics and suggests a new charged particle model. (shrink)
It is commonly assumed that natural languages, construed as sets of sentences, contain denumerably many sentences. One argument for this claim is that the sentences of a language must be recursively enumerable by a grammar, if we are to understand how a speaker-hearer could exhibit unbounded competence in a language. The paper defends this reasoning by articulating and defending a principle that excludes the construction of a sentence non-denumerably many words long.
Collins, John Francis In October this year there are to be two events at the Vatican. Beginning on 7 October and going through to 28 October bishops from all over the world are to gather at a Synod on 'New Evangelization for the Transmission of the Christian Faith.' On 11 October, midway through the Synod, the whole Church will mark the fiftieth anniversary of the opening of the Second Vatican Council. The bishops who are to gather this year at (...) the Synod follow in the footsteps of the more than 2000 Bishops who gathered at the Second Vatican Council. John XXIII opened the Second Vatican Council, with the following words 'Looked at one way there is the deposit of faith or the truths which are contained in our doctrine which we venerate, looked at another way there is the way by which the same (the deposit of faith) is enunciated both in its meaning and its spirit.' In a recent interview for Salt and Light Television the inaugural head of the Pontifical Council for the promotion of the New Evangelisation Archbishop Salvatore Fisichella noted that what Vatican II did for the Church is still present in our community. Later in the interview the Archbishop stated that the 'New Evangelisation is not a new work, it is a new mentality; a new language, a new enthusiasm for announcing the gospel.' There is continuity between both the spirit and letter of the Archbishop's words recorded in 2012 and the words of John XXIII in opening Vatican II. That is, as a Church, what we are seeking is new ways to announce the meaning and spirit of the deposit of faith, the truths contained in doctrine. What would later be called the new evangelisation permeated Vatican II. (shrink)
Collins, John Francis; Carroll, Sandra In the April 2012 edition of The Australasian Catholic Record (ACR) John Duiker presented a useful overview and history of the Catholic Charismatic Renewal (CCR) titled 'Spreading the Culture of Pentecost in the Midst of Disenchantment.' According to Duiker the CCR as an ecclesial movement 'has its origins in a retreat that was held at Duquesne University in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania in the USA in February 1967.' Describing this event as a Pentecost experience Duiker writes (...) that the movement that was started by this event 'spread to other college campuses and continued to spread right across the world, and now exists in over 220 countries and has touched the lives of over 120 million Catholics.' Duiker's article draws on Charles Taylor's thesis that our post-enlightenment Western culture has been emptied-out of the idea of God's providence leading to 'a diminishing of the necessity of grace and a fading of the sense of mystery.' Duiker then presents a case for CCR being recognised 'as an example for the re-enchantment of a post-Enlightenment secular world.'. (shrink)
With the dramatic collapse of bureaucratic dictatorial socialism, Business Ethicists need an antithesis to capitalism to enrich our reformist writings. Reliance on self-regulation and requesting that business executives behave in a socially responsible manner are necessary, but not sufficient, conditions for creating a "good society." The purpose of this article is to introduce readers to the works of two new age theologians – Neale Donald Walsch and Reverend Sun Myung Moon – who offer an alternative vision and paradigm for understanding (...) business and society relationships. They provide unique insights about economics, organizational structures and policies, and individual attitudes and behaviors necessary for creating an ethical society. Pertinent economic and organizational concepts emanating from their writings include mission statements and codes of ethics; meaningful and joyful work; autonomy and self-management; workplace diversity; parentism and participatory management; stakeholder governance boards; democratic social capitalismwith upper and lower income limits; and the principle ofvisibility. Work should support family units and individualgrowth and development, not supersede or destroy them. (shrink)
My contribution takes up a set of methodological and philosophical issues in linguistics that have recently occupied the work of Devitt and Rey. Devitt construes the theories of generative linguistics as being about an external linguistic reality of utterances, inscriptions, etc.; that is, Devitt rejects the ‘psychologistic’ construal of linguistics. On Rey’s conception, linguistics concerns the mental contents of speaker / hearers; there are no external linguistic items at all. I reject both views. Against Devitt, I argue that the philosophical (...) issues in linguistics should be framed in terms of the theories themselves, not pre-theoretical conceptions front either philosophy or commonsense as to what linguistics is about or what a language is. In this light, I suggest that Devitt’s key arguments (concerning parameter setting, psychological reality, and the role of intuitions) do not make sense of current linguistic inquiry and so do not offer an adequate philosophical basis of that work. To this extent, I agree with Rey. Ourdifferences emerge over the putative role of content in linguistic inquiry and how the concept of computation ought to be understood. Following the lead of Chomsky’s recent philosophical remarks, I argue that a theory of the language faculty should be understood as an abstract specification of the function that pairs ‘sound’ with ‘meaning’ rather than as a specification of the content the mind represents. But doesn’t ‘computation’ presuppose ‘representation’? I argue for a negative answer, at least if ‘representation’ is read intentionally. A ‘representation’ can be construed as brain structure that, at the present stage of inquiry, can only be picked out via the abstract concepts of linguistic theory. We are entitled to posit such structures insofar as they earn their explanatory keep over the output of the faculty. The linguistic function is a way of setting the boundary conditions on what the brain must be doing such that humans get to be competent speaker / hearers, although we do not therefore take the function to be a story of the causal spring of linguistic performance. (shrink)
A range of positions persist in the proper interpretation of generative linguistics. The paper responds to recent work in this area that either weakly or strongly diverges from the non-contentful, internalist model presented in Collins (2008a). Against the sympathetic criticisms of Matthews (2008) and Smith (2008), it is argued that a crucial role for content in our understanding of linguistic theories remains obscure, although the discussion here will hopefully clarify the divergence between the parties as merely perspectival. Rey (2008) (...) more strongly argues that the non-contentful model is prey to some classic complaints. The charges are rebutted. Finally, the position of Devitt (2008a, b) is considered. It is argued that his most recent presentation of his brand of realism fails to speak to the fundamental complaints levelled against it, especially as regards the putative role of conventions in the explanation of unvoiced syntax. (shrink)
The essence of the ethical issues pertinent to business activities is the harm or benefit that occurs as part of a company's resource transformation process. A typology is developed that sorts ethical issues according to three variables: (1) the nature of the harm, (2) the nature of those harmed and (3) the transformation stage where the harm occurs. Propositions are formulated that would enable analysts and practitioners to predict the degree of legal condemnation of, and stakeholder retaliation to, harms generated (...) by questionable moral reasoning. An organizational harm analysis is then constructed as a decision making tool that could supplement cost/benefit analysis. (shrink)
I respond to Selinger and Mix (Selinger, E. and Mix, J. 2004. On interactional expertise: Pragmatic and ontological considerations. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 3: 145–163), concentrating on their charges that Collins (Collins, H. M. 2004a. Interactional expertise as a third form of knowledge. Phenomenology and the Cognitive Sciences 3: 125–143) underrates the importance of interactional expertise as an expertise sui generis and that the paper fails to analyse the idea of embodiment sufficiently holistically, misleading treating the ‘body’ (...) as no more than the linear sum of its parts. (shrink)
It is shown that the Hilbert space formalism of quantum mechanics can be derived as a corrected form of probability theory. These constructions yield the Schrödinger equation for a particle in an electromagnetic field and exhibit a relationship of this equation to Markov processes. The operator formalism for expectation values is shown to be related to anL 2 representation of marginal distributions and a relationship of the commutation rules for canonically conjugate observables to a topological relationship of two manifolds is (...) indicated. (shrink)