Peer review is a widely accepted instrument for raising the quality of science. Peer review limits the enormous unstructured influx of information and the sheer amount of dubious data, which in its absence would plunge science into chaos. In particular, peer review offers the benefit of eliminating papers that suffer from poor craftsmanship or methodological shortcomings, especially in the experimental sciences. However, we believe that peer review is not always appropriate for the evaluation of controversial hