In this paper, we review Keith Lehrer’s account of the basing relation, with particular attention to the two cases he offered in support of his theory, Raco (Lehrer, Theory of knowledge, 1990; Theory of knowledge, (2nd ed.), 2000) and the earlier case of the superstitious lawyer (Lehrer, The Journal of Philosophy, 68, 311–313, 1971). We show that Lehrer’s examples succeed in making his case that beliefs need not be based on the evidence, in order to be justified. These cases (...) show that it is the justification (rather than the belief) that must be based in the evidence. We compare Lehrer’s account of basing with some alternative accounts that have been offered, and show why Lehrer’s own account is more plausible. (shrink)
John Searle distinguished between weak and strong artificial intelligence (AI). This essay discusses a third alternative, mild AI, according to which a machine may be capable of possessing a species of mentality. Using James Fetzer's conception of minds as semiotic systems, the possibility of what might be called ``mild AI'' receives consideration. Fetzer argues against strong AI by contending that digital machines lack the ground relationship required of semiotic systems. In this essay, the implementational nature of semiotic processes posited by (...) Charles S. Peirce's triadic sign relation is re-examined in terms of the underlying dispositional processes and the ontological levels they would span in an inanimate machine. This suggests that, if non-human mentality can be replicated rather than merely simulated in a digital machine, the direction to pursue appears to be that of mild AI. (shrink)
The problem of metaphor has come to a noteworthy revival in the analytical philosophy of today. Despite all progress that has been made, the majority of important studies consider the function of metaphor as an analogue to visual perception. Such comparison may be conceived as metaphor as well. In his late philosophy, Wittgenstein spent a lot of effort to explain the use of the expression "seeing as". I argue that his explanations can be transposed to the explanation of the function (...) of metaphor. Firstly, it is shown that all earlier attempts to do that are not satisfying. The occurrence of the expression "to see as" in everyday language led Wittgenstein to the elaboration of the notion of "aspect". Primarily these ideas should be employed in order to explain metaphors in everyday or even poetic language. My conclusion is that an internal relation can be perceived and thought of in the metaphor. (shrink)
Exploring and reassessing the philosophical notion of relation, Of Minimal Things views relation as the minimal and elemental theme and structure of philosophy, in contrast to the scholastic, ontological conception of relation as a thing of diminished being. Drawing radical conclusions from the classical understanding of relation as a being-toward-another, it argues that rethinking relation engages the very possibility and limits of philosophical discourse. In the author's studies of Nietzsche, Benjamin, Husserl, Heidegger, Derrida and Blanchot, (...)relation is shown to be central to their thought and to undergo elaborations that escape the ontological, categorial, and formalist ways in which the concept has traditionally been interpreted. Studying the writings of Mallarme; and Kafka, the author argues that philosophy necessarily opens up to and is implicated in its others, one such possible other being literature. (shrink)
1. To be is to be-in-relation -- 2. Cosmic being as relation -- 3. Human being as relation -- 4. Divine being as relation -- 5. Divine and cosmic being in relation -- 6. Creation as relation in an evolving cosmos -- 7. Incarnation as relation in an evolving cosmos -- 8. Grace as relation in an evolving cosmos -- 9. Living in trinitarian relation.
In this article it is presented the idea that quantum electrodynamics has to be seen as a theoretical upgrade of classical electrodynamics and the theory of relativity, that permits an extension of classical theory in the description of phenomena, that while being clearly related to the conceptual framework of the classical theory – the description of matter, radiation, and their interaction – cannot be properly addressed from the classical theory. In this way quantum electrodynamics would not be a fundamental theory, (...) and principally, we could not consider classical electrodynamics as contained in the quantum theory and being recovered from it by some sort of limiting procedure. (shrink)
Considering the close relation between language and theory of mind in development and their tight connection in social behavior, it is no big leap to claim that the two capacities have been related in evolution as well. But what is the exact relation between them? This paper attempts to clear a path toward an answer. I consider several possible relations between the two faculties, bring conceptual arguments and empirical evidence to bear on them, and end up arguing for (...) a version of co-evolution. To model this co-evolution, we must distinguish between different stages or levels of language and theory of mind, which fueled each other’s evolution in a protracted escalation process. (shrink)
The dissertation provides a critical comparison of the theories of John Rawls and Alasdair MacIntyre with particular attention to the question of identity. The theme of true persuasion as situated by the concepts of eros and logos in Plato's Phaedrus is developed and applied to two contemporary understandings of the person. I suggest explanations for the paradoxical way in which Rawls and MacIntyre tend to read their understandings of identity in terms of the understandings of citizenship. An idiom of Will (...) elaborated in each theorist's view of politics and rationality results in a conflation of person and citizen and the reduction of true persuasion to public philosophy. (shrink)
Ce texte s’efforce de définir la contribution possible de la phénoménologie française contemporaine au développement et à la radicalisation du projet d’une herméneutique du soi. Il s’agit, plus spécifiquement, de préciser quelle conception décentrée du soi ressort des récents travaux de Claude Romano sur l’événement et d’Emmanuel Housset sur la dimension relationnelle de la personne. Pour ce faire, l’auteur insiste sur les convergences entre les deux œuvres, tout en s’interrogeant sur les limites de ces approches.
The properties colored and red stand in a special relation. Namely, red is a determinate of colored, and colored is determinable relative to red. Many other properties are similarly related. The determination relation is an interesting topic of logical investigation in its own right, and the prominent philosophical inquiries into this relation have, accordingly, operated at a high level of abstraction.1 It is time to return to these investigations, not just as a logical amusement, but for the (...) payoffs such investigation can yield in solving some basic metaphysical problems. The goal in what follows is twofold. First, I argue for a novel understanding of the determination relation. Second, this understanding is applied to yield insights into property instance (e.g., trope) individuation, how different property types can share an instance, the relation between property types and property instances, as well as applications to causation (mental causation, in particular). (shrink)
The paper argues that there is a proper place for literature within aesthetics but that care must be taken in identifying just what the relation is. In characterising aesthetic pleasure associated with literature it is all too easy to fall into reductive accounts, for example, of literature as merely “fine writing”. Belleslettrist or formalistic accounts of literature are rejected, as are two other kinds of reduction, to pure meaning properties and to a kind of narrative realism. The idea is (...) developed that literature—both poetry and prose fiction—invites its own distinctive kind of aesthetic appreciation which far from being at odds with critical practice, in fact chimes well with it. (shrink)
Ayahuasca, a hallucinogen with profound consciousness- altering properties, has been increasingly utilized in recent studies (e.g., Strassman, 2001; Shanon, 2002a,b). However, other than Shanon's recent work, there has been little attempt to examine the effects of ayahuasca on perceptual, affective and cognitive experience, its relation to fringe consciousness or to pertinent personality variables. Twenty-one volunteers attending a seminar on ayahuasca were administered personality measures and a semi-structured interview about phenomenal qualities of their experience. Ayahuasca ingestion was associated with profound (...) alterations of temporal- spatial experiences including expansive space and slowed time. Ayahuasca use was also associated with positive emotional states, higher levels of fantasy proneness and psychological absorption and a greater openness to mystical experiences. Conversely, quickened time was associated with negative emotionality. The results are discussed within a multi-faceted model of fringe consciousness with a particular emphasis on Hunt's (1995) models of cross-modal translation as the basis for higher-order symbolic cognition and support James' (1890/1950) contention that fringe consciousness is essential to human cognition. (shrink)
The measurement problem of quantum theory is discussed, and the difficulty of trying to solve it within the confines of a local, Lorentz-invariant physics is emphasised. This leads to the obvious suggestion to seek a solution beyond physics, in particular, by introducing the concept of consciousness. The resulting dualistic model, in the natural form suggested by quantum theory, is shown to differ in several respects from the classical model of Descartes, and to suggest solutions to some of the long-standing problems (...) concerning the relation of consciousness to the physical world. (shrink)
Heidegger formulates the artwork's origin in a movement against the false motion of portrayal and repetition. The term mimesis is employed in the present essay to describe this origin and the means by which truth 'happens', specifically when mimesis turns against itself as imitation. The movement of the artwork is considered within the following constellation: the concept of mimesis is examined in light of Heidegger's 'Origin' essay to illuminate the concept and the essay by placing both in relation to (...) Adorno's aesthetics (especially the way mimesis figures there) as well as Kant's doctrine of the sublime- via Lyotard's Lessons on the Analytic of the Sublime. The movement of the artwork toward truth is presented as the movement of mimesis. Further, for both Heidegger and Adorno's accounts, the mimetic movement of the artwork parallels the movement of aesthetic judgment, especially as it is construed in regard to Kant's doctrine of the sublime. Key Words: aesthetic judgment .art theory . beauty . mimesis . the Sublime. (shrink)
