Since the terrorist attacks of September 11, 2001, the concept of 'evil' has enjoyed renewed popularity in both international political rhetoric and scholarly writing. World leaders, politicians, and intellectuals have increasingly turned to 'evil' to describe the very worst humanitarian atrocities that continue to mark international affairs. However, precisely what 'evil' actually entails is not well understood. Little consensus exists as to what 'evil' is, how it is manifested in the international sphere, and what we ought to do about it. (...) With this in mind, this work seeks to ascertain precisely what is meant by 'evil' when it is used to describe actors and events in international politics. Focusing on the history of evil in western secular and religious thought, it reintroduces a classical understanding of evil as the means according to which we seek to understand otherwise meaningless human suffering. (shrink)
This paper is based on the findings from a study in which social workers in healthcare settings were asked for their perspectives on cultural and racial difference as these apply to their practice with racialized clients. In examining the varied practice philosophies and approaches they employ, we find that older practice models based on problematized knowledge about racialized Others are being, alternately, reinstated and contested. In grappling with how to practise, participants describe approaches that, in many cases, effectively individualize clients (...) and ignore hierarchies and systems of domination. Following Sarah Ahmed's work on ethical encounters (Strange Encounters, Routledge, London, 2000), we argue for a socially and historically informed consideration of power relations as they shape professional practice. (shrink)
Shors & Matzel (1997) suggest replacing the question “Is LTP a mechanism of learning?” with “Is LTP a mechanism of arousal and attention?” However, the failure of experiments to verify the LTP-learning hypothesis may arise not because it is untrue, but because in its current guise, it is not properly testable. If so, then the LTP-attention hypothesis is untestable, as well.
In a national survey, members of 4As agencies were contrasted with non-member agencies to determine awareness and influence of the 4As Standards of Practice, the Professional Code of Ethics for 4As members. The 4As Code was selected because the 4As represents the principle professional association of the support service industry, advertising.
We report empirical results on factors that influence how people reason with default rules of the form "Most x's have property P", in scenarios that specify information about exceptions to these rules and in scenarios that specify default-rule inheritance. These factors include (a) whether the individual, to which the default rule might apply, is similar to a known exception, when that similarity may explain why the exception did not follow the default, and (b) whether the problem involves classes of naturally (...) occurring kinds or classes of artifacts. We consider how these findings might be integrated into formal approaches to default reasoning and also consider the relation of this sort of qualitative default reasoning to statistical reasoning. (shrink)
My research work title is “A Philosophical Study of the Concept of Mind (with special reference to Rene Descartes, David Hume and Gilbert Ryle).” In this study we have discussed three conceptions of mind presented by Rene Descartes, David Hume and Gilbert Ryle. All the three thinkers are related to different philosophical traditions known as Rationalism, Empiricism and Analytical Philosophy respectively. Each of these various approaches can be seen as at least partly successful, each provides answers to questions regarded as (...) especially pressing, each apparently solved certain problems. Notoriously, however, each leaves unanswered and unsolved a host of distinct problems as well. (shrink)
How cool is the philosophy of religion? Content Type Journal Article Category Article Pages 3-19 DOI 10.1007/s11153-011-9330-5 Authors John Churchill, Phi Beta Kappa National Office, Washington, DC, USA Ingolf Dalferth, Institute of Hermeneutics and Philosophy of Religion, University of Zurich, Kirchgasse 9, 8001 Zurich, Switzerland Patrick Horn, Claremont Graduate Center, Claremont, CA, USA Jeffery Willetts, Leland School of Ministries, Richmond, VA, USA Journal International Journal for Philosophy of Religion Online ISSN 1572-8684 Print ISSN 0020-7047 Journal Volume Volume 71 Journal (...) Issue Volume 71, Number 1. (shrink)
rimary Works -/- Descartes, Rene, (1997) Meditations on the First Philosophy, from Philosophical Classics from Plato to Nietzsche, Ed. By Forrest E. Baired & Walter Kaufmann, Prentice Hall, Upper Saddle River, New Jersey. -/- ______________ (1972) “The Principles of Philosophy”, from Masterworks of Philosophy, Vol.I, Ed. by S.E. Frost Jr., McGraw Hill Book Company. -/- ______________ (1958)”The Passions of the Soul”, from Descartes Philosophical Writings, Trans.& Selected by Norman Kemp Smith, The Modern Library, New York. -/- _____________ (1927)”The Passions of (...) the Soul”, from Descartes Selections, Edi. by Charles Scribner’s Sons, United States. -/- ____________ (2006)” Meditations on the First Philosophy”, The Radical Academy, 2006.Link:http;//www.earlymoderntexts.com/pdf/desmed.pdf ,Citation:20-10-2006 -/- _____________(2006)”Discourse on the Method“, The Radical Academy, 2006.Link:http;//www.earlymoderntexts.com/pdf/desdisc.pdf ,Citation:20-10-2006 -/- ______________:”Objections to Descartes’s Meditations, and His Replies“, The Radical Academy, 2006.Link:http;//www.earlymoderntexts.com/pdf/descor.pdf ,Citation:20-10-2006 -/- Anscomb,E.& Geach,P.T. (1966) Descartes Philosophical Writings, (Edi.& Trans.) The Nelson and Sons Ltd., London. (shrink)
