This study tested the two main neurocognitive models of dreaming by using cognitive data elicited from REM sleep in normals and narcoleptics. The two models were the ''activation-only'' view which holds that, in the context of sleep, overall activation of the brain is sufficient for consciousness to proceed in the manner of dreaming (e.g., Antrobus, 1991; Foulkes, 1993; Vogel, 1978); and the Activation, Input source, Modulation (AIM model), which predicts that not only brain activation level but also neurochemical modulatory systems (...) exert widespread effects upon dreaming (Hobson & McCarley, 1977; Hobson, Pace-Schott, & Stickgold, 2000). Mental activity was studied in nocturnal REM in 15 narcoleptics and 9 normal healthy persons and in REM at the onset of daytime naps and nighttime sleep (SOREM) in narcoleptics. The study was performed in the subjects' homes, using instrumental awakenings and ambulatory polysomnographic techniques, and focused upon visual vividness, mentation report length, improbable and discontinuous bizarre features, and reflective consciousness. Within each subject group, most cognitive variables tended to fluctuate in line with expected variations in circadian activation level. When comparing the cognitive variables between the two groups, reflective consciousness was clearly highest in narcoleptics, whereas improbabilities and discontinuities were lower, with mentation report length and visual vividness differing less between the groups. These findings are consistent with the AIM model of sleep mentation, but not with the activation-only model. (shrink)
This article seeks to develop a new theory of reflexive democracy, based on practical cases of action research in regional development, with particular reference to regional development coalitions. Reflexive democracy is located in the context of the debate on Scandinavian worklife, emphasising knowledge, dialogue, and legitimacy.
Foss's critique of van Fraassen's constructive empiricism is shown to be completely wide of the mark (Foss 1984, van Fraassen 1980). Foss misunderstands van Fraassen's use of the terms 'observable', 'phenomena', 'empirical adequacy', and 'epistemic community'. He misconstrues constructive empiricism as making knowledge, and perhaps existence, dependent on the observer. On the basis of this error, he attempts to reduce constructive empiricism to skepticism. None of his criticisms are to the point.
There are significant parallels between the Roaring Twenties and the Bullish Eighties. Both decades were characterized by a policy?induced artificial boom that ended with an inevitable bust. The Federal Reserve had a hand in both episodes, keeping the interest rate artificially low in the first one and keeping Treasury bills artificially risk?free in the second. Comparing the two episodes in terms of Federal Reserve policy, federal government borrowing, and the regulatory environment faced by the banking community accounts for both similarities (...) and differences between the economic realities of the 1990s and those of the 1930s. (shrink)
La Legge di Non-Contraddizione (LNC) dice che nessuna contraddizione può essere vera. Ma cos’è una contraddizione? E cosa occorrerebbe perché una contraddizione fosse vera? Come ha mostrato Patrick Grim1, un rapido sguardo alla letteratura rivelerà una grande varietà di interpretazioni differenti dei termini di base e, conseguentemente, della LNC. In effetti, Grim identifica qualcosa come 240 diverse opzioni (con un conteggio prudente), e non credo occorra indugiare ulteriormente sulla combinatoria concettuale che si nasconde dietro questo comune frammento di terminologia (...) logica. Intendo tuttavia concentrarmi su una delle principali ambiguità elencate da Grim – un’ambiguità che, a mio avviso, è al cuore della questione. E intendo proporre un argomento in virtù del quale, risolvendo l’ambiguità in un certo modo, la LNC risulta non negoziabile, mentre, risolvendola in un altro modo, è perfettamente plausibile supporre che la LNC possa, in circostanze molto speciali e forse poco desiderabili, venir meno. (shrink)