This essay offers a detailed philosophical criticism of Frege’s popular thesis that identity is a relation of names. I consider Frege’s position as articulated both in ‘On Sense and Reference’, and in the Grundgesetze, where he appears to take an objectual view of identity, arguing that in both cases Frege is clearly committed to the proposition that identity is a relation holding between names, on the grounds that two different things can never be identical. A counterexample to Frege’s (...) thesis is considered, and a positive thesis is developed according to which, in contradistinction to the Fregean position, identity is a reflexive, symmetric, and transitive relation holding only between a thing and itself which can be expressed as a relation between names. (shrink)
In 1913 Wittgenstein raised an objection to Russell’s multiple relation theory of judgment that eventually led Russell to abandon his theory. As he put it in the Tractatus, the objection was that “the correct explanation of the form of the proposition, ‘A makes the judgement p’, must show that it is impossible for a judgement to be a piece of nonsense. (Russell’s theory does not satisfy this requirement,” (5.5422). This objection has been widely interpreted to concern type restrictions on (...) the constituents of judgment. I argue that this interpretation is mistaken and that Wittgenstein’s objection is in fact a form of the problem of the unity of the proposition. (shrink)
It is commonplace to distinguish between propositional justification (having good reasons for believing p) and doxastic justification (believing p on the basis of those good reasons).One necessary requirement for bridging the gap between S’s merely having propositional justification that p and S’s having doxastic justification that p is that S base her belief that p on her reasons (propositional justification).A plausible suggestion for what it takes for S’s belief to be based on her reasons is that her reasons must contribute (...) causally to S’s having that belief. Though this suggestion is plausible, causal accounts of the basing relation that have been proposed have not fared well. In particular, cases involving causal deviancy and cases involving over-determination have posed serious problems for causal accounts of the basing relation. Although previous causal accounts of the basing relation seem to fall before these problems, it is possible to construct an acceptable causal account of the basing relation. That is, it is possible to construct a causal account of the basing relation that not only fits our intuitions about doxastic justification in general, but also is not susceptible to the problems posed by causal deviancy and causal over-determination. The interventionist account of causation provides the tools for constructing such an account. My aim is to make use of the insights of the interventionist account of causation to develop and defend an adequate causal account of the basing relation. (shrink)
According to a common view, the activity of justifying is epistemologically irrelevant: being justified in believing as one does never requires the ability to justify one’s belief. This view runs into trouble regarding the epistemic basing relation, the relation between a person’s belief and the reasons for which the person holds it. The view must appeal to basing relations as part of its account of what it is for a person to be justified in believing as she does, (...) but the view prevents basing relations from doing the needed work. In place of the common view, I propose an account of basing relations which links them to the person’s commitments and hence to her justificatory activity. If this proposal is correct, then positive justificatory status, too, will be conceptually linked to the ability to succeed in the activity of justifying. (shrink)
Quine famously argued that analyticity is indefinable, since there is no good account of analyticity in terms of synonymy, and intensions are of no help since there are no intensions. Yet if there are intensions, the question still remains as to the right account of analyticity in terms of them. On the assumption that intensions must be admitted, the present paper considers two such accounts. The first analyzes analyticity in terms of concept identity, and the second analyzes analyticity in terms (...) of the analysis relation. The first fails in light of possible counterexamples. The second is defended, both by considering test cases of intuitively clear analyticities, and by developing the account in light of possible counterexamples. (shrink)
One of the most dominant approaches to semantics for relevant (and many paraconsistent) logics is the Routley–Meyer semantics involving a ternary relation on points. To some (many?), this ternary relation has seemed like a technical trick devoid of an intuitively appealing philosophical story that connects it up with conditionality in general. In this paper, we respond to this worry by providing three different philosophical accounts of the ternary relation that correspond to three conceptions of conditionality. We close (...) by briefly discussing a general conception of conditionality that may unify the three given conceptions. (shrink)
This paper considers the relation between philosophical discussions of, and social-scientific research into popular beliefs about, distributive justice. The first part sets out the differences and tensions between the two perspectives, identifying considerations which tend to lead adherents of each discipline to regard the other as irrelevant to its concerns. The second discusses four reasons why social scientists might benefit from philosophy: problems in identifying inconsistency, the fact that non-justice considerations might underlie distributive judgments, the way in which different (...) principles of justice can yield the same concrete distributive judgments, and the ambiguity of key terms. The third part distinguishes and evaluates three versions of the claim that normative theorising about justice can profit from empirical research into public opinion: that its findings are food for thought, that they amount to feasibility constraints, and that they are constitutive of normatively justified principles of justice. The view that popular opinion about justice has a strongly constitutive role to play in justifying principles of distributive justice stricto sensu is rejected, but it is argued that what the people think (and what they can reasonably be expected to come to think) on distributive matters can be an important factor for the political theorist to take into account, for reasons of legitimacy, or feasibility, or both. (shrink)
In 1935, A. G. Tansley, who was knighted later, proposed the ecosystem concept. Nevertheless, this concept was not without predecessors. Why did Tansley’s ecosystem prevail and not one of its competitors? The purpose of this article is to pin the distinguishing features of Tansley’s ecosystem down, as far as the published record allows. It is an exercise in finding the difference that made a difference. Besides being a pioneering ecologist, Tansley was an adept of psychoanalysis. His interest even led him (...) to visit Sigmund Freud in Vienna for a while. Psychologists had to regard the mind as an entity in its own right, while knowing that it truly was part of a larger whole (body + mind), because the causal relation between body and mind was unknown. This lead Tansley to conclude that psychologists must not objectify the system under study, have to search for causes within their own field, and must not speculate unless this serves a scientific purpose. In 1925, Tansley defended psychoanalysis in a prolonged controversy against a concerted attack criticizing its speculative content and poor scientific standing. This could have been the reason why Tansley kept his ecosystem free of speculative content and unscientific connotation. The competing ecosystem-like concepts, however, have contained philosophical speculation, non-deterministic properties like vitalism or entelechy, or have been burdened with unscientific connotations. Hence, rigorous restraint distinguished the ecosystem concept and made it ready for use by later researchers. (shrink)
If conceptual analysis is possible for finite thinkers, then there must ultimately be a distinction between complex and primitive or irreducible and unanalyzable concepts, by which complex concepts are analyzed as relations among primitive concepts. This investigation considers the advantages of categorizing intentionality as a primitive rather than analyzable concept, in both a historical Brentanian context and in terms of contemporary philosophy of mind. Arguments in support of intentionality as a primitive relation are evaluated relative to objections, especially a (...) recent criticism by Jerry A. Fodor. Against this background, the relation between qualia and intentionality in the understanding of consciousness is explored. (shrink)
In section 96 of Reasons and Persons, Derek Parfit offers his now familiar tripartite distinction among candidates for ‘what matters’: (1) Relation R with its normal cause; (2) R with any reliable cause; (3) R with any cause. He defends option (3). This paper tries to show that there is important ambiguity in this distinction and in Parfit's defence of his position. There is something strange about Parfit's way of dividing up the territory: I argue that those who have (...) followed him in viewing the choice among (1)–(3) as the (or an) important question in thinking about ‘what matters’ are mistaken, and that they bypass what seems to be a more important, even crucial, set of options and considerations. I am less concerned with what he does say than with what he ought to say, given his intuitions and arguments, and the general framework within which he is working. And I am particularly concerned to show that whether or not I am correct about what he is doing with his tripartite distinction, it is a distinction with which we should not be particularly concerned in the analysis either of what matters or of psychological continuity. (shrink)