Religion has become a vital resource for attempts to rethink the meaning of the political. This article rehearses the efforts of two recent figures, René Girard and Giorgio Agamben, to transform the political by renewing its connection to religion. Both thinkers struggle to escape politics as defined by Carl Schmitt's friend/enemy distinction. Girard and Agamben do clash ideologically, but their inquiries into sacrifice and messianism take similar courses. Regarding origins, Girard argues for the sacrificial crisis as the common parent to (...) religion and politics. Conversely, for Agamben, the Roman figure of homo sacer distinguishes politics from religion. With respect to the future, Girard's messianism installs Christian belief as the only way to move beyond violence. By contrast, Agamben steers Pauline messianism toward the efforts to displace sovereignty and reopen the political. I conclude that Agamben breaks with Schmitt while Girard reinscribes his politics at a higher level. Key Words: Giorgio Agamben Rey Chow Christianity René Girard homo sacer messianism politics sacred sacrifice Carl Schmitt. (shrink)
This anthology brings together many of the more significant contributions to Cartesian scholarship, some of which reach far back as the 1930s. Altogether, there are well over 100 detailed analyses and discussions of salient aspects of Descartes' Promethean legacy. Because Descartes intended his system to embrace not only philosophy but also a complete scientific corpus, this collection covers both philosophical issues and scientific views: Volume 1 is devoted to questions of Cartesian Method and epistemology; Volumes 2 and 3 concentrate on (...) his metaphysics; and Volume 4 discusses Descartes' scientific views and achievements. The lucidity and originality of the essays, a number of which are already classics of Cartesian scholarship, will ensure that this anthology becomes a standard in Cartesian philosophy. An invaluable resource, Rene;e Descartes provides a large variety of introductions, analyses, criticisms, and appraisals of the problems which preoccupied Descartes and the solutions he propounded. (shrink)
Though the work of René Girard has highlighted the interrelations between sacrifice and sacrality in the contemporary world, it has yet to engage the work of Walter Benjamin and his heir, Giorgio Agamben, whose project concerning the Homo Sacer has aroused interest in contemporary political thought. By focusing on Benjamin's early description of mimesis and its relation to language, a position can be elaborated that steers mimesis clear of its indebtedness to language and towards a ‘purer’ realm of gesture. Benjamin's (...) formulation of a more proper ‘divine’ language of gestures could then be said to coalesce with certain historical-religious proclamations, something that Agamben's work challenges us to consider as a viable, albeit ‘profane’, political and ethical option for humanity. (shrink)
For nearly four decades French philosopher René Schérer has been exploring the theme of utopia beneath the radar of what has come to be known in America as “French theory.” In the 1970s, his Fourier-inspired writings on education, childhood, and desire formed part of the intellectual backdrop for France’s sexual liberation movements. In the same utopian vein, Schérer has turned his attention in recent years to the question of hospitality and its vanishing place in the modern world. This essay introduces (...) his work to an English-speaking audience, prefacing the first translation of excerpts of his recent book Hospitalités, and includes a list of some ofhis important works of the past thirty years. (shrink)
La tesis principal de este ensayo estipula que el determinismo causal es una propiedad de la naturaleza y el primer principio de la inteligibilidad natural. Se expresa, por ejemplo, en la frase de Lucrecio: “Nada surge de la nada ni va hacia la nada”. Todo lo que existe es efecto de una red de causas y es a su vez causa de otras cosas. Se sigue que la teoría científica orientada hacia la inteligibilidad —diferente de la ciencia positi-vista y pragmática— (...) es la búsqueda de determinismo causal. El desarrollo de esta tesis utiliza como hilo conductor el pensamiento de René Thom. Esto significa que el determinismo causal se examina en su rela-ción con (I) la estabilidad y la inestabilidad, (II) el desafío de la mecánica cuántica, (III) las raíces aporéticas de la ciencia tal como la dualidad determinismo-indeterminismo, y finalmente (IV) en su relación con el método para ponerlo de manifiesto, es decir la reducción de lo posible —estrategia que es, en este dominio, una de las ideas más originales de Thom.The main thesis of