This article is about the history of logic in Australia. Douglas Gasking (1911?1994) undertook to translate the logical terminology of John Anderson (1893?1962) into that of Ludwig Wittgenstein's (1921) Tractatus. At the time Gilbert Ryle (1900?1976), and more recently David Armstrong, recommended the result to students; but it is reasonable to have misgivings about Gasking as a guide to either Anderson or Wittgenstein. The historical interest of the debate Gasking initiated is that it yielded surprisingly little information about Anderson's traditional (...) (syllogistic or Aristotelian) logic and its relation to classical (first-order predicate or Russellian) logic, the ostensible topic; but the materials now exist to interpret Anderson's logic in classical logic, possibly as an algebra of classes. This would be of little interest to contemporary logicians, but it might shed some light on Anderson's philosophy. (shrink)
Since 1999 Thoemmes Press (now Thoemmes Continuum) has been engaged in a large-scale programme of biographical dictionaries of philosophy and related subjects. This volume on Irish philosophers follows the standard format of arranging entires alphabetically by thinker. It includes two forms of entry: (1) entries reproduced from previous editions of Thoemmes encyclopedias of British philosophy and (2) wholly new entries on early (renaissance-period) and_ modern (20th century) philosophers, together with some new entries on the intervening centuries. >.
The evolution of life on Earth has produced an organism that is beginning to model and understand its own evolution and the possible future evolution of life in the universe. These models and associated evidence show that evolution on Earth has a trajectory. The scale over which living processes are organized cooperatively has increased progressively, as has its evolvability. Recent theoretical advances raise the possibility that this trajectory is itself part of a wider developmental process. According to these theories, the (...) developmental process has been shaped by a larger evolutionary process that involves the reproduction of universes. This evolutionary process has tuned the key parameters of the universe to increase the likelihood that life will emerge and develop to produce outcomes that are successful in the larger process (e.g. a key outcome may be to produce life and intelligence that intentionally reproduces the universe and tunes the parameters of ‘offspring’ universes). Theory suggests that when life emerges on a planet, it moves along this trajectory of its own accord. However, at a particular point evolution will continue to advance only if organisms emerge that decide to advance the evolutionary process intentionally. The organisms must be prepared to make this commitment even though the ultimate nature and destination of the process is uncertain, and may forever remain unknown. Organisms that complete this transition to intentional evolution will drive the further development of life and intelligence in the universe. Humanity’s increasing understanding of the evolution of life in the universe is rapidly bringing it to the threshold of this major evolutionary transition. (shrink)
Futility is not a purely medical concept. Its subjective nature requires a balanced procedural approach where competing views can be aired and in which disputes can be resolved with procedural fairness. Law should play an important role in this process. Pure medical models of futility are based on a false claim of medical sovereignty. Procedural approaches avoid the problems of such claims. This paper examines the arguments for and against the adoption of a procedural approach to futility determination.
The Foundations of Mathematics (Stewart and Tall) is a horse of a different color. The writing is excellent and there is actually some useful mathematics. I definitely like this book."--The Bulletin of Mathematics Books.
Enhancing body awareness has been described as a key element or a mechanism of action for therapeutic approaches often categorized as mind-body approaches, such as yoga, TaiChi, Body-Oriented Psychotherapy, Body Awareness Therapy, mindfulness based therapies/meditation, Feldenkrais, Alexander Method, Breath Therapy and others with reported benefits for a variety of health conditions. To better understand the conceptualization of body awareness in mind-body therapies, leading practitioners and teaching faculty of these approaches were invited as well as their patients to participate in focus (...) groups. The qualitative analysis of these focus groups with representative practitioners of body awareness practices, and the perspectives of their patients, elucidated the common ground of their understanding of body awareness. For them body awareness is an inseparable aspect of embodied self awareness realized in action and interaction with the environment and world. It is the awareness of embodiment as an innate tendency of our organism for emergent self-organization and wholeness. The process that patients undergo in these therapies was seen as a progression towards greater unity between body and self, very similar to the conceptualization of embodiment as dialectic of body and self described by some philosophers as being experienced in distinct developmental levels. (shrink)