This essay aims to sharpen debates on the pros and cons of historical epistemology, which is now understood as a novel approach to the study of knowledge, by comparing it with the history of epistemology as traditionally pursued by philosophers. The many versions of both approaches are not always easily discernable. Yet, a reasoned comparison of certain versions can and should be made. In the first section of this article, I argue that the most interesting difference involves neither the subject (...) matter nor goal, but the methods used by the two approaches. In the second section, I ask which of the two approaches or methods is more promising given that both historical epistemologists and historians of epistemology claim to contribute to epistemology simpliciter . Using traditional problems concerning the epistemic role of perception, I argue that the historical epistemologies of Wartofsky and Daston and Galison fail to show that studying practices of perception is philosophically significant. Standard methods from the history of epistemology are more promising, as I show by means of reconstructing arguments in a debate about the relation between perception and judgment in psychological research on the famous moon illusion. (shrink)
This paper interprets the relation between sovereignty and guilt in Nietzsche's Genealogy. I argue that, contrary to received opinion, Nietzsche was not opposed to the moral concept of guilt. I analyse Nietzsche's account of the emergence of the guilty conscience out of a pre-moral bad conscience. Drawing attention to Nietzsche's references to many different forms of conscience and analogizing to his account of punishment, I propose that we distinguish between the enduring and the fluid elements of a ‘conscience’, defining (...) the enduring element as the practice of forming self-conceptions. I show that for Nietzsche, the moralization of the bad conscience results from mixing it with the material concepts of guilt and duty, a process effected by prehistoric religious institutions by way of the concept of god. This moralization furnishes a new conception of oneself as a responsible agent and holds the promise of sovereignty by giving us a freedom unknown to other creatures, but at the price of our becoming subject to moral guilt. According to Nietzsche, however, the very forces that made it possible have spoiled this promise and, under the pressures of the ascetic ideal, a harmful notion of responsibility understood in terms of sin now dominates our lives. Thus, to fully realize our sovereignty, we must liberate ourselves from this sinful conscience. (shrink)
Brentano held that every mental phenomenon has an object and is conscious (the dual relation thesis). The dual relation thesis faces a number of wellknown problems. The paper explores how Brentano tried to overcome these problems. In considering Brentano's responses, the paper sheds light on Brentano's theory of judgement that underpins his philosophy of mind.
In The Transcendence of the Ego Sartre deals with the idea of the self and of its relation to what he calls 'pure consciousness'. Pure consciousness is an impersonal transcendental field, in which the self is produced in such a way that consciousness thereby disguises its 'monstrous spontaneity'. I want to explore to what extent the ego is to be understood as a result of absolute consciousness. I also claim that the idea of the self Sartre has in mind (...) is Bergson's 'moi profond'. Since this 'deeper self' has to be understood as a result of an impersonal transcendental field, it loses its central position in consciousness. Sartre claims that the ego is not transcendental, as Husserl had claimed, but transcendent to consciousness. But can the role of Husserl's transcendental ego be reduced to that transcendent Bergsonian 'deeper self'? Isn't there something irreducible in Husserl's transcendental ego? (shrink)
This article discusses the relation between empirical and normative approaches in bioethics. The issue of dwarf tossing, while admittedly unusual, is chosen as a point of departure because it challenges the reader to look with fresh eyes upon several central bioethical themes, including human dignity, autonomy, and the protection of vulnerable people. After an overview of current approaches to the integration of empirical and normative ethics, we consider five ways that the empirical and normative can be brought together to (...) speak to the problem of dwarf tossing: prescriptive applied ethics, theoretical ethics, critical applied ethics, particularist ethics and integrated empirical ethics. We defend a position of critical applied ethics that allows for a two-way relation between empirical and normative theories. Against efforts fully to integrate the normative and the empirical into one synthesis, we propose that the two should stand in tension and relation to one another. The approach we endorse acknowledges that a social practice can and should be judged both by the gathering of empirical data and by normative ethics. Critical applied ethics uses a five stage process that includes: (a) determination of the problem, (b) description of the problem, (c) empirical study of effects and alternatives, (d) normative weighing and (e) evaluation of the effects of a decision. In each stage, we explore the perspective from both the empirical (sociological) and the normative ethical point of view. We conclude by applying our five-stage critical applied ethics to the example of dwarf tossing. (shrink)
The analysis of mental concepts suggests that the distinctionbetween the mental and the nonmental is not ontologically fundamental,and that, whereas mental processes are one and the same things as thebrain processes with which they are correlated, dispositional mentalstates depend causally on and are, thus, ''''distinct existences'''' fromthe states of the brain microstructure with which ''they'' are correlated.It is argued that this difference in the relation between an entity andits composition/underlying structure applies across the board. allstuffs and processes are the (...) same thing as is described by a descriptionof their microstructure. In all cases where the manifestation of adisposition extends beyond the ''''skin'''' of the dispositional propertybearer, dispositions invariably depend causally on the structure,usually the microstructure, of the bearer. (shrink)
Nelson Goodman argued that the pictorial relation is reducible to reference. After explaining why previous attempts to refute this thesis of reduction have failed, I argue that in order to show that the thesis is indeed wrong we must find an aspect of pictures that is incompatible with it. I proceed to argue that there is indeed such an element to pictures. Ordinarily, a picture depicts its subject as having aesthetic properties. I show that the depiction of these properties (...) requires the picture’s engagement of our aesthetic judgement. Yet if according to the thesis of reduction a picture refers to these aesthetic properties, they must be inaccessible to aesthetic judgement, because reference is based on arbitrary correlation rules. Since pictures do engage our aesthetic judgement, we must conclude that the pictorial relation is irreducible to reference. (shrink)
The relation of teleological to causal explanations in psychology is examined. Nagel's claim that they are logically equivalent is rejected. Two arguments for their non-equivalence are considered: (i) the impossibility of specifying initial conditions in the case of teleological explanations and (ii) the claim that different kinds of logic are involved. The view that causal explanations provide only necessary conditions whereas teleological explanations provide sufficient conditions is rejected: causal explanations can provide sufficient conditions, typically being unable to provide necessary (...) ones, whereas teleological explanations tend to point to necessary features. Nor is a distinction in terms of intensional and extensional logic entirely satisfactory, although there is some support for the view that teleological and causal explanations invoke different types of explanatory framework. A key feature of teleogical explanation is the achievement of the same goal by a variety of means. Thus its main scientific function is likely to be heuristic rather than predictive. (shrink)
Contrastivism is the claim that the knowledge relation is ternary, it relates three relata: a subject, a proposition, and a class of contrastive propositions. The present paper is a discussion of Jonathan Schaffer's arguments in favour of contrastivism. The case is made that these are unconvincing: the traditional binary account of knowledge can handle the phenomena that ternarity is claimed to handle in a superior way.
This article examines the relation between policies concerning Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) and philosophical moral theories. The objective is to determine which moral theories form the basis for CSR policies. Are they based on ethical egoism, libertarianism, utilitarianism or some kind of common-sense morality? In order to address this issue, I conducted an empirical investigation examining the relation between moral theories and CSR policies, in companies engaged in CSR. Based on the empirical data I collected, I start by (...) suggesting some normative arguments used by the respondents. Secondly, I suggest that these moral arguments implicitly rely on some specific moral principles, which I characterise. Thirdly, on the basis of these moral principles, I suggest the moral theories upon which the CSR policies are built. Previous empirical studies examining the relation between philosophical moral theories and the ethical content of business activities have mainly concentrated on the ethical decision-making of managers. Some of the most prominent investigations in that regard propose that managers mainly act in accordance with utilitarian moral theory (Fritzsche, D. J. and H. Becker: 1984 , Academy of Management Journal 27 (1), 166–175; Premeaux, S. and W. Mony: 1993 , Journal of Business Ethics 12 , 349–357; Premeaux, S.: 2004 , Journal of Business Ethics 52 , 269–278). I conclude that CSR policies are not based on utilitarian thinking, but instead, on some kind of common-sense morality. The ethical foundation of companies engaged in CSR, thus, does not mirror the ethical foundation of managers. (shrink)
An implication relation between pictures is defined, it is then shown how conjunctions, disjunctions, negations, and hypotheticals of pictures can be formed on the basis of this. It is argued that these logical operations on pictures correspond to natural cognitive operations employed when thinking about pictures.