this essay is that causal determinism is a property of nature and the main principle of natural intelligibility. It can be expressed in Lucretius’ words: “Nothing comes out of nothing or passes into nothing”. Everything is the effect of a web of causes and is, in its turn, cause of something else. It follows that the essence of an intelligibility-oriented scientific theory —which is different from science in a positivist or pragmatist sense— is the search for causal determinism. The development of this thesis is guided by René Thom’s thought. This means that causal determinism is analysed, first, in its relation to stability and instability; second, in its relation to the prima facie indeterminism of quantum mechanics; third, in its relation to the aporetic roots of science such as the duality determinism —indeterminism, and, finally, in its relation to the method which allows science to follow the causal determinist ideal: the reduction of the possible— a strategy which is, in this field, one of Thom’s most original ideas. (shrink)
Religion in the perverted form of idolatry/ideology is at the root of violence for Simone Weil and René Girard. For Girard, “mimetic desire” expresses the idolization of another and ultimately of the self: when the individual’s expectations of achieving autonomy through another remain unfulfilled, he seeksa scapegoat. For Weil, everyone is subject to “force” as recipient or perpetrator of violence which is catalyzed by ideology, a form of idolatry. While Weil focuseson the idolatry of ideas, both writers agree that the (...) subject’s desire for absolute autonomy is the source of idolatry and violence. Furthermore, both presupposesuffering as the individual’s driving force, seeking relief in idols or scapegoats; accepting this suffering by imitating Christ is the solution, freeing one from selfish,idolatrous desires. (shrink)
Between the years 1643 and 1649, Princess Elisabeth of Bohemia (1618–80) and Rene; Descartes (1596–1650) exchanged fifty-eight letters—thirty-two from Descartes and twenty-six from Elisabeth. Their correspondence contains the only known extant philosophical writings by Elisabeth, revealing her mastery of metaphysics, analytic geometry, and moral philosophy, as well as her keen interest in natural philosophy. The letters are essential reading for anyone interested in Descartes’s philosophy, in particular his account of the human being as a union of mind and body, as (...) well as his ethics. They also provide a unique insight into the character of their authors and the way ideas develop through intellectual collaboration. Philosophers have long been familiar with Descartes’s side of the correspondence. Now Elisabeth’s letters—never before available in translation in their entirety—emerge this volume, adding much-needed context and depth both to Descartes’s ideas and the legacy of the princess. Lisa Shapiro’s annotated edition—which also includes Elisabeth’s correspondence with the Quakers William Penn and Robert Barclay—will be heralded by students of philosophy, feminist theorists, and historians of the early modern period. (shrink)
René Girard’s mimetic theory has significantly influenced the fields of comparative literature and cultural studies, as well as sociological anthropology and philosophy. Nevertheless, I argue that a somewhat different line of interpretation, an interdisciplinary one, has not been sufficiently investigated. This involves an interpretation which focuses on the vicissitudes of the mimetic and “victimage” circle not (or not only) in sociological terms, but by analysing their articulation on the level of knowledge. The sociological and epistemological perspectives do not exclude each (...) other, but can be integrated. The main aim of this paper is to clarify this articulation, and to show that integration between these two perspectives is possible only by bringing into play a real ‘literary aesthetics’. The notion of literary aesthetics needs to be considered in both the common and the etymological sense, as a theory of feeling and of experiencing. In doing so, I firstly cover in brief the main stages of Girard’s thought in the light of this perspective, to then focus on the relationship between literary aesthetics and knowledge. Finally I argue that this picture, if seriously considered, could lead to a mystical outcome, and will discuss the possible alternatives to that outcome. (shrink)
_René Descartes proposed an interactive dualism that posits an interaction between the_ _mind of a human being and some of the matter located in his or her brain. Isaac Newton_ _subsequently formulated a physical theory based exclusively on the material/physical_ _part of Descartes’ ontology. Newton’s theory enforced the principle of the causal closure_ _of the physical, and the classical physics that grew out of it enforces this same principle._ _This classical theory purports to give, in principle, a complete deterministic account (...) of the_ _physically described properties of nature, expressed exclusively in terms of these_ _physically described properties themselves. Orthodox contemporary physical theory_ _violates this principle in two separate ways. First, it injects random elements into the_ _dynamics. Second, it allows, and also requires, abrupt probing actions that disrupt the_ _mechanistically described evolution of the physically described systems. These probing_ _actions are called Process 1 interventions by von Neumann. They are psycho-physical_ _events. Neither the content nor the timing of these events is determined either by any_ _known law, or by the afore-mentioned random elements. Orthodox quantum mechanics_ _considers these events to be instigated by choices made by conscious agents. In von_ _Neumann’s formulation of quantum theory each such intervention acts upon the state of_ _the brain of some conscious agent. Thus orthodox von Neumann contemporary physics_ _posits an interactive dualism similar to that of Descartes. But in this quantum version the_ _effects of the conscious choices upon our brains are controlled, in part, by the known_ _basic rules of quantum physics. This theoretically specified mind-brain connection allows_ _many basic psychological and neuropsychological findings associated with the apparent_ _physical effectiveness of our conscious volitional efforts to be explained in a causal and_ _practically useful way.. (shrink)
This paper presents an account of the manner in which a proposition’s immediate structural features are related to its core truth-conditional features. The leading idea is that for a proposition to have a certain immediate structure is just for certain entities to play certain roles in the correct theory of the brute facts regarding that proposition’s truth conditions. The paper explains how this account addresses certain worries and questions recently raised by Jeffery King and Scott Soames.
Should we conceive of corporations as entities to which moral responsibility can be attributed? This contribution presents what we will call a political account of corporate moral responsibility. We argue that in modern, liberal democratic societies, there is an underlying political need to attribute greater levels of moral responsibility to corporations. Corporate moral responsibility is essential to the maintenance of social coordination that both advances social welfare and protects citizens’ moral entitlements. This political account posits a special capacity of self-governance (...) that corporations can intelligibly be said to possess. Corporations can be said to be administrators of duty in that they can voluntarily incorporate moral principles into their decision-making processes about how to conduct business. This account supplements and partly transforms earlier pragmatic accounts of corporate moral responsibility by disentangling responsibility from its conventional linkages with accountability, blame and punishment. It thereby represents a distinctive way to defend corporate moral responsibility and shows how Kantian thinking can be helpful in disentangling the problems surrounding the concept. (shrink)
Lecture I begins with a distinction between two themes in philosophical naturalism. The first theme takes science to be our best guide to what there is, the second takes it to be our best guide to the nature of our own thought and talk. Thus the first theme ('object naturalism') motivates a scientifically-constrained metaphysics, while the second ('subject naturalism') motivates a scientifically-constrained philosophy of language and philosophical psychology. The lecture discusses a sense in which these two themes may conflict: in (...) particular, a sense in which subject naturalism may undermine a presupposition of object naturalism. The presupposition in question is the assumption that belief, judgement and assertion are 'referential', or 'representational', in some theoretically robust sense. In showing that this assumption is itself open to naturalistic challenge, the lecture identifies a little-recognised vulnerability in popular forms of (object) naturalism. The remaining lectures aim to show, first, what conception(s) of representation might replace the assumption in question; and second, what the project of philosophical naturalism looks like, in the light of these changes. Lecture II begins with the so-called bifurcation thesis -- the view that speech acts into descriptive and non-descriptive categories. The lecture advocates a different bifurcation, between two notions of representation: an 'external', world-tracking notion, and an 'internal', inferentialist notion. I argue that traditional representationalism confuses these notions. Lecture III outlines a conception of the project of naturalistic philosophy, in the light of this new bifurcation thesis. The recognition that not all representations in the inferential sense need be representation in the world-tracking sense permits a new pluralism within the former class: a pluralism about the functions of representation (in the former sense) in the lives of natural creatures in a natural environment. I emphasise that this kind of pluralism is orthogonal to familiar programs for pluralism in the philosophy of science. It involves a new dimension of variability, that conventional representationalism simply hides from view. (shrink)