Jon Stewart's groundbreaking study is a major re-evaluation of the complex relations between the philosophies of Kierkegaard and Hegel. The standard view on the subject is that Kierkegaard defined himself as explicitly anti-Hegelian, indeed that he viewed Hegel's philosophy with disdain. Jon Stewart shows convincingly that Kierkegaard's criticism was not of Hegel but of a number of contemporary Danish Hegelians. Kierkegaard's own view of Hegel was in fact much more positive to the point where he was directly influenced (...) by some of Hegel's work. Any scholar working in the tradition of Continental philosophy will find this an insightful and provocative book with implications for the subsequent history of philosophy in the twentieth century. The book will also appeal to scholars in religious studies and the history of ideas. (shrink)
This second research paper on science education in Māori-medium school contexts complements an earlier article published in this journal (Stewart, 2005). Science and science education are related domains in society and in state schooling in which there have always been particularly large discrepancies in participation and achievement by Māori. In 1995 a Kaupapa Māori analysis of this situation challenged New Zealand science education academics to deal with ‘the Māori crisis’ within science education. Recent NCEA results suggest Pūtaiao (Māori-medium Science) (...) education, for which a national curriculum statement was published in 1996, has so far increased, rather than decreased, the level of inequity for Māori students in science education. What specific issues impact on this lack of success, which contrasts with the overall success of Kura Kaupapa Māori, and how might policy frameworks and operational systems of Pūtaiao need to change, if better achievement in science education for Māori-medium students is the goal? A pathway towards further research and development in this area is suggested. (shrink)
Abstract Previous work has found few gender differences in moral orientation among children. Two experiments were conducted with third grade children (8?year?olds) to learn if children's moral orientation would be affected by the gender of dilemma characters: all male, all female, or mixed gender. Children responded to stories in which animal characters faced a conflict. Children's suggestions as to how the characters should solve their problems were coded as expressing a concern for others (care orientation) or a focus on issues (...) of rights and justice (rights orientation). Both boys and girls showed a small but consistent preference for the care orientation, and their reasoning was not influenced by the gender of the characters. Children tended to misremember female animal story characters as male (Experiment 1), unless an illustration depicting the characters? gender accompanied the text (Experiment 2). Overall, the results point to the role of children's literature in creating stereotyped expectations about male and female story characters, and emphasise the initial similarity of boys? and girls? moral orientation in childhood. (shrink)
Mendeleev’s failure to represent the periodic system as a continuum may have hidden from him the space for the noble gases. A spiral format might have revealed the significance of the wide gaps in atomic mass between his rows. Tables overemphasize the division of the sequence into ‘periods’ and blocks. Not only do spirals express the continuity; in addition they are more attractive visually. They also facilitate a new placing for hydrogen and the introduction of an ‘element of atomic number (...) zero’. (shrink)
This paper begins by distinguishing between two levels at which ethics has been applied in the past half century. Typically, ethics gets applied at the level of public debate and policy. Much less often, applied ethics centers on the personal level. As a literature search reveals, this is true of recent philosophic discussions of divorce. This paper seeks to begin an alternative philosophic discussion of divorce and separation by considering it at a personal level. I begin this discussion by analyzing (...) two different conceptions of love-eros and agape-and suggest a synthesis of the two. The conception of love that I endorse suggests that the value of the parties in a loving relationship is constructed within the relationship itself. It is this feature of love that helps to explain why so many feel sueh a sense of worthlessness when experiencing a divorce or separation. Namely, that much of the positive value they had within their relationship has little or no value outside the context of that relationship. (shrink)
The strategies of action employed by a human subject in order to perceive simple 2-D forms on the basis of tactile sensory feedback have been modelled by an explicit computer algorithm. The modelling process has been constrained and informed by the capacity of human subjects both to consciously describe their own strategies, and to apply explicit strategies; thus, the strategies effectively employed by the human subject have been influenced by the modelling process itself. On this basis, good qualitative and semi-quantitative (...) agreement has been achieved between the trajectories produced by a human subject, and the traces produced by a computer algorithm. The advantage of this reciprocal modelling option, besides facilitating agreement between the algorithm and the empirically observed trajectories, is that the theoretical model provides an explanation, and not just a description, of the active perception of the human subject. (shrink)
This collection of new papers on Scottish philosophy in the age of Hutcheson and Hume pays close attention to the study of context and the use of original historical sources as a key to philosophical interpretation. The book includes revolutionary new research on Hume's early reading in science and religion and its impact of his thought.