Secondo un recente bilancio della filosofia del Novecento di Rossi e Viano, nel nostro secolo «il successo maggiore è toccato alle dottrine filosofiche che si sono proposte di offrire alternative alla conoscenza tecnico-scientifica e che sostengono la possibilità di alleggerire i vincoli che il sapere positivo porrebbe al modo di pensare e ai progetti di azione»2. Tali dottrine prospettano un ritorno all’antica metafisica, a cui «si ricorre non come a una forma di sapere sistematico, bensì come alla testimonianza di una (...) possibilità di pensare qualcosa che vada al di là del sapere positivo»3. Perciò il Novecento si è concluso con la vittoria, se non del «duro conservatorismo di Heidegger», almeno di «un più blando tradizionalismo, che si limita a sostenere il primato della cultura umanistica tradizionale rispetto alla cultura tecnico-scientifica»4. Per Rossi e Viano la filosofia del Novecento ha avuto questo esito poiché è risultata insostenibile la convinzione, diffusa nella filosofia analitica all’inizio degli anni Trenta, «che la filosofia avesse imboccato la strada giusta per inserirsi nel mondo del sapere scientifico specializzato»5. Dopo «che si era affermata la specializzazione del sapere, la filosofia aveva cercato di stabilire una posizione di dominio legandosi a quelle che erano sembrate le discipline titolari di un qualche primato: ora a quelle matematiche, ora a quelle naturalistiche, ora a quelle storiche»6. Essa, inoltre, aveva cercato di accreditare l’idea che l’analisi logica delle teorie scientifiche fosse comunque lo strumento più attendibile per fare filosofia. Questo tentativo della filosofia analitica, però, è fallito, e così nella cultura contemporanea è diventato chiaro che non «ci sono legami particolarmente stretti tra la filosofia e qualche scienza particolare»7. Insieme all’idea che esistesse un legame privilegiato tra la filosofia e qualche scienza particolare, «la cultura filosofica del Novecento respingeva anche l’idea che l’analisi logica delle teorie scientifiche fosse comunque lo strumento più attendibile per fare filosofia»8.. (shrink)
The publication of Marx's early writings has given us a perspective on the early development of socialistic thought that provides a clearer view of its connection with current discussion in philosophy and sociology. The link is the phenomenon of alienation, with which the early Marx was much concerned. In this article the author marks the distinctiveness of the two main current approaches to the alienation phenomenon, the ontological and the sociological, and suggests that the tension between Hegelian ontology and empirical (...) sociology in. the early Marx's analysis of the phenomenon reflects the strength rather than the weakness of this analysis as a contribution to the understanding of the human position. (shrink)
Iraq remains a significant concern for the population, but that is a matter of little moment in a modern democracy. The important work of the world is the domain of the "responsible men," who must "live free of the trampling and the roar of a bewildered herd," the general public, "ignorant and meddlesome outsiders" whose "function" is to be "spectators," not "participants." And spectators are not supposed to bother their heads with issues. The Wall Street Journal came close to (...) the point in a major front-page article on super- Tuesday, under the heading "Issues Recede in '08 Contest As Voters Focus on Character." To put it more accurately, issues recede as candidates, party managers, and their PR agencies focus on character (qualities, etc.). As usual. And for sound reasons. Apart from the irrelevance of the population, they can be dangerous. The participants in action are surely aware that on a host of major issues, both political parties are well to the right of the general population, and that their positions that are quite consistent over time, a matter reviewed in a useful study by Benjamin Page and Marshall Bouton, The Foreign Policy Divide; the same is true on domestic policy (see my Failed States, on both domains). It is important, then, for the attention of the herd to be diverted elsewhere. (shrink)
O estruturalismo alcançou seu zênite de influência no pensamento francês nos anos 60 e 70 do século XX, quando Lévinas escreveu os seus livros mais importantes. Gostaria, portanto, de examinar sua concepção das implicações filosóficas desta corrente teorético-metodológica, cujo impacto nas sciences humaines quase não deixou nenhum pensador francês indiferente na época. Lévinas acusou o estruturalismo de não passar de uma ilusão, na medida em que sua espontaneidade subjetiva faz com que impulsos e instintos sejam descritos como valores da razão (...) prática. Todavia, apesar da divergência entre Lévinas, para quem a ciência deve estar ao serviço da ética, e Lévi-Strauss, que concebia a ética no melhor dos casos como resultado da pesquisa científica e não como seu fim, ambos pensadores embasaram sua ética na mesma premissa: respeitar a alteridade do Outro, de cada pessoa, cada sociedade e cada cultura. A crítica de Lévinas não visava a refutação do estruturalismo mas suas premissas teóricas. Se elas pudessem ser ratificadas, alguém poderia justificar a metodologia estruturalista. Portanto, a palavra-chave aqui é “se”. Sua crítica não é nenhuma negação absoluta. Sua principal crítica foi a de que o estruturalismo era uma teoria científica que não