In this paper we argue that dissociative identity disorder (DID) is best interpreted as a causal model of a (possible) post-traumatic psychological process, as a mechanical model of an abnormal psychological condition. From this perspective we examine and criticize the evidential status of DID, and we demonstrate that there is really no good reason to believe that anyone has ever suffered from DID so understood. This is so because the proponents of DID violate basic methodological principles of good causal modeling. (...) When every ounce of your concentration is fixed upon blasting a winged pig out of the sky, you do not question its species' ontological status. James Morrow, City of Truth (1990). (shrink)
Should we conceive of corporations as entities to which moral responsibility can be attributed? This contribution presents what we will call a political account of corporate moral responsibility. We argue that in modern, liberal democratic societies, there is an underlying political need to attribute greater levels of moral responsibility to corporations. Corporate moral responsibility is essential to the maintenance of social coordination that both advances social welfare and protects citizens’ moral entitlements. This political account posits a special capacity of self-governance (...) that corporations can intelligibly be said to possess. Corporations can be said to be “administrators of duty” in that they can voluntarily incorporate moral principles into their decision-making processes about how to conduct business. This account supplements and partly transforms earlier pragmatic accounts of corporate moral responsibility by disentangling responsibility from its conventional linkages with accountability, blame and punishment. It thereby represents a distinctive way to defend corporate moral responsibility and shows how Kantian thinking can be helpful in disentangling the problems surrounding the concept. (shrink)
Psychologism in logic is the doctrine that the semantic content of logical terms is in some way a feature of human psychology. We consider the historically influential version of the doctrine, Psychological Individualism, and the many counter-arguments to it. We then propose and assess various modifications to the doctrine that might allow it to avoid the classical objections. We call these Psychological Descriptivism, Teleological Cognitive Architecture, and Ideal Cognizers. These characterizations give some order to the wide range of modern views (...) that are seen as psychologistic because of one or another feature. Although these can avoid some of the classic objections to psychologism, some still hold. (shrink)
Bringing together leading scholars in the fields of criminology, international law, philosophy and architectural history and theory, this book examines the interrelationships between architecture and justice, highlighting the provocative and curiously ambiguous juncture between the two. Illustrated by a range of disparate and diverse case studies, it draws out the formal language of justice, and extends the effects that architecture has on both the place of, and the individuals subject to, justice. With its multi-disciplinary perspective, the study serves as a (...) platform on which to debate the relationships between the ceremonial, legalistic, administrative and penal aspects of justice, and the spaces that constitute their settings. (shrink)
Social contract theory has been criticized as a “theory in search of application.” We argue that incorporating the nano, or individual, level of analysis into social contract inquiry will yield more descriptive theory. We draw upon the psychological contract perspective to address two critiques of social contract theory: its rigid macro-orientation and inattention to the process of contract formation. We demonstrate how a psychological contract approach offers practical insight into the impact of social contracting on day-to-day human interaction. We then (...) articulate several potentially testable propositions that emerge from this nano-level perspective. (shrink)
The eighteenth and nineteenth centuries witnessed a change in the perception of the arts and of philosophy. In the arts this transition occurred around 1800, with, for instance, the breakdown of Vitruvianism in architecture, while in philosophy the foundationalism of which Descartes and Spinoza were paradigmatic representatives, which presumed that philosophy and the sciences possessed a method of ensuring the demonstration of truths, was undermined by the idea, asserted by Nietzsche and Wittgenstein, that there exist alternative styles of enquiry among (...) which a choice is open. The essays in this book examine the circumstances, features, and consequences of this historical transition, exploring in particular new aspects and instances of the inter-relatedness of content and its formal representation in both the arts and philosophy. (shrink)
This paper presents a position called Scheme-based Alethic Realism, which reconciles a realist position on the nature of truth with a pluralistic Kantian perspective that allows for multiple environments in which truthmaking relationships are established. We argue that truthmaking functions are constrained by a stable phenomenal world and a stable cognitive architecture. This account takes truth as normatively distinct from epistemic justification while relativizing the truth conditions of our statements to what we call Frameworks. The pluralistic aspect allows that these (...) stable elements, while constraining representational and linguistic schemes, do not define a single framework for truthmaking relations. We strengthen this position by considering themes on situated rational agency from cognitive science and artificial intelligence, arguing that whatever enables or supports rational action within a particular environment must figure into some account of truth and truthmaking, and vice versa. (shrink)