This paper offers an interpretation of Russell's multiple-relation theory of judgment which characterizes it as direct application of the 1905 theory of definite descriptions. The paper maintains that it was by regarding propositional symbols (when occurring as subordinate clauses) as disguised descriptions of complexes, that Russell generated the philosophical explanation of the hierarchy of orders and the ramified theory of types of Principia mathematica (1910). The interpretation provides a new understanding of Russell's abandoned book Theory of knowledge (1913), the (...) ?direction problems? and Wittgenstein's criticisms. (shrink)
Suppose that unobtanium-346 is a rare radioactive isotope. Consider: (1) Every Un346 atom, at its creation, decays within 7 microseconds (µs). (50%) Every Un346 atom, at its creation, has a 50% chance of decaying within 7µs. (1) and (50%) can be true together, but (1) and (50%) cannot together be laws of nature. Indeed, (50%)'s mere (non-vacuous) truth logically precludes (1)'s lawhood. A satisfactory analysis of chance and lawhood should nicely account for this relation. I shall argue first that (...) David Lewis's Humean picture accounts for this relation only by inserting this relation ‘by hand’. Next, I shall argue that this relation between law and chance also threatens a radically non-Humean picture of laws and chances. Finally, I shall offer an account of natural law that nicely explains the relation between chancy facts and deterministic laws. This explanation is not ad hoc because it derives the relation from the very same features of lawhood that account for the laws' special relation to counterfactuals and explain how the laws (unlike the accidents) possess a variety of necessity. The reason that a chancy fact such as (50%) keeps (1) from being a law, without keeping (1) from being true, is ultimately that a chancy fact constrains the subjunctive facts and (1)'s lawhood, unlike (1)'s truth, depends upon the subjunctive facts. (shrink)
In "Wittgenstein in relation to his times" Von Wright1 poses a dilemma regarding the relationship between three wittgensteinian tenets: (i) the view that individual's beliefs and thoughts are entrenched in accepted language games and socially sanctioned forms of life (ii) the view that "philosophical problems are disquietudes of the mind caused by some malfunctioning in the language games, and hence in the way of life of the community". (iii) the "rejection of the scientific-technological civilisation of industrialised societies". The dilemma (...) is the following: is Wittgenstein's rejection of technological civilisation strictly linked to his general view of philosophy? Or is it "only contingently - that is for historical and psychological reasons, connected with the other two in Wittgenstein's thought"? Von Wright argues, even with some doubts, for a strong link between Wittgenstein's rejection of technological society and his general approach to philosophy; the argument is as follows: "because of the interlocking of language and ways of life, a disorder in the former reflects disorder in the latter. If philosophical problems are symptomatic of language, producing malignant outgrowths which obscure our thinking, then there must be a cancer in the Lebensweise, in the way of life itself" (p.119). The argument seems to be not compelling; among some of the main philosophical problems Wittgenstein is willing to "cure" there are misunderstandings lying in the history of our language much time before our technological civilisation (Wittgenstein refers to Augustine and Plato as suffering these disorder of language). We should generalise the criticism to technological society to the effect of enclosing ancient Greece. In this way the criticism seems to loose all its polemical vein, becoming a generic criticism of the structures of western thought since Greece. But probably this was the point Wittgenstein wanted to make in his criticism of the idea of progress and technological civilisation. I will argue therefore for the second horn of the dilemma, relying on another kind of de facto argument: contemporary technological civilisation is embodying some of Wittgenstein's main ideas (we might also note that these ideas are among the strongest points Wittgenstein gives against Greek classical tradition in philosophy).. (shrink)
The Shannon information function (H) has been extensively used in ecology as a statistic of species diversity. Yet, the use of Shannon diversity index has also been criticized, mainly because of its ambiguous ecological interpretation and because of its relatively great sensitivity to the relative abundances of species in the community. In my opinion, the major shortcoming of the traditional perspective (on the possible relation of species diversity with information theory) is that species need for an external receiver (the (...) scientist or ecologist) to exist and transmit information. Because organisms are self-catalized replicating structures that can transmit genotypic information to offspring, it should be evident that any single species has two possible states or alternatives: to be or not to be. In other words, species have no need for an external receiver since they are their own receivers. Therefore, the amount of biological information (at the species scale) in a community with one only species would be species, and not bits as in the traditional perspective. Moreover, species diversity appears to be a monotonic increasing function of (or S) when all species are equally probable (S being species richness), and not a function of as in the traditional perspective. To avoid the noted shortcoming, we could use 2H (instead of H) for calculating species diversity and species evenness (= 2H/S). However, owing to the relatively great sensitivity of H to the relative abundances of species in the community, the value of species dominance (= 1 − 2H/S) is unreasonably high when differences between dominant and subordinate species are considerable, thereby lowering the value of species evenness and diversity. This unsatisfactory behaviour is even more evident for Simpson index and related algorithms. I propose the use of other statistics for a better analysis of community structure, their relationship being: species evenness + species dominance = 1; species diversity × species uniformity = 1; and species diversity = species richness × species evenness. (shrink)
For many assertions, the correspondence theory of truth seems intuitively to give the best account of the difference between truth and falsity, but one of its problems is how to explicate the notions of “correspondence” and “truthmaking”. In conformity with the view of David Armstrong, it is claimed that truthmaking is an internal relation between a truthmaker and a truth(-value-)bearer. The truthbearer (a token proposition) can exist without the truthmaker (an object or a state of affairs), and vice versa, (...) but when both exist the truthmaker necessarily makes the truthbearer true and correspondence obtains. Contrary to Armstrong’s reductionist analyses of internal relations and propositions, however, it is argued that internal relations can have a mind-independent existence and “add to being”, that truthbearers and truthmakers are categorially different, and that the correspondence theory of truth requires a distinction between internal relations with heterogeneous and homogeneous relata, respectively. (shrink)
Kuhn's ‘taxonomic conception’ of natural kinds enables him to defend and re-specify the notion of incommensurability against the idea that it is reference, not meaning/use, that is overwhelmingly important. Kuhn's ghost still lacks any reason to believe that referentialist essentialism undercuts his central arguments in SSR – and indeed, any reason to believe that such essentialism is even coherent, considered as a doctrine about anything remotely resembling our actual science. The actual relation of Kuhn to Kripke-Putnam essentialism, is as (...) follows: Kuhn decisively undermines it – drawing upon the inadequacies of such essentialism when faced with the failure of attempts to instantiate in history or contemporaneously its ‘thought-experiment’ – and leaves the field open instead for his own more ‘realistic’, deflationary way of thinking about the operation of ‘natural kinds’ in science. (shrink)
Mind is not some mysterious mind stuff; no such stuff exists and the universe comprises only physical matter. It is an emergent property of certain complex material entities, not brains alone but whole human beings living and coping in the physical and social world. This thesis involves three ideas: materialism, emergent properties, and intentionality. The first two belong to the mind-body problem and the status of mental properties in the material universe. The third refers to the mind-world relation, the (...) symbiotic relation between subject and object in cognition and experience. (shrink)
George Berkeley maintains both anti-abstractionism (that abstract ideas are impossible) and idealism (that physical objects and their qualities are mind-dependent). Some scholars (including Atherton, Bolton, and Pappas) have argued, in different ways, that Berkeley uses anti-abstractionism as a premise in a simple argument for idealism. In this paper, I argue that the relation between anti-abstractionism and idealism in Berkeley's metaphysics is more complex than these scholars acknowledge. Berkeley distinguishes between two kinds of abstraction, singling abstraction and generalizing abstraction. He (...) then rests his case for idealism, not on the denial of the possibility of generalizing abstraction, but rather on the denial of the possibility of singling abstraction. Moreover, Berkeley's argument does not rest on a blanket rejection of all forms of singling abstraction. Rather, the fundamental anti-abstractionist assumption, for his purposes, is the claim that primary qualities cannot be mentally singled out from secondary qualities. Crucially, the claim that the existence of physical objects cannot be mentally singled out from their being perceived is not a premise in, but rather a consequence of, Berkeley's argument for idealism. Berkeley's argument therefore avoids circularity inasmuch as it appeals to the impossibility of singly abstracting one idea in order to establish the impossibility of singly abstracting another. (shrink)