deixava nenhum lugar para a ética; portanto, Lévinas também considerava o estruturalismo uma ameaça ao judaísmo, onde a ética ocupa um importante lugar. No início do século XX, Rosenzweig – assim como Lévinas no seu fim – buscou propor uma saída da concepção de totalidade porque não deixava lugar adequado para o estatuto do ser humano como sujeito. Para Rosenzweig, tratava-se antes de mais nada de uma revolta contra a filosofia idealista de Hegel, enquanto que para Lévinas compreendia uma crítica do estruturalismo que dava primazia a estruturas inconscientes sobre a subjetividade humana. Apenas esta pode servir de base para uma ética que fosse o propósito maior de sua filosofia PALAVRAS-CHAVE – Estruturalismo. Filosofia Francesa. Lévinas. Lévi-Strauss. Rosenzweig. ABSTRACT Structuralism reached the peak of its influence in French thought in the sixties and seventies of the 20th century when Lévinas wrote his most important books. Therefore I want to examine his contention with the philosophical implications of this theoreticalmethodological current to whose impact on “les sciences humaines” almost no French thinker remained indifferent at the time. Lévinas accused structuralism that according to it subjective spontaneity is no more than an illusion by which impulses and instincts are described as values of practical reason. However, notwithstanding the divergence between Lévinas, according to whom science must serve ethics, and Lévi-Strauss, according to whom ethics is at most a result of scientific research and not its end, both established their ethics on the same assumption: to respect the otherness of the other, of every person, every society, every culture. Lévinas’ criticism did not aim at refuting structuralism but at wrestling with its theoretical assumptions. If they were possible of ratification, one might justify structuralist methodology. So the keyword is “if”. His critique is no absolute denial. His main critique was that structuralism was a scientific theory that left no place for ethics; therefore he also considered structuralism to be a danger to Judaism where ethics occupies an important place. Rosenzweig in the beginning of the 20th century as well as Lévinas at its end endeavored to propose an outlet frm the conception of totality because it did not leave any adequate place for man’s status as a subject. For Rosenzweig that had been first of all a revolt against Hegel’s idealistic philosophy, while for Lévinas it comprised a critique of structuralism that awarded priority to unconscious structures over human subjectivity. Only the latter can serve as a basis for ethics which was the chief goal of his philosophy. KEY WORDS – Structuralism. French Philosophy. Lévinas. Lévi-Strauss. Rosenzweig. (shrink)
Em primeiro lugar, (1) examinarei a chamada Destruktion fenomenológica da ontologia medieval, componente básico do método a partir da história da ontologia. Nessa seção, coloco algumas questões sobre a apropriação da Idade Média com base na escolástica tardia, como se esta fosse o "cume" das reflexões precedentes! Em segundo lugar, (2) apresento a reflexão de próprio Heidegger sobre a ontologia medieval tal como se expõe no curso de semestre de verão de 1927 ("Os problemas fundamentais da fenomenologia"), ministrado na (...) Universidade de Marburg. Igualmente nessa parte, faço algumas reflexões críticas sobre a leitura heideggeriana dos medievais, que se presta muito mais para conhecer o próprio modo de pensar de Heidegger do que os medievais em si mesmos, ou seja, pela leitura cursiva dos textos em seu contexto histórico e cultural: sem o élan espiritual, consubstancial aos escritos de Tomás de Aquino, por exemplo, a organização conceitual deste último não pareceria um sistema assaz grandioso e seco? Esta não terá sido a compreensão de Heidegger, fruto da separação metodológica feita entre mística medieval e filosofia escolástica desde o curso não proferido intitulado "Fundamentos filosóficos da Mística Medieval" (1918-1919)? First, I will examine the so-called phenomenological Destruktion of medieval ontology, a basic component of the method of the history of ontology. In this section I put forth some questions regarding the appropriation of the Middle Ages by late scholasticism, which supposed itself the apex of preceding reflections. Secondly, I present Heidegger's own reflections on medieval ontology as presented in his course of the summer semester of 1927 ("The fundamental problems of phenomenology") taught at the University of Marburg. In this part I also make some critical reflections on Heidegger's reading of the medieval philosophers, which lends itself more to understanding Heidegger's way of thinking than that of the medievals themselves (i.e. as read in their historical and cultural context). Without spiritual élan, consubstantial with the writings of Thomas Aquinas, for example, would not the conceptual organization of Aquinas' system seem rather grandiose and dry? Would not this have been Heidegger's understanding, which was the result of a methodological separation made between medieval mysticism and Scholastic philosophy ever since his undelivered course entitled "Philosophical Foundations of Medieval Mysticism" (1918-1919)? (shrink)
In 1980, Ronald Reagan was elected President of the United States for his first term and the conservative revolution that was slowly developing in the United States finally emerged in full-throated roar. Who provoked the conservative revolution? Shadia Drury provides a fascinating answer to the question as she looks at the work of Leo Strauss, a seemingly reclusive German Jewish emigré and scholar, who was one of the most influential individuals in the conservative movement, a man widely seen as (...) the godfather of the Republican party’s failed “Contract With America.” Among his students were individuals such as Alan Bloom, author of The Closing of the American Mind. Strauss influenced the work of Irving Kristol, Gertrude Himmelfarb and William Kristol, as well as Chief Justice Clarence Thomas and Speaker of the House Newt Gingrich. Drury delves deeply into Strauss’s work at the University of Chicago where he taught his students that, if they truly loved America, they must save her from her fateful enchantment with liberalism. Leo Strauss and the American Right is a fascinating piece of work that anyone interested in understanding our current political situation will want to read. (shrink)
In 1990, when the Berlin Wall fell and the Cold War ended, economic and political analysts declared the world a safer place. But not political journalist Robert Harvey. The roar of international optimism only intensified the pangs of his geopolitical anxiety. In 1995, in The Return of the Strong, he warned Western democracies that the tides of economic globalization were sweeping the world toward a new crisis. Unfortunately, the attack on the World Trade Center in New York City on (...) September 11, 2001, justified Harvey's alarm. It also prompted him to revise and update his analysis of the dangers facing the free world. Global Disorder not only examines the precarious state of world affairs in the aftermath of 9/11 but also offers far-reaching proposals for the reform of global security. In light of the emergence of the United States as the world's first megapower, Harvey explores the sources of international tension that have increasingly commanded the attention of the West and lays out the perils inherent in the globalization of capitalism without political or economic control. He presents constructive measures that he believes the West—especially the United States—must undertake to restore stability around the world and truly ensure international security. (shrink)
It is reported that the moment anyone talked to Marx about morality, he would roar with laughter. Yet, plainly, he was fired by outrage and a burning desire for a better world. This paradox is the starting point for Marxism and Morality. Discussing the positions taken by Marx, Engels, and their descendants in relation to certain moral issues, Steven Lukes addresses the questions on which Marxist thinkers and actors have taken a number of characteristic stands as well as other (...) questions--personal relations and the moral virtues of the individual, for example--on which Marxism falls silent. A provocative exploration of the gray area where Marxism and morality meet, this book argues that Marxism makes a number of major moral claims and that its appeal has always been, in large part, a moral one. (shrink)
Resumo: A teoria marxiana do trabalho alienado ocupa um papel de destaque na Filosofia política moderna. Seguindo a esteira de Hegel, Marx concebe o homem como sendo o produto de sua própria atividade, isto é, a autoproduçáo do homem pelo trabalho. Isso significa que o ser humano náo é um ser que nasce acabado, mas que se desenvolve como ser humano enquanto desenvolve as potencialidades que lhe sáo inerentes. Imerso no estudo da sociedade capitalista, Marx percebe como nela se interdita (...) esse postulado da autoproduçáo do homem pelo trabalho. Mas, se a realizaçáo da humanidade depende da genuína atividade produtiva, do exercício do trabalho, sem alienar-se em relaçáo ao seu produto, surge a necessidade de se criarem alternativas frente a esse modo de produçáo, no intuito de se assegurarem as condições de realizaçáo da humanidade do trabalhador. As condições para o exercício do trabalho náo-alienado seráo superadas, na medida em que se superar a propriedade privada e a divisáo social do trabalho. E na linha de pensamento de Marx, a tese de que o trabalho perdeu sua centralidade náo tem lugar. Vale dizer que, se tal tese fosse admitida, seriam suprimidas as condições de realizaçáo do ser humano, pois, para Marx, trabalho e o desenvolvimento das potencialidades humanas sáo indissociáveis. O que precisa ser superado é o trabalho alienado e náo o trabalho como tal. Palavras-Chave: Divisáo do Trabalho. Marx. Propriedade Privada. Trabalho Alienado. (shrink)