Natural theology is still practiced as though substantive theological conclusions can be derived by a quasi-deductive process. Perhaps relevant "evidence" may lead to interesting theological conclusions -- the fact of natural evil, or the cosmic fine-tuning we hear about in contemporary cosmology, both cry out for theological explanation. I remain a skeptic, however, about the value of "a priori" methods in natural theology. The case study in this short discussion is the well known attempt to establish the logical incoherence of (...) the divine command theory of moral objectivity. If skeptics can make good on this charge, they will have gone a long way toward undercutting a central tenant of western theism. I will argue, however, that the case against theologically based moral absolutism is not as simple as showing some internal paradox or logical tension. (shrink)
Does effective moral judgment in business ethics rely upon the identification of a suitable set of moral principles? We address this question by examining a number of criticisms of the role that principles can play in moral judgment. Critics claim that reliance on principles requires moral agents to abstract themselves from actual circumstances, relationships and personal commitments in answering moral questions. This is said to enforce an artificial uniformity in moral judgment. We challenge these critics by developing an account of (...) principle-based moral judgment that has been widely discussed by contemporary Kantian scholars. In so doing we respond to some basic problems raised by so-called “moral particularists” who voice theoretical objections to the role of principles as well as to contemporary business ethicists who have criticized principle-based moral judgment along similar lines. We conclude with some future areas of research. (shrink)
R ené Descartes was the leading French philosopher of the seventeenth-century scientiﬁ c revolution. Although now best known, and commonly viliﬁ ed, for his defense of mind/body dualism and for his quest for certainty in the theory of knowledge, Descartes was primarily interested in studying the natural world and the human body. His global inﬂ uence as the intellectual point of origin of modern Western subjectivity, the evil demon of modern philosophy, is undeniable. But it masks the stranger work of (...) the historical ﬁ gure, who was as puzzled by meteors and by medicine as by metaphysics and method, and more interested in passion, psychosomatics, and perception than in rationality and the soul. Born in La Haye (now Descartes) in Touraine, and educated at the Jesuit college of La Flèche, Descartes decided on a life of inquiry in his early twenties after studying mechanics and music, and after a series of powerful dreams. He developed a systematically mechanical account of nature, modeling his cosmology and physics on the behavior of ﬂ uids, which also plays a key role in his remarkable physiological theories. Descartes settled in Holland in the late 1620s; by 1632 he was in Amsterdam, “dissecting the heads of various animals” to “explain what imagination. (shrink)
There has long been a history of studies investigating how people (“ordinary people”) perform on tasks that involve deductive reasoning. The upshot of these studies is that people characteristically perform some deductive tasks well but others badly. For instance, studies show that people will typically perform MP (“modus ponens”: from ‘If A then B’ and ‘A’, infer ‘B’) and bi-conditional MP (from: ‘A if and only if B’ and ‘A’, infer ‘B’) correctly when invited to make the inference and additionally (...) can discover of their own accord when such inferences are appropriate. On the other hand, the same studies show that people typically perform MT (“modus tollens”: from ‘If A then B’ and ‘not-B’, infer ‘not-A’) and biconditional MT badly. They not only do not recognize when it is appropriate to draw such inferences, but also they will balk at doing them even when they are told that they can make it. Related to these shortcomings seems to be the inability of people to understand that contrapositives are equivalent (that ‘If A then B’ is equivalent to ‘If not-B then not-A’). [Studies of people’s deductive inference-drawing abilities have a long history, involving many studies in the early 20th century concerning Aristotelian syllogisms. But the current spate of studies draws much of its impetus from Wason (Wason, 1968; see also Wason & Johnson-Laird, 1972). ] The general conclusion seems to be that there are specific areas where “ordinary people” do not perform very logically. This conclusion will not come as a surprise to teachers of elementary logic, who have long thought that the majority of “ordinary people” are inherently illogical and need deep and forceful schooling in order to overcome this flaw. (shrink)