One of the great insights of postmodern thought is that our understanding is perspectival, and that we have the perspectives we do because we have privileged one element of certain important binaries over others. Western civilization, or our understanding of it, is based upon our privileging of the male perspective over the female, the rich over the poor, and the white over the black. If that order were reversed and we privileged the perspective of those who had been marginalized, we (...) would see things very differently. Traditional attempts to understand both our own identity and the identity of God all hinge on Aristotle’s privileging of substance over relation. The distinction between substance and relation is another important binary that has shaped Western Civilization. This paper looks at both human and divine identity by privileging relation over substance and considering identity from that marginalized perspective. (shrink)
the structure of medical science with a special focus on the role of generalizations and universals in medicine, and (2) philosophy of medicine's relation with the philosophy of science. I argue that a usually overlooked aspect of Kuhnian paradigms, namely, their characteristic of being "exemplars", is of considerable significance in the biomedical sciences. This significance rests on certain important differences from the physical sciences in the nature of theories in the basic and the clinical medical sciences. I describe those (...) differences and maintain that they are these differentiating features that require the use of more comparative and analogical reasoning in medicine. I suggest that Kitcher's recent introduction of the notion of a ‘practice’ may have similar implications if it is construed to contain more analogical elements than he appears to recognize in his initial formulation. Finally I argue that though Gorovitz and MacIntyre's characterization of medicine as a "science of particulars" bears some similarities with my thesis, I maintain that such a position without careful qualification can lead to ignoring both the nature of generalizations in these sciences and their role as positive analogies tying together a family of overlapping models. Keywords: medical reasoning, biomedical theories/paradigms, science of particulars, philosophy of medicine CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
ENTIRE BOOK, SINGLE FILE. BOOLEAN RELATION THEORY AND THE INCOMPLETENESS PHENOMENA. 10/30/07 version. Same as 10/01/07 version with Preface added. 568 pages without Appendix B. See above for Appendix B by Francoise Point.
Using Carnapâs concept explication, we propose a theory of concept formation in mathematics. This theory is then applied to the problem of how to understand the relation between the concepts formal proof (deduction) and informal, mathematical proof.
Husserlian variation, Bergsonian intuition and Peircean abduction are contrasted as methodological responses to the traditional philosophical problem of deriving knowledge of universals from singulars. Each method implies a correspondingly different view of the generation of the variations from which knowledge is derived. To make sense of the latter differences, and to distinguish the different sorts of variation sought by philosophers and scientists, a distinction between extensive, intensive, and abductive-intensive variation is introduced. The link between philosophical method and the generation of (...) variation is used to illuminate different philosophical conceptions of nature and nature's relation to meaning and sense. (shrink)
Russell's version of the multiple-relation theory from the "Theory of Knowledge" manuscript is presented and defended against some objections. A new problem, related to defining truth via correspondence, is reconstructed from Russell's remarks and what we know of Wittgenstein's objection to Russell's theory. In the end, understanding this objection in terms of correspondence helps to link Russell's multiple-relation theory to his later views on propositions.
We discuss the foundations of constructive mathematics, including recursive mathematics and intuitionism, in relation to classical mathematics. There are connections with the foundations of physics, due to the way in which the different branches of mathematics reflect reality. Many different axioms and their interrelationship are discussed. We show that there is a fundamental problem in BISH (Bishop’s school of constructive mathematics) with regard to its current definition of ‘continuous function’. This problem is closely related to the definition in BISH (...) of ‘locally compact’. Possible approaches to this problem are discussed. Topology seems to be a key to understanding many issues. We offer several new simplifying axioms, which can form bridges between the various branches of constructive mathematics and classical mathematics (‘reuniting the antipodes’). We give a simplification of basic intuitionistic theory, especially with regard to so-called ‘bar induction’. We then plead for a limited number of axiomatic systems, which differentiate between the various branches of mathematics. Finally, in the appendix we offer BISH an elegant topological definition of ‘locally compact’, which unlike the current definition is equivalent to the usual classical and/or intuitionistic definition in classical and intuitionistic mathematics, respectively. (shrink)
This essay attempts a phenomenological analysis of Descartes' statement, ‘my perception of God is prior to my perception of myself,’ and Buber's claim that God ‘is also the mystery of the self-evident, nearer to me than my I.’ I radicalize the implications of Descartes' and Buber's claims by drawing on the thought of Husserl and Levinas, and couching the analysis in terms of Merleau-Ponty's experiential notions of haunting and reversibility. This forces us to interrogate the subjective space in which we (...) think God qua recognize the other, and shows us a kind of necessity that underlies the I-Thou relation. My conclusion leaves us in a place of powerless subjective inwardness and awe. (shrink)
This essay is a survey of positions on the relation between texts and performances in theater. It proposes a simple framework within which to compare and evaluate these positions. The framework also allows us to see a pattern of thinking that reflects the historical fact of the importance of the literary tradition in theater. The essay points out certain challenges facing the positions surveyed and concludes with a brief sketch of the most recent views that have been put on (...) offer. The latest positions re-situate the literary theater as a species of the more general phenomena of theatrical performance. (shrink)
I consider three questions concerning the relation of the good will to the moral worth of actions. (1) Does a good will consist simply in acting from the motive of duty? (2) Does acting from the motive of duty presuppose that one has a good will? (3) Does the fact that one has a good wilI entail that all of one’s duty-fulfilling actions have moral worth, even if they are not (directly) motivated by duty? I argue that while only (...) persons with a good will are capable of acting from the motive of duty, it does not follow either that a good will consists in acting from duty or that if one has a good will, all of one’s dutiful actions will be motivated by duty. Whereas the good will is constituted by the agent’s highest-order maxim (the moral law itself), moral worth is a function of the agent’s first-order maxims. (shrink)
This paper addresses the relation between the intelligible and the material world in the works of the Neoplatonic philosopher Damascius (ca. 460-ca. 538 AD), who uses the theory of the Platonic Ideas in order to discuss the evolution from the One to the Manifold. This relation arises through specific laws that lead to the development of a harmonious cosmic system. The vertical and the horizontal segmentation of metaphysical causes is implemented in the process of the generation of the (...) empirical world, which is nevertheless imperfect in the sense that it is an image of the metaphysical world and is subject to generation and decay. The metaphysical world constitutes a normative basis for the beings of the world of experience to the same extent in the ontological as in the aesthetic and ethical area. The vertical segmentation cannot be understood without the horizontal because in that case the generation of tangible beings, which are complex realities, would be implausible. At the same time, the horizontal segmentation without the vertical would result in inactive metaphysical causes. The simple fact that the empirical world exists excludes such alternatives. (shrink)
The debate on the yan-yi relation was carried out by Chinese philosophers collectively, and the principles and methods in the debate still belong to a living tradition of Chinese philosophy. From Yijing (Book of Changes), Lunyu (Analects), Laozi and Zhuangzi to Wang Bi, “yi” which cannot be expressed fully by yan (language), is not only “idea” or “meaning” in the human mind, but is also some kind of ontological existence, which is beyond yan and emblematic symbols, and unspeakable. Thus, (...) the debate on the yan-yi relation refers firstly to metaphysics, secondly to moral philosophy, and then to epistemology and philosophy of language. Guided by this view, this paper recalls the source of the debate on the yan-yi relation to Yijing and Lunyu, distinguishes four meanings of “yi” in Chinese philosophy, and reconstructs three arguments. These arguments are the “yan cannot express yi fully” argument, “forget yan once you get yi” argument, and “yan can express yi fully” argument. Finally, this paper exposes and comments on those principles, methods and the general tendency shown in the debate from the following five aspects: starting point, value-preference, methodology, texts (papers and books), and influences. (shrink)