Philippe Roseberry | : L’interprétation d’un acte de violence de masse est toujours délicate puisqu’elle confère un certain statut au groupe visé. Ce statut peut devenir un facteur important dans la décision de la communauté internationale de reconnaître ou non l’indépendance d’un groupe et de son territoire. Cet article examine le cas de la reconnaissance du Kosovo par la communauté internationale, en février 2008, et soutient que cette reconnaissance a été rendue possible par l’utilisation d’arguments basés sur le statut collectif (...) de victime de nettoyage ethnique détenu par la population albanaise du Kosovo. L’article comble le fossé entre, d’un côté, la théorie de la sécession comme réparation, et de l’autre, les travaux sur la violence de masse contre les groupes ethnonationaux. L’analyse montre que la pratique de la reconnaissance étatique a été réorientée vers un critère restrictif lié au type de violence subie par le groupe réclamant l’indépendance. Dans cette optique, le territoire devient une forme tangible de compensation pour les injustices subies, ce qui tranche par rapport à la pratique antérieure de la reconnaissance étatique dans l’ex-Yougoslavie et ailleurs. | : The interpretation of an act of mass violence is always a contentious issue since it confers a certain status to the targeted group. This status may become an important factor in the international community’s decision to recognize or not the independence of a group and its territory. This article examines the case of Kosovo’s February 2008 recognition by the international community and argues that this recognition was made possible by the summoning of arguments based on Kosovo Albanians’ collective status as victims of ethnic cleansing. The article bridges the gap between on the one hand the Remedial Right theory of secession, and on the other hand, works on mass violence against ethnonational groups. The article shows that the practice of state recognition was reoriented towards a restrictive criterion linked to the type of violence sustained by the group claiming independence. Under this interpretation, territory becomes a tangible form of compensation for suffered injustices, which contrasts with earlier practice of state recognition in the former Yugoslavia and elsewhere. (shrink)
In the fusillade he lets fly against Foss (1984), Bourgeois (1987) sometimes hits a live target. I admit that I went beyond the letter of van Fraassen's The Scientific Image (1980), making inferences and drawing conclusions which are often absurd. I maintain, however, that the absurdities must be charged to van Fraassen's account. While I cannot redress every errant shot of Bourgeois, his essay reveals the need for further discussion of the concepts of the phenomena and the observables as used (...) by van Fraassen. (shrink)
Alan Musgrave, Michael Friedman, Jeffrey Foss, and Richard Creath raised different objections against the Distinction between observables and unobservables when drawn within the confines of Bas C. van Fraassen's Constructive Empiricism (CE), to the effect that the Distinction cannot be drawn there coherently. Van Fraassen has only responded to Musgrave but Musgrave claimed not to understand van Fraassen's succinct response. I argue that van Fraassen's response is not enough. What remains in the end is an unsolved problem which CE cannot (...) afford to leave unsolved, or so I argue; I then strengthen Musgrave's criticism and indicate that an extension of the epistemic policy of CE is mandatory to solve the problem. I also argue that Friedman's and Foss' objection against the Distinction in CE misses the mark on closer inspection. An objection due to Creath does hit the mark but can be taken care of without too much ado. All these objections seem alive and kicking until the present day; I try (and hope) to put them all to rest. (shrink)
Given that the mind is the brain, as materialists insist, those who would understand the mind must understand the brain. Assuming that arrays of neural firing frequencies are highly salient aspects of brain information processing (the vector functional account), four hurdles to an understanding of the brain are identified and inspected: indeterminacy, micro-specificity, chaos, and openness.