In the wake of recent corporate scandals, this paper examines the claim made by John Boatright that business ethics, as it is currently conceived, “rests on a mistake.” Ethics in business should not be achieved through managerial vision, discretion or responsibility; rather, ethics should shape the design of institutions that regulate business from the outside. What ethicists should advocate for, according to Boatright, are moral markets not moral managers. I explore the empirical and normative dimensions of his claim with special (...) attention paid to the extent to which Boatright’s development of the economic theory of the firm supports his position. I conclude by suggesting some reasons why moral markets and moral management are compatible frameworks for corporate reform. (shrink)
Akrasia is both an intentional and an irrational phenomenon. These two characteristics can be reconciled by a careful reconstruction of practical reasoning. I undertake this task along Davidsonian lines, arguing against his critics that the notion of unconditional judgment is the key to an adequate account of akrasia. Unless akrasia is conceived as a failure of the agent to form an unconditional judgment that conforms to her best judgment "all things considered," the intentionality of akrasia is lost. Likewise, I show (...) how practical and theoretical reasoning concur in the production of action, and why akrasia is a problem for the philosophy of action before being a problem for moral philosophy. (shrink)
As the eleventh volume in the New Directions in Cognitive Science series (formerly the Vancouver Studies in Cognitive Science series), this work promises superb scholarship and interdisciplinary appeal. It addresses three areas of current and varied interest: common sense, reasoning, and rationality. While common sense and rationality often have been viewed as two distinct features in a unified cognitive map, this volume offers novel, even paradoxical, views of the relationship. Comprised of outstanding essays from distinguished philosophers, it considers what constitutes (...) human rationality, behavior, and intelligence covering diverse areas of philosophy, psychology, cognitive science, and computer science. Indeed, it is at the forefront of cognitive research and promises to be of unprecedented influence across numerous disciplines. (shrink)
Despite the amount of public investment in nanotechnology ventures in the developed world, research shows that there is little public awareness about nanotechnology, and public knowledge is very limited. This is concerning given that nanotechnology has been heralded as ‘revolutionising’ the way we live. In this paper, we articulate why public engagement in debates about nanotechnology is important, drawing on literature on public engagement and science policy debate and deliberation about public policy development. We also explore the significance of timing (...) in engaging the public, and we make some suggestions concerning how to effectively engage publics. Our conclusions indicate the significance of scientific researchers, policy makers and representative consumer groupings in public reasoning towards a better public policy framework for debate about technological development. (shrink)
A major contribution to Descartes studies, this book provides a panorama of cutting-edge scholarship ranging widely over Descartes's own primary concerns: metaphysics, physics, and its applications. It is at once a tool for scholars and--steering clear of technical Cartesian science--an accessible resource that will delight nonspecialists. The contributors include Edwin Curley, Willis Doney, Alan Gabbey, Daniel Garber, Marjorie Grene, Gary Hatfield, Marleen Rozemond, John Schuster, Dennis Sepper, Stephen Voss, Stephen Wagner, Margaret Welson, Jean Marie Beyssade, Michelle Beyssade, Michel Henry, Evert (...) van Leeuwen, Jean-Luc Marion, Genevieve Rodis-Lewis, and Jean-Pierre Seris. Combining new textual sensitivity with attentiveness to history, they represent the best established scholars and most exciting new voices, including both English speaking and newly-translated writers. Part I examines the foundations of Descartes's philosophy: Cartesian certainty; the phenomenology of the cogito and its modulations in the passions; and the defensibility and comprehensibility of the Cartesian God. The second part examines Descartes's groundbreaking metaphysics: mind's distinctness from and interaction with body; imagination; perception; and language. Part III examines Cartesian science: the revolutionary rhetoric of the Rules and the Discourse; the metaphysical foundations of physics; the interplay of rationalism and empiricism; the mechanics and human biology that flow from Descartes's physics. (shrink)
Putnam's internal realism entails the simultaneous rejection of metaphysical realism and (anything goes or total or cultural) relativism. Putnam argues, in some places, that relativism is self-contradictory, and in others, that it is self-refuting. This paper attempts the exegetical task of explicating these challenging arguments, and the critical task of suggesting that a full-blown epistemological relativism may be capable of surviving the Putnam attack.
Meet longtime Tarot reader and renowned occultist Renée O’Cards. Wracked with guilt over her epistemic irresponsibility, seized with fear of being deceived by a malignant demon, and prone to escape into sleep and dreams for unknown time periods, she turns to the consolation of First Philosophy.
Long-term potentiation (LTP) is a long-lasting increase in synaptic efficacy that many consider the best candidate currently available for a neural mechanism of memory formation and/or storage in the mammalian brain. In our target article, LTP: What's learning got to do with it?, we concluded that there was insufficient data to warrant such a conclusion. In their commentaries, Jeffery and Zhadin raise a number of important issues that we did not raise, both for and against the hypothesis. Although we (...) agree with a number of these issues, we maintain that there remains insufficient evidence that LTP is a memory mechanism. (shrink)
Plusieurs auteurs se sont inspirés des thèses du deuxième Wittgenstein pour proposer une nouvelle approche en sciences sociales qui viserait la justification plutôt que l'explication de l'action. Sur la base d'une étude de trois types d'énoncés formulés grâce au langage de l'action (factuels, normatifs et attributifs d'états mentaux), cet article évalue les difficultés et possibilités d'une telle suggestion.
This paper addresses two objections raised against anomalous monism. Firstly, on the basis of Davidson's assertion that all causal relations fall under strict laws, many critics conclude mental properties are causally inert since they are non-nomic. I argue that this conclusion follows only on the further assumption that all causally efficacious properties are nomic properties. It is perfectly consistent, however, to hold that there is a law covering each causal relation without each causal statement being the instantiation of a law. (...) Secondly, I countervail Kim's claim that the only option open to physicalists is reductionism by showing how weak supervenience preserves both the dependence of the mental on the physical and the irreducibility of mental explanations to physical ones. (shrink)
Michael Rea and Jeffery Brower have offered a provocative new model of the Trinity on the analogy of the Aristotelian solution to the problem of material constitution. Just as a fist and a hand can be distinct entities composed of a common matter and yet numerically the same object, so the persons of the Trinity can be distinct entities (persons) composed of a common "matter" (the divine essence) and yet numerically the same object (God). I express doubts about the (...) degree to which this analogy sheds light on the doctrine of the Trinity due to the disanalogy that neither God nor the Trinitarian persons are to be thought of as composed of any sort of stuff and to the model’s lack of explanatory power as to how a common matter can be simultaneously imbued with seemingly incompatible forms to constitute one object. (shrink)
The coming of bioethics -- The coming of bioethicists -- "Choices on our conscience": the inauguration of the Kennedy Institute of Education -- "Hello, Dolly": bioethics in the media -- Celebrating bioethics and bioethicists -- Thinking socially and culturally in bioethics -- Reminiscences of observing participants -- Bioethics circles the globe -- Bioethics in France -- The development of bioethics in the Islamic Republic of Pakistan -- The coming of the culture wars to American bioethics.
This article analyzes Wittgenstein’s position on the grammatical incorrigibility of psychological self-ascriptions and shows how introspective statements can be of use to philosophers. In Wittgenstein On Rules and Private Language, Kripke notes Wittgenstein’s puzzling ambivalence toward introspection. On the one hand Wittgenstein repudiates introspection and on the other he uses it in his own philosophical investigations. To resolve the paradox, this paper distinguishes between introspective methodology in psychological and philosophical investigations. Wittgenstein’s arguments against introspection are specifically directed at introspective methodology (...) in psychology. He argues that the use of introspection to discover “inner causes” commits one to a conception of “direct inner awareness”. On that conception, psychological self-ascriptions are considered highly reliable due to the superiority of the subjective vantage point in ascertaining one’s own mental contents. As an alternative, Wittgenstein maintains that this reliability stems from the grammar of the ascription. The paper places Wittgenstein’s alternative conception of incorrigibility into the context of his argument against the use of introspection in psychology. (shrink)