In recent years, neologicists have demonstrated that Hume's principle, based on the one-to-one correspondence relation, suffices to construct the natural numbers. This formal work is shown to be relevant for empirical research on mathematical cognition. I give a hypothetical account of how nonnumerate societies may acquire arithmetical knowledge on the basis of the one-to-one correspondence relation only, whereby the acquisition of number concepts need not rely on enumeration (the stable-order principle). The existing empirical data on the role of (...) the one-to-one correspondence relation for numerical abilities is assessed and additional empirical tests are proposed. In the final part, it is argued that the fact that the successor relation and the one-to-one correspondence relation can play independent roles in number concept acquisition may be a complication for testing the Whorfian hypothesis. (shrink)
Machine generated contents note: Preface (Trevor H.J. Marchand, School of Oriental and African Studies). -- Introduction: Making knowledge: explorations of the indissoluble relation between minds, bodies, and environment (Trevor H.J. Marchand, School of Oriental and African Studies). -- 1. 'Practice without theory': a neuroanthropological perspective on embodied learning (Greg Downey, Macquarie University). -- 2. Learning to listen: auscultation and the transmission of auditory knowledge (Tom Rice, University of Exeter). -- 3. The craft of skilful learning: Kazakh women's everyday craft (...) practices in western Mongolia (Anna Odland Portisch, School of Oriental and African Studies). -- 4. 'Something to talk about': notation and knowledge-making among Central Slovak lace-makers (Nicolette Makovicky, Wolfson College, Oxford). -- 5. Embodied cognition and communication: studies with British fine woodworkers (Trevor H.J. Marchand, School of Oriental and African Studies). -- 6. Footprints through the weather-world: walking, breathing, knowing (Tim Ingold, University of Aberdeen). -- 7. Unconscious culture and conscious nature: exploring East Javanese conceptions of the person through Bourdieu's lens (Konstantinos Retsikas, School of Oriental and African Studies). -- 8. Learning to weave; weaving to learn ... what? (Soumhya Venkatesan, University of Manchester). -- 9. Reflections on knowledge practices and the problem of ignorance (Roy Dilley, University of St Andrews). -- 10. Anthropology of knowledge (Emma Cohen, Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology and Max Planck Institute for Psycholinguistics). -- Index. (shrink)
This article offers two commentaries on two of Félix Guattari's essays from Chaosmosis: ‘The New Aesthetic Paradigm’ and ‘Schizoanalytic Metamodelisation’. The first commentary attends specifically to how Guattari figures the infinite/finite relation in relation to what he calls the three Assemblages (pre-, extant, and post-capitalism) and then even more specifically to the mechanics of this relation – or folding – within the third ‘processual’ Assemblage or new aesthetic paradigm of the essay's title. The second commentary looks at (...) what Guattari has to say about this paradigm in relation to subjectivity, that is, the schizoanalytic programme or practice of metamodelling. Here the focus is on the turn to asignifying semiotics – but also the importance of signifying material and indeed the actual material scene of encounter – in any programme for the production of subjectivity (it is here also that the symptom makes its appearance). (shrink)
In Plato’s Apology of Socrates, Socrates claims that any just person who becomes involved in politics will be destroyed by the “multitude” and that the philosopher must therefore lead a private life. I argue that Socrates’ elaboration of his relation to the political community, especially in the trial of the generals of Arginusae and the arrest of Leon, raises more questions than a cursory reading can answer both with respect to the logical structure of the argument in the Apology (...) and in comparison with other Socratic formulationsof the relation of philosophy and the city. Far from demonstrating the incompatibility of philosophy and politics, Socrates in the Apology and other dialogues limns the features of a conception of political life that incorporates philosophical principles of moderation anddialectical examination into an understanding of politics directed towards the moral and intellectual development of the citizens. (shrink)
This paper discusses the relation between cognitive and implementational levels of analysis. Chalmers (1990, 1993) argues that a connectionist implementation of a classical cognitive architecture possesses a compositional semantics, and therefore undercuts Fodor and Pylyshyn's (1988) argument that connectionist networks cannot possess a compositional semantics. I argue that Chalmers argument misconstrues the relation between cognitive and implementational levels of analysis. This paper clarifies the distinction, and shows that while Fodor and Pylyshyn's argument survives Chalmers' critique, it cannot be (...) used to establish the irrelevance of neurophysiological implementation to cognitive modeling; some aspects of Chater and Oaksford's (1990) response to Fodor and Pylyshyn, though not all, are therefore cogent. (shrink)
The relations between the majority and minorities in a democracy have been standardly viewed as the main subject matter of toleration: the majority should refrain from using its dominant position to interfere with some minorities’ practices or beliefs despite its dislike or disapproval of such practices or beliefs. Can the idea of toleration provide us with the necessary resources to understand and respond to the problems arising out of majority/minorities relations in a democracy? We reply in the negative and make (...) two main claims: first, that resorting to toleration is not enough to make sense of the problems deriving from the unequal participation of minorities in society, and, second, that it risks sanctioning the asymmetric relation between the majority and minorities informed by the negative judgement of the former towards some belief or practice of the latter. We suggest resorting instead to the idea of equal opacity respect for persons: all persons should be treated equally as moral agents, in accordance with their equally possessing the capacity for self-legislation, and as if they were opaque to our judgement for all those properties of theirs which exceed moral agency. Looking at the majority/minorities relations through such a lens enables us to understand (and appropriately respond to) what is problematic in such relations: the majority often fails to treat minorities as moral agents by failing to take their voices into account on an equal footing, by seeing them merely as recipients of certain provisions affecting them rather than their authors, and by considering them as legitimately exposed to the majority’s (negative) judgment. The purchase of our argument is illustrated by reference to two minorities whose treatment is paradigmatic of the problematic nature of majority/minorities relations across Europe: Muslims and Roma. (shrink)
In the 1950's some prominent philosophers suggested a logical relation weaker than entailment between primarily descriptive statements and ethical conclusions. The paper revisits this suggestion. It examines four ways in which ethical statemnts can be supported by descriptions and evaluations. This provides a similarity bteween some kinds of reason-giving in ethics and familiar cases of logical inference, making it plausible to speak of a logic. The similarity however is limited, and the strength in ethics of descriptive reasons is never (...) precise and always somewhat contestable. (Published Online October 13 2005). (shrink)
The purpose of this paper is to provide a historical overview of the ethical concept of organizational due process in relation to contemporary issues in the utilization of company grievance procedures in the rapidly growing nonunion arena. Another objective of this paper is to appraise the current practices that employers have evolved for resolving issues generated by grievances, particularly those of professional, white collar employees.
I relate plural quantification, and predicate logic where predicates do not need a fixed number of argument places, to the part-whole relation. For more on these themes see later work by Boolos, Lewis, and Oliver & Smiley.
By giving the proper emphasis to both radical skepticism and naturalism as two independent standpoints in Hume, I wish to propose a more satisfactory account of some of the more puzzling Humean claims on causation. I place these claims alternatively in either the philosophical standpoint of the radical skeptic or in the standpoint of everyday and scientific beliefs. I characterize Hume's radical skeptical standpoint in relation to Hume's perceptual model of the traditional theory of ideas, and I argue that (...) Hume's radical skeptical argument concerning our causal inferences is inextricably linked to his skeptical argument concerning our idea of a necessary connection between cause and effect. I discuss Hume's naturalistic account of the origin of our idea of necessity and offer a new reading of Hume's two "definitions" of cause. I argue along the way against central aspects of two opposing styles of interpretation-Norman Kemp Smith's and Annette Baier's, on the one hand, and Robert Fogelin's, on the other-that in my view do not appreciate the mutual autonomy of radical skepticism and naturalism in Hume. (shrink)
The aim of this paper is to discuss the relation between the observation basis and the theoretical principles of General Relativity. More specifically, this relation is analyzed with respect to constructive axiomatizations of the observation basis of space-time theories, on the one hand, and in attempts to complete them, on the other. The two approaches exclude one another so that a choice between them is necessary. I argue that the completeness approach is preferable for methodological reasons.
According to the so-called “standard account” regarding the problem of material constitution, a statue and a lump of clay that makes it up are not identical. The usual objection is that this view yields many objects in the same place at the same time. Lynne Rudder Baker's theory of constitution is a recent and sophisticated version of the standard account. She argues that the aforementioned objection can be answered by defining a relation of being the same P as (...) (sameP). In this paper I shall examine consequences of her response and show that sameP has wrong formal properties, as a result of which this solution cannot be accepted. (shrink)
A relation between two secrets, known in the literature as nondeducibility , was originally introduced by Sutherland. We extend it to a relation between sets of secrets that we call independence . This paper proposes a formal logical system for the independence relation, proves the completeness of the system with respect to a semantics of secrets, and shows that all axioms of the system are logically independent.
I focus on the religio-aesthetic concept of nature in Japanese Buddhism as a valuable complement to environmental philosophy in the West and develop an explicit comparison of the Japanese Buddhist concept of nature and the ecological world view of Aldo Leopold. I discuss the profound current of ecological thought running through the Kegon, Tendai, Shingon, Zen, Pure Land, and Nichiren Buddhist traditions as weIl as modem Japanese philosophy as represented by Nishida Kitarö and Watsuji Tetsurö. In this context, I present (...) the Japanese concept of nature as an aesthetic continuum of interdependent events based on a field paradigm of reality. I show how the Japanese concept of nature entails an extension of ethics to include the relation between humans and the land. I argue that in both the Japanese Buddhist concept of nature and the thought of Aldo Leopold there is a hierarchy of normative values which grounds the land ethic in aland aesthetic. I also clarify the soteric concept of nature in Japanese Buddhism by which the natural environment becomes the ultimate locus of salvation for all sentient beings. In this way, I argue that the Japanese Buddhist concept of nature represents a fundamental shift from the egocentric to an ecocentric position-i.e., a de-anthropocentric standpoint which is nature-centered as opposed to human-centered. (shrink)
In Womanizing Nietzsche, Kelly Oliver uses an analysis of the position of woman in Nietzsche's texts to open onto the larger question of philosophy's relation to the feminine and the maternal. Offering readings from Nietzsche, Derrida, Irigaray, Kristeva, Freud and Lacan, Oliver builds an innovative foundation for an ontology of intersubjective relationships that suggests a new approach to ethics. Oliver argues that while Freud, Nietzsche and Derrida, in particular, attempt to open up philosophy to its other--the unconscious, the body, (...) difference, even the feminine--their attempts depend on closing off the possibility of a specifically feminine other. In this regard, Oliver maintains that none of these theorists have escaped the Hegelian model of intersubjectivity at the level of Lordship and Bondage. She suggests that the recent talk of the death of philosophy is a symptom of the exclusion of woman, the feminine and the maternal. By problematizing and reformulating the traditional philosophical association between the maternal and nature, Oliver presents an alternative model for intersubjectivity and ethics. (shrink)
A major controversy in the study of the "Analects" has been over the relation between two central concepts, ren (humanity, human excellence) and li (rites, rituals of propriety). Confucius seems to have said inconsistent things about this relation. Some passages appear to suggest that ren is more fundamental than li, while others seem to imply the contrary. It is therefore not surprising that there have been different interpretations and characterizations of this relation. Using the analogy of language (...) grammar and mastery of a language, it is proposed here that we should understand li as a cultural grammar and ren as the mastery of a culture. In this account, society cultivates its members through li toward the goal of ren, and persons of ren manifest their human excellence through their practice of li. (shrink)
We give a detailed extended abstract reflecting what we know about Boolean relation theory. We follow this by a proof sketch of the main instances of Boolean relation theory, from Mahlo cardinals of finite order, starting at section 19. The proof sketch has been used in lectures.
The need to find an intrinsic characterization of what makes a relation between events causal arises not only in local theories of causation like Salmon's process theory but also in global approaches like Lewis' counterfactual theory. According to the localist intuition, whether a process connecting two events is causal should depend only on what goes on between the events, not on conditions that hold elsewhere in the world. If such intrinsic characterizations could be found, an identification of the causal (...)relation in the actual world (though not in other possible worlds) with physical processes may be feasible (the a posteriori identification). I consider recent proposals made for intrinsic characterizations of causality and conclude that none of them is able to deliver the intended result. (shrink)
Contrastivism is the claim that the knowledge relation is ternary, it relates three relata: a subject, a proposition, and a class of contrastive propositions. The present paper is a discussion of Jonathan Schaffer's arguments in favour of contrastivism. The case is made that these are unconvincing: the traditional binary account of knowledge can handle the phenomena that ternarity is claimed to handle in a superior way.
Technology has a history structured by discontinuities. The first important philosophical expression of such a conception of technology was advanced by Walter Benjamin when he defined art works in relation to specific techniques of production. At the present art and architecture occur within an age defined by the move from ’technical reproducibility’ to digital reproducibility. The move has an impact on how technology is understood and its relation to architecture conceived. Adapting Walter Benjamin’s work in this area provides (...) the basis for a response to Soren Riis’ important treatment of the relationship between architecture and technology in his paper “Dwelling in-between walls: the architectural surround”. (shrink)
In Zwicker (1987) the hypergame paradox is introduced and studied. In this paper we continue this investigation, comparing the hypergame argument with the diagonal one, in order to find a proof schema. In particular, in Theorems 9 and 10 we discuss the complexity of the set of founded elements in a recursively enumerable relation on the set N of natural numbers, in the framework of reduction between relations. We also find an application in the theory of diagonalizable algebras and (...) construct an undecidable formula. (shrink)
Kant argues that morals should not only constrain politics, but that morals and politics properly understood cannot conflict. Such an uncompromising stance on the relation of morals to politics has been branded unrealistic and even politically irresponsible. While justice can afford to be blind, politics must keep its eyes wide open. In response to this charge I argue that Kant’s position on the relation of morals to politics is both morally uncompromising and yet politically flexible, both principled and (...) practical. Kantian justice is not blind to circumstances, and we need not abandon our convictions in order to be politically responsible. Indeed, Kant argues that future political progress can only be achieved when the coerced rule of right is coupled with the non-coerced rule of virtue. For Kant, freedom and justice are intertwined with publicity, and publicity depends upon the critical acumen and moral candour of an enlightened and virtuous citizenry. (shrink)
In line with the semantic conception of scientific theories, I develop an account of the intertheory relation of comparative structural similarity. I argue that this relation is useful in explaining the concept of verisimilitude and I support this contention with a concrete historical example. Finally, I defend this relation against the familiar charge that the concept of similarity is insufficiently objective.