The free and open source software (Foss) movement deserves to be placed in an historico-ethical perspective that emphasizes the end user. Such an emphasis is able to enhance and support the Foss movement by arguing the ways it is heir to a tradition of professional ethical idealism and potentially related to important issues in the history of science, technology, and society relations. The focus on software from an end-user’s perspective also leads to the concept of program conviviality. From a non-technical (...) perspective, however, software is simply a new example of technology, and the effort to assure that technology is developed in a socially responsible manner has a significant history. The argument thus begins with observations about the history of technology. This leads to critical reflections on the development of professional engineering ethics, and to a discussion of the alternative technology movement. Finally, it concludes by indicating some criteria to consider when imagining the design of convivial software. (shrink)
Like everyone with a scientific bent of mind, Dennett thinks our capacity for meaningful language and states of mind is the product of evolution (Dennett [1987, ch. VIII]). But unlike many of this bent, he sees virtue in viewing evolution itself from the intentional stance. From this stance, ?Mother Nature?, or the process of evolution by natural selection, bestows intentionality upon us, hence we are not Unmeant Meaners. Thus, our intentionality is extrinsic, and Dennett dismisses the theories of meaning of (...) Dretske, Fodor, Burge, Putnam, and Kripke on the grounds that each requires that our mental states, unlike those of artifacts, have meaning intrinsically. I argue that we are Unmeant Meaners, incidentally defending Dretske et al., though my goal is to test the explanatory virtue of the intentional stance as applied to the evolution of intentionality. (shrink)
Thesis: Art like science radically affects our perceiving and thinking, and the two are substantially alike in that together--along with an inherited "natural" language system with which they overlap--they enable us to articulate the world. Science has been advanced as the measure of all things: scientific realism. By implication, art pertains to beauty, science truth. Science effects conceptual break-throughs, changes our models of natural order. On the contrary (I argue), as a nonverbal symbol system art similarly affects paradigm-induced expectations. Substantively (...) there is no difference in the way each enables us to articulate or measure the world: symbolic realism. The myth of resemblance as a criterion of representation--imitation as a one-one relation--has, at least since the time of Plato, obscured this truth. Once the distinction between representational and nonrepresentational art falls, the true nature of artist (like scientist) as maker is illumined. The artist, the scientist (disciplinarian), the cosmologist (those responsible for the formulation of so-called natural languages--in time all of us) make the world or, what practically amounts to the same thing, the known, perceived world. This is the claim of the symbolic realist. Is symbolic realism itself only a watershed? What implication does this critique have for assessing the role of the philosopher today? (shrink)
Mele desires to believe that the self-deceived have consistent beliefs. Beliefs are not observable, but are instead ascribed within an explanatory framework. Because explanatory cogency is the only criterion for belief attribution, Mele should carefully attend to the logic of belief-desire explanation. He does not, and the consistency of his own account as well as that of the self-deceived, are the victims.
The noted psychologist, Doreen Kimura, has argued that we should not expect to find equal numbers of men and women in various professions because there is a natural sexual inequality of intellect. In rebuttal I argue that each of these mutually supporting theses is insufficiently supported by the evidence to be accepted. The social and ethical dimensions of Kimura's work, and of the scientific study of the nature-nurture controversy in general, are briefly discussed.
Physicalism is an empirical theory of the mind and its place in nature. So the physicalist must show that current neuroscience does not falsify physicalism, but instead supports it. Current neuroscience shows that a nervous system is what I call a vector function system. I provide a brief outline of the resources that empirical research has made available within the constraints of the vector function approach. Then I argue that these resources are sufficient, indeed apt, for the physicalist enterprise, by (...) offering a vector functional, hence physicalist, theory of the percept--the perceptual experience itself, a paradigm of phenomenally immediate, introspectively accessible consciousness. (shrink)
The basic premise of today's scientific medicine is that the ‘book of man’ is written in the language of the biological sciences, ultimately molecular genetics and biochemistry. The patient is a complex biological organism and disease is a deviation from the norm of somatic parameters. At the same time, many major contemporary diseases are reported to have psychosocial and environmental components in their etiology. Hence the challenge: how can a medical model be both scientific and conceptually well-suited to today's disease (...) burden? I argue that certain contemporary "postmodern" sciences support alternative, non-reductionist (self-organizational) premises. So doing, they offer an infrastructure for a medical model at once scientific and responsive to the diseases at hand. Keywords: biomedicine (biological medicine), natural science paradigm, Cartesian dualism, self-organization, postmodern sciences, self-referentiality CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
In his book, The Scientific Image, van Fraassen lucidly draws an alternative to scientific realism, which he calls "Constructive Empiricism". In this epistemological theory, the concept of observability plays the pivotal role: acceptable theories may be believed only where what they say solely concerns observables. Van Fraassen develops a concept of observability which is, as he admits, vague, relative, science-dependent, and anthropocentric. I draw out unacceptable consequences of each of these aspects of his concept. Also, I argue against his assumption (...) that "empirical adequacy" is the same thing as "saving the phenomena", according to his sense of the expressions. (shrink)
An examination of the early history of Nobel Committee deliberations, coupled with a survey of discoveries for which prizes have been awarded to date – and, equally revealing, discoveries for which prizes have not been awarded – reveals a pattern. This pattern suggests that Committee members may have internalized the received, biomedical model and conferred awards in accord with the physicalistic premises that ground this model. I consider the prospect of a paradigm change in medical science and the possible repercussions (...) of such a change on the distribution of Nobel prizes within the domain of physiology or medicine. For expository purposes, I contrast a model based on a science of pathophysiology with one based on a science of pathopsychophysiology. I propose a means whereby members might minimize the potentially blinding effects of model-dependence and come to evaluate medical discoveries from an inter-model rather than an exclusively intra-model perspective. By bringing to light questions rarely asked and proposing answers, I seek to open a dialogue and furnish a vehicle by which the putative delimiting effects of model-dependence might be overcome. (shrink)
Boyer & Lienard's (B&L's) explanation of ritualized behavior is plausible because it fits so well with elementary facts about evolution of plasticity in our behavioral repertoire. Its scope, however, may be broader than its authors explicitly admit. Science itself may be illuminated as ritual behavior. Science, like other rituals, can sustain both healthy and pathological forms. (Published Online February 8 2007).