Postmodern claims for the lack of general coherence in social life and therefore in social research are merely a version of recurrent attempts to accept incoherence as adequate in explanations. Incoherence, however, is less sharply distinguished from the synthetic and generalizing theories that it is held to have replaced than its proponents and critics suppose. Generalizing approaches, in fact, were built around contradictions that contributed to their instability and facilitated postmodern fragmentation. In this paper we demonstrate the central contradictions in (...) social theory, showing their common occurrence in apparently opposed positions. Both postmodernism and what it seeks to replace are features of a conservative and unproductive social science. We trace the contradictory continuities through major modern schools of social theory in order to clear the ground for a progressive social science which accepts contradictions as problems that must be solved creatively in the practice of social research. (shrink)
Some version of the will theory and the interest theory of rights attempt to provide a precise and normatively neutral definition of a right that would be useful in substantive normative debates and that corresponds reasonably well with usage in our political and legal culture. But there is an irresolvable tension in this project. Consistent application of a definition of a right cannot plausible track ordinary usage without invoking underlying normative propositions about the justifications for granting rights. Thus, definitional approaches (...) to rights are too demanding to serve either the descriptive purpose of providing a neutral vocabulary or the normative purpose of usefully discussing the rights we ought to have. For descriptive purposes, it would be better to retreat, if necessary, to the Hohfeldian idea that a right is nothing more than the correlate of a duty; for normative purposes, it would be better to address directly the political justification for characterizing a particular legal as creating a right. (shrink)
Preoccupation with LTP as a putative memory mechanism may have retarded the consideration of pathological modulation of synaptic plasticity in clinical disorders where memory dysfunction is not a primary feature. Encouraged by Shors & Matzel's review, we consider the relationship between stress, synaptic plasticity, and depressive disorder.
Investigating key issues in English philosophical, political, and religious thought in the second half of the seventeenth century, this book presents a set of new and intriguing essays on the topics. Particular emphasis is given to the interaction between philosophy and religion among leading political thinkers of the period; connections between philosophical debate on personhood, certainty, and the foundations of faith; and new conceptions of biblical exegesis.
Open peer commentary on the target article “From Objects to Processes: A Proposal to Rewrite Radical Constructivism” by Siegfried J. Schmidt. Upshot: My suggestion is that the shift from objects to processes can be seen as grounded in the processes of self-generation common to all living organisms. Specifically human cognition is a subsequent evolutionary emergence.
Reflecting the trend over the last twenty years to examine more thoroughly the nature of love and sexuality within a philosophical context, this eclectic anthology presents numerous perspectives on sexual roles and norms, eroticism, pornography, feminism, prostitution, perversion, friendship, and familial love. Philosophical Perspectives on Sex and Love is the most up-to-date appraisal of these most fundamental and timeless of human attributes, featuring the work of thinkers from antiquity and the Middle Ages as well as the modern era. On the (...) subject of erotic love, Stewart offers insight from Plato's Symposium, as well as Solomon's more contemporary "The Virtue of (Erotic) Love". There are also reflections on "Sexual Perversion" from Nagel, and the editor himself explores "Moral Criticisms and the Social Meaning of Prostitution." From Graybosch we have "Parents, Children, and Friends", and David Hume opens a window onto the ethics of sexuality through his "Of Chastity and Modesty." Care has been taken to present different positions on the most controversial issues, and the vast majority of selections are offered in their entirety. Invaluable for courses in social philosophy, sexuality, social ethics, and feminism, no other volume can give students a more comprehensive discussion of love's countless dimensions. (shrink)
This is a collection of new, specially written essays on the flowering of modern philosophy on the continent of Europe. The eight leading contributors focus on the work of Descartes, later Cartesians, Leibniz, and Bayle, reassessing the influence of Augustine on Descartes and of the Reformed tradition on Leibniz, and tracing anticipations of Leibniz's monadology in the cabbalistic notions of van Helmont, the preformationist theories of Malebranche, and the experimental work of Dutch microscopists.
Features of semantic prosody -- The evaluative and the hidden -- The diachronic and the synchronic -- Semantic prosody and lexical environment -- Semantic prosody and corpus data -- Semantic prosody and the concordance -- Intuition, introspection, and corpus data -- Semantic prosody and lexical priming.