Abstract In this article we develop a relational understanding of sociality, that is, an account of social life that takes relation as primary. This stands in contrast to the common assumption that relations arise when subjects interact, an account that gives logical priority to separation. We will develop this relational understanding through a reading of the work of Martin Buber, a social philosopher primarily interested in dialogue, meeting, relationship, and the irreducibility and incomparability of reality. In particular, the article (...) contrasts Buber’s work with that of poststructuralist theorists who take as their starting point the deconstruction of the Hegelian logic of binary oppositions. Deconstruction understands difference as the excess that undoes the binary, but Buber, we argue, shows how difference derives from the primacy and ontological undefinability of relation. Relational logic does not exclude the logic of separations and oppositions: relation is the primal ground that makes separations possible. Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-13 DOI 10.1007/s11841-011-0278-9 Authors Andrew Metcalfe, School of Social Sciences and International Studies, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia Ann Game, School of Social Sciences and International Studies, University of New South Wales, Sydney, NSW 2052, Australia Journal Sophia Online ISSN 1873-930X Print ISSN 0038-1527. (shrink)
The claim that managers have a fiduciary duty to shareholders to run the corporation in their interests is generally supported by two arguments: that shareholders are owners of a corporation and that they have a contract or agency relation with management. The latter argument is used by Kenneth E. Goodpaster, who rejects a multi-fiduciary, stakeholder approach on the grounds that the shareholder-management relation is “ethically different” because of its fiduciary character. Both of these arguments provide an inadequate basis (...) for the fiduciary duties of officers and directors of corporations. The basis is to be found, rather, in considerations of public policy, a point that was established in the Dodd-Berle exchange of the 1930s. This conclusion also shows the inadequacy of Goodpaster’s solution to the so-called stakeholder paradox, and an alternative solution to the paradox is presented. (shrink)
In studying what people do two points of view can be distinguished: We can choose the perspective of the actors themselves (the actor’s perspective), or we can look at what is going on from the outside, from a distance (the researcher’s perspective). Regarding the relation between both points of view three standpoints have been defended.
The context in which medieval theologians discuss 'relation' is nearly always a trinitarian one. They have to solve an awkward problem: to explain how in God the persons are identical with the divine essence, yet different among themselves. In this paper I want to argue that Henry of Ghent's interest in the nature of the Trinity acted as an impetus towards the development of his theory of the nature of relations. In this context the accounts of Thomas Aquinas and (...) Giles of Rome will be considered as important for understand18 ing Henry's account. Henry's positive account of relations stems from Avicenna. For Henry, a relation is not an aliquid but has two modes of being, both as an accident and as a relative. Henry's attempt to think the nature of relation leads to him developing a relational ontology. (shrink)
After having received little attention over the past decades, one of the least known human rights—the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications—has had its dust blown off. Although included in the Universal Declaration of Human Rights (UDHR) and in the International Covenant on Economic, Social and Cultural Rights (ICESCR)—be it at the very end of both instruments -this right hardly received any attention from States, UN bodies and programmes and academics. The role of science in (...) societies and its benefits and potential danger were discussed in various international fora, but hardly ever in a human rights context. Nowadays, within a world that is increasingly turning to science and technology for solutions to persistent socio-economic and development problems, the human dimension of science also receives increased attention, including the human right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications. This contribution analyses the possible legal obligations of States in relation to the right to enjoy the benefits of scientific progress and its applications, in particular as regards health. (shrink)
The calculus of relations was created and developed in the second half of the nineteenth century by Augustus De Morgan, Charles Sanders Peirce, and Ernst Schröder. In 1940 Alfred Tarski proposed an axiomatization for a large part of the calculus of relations. In the next decade Tarski's axiomatization led to the creation of the theory of relation algebras, and was shown to be incomplete by Roger Lyndon's discovery of nonrepresentable relation algebras. This paper introduces the calculus of relations (...) and the theory of relation algebras through a review of these historical developments. (shrink)
This essay concerns the problem of individuation in metaphysics in relation to the question of individuality in politics. It rejects the assumption in muchof ancient, modern, and contemporary philosophy and theology that unity and diversity are opposed and that this opposition produces conflict and violence. Theproposed alternative is a metaphysics and politics of relationality. This alternative is not so much indebted to Aristotle, but instead goes back to Platonist metaphysics and its transformation by Augustine and Boethius. By privileging substance (...) over all other categories, Aristotle not only relegated the transcendent immaterial actuality from the immanence of the material world but also divorced particular beings from the universal Prime Mover or God. By contrast, for Plato, the transcendent universal Good individuates all immanent particulars relationally at the level of the oikos, the polis, and the cosmos. Crucially, by combining the concept of creation ex nihilo with the metaphysics of participation, Augustine and Boethius reconfi gured Plato’s Good in the direction of the Creator-God and Trinitarian relationality. Thus, each and every being is individuated because it is a particular reflection of the universal Good, a unique and singular expression of God’s self-communicative actualization in the world. (shrink)
Summary. It is proposed to translate the mind-matter distinction into terms of mental and physical time. In the spirit of this idea, we hypothesize a relation between the intensity of mental presence and a crucial time scale (some seconds) often referred to as a measure for the duration of nowness. This duration is experimentally accessible and might, thus, offer a suitable way to characterize the intensity of mental presence. Interesting consequences with respect to the idea of a generalized notion (...) of mental presence, with human consciousness as a special case, are outlined. Our approach includes some features consistent with other, related ideas which are indicated. (shrink)
According to a rule of traditional logic concerning the relation between general (or universal) concepts, if a given concept is more general than a second one, then the opposition (or contradictory) of the first concept is more specific than the opposition (or contradictory) of the second one. K?tib?, one of the Muslim logicians in the 13th century, has raised a question against this rule and, by giving some counterexamples, claims that it results in contradiction. Some Muslim logicians have replied (...) to K?tib?, and in this paper I have examined their replies. Also, by using rules of modern logic, we may easily show that either K?tib?'s argumentation is fallacious or it does not result in contradiction; however, it seems that if modern logic rules had been represented to Muslim logicians, some of those rules would have been rejected by them. (shrink)
This paper provides a general philosophical groundwork for the theoretical and applied normative evaluation of information generally and digital information specifically in relation to the good life. The overall aim of the paper is to address the question of how Information Ethics and computer ethics more generally can be expanded to include more centrally the issue of how and to what extent information relates and contributes to the quality of life or the good life , for individuals and for (...) society. To answer that question, the paper explores and provides by way of a theoretical groundwork for further research, the concept of wisdom understood as a type of meta - knowledge as well as a type of meta - virtue , which can enable one to both know in principle what a good life is and how to successfully apply that knowledge in living such a life in practice. This answer will be based on the main argument presented in this paper that the notion of wisdom understood as being at once a meta - epistemological , meta - axiological and meta - eudemonic concept, provides the essential conceptual link between information on the one hand and the good life on the other. If, as we are told, this is the Age of Information, both the theoretical examination and analysis of the question of how information relates to the good life and the provision of an adequate answer to that question are essential for developing a deeper understanding of how to evaluate the theoretical and practical implications and ramifications of information for the good life, for individuals and societies generally. (shrink)
The title above identifies two issues in Charles Hartshorne's panentheistic understanding of God that, in my judgment, have not been sufficiently clarified. The purpose of this paper is to provide additional clarification, that the adequacy of this type of theism may be more carefully judged by its admirers and by its detractors from their respective perspectives. The first part will identify central elements of Hartshorne's reasoning about God's relation to the world. The second part examines how Hartshorne speaks of (...) a divine "transcendence" in a naturalistic metaphysics that is thoroughly empirical. The third part will examine the ways that God is related to the world's evil and whether God is in some way .. (shrink)
This study consists in a commentary on some passages from Avicenna, which deal with the category of the relative. The commentary points out the promotion of the relative to the role of an exclusive determining factor. An attempt is made here to show how Avicenna tries to detach the relative accident from its subject, in order to transform it into the exclusive determining factor of a pure thingness. The relative determination of this thingness must be able to receive specifications, which (...) may extend as far as the infimae species. These specifications are obtained by the consideration of the other attributes of the subject of the relative attribution, which are henceforth no more than the “modes of advent” of the relation. (Published Online August 10 2006). (shrink)
According to Thomas Aquinas, the ideas in the mind of God serve two distinct although interrelated roles: (1) as epistemological principles accounting for God’s knowledge of things other than himself, and (2) as ontological or causal principles involved in God’s creative activity. This article examines the causal role of the divine ideas by focusing on their relation to natural agents. Given Thomas’s observation that from God’s intellect “forms flow forth (effluunt) into all creatures,” the article considers whether the causality (...) of the divine ideas excludes that of natural agents, or whether both modes of causality can somehow produce one and the same effect. (shrink)