Journalists in Lebanon reported that 90 percent of the 80,000 inhabitants of Tyre joined the flood of refugees northwards. Villages were deserted, with many casualties and destruction of civilian dwellings by intensive bombardment. Nabatiye, with a population of 60,000, was described as "a ghost town" by a Lebanese reporter a day after the attack was launched. Inhabitants described the bombings as even more intense and destructive than during the Israeli invasions of 1978 and 1982. Those who had not fled were (...) running out of food and water but were trapped in their villages, Mark Nicolson reported from Nabatiye in the Financial Times, because "any visible movement inside or outside their houses is likely to attract the attention of Israeli artillery spotters, who...were pounding shells repeatedly and devastatingly into selected houses." Artillery shells were hitting some villages at a rate of more than 10 rounds a minute at times, he reported, while Israeli jets roared overhead, and in nearby Sidon, "the main Hammoud hospital was admitting new casualties every 15 minutes by late afternoon" of July 27. An Israeli Army spokesperson said that "70 percent of the village of Jibshit is totally destroyed, its inhabitants will not recognize it." The goal is "to wipe the villages from the face of the earth," a senior officer added. In Tripoli, 40 miles north of Beirut, a Palestinian refugee camp was attacked by Israeli planes firing missiles. Israeli naval forces bombarded coastal areas near Beirut and intercepted vessels approaching Lebanese ports, though whether they also resumed their long-term practice of kidnapping and killing passengers on the high seas is not reported. (shrink)
Behrendt's & Young's (B&Y's) persuasive scientific theory explains hallucinations, and is supported by a wide variety of psychological evidence, both normal and abnormal – unlike their philosophical thesis, Kantian idealism. I argue that the evidence cited by the authors in support of idealism actually favors realism. Fortunately, their scientific theory is separable from their philosophy, and is methodologically consistent with realism.
This paper examines today's received scientific medical model with respect to its ability to satisfy two conditions: (1) its explanatory adequacy relative to the full range of findings in the medical literature, including those indicating a correlation between psychosocial variables and disease susceptibility; and (2) the fit between its physicalist patient and disease concepts and what today's basic sciences, so-called sciences of complexity, tell us about the way matter, notably complex systems (e.g. patients), behave and the nature of scientific explanation. (...) I conclude that the received (biomedical) model falls short on both counts and to satisfy these conditions is to articulate a formal successor model. This successor must be guided by premises consistent with the findings and methods of today's basic sciences on which an applied science like medicine depends for its validity. Additionally, the successor model must be able to explain (and predict) the full range of clinical findings, both those that its predecessors explains and at least some of those that it does not. The aim of the paper is to identify such a model. (shrink)
We respond to Jack Vromen’s (this issue) critique of our discussion of the missing micro-foundations of work on routines and capabilities in economics and management research. Contrary to Vromen, we argue that (1) inter-level relations can be causal, and that inter-level causal relations may also obtain between routines and actions and interactions; (2) there are no macro-level causal mechanisms; and (3) on certain readings of the notion of routines and capabilities, these may be macro causes.
Gintis assumes the behavioral (=social) sciences are in disarray, and so proposes a theory for their unification. Examination of the unity of the physical sciences reveals he misunderstands the unity of science in general, and so fails to see that the social sciences are already unified with the physical sciences. Another explanation of the differences between them is outlined. (Published Online April 27 2007).