What is the potential for improvements in the functioning of consciousness? The paper addresses this issue using global workspace theory. According to this model, the prime function of consciousness is to develop novel adaptive responses. Consciousness does this by putting together new combinations of knowledge, skills and other disparate resources that are recruited from throughout the brain. The paper's search for potential improvements in consciousness is aided by studies of a developmental transition that enhances functioning in whichever domain it occurs. (...) This transition involves a shift from the use of procedural (implicit) knowledge to declarative (explicit) knowledge. However, the potential of the transition to enhance functioning has not yet been realised to any extent in relation to consciousness itself. The paper assesses the potential for consciousness to use declarative knowledge to improve its own functioning and to thereby enhance human adaptability. A number of sources (including the practices of religious and contemplative traditions) are drawn on to investigate how this potential might be realised. (shrink)
ABSTRACT. What potential exists for improvements in the functioning of consciousness? The paper addresses this issue using global workspace theory. According to this model, the prime function of consciousness is to develop novel adaptive responses. Consciousness does this by putting together new combinations of knowledge, skills and other disparate resources that are recruited from throughout the brain. The paper's search for potential improvements in the functioning of consciousness draws on studies of the shift during human development from the use of (...) implicit knowledge to the use of explicit (declarative) knowledge. These studies show that the ability of consciousness to adapt a particular domain improves significantly as the transition to the use of declarative knowledge occurs in that domain. However, this potential for consciousness to enhance adaptability has not yet been realised to any extent in relation to consciousness itself. The paper assesses the potential for adaptability to be improved by the conscious adaptation of key processes that constitute consciousness. A number of sources (including the practices of religious and contemplative traditions) are drawn on to investigate how this potential might be realised. (shrink)
In this article, the author argues that complexity theories have limited use in the study of society, and that social processes are too complex and particular to be rigorously modeled in complexity terms. Theories of social complexity are shown to be inadequately developed, and typical weaknesses in the literature on social complexity are discussed. Two stronger analyses, of Luhmann and of Harvey and Reed, are also critically considered. New considerations regarding social complexity are advanced, on the lines that simplicity, complexity (...) that can be modeled, and incondensible complexity permeate society simultaneously. The difficulty of establishing complexity models for processes involving ongoing interpretation is discussed. It is argued that the notions of system and environment need recasting in social studies. Existing social studies and literature, it is argued, reflect a polymorphous, contextual, contingent, labyrinthine, dramatic and political face to social complexity. Students of social complexity must be literate in such studies. (shrink)
The harm principle, understood as the normative requirement that conduct should be criminalized only if it is harmful, has difficulty in dealing with those core cases of criminal wrongdoing that can occur without causing any direct harm. Advocates of the harm principle typically find it implausible to hold that these core cases should not be crimes and so usually seek out some indirect harm that can justify criminalizing the seemingly harmless conduct. But this strategy justifies criminalization (...) of a wide range of conduct on the basis of the fear, worry, and anxiety it generates among those who are not the direct victims of the conduct, and thereby undermines the limiting role of the harm principle by permitting the very move it was meant to prevent: the criminalization of harmless conduct on the ground of othersâ feelings about it. The best way to avoid this dilemma is to recognize that people have rights, operating independently of the harm principle, to be treated in certain ways just because they are persons. The existence of such rights provides a ground for both criminalizing conduct and limiting the scope of criminalization because these rights point both to conduct that people must be permitted to engage in (regardless of its harmful effects) and conduct that might well be criminalized (though it is not harmful). A complete account of criminal law will therefore require the harm principle to work together with an independent account of rights. (shrink)
Experimental results on the Ellsberg paradox typically reveal behavior that is commonly interpreted as ambiguity aversion. The experiments reported in the current paper find the objective probabilities for drawing a red ball that make subjects indifferent between various risky and uncertain Ellsberg bets. They allow us to examine the predictive power of alternative principles of choice under uncertainty, including the objective maximin and Hurwicz criteria, the sure-thing principle, and the principle of insufficient reason. Contrary to our expectations, the principle of (...) insufficient reason performed substantially better than rival theories in our experiment, with ambiguity aversion appearing only as a secondary phenomenon. (shrink)
As Hammond has argued, traditional explanations for disagreement among experts (incompetence, venality, and ideology) are inadequate. The character and fallibilities of the human judgement process itself lead to persistent disagreements even among competent, honest, and disinterested experts. Social Judgement Theory provides powerful methods for analysing such judgementally based disagreements when the experts' judgement processes can be represented by additive models involving the same cues. However, the validity and usefulness of such representations depend on several conditions: (a) experts must agree on (...) a problem definition, (b) experts must have access to the same information, and (c) experts must use the same organising principles. When these conditions are not met, methods for diagnosing and treating disagreement are poorly understood. As a start towards developing such an understanding, sources of expert disagreement are discussed and categorised. (shrink)
The term “social cognition” can be construed in different ways. On the one hand, it can refer to the cognitive faculties involved in social activities, defined simply as situations where two or more individuals interact. On this view, social systems would consist of interactions between autonomous individuals; these interactions form higher-level autonomous domains not reducible to individual actions. A contrasting, alternative view is based on a much stronger theoretical definition of a truly social domain, which is always defined by a (...) set of structural norms; moreover, these social structures are not only a set of constraints, but actually constitute the possibility of enacting worlds that would just not exist without them. This view emphasises the heteronomy of individuals who abide by norms that are impersonal, culturally inherited and to a large extent independent of the individuals. Human beings are socialised through and through; consequently, all human cognition is social cognition. The article argues for this second position. Finally, it appears that fully blown autonomy actually requires heteronomy. It is the acceptance of the constraints of social structures that enables individuals to enter new realms of common meaningfulness. The emergence of social life marks a crucial step in the evolution of cognition; so that at some evolutionary point human cognition cannot but be social cognition. (shrink)