RobertMyers presents an original moral theory which charts a course between the extremes of consequentialism and contractualism. He puts forward a radically new case for the existence of both agent-neutral and agent-relative values, and gives an innovative answer to the question how such disparate values can be weighed against each other. The result is a theory of morality which combines a balanced account of its content with a ringing affirmation of its authority.
We advance a model of human probability judgment and apply it to the design of an extrapolation algorithm. Such an algorithm examines a person's judgment about the likelihood of various statements and is then able to predict the same person's judgments about new statements. The algorithm is tested against judgments produced by thirty undergraduates asked to assign probabilities to statements about mammals.
James argued that time is a sensation, and the main point of this paper is to deny that claim. The concept of the specious present is explained, indicating how it clarifies the concept of "the present moment." But neither it nor an argument used by Mach and James show time to be a sensation. The analysis presented here requires distinguishing concepts of sensation from concepts of temporal relations. James' view is really a theory that time-as-duration is sensed. But this assumes (...) that the description of time as sensed is also a description of time as an objective property of independent events. This is nowhere established, and making it plausible is a recurrent problem for philosophies like neutral monism and radical empiricism. (shrink)
Context: Although ethics consultation is commonplace in United States (U.S.) hospitals, descriptive data about this health service are lacking. Objective: To describe the prevalence, practitioners, and processes of ethics consultation in U.S. hospitals. Design: A 56-item phone or questionnaire survey of the "best informant" within each hospital. Participants: Random sample of 600 U.S. general hospitals, stratified by bed size. Results: The response rate was 87.4%. Ethics consultation services (ECSs) were found in 81% of all general hospitals in the U.S., and (...) in 100% of hospitals with more than 400 beds. The median number of consults performed by ECSs in the year prior to survey was 3. Most individuals performing ethics consultation were physicians (34%), nurses (31%), social workers (11%), or chaplains (10%). Only 41% had formal supervised training in ethics consultation. Consultation practices varied widely both within and between ECSs. For example, 65% of ECSs always made recommendations, whereas 6% never did. These findings highlight a need to clarify standards for ethics consultation practices. (shrink)
Many commentators have contrasted the way that sociability is theorized in the writings of Mary Astell and Damaris Masham, emphasizing the extent to which Masham is more interested in embodied, worldly existence. I argue, by contrast, that Astell's own interest in imagining a constitutively relational individual emerges once we pay attention to her use of religious texts and tropes. To explore the relevance of Astell's Christianity, I emphasize both how Astell's Christianity shapes her view of the individual's relation to society (...) and how Masham's contrasting views can be analyzed through the lens of her charge that Astell is an “enthusiast.” In late seventeenth-century England, “enthusiasm” was a term of abuse that, commentators have recently argued, could function polemically to dismiss those deemed either excessively social or antisocial. By accusing Astell of enthusiasm, I claim, Masham seeks to marginalize the relational self that Astell imagines and to promote a more instrumental view of social ties. I suggest some aspects of Astell's thought that may have struck contemporaries as “enthusiastic” and contrast her vision of the self with Masham's more hedonistic subject. I conclude that, although each woman differently configures the relation between self and society, they share a desire to imagine autonomy within a relational framework. (shrink)
Since locke, introspection has been generally defined as a form of observation. this is true, for example, of the classical tradition in psychology exemplified by wundt and titchener. recent experimental work by cognitive psychologists continues to treat introspection as a mode of observation while denying its alleged success in identifying cognitive processes. besides psychologists, philosophers such as james, ryle, and quinton are discussed, and they, too, define introspection as a type of observation analogous to perception. the present article calls attention (...) to other concepts of introspection that are important but that have figured less prominently in the history of philosophy and psychology. it is agreed here that, so far as the goals of self-knowledge and self-control are concerned, a concept of introspection other than that of observation is the significant one. explicating the nature of this alternative concept of introspection and its relevance for self-knowledge is the major aim of the article. (shrink)
In theories of gravity with a positive cosmological constant, we consider product solutions with flux, of the form (A)dS p ×S q . Most solutions are shown to be perturbatively unstable, including all uncharged dS p ×S q spacetimes. For dimensions greater than four, the stable class includes universes whose entropy exceeds that of de Sitter space, in violation of the conjectured “N-bound.” Hence, if quantum gravity theories with finite-dimensional Hilbert space exist, the specification of a positive cosmological constant will (...) not suffice to characterize the class of spacetimes they describe. (shrink)