This paper discusses the reasons for the success of the new growth theory. Given that the NGT does not appear to say much new about empirical reality, that its essential ideas have been known for a long time, and that it does not really make contact with a large literature on institutions and economic change, its strong success may arguably be seen as surprising. Or, at least, its success may appear peculiar to Lakatosian methodologists, and others who emphasize notions such (...) as ?novel facts?. The reason for the success of the NGT is argued to lie in its constituting a case of strong heuristic progress: it brought growth through knowledge accumulation within the confines of neoclassical economics, and thus demonstrated the continued viability of this research tradition. (shrink)
The object of this essay is to demonstrate a logical connection between beliefs and values. It is argued that such a connection can be established only if one keeps in mind the question: What is minimally required in order that it makes sense to speak of beliefs and values at all? Thus, the concept of minimal rationality is indispensable to the task at hand. A particular example of a logical connection between a belief and a value is examined, which leads (...) to a formal rule (Rule of Minimal Rationality) which expresses in general the logical connection between beliefs and values. This rule is elaborated to include attempted activities as well as activities simpliciter, activities having been discovered as essential to any logical connection between beliefs and values. Finally, some interesting implications and promising applications of the Rule of Minimal Rationality are outlined. (shrink)
I address the issue of justifiable profits from distinct perspectives in economics, strategy research and ethics. Combining insights from Austrian economics, the resource-based perspective, and finders, keepers ethics, I argue that strategy is about the discovery of hitherto unexploited possibilities for exchange. To the extent that strategy is about the discovery/creation ex nihilo of products, ways of producing products, etc., the resulting profits are argued to be justifiable from a finders, keepers perspective.
Quartz & Sejnowski's (Q&S's) main accomplishment is the presentation of increasing complexity in the developing brain. Although this cuts a colorful swath through current theories of learning, it leaves the central question untouched: How does the environment direct neural structure? In answer, Q&S offer us only Hebb's half-century-old suggestion once again.
Peirce measures the testability of scientific hypotheses by these oft-repeated standards: "money, time, energy, thought". His concept of testability is outlined and developed. It is found to be strikingly different, but not incompatible with, the positivist-empiricist concept of testability- in-principle. Peirce's concept of testability is, however, much richer than the received positivist-empiricist concept, and plays a larger, more central role in the logic of science, as Peirce sees it. In particular, Peirce's concept, in its role in his theory of the (...) economy of research, shows how the acceptance of scientific hypotheses is itself a function of economic factors, and thus is not value-neutral. (shrink)
The rise of the knowledge economy has far-reaching implications for the nature of economic organization as well as firm strategy. Not surprisingly, thinking in management studies as well as in economics has been profoundly affected by these changes. Thus, management thinking in particular has been increasingly characterized by a schism between those who advocate 'knowledge' or 'capabilities-based' approaches in the strategy and organization fields and those who adopt more economics-influenced approaches, notably the economics of organization. -/- This book is a (...) sustained attempt to overcome this schism. Its basic argument is that knowledge-based and organizational economics approaches are not substitutes but complements. In particular, organizational economics has much to contribute with respect to furthering the understanding of efficient organization and strategy in the emerging knowledge economy. This theme is taken through several theoretical as well as empirical variations. Themes such as the incentive liabilities of flat, 'knowledge-based' organizations and the role of complementary HRM practices for fostering knowledge sharing and creation are extensively treated. The book thus contains important implications for knowledge management, organizational design, and firm strategy." -/- The book encompasses nine chapters which critically examine current thinking on strategy, and organization. The reasoning is non-technical. While primarily aimed at a management studies audience, economists and other social scientists will also benefit from it, including Advanced Students, Academics, and Researchers. (shrink)
Because the reciprocal theory of Mazur & Booth dominates the static basal model, given the evidence they present, it is worth considering the implications for women's equality, supposing it true. Testosterone might well give males a competitive edge, and hence higher status, creating an inequality that mere social legislation would be ill-suited to address. Further research on the role of testosterone is needed.
We discuss contract theory from a combined Austrian/new institutional view. In the latter view, the world is seen as shot through with ignorance and transaction costs, but, as a tendency, entrepreneurial activity responds to the problems caused by these. All modelling must critically reflect this. This ontological commitment is contrasted to various isolations characteristic of contract theory, specifically the modelling strategy of introducing often ad hoc and unexplained constraints that suppress margins and possibilities of entrepreneurial actions that would be open (...) to real-world decision-makers. We illustrate this by means of, for example, the treatment of asymmetric information under complete contracting and the notion of control rights under incomplete contracting. (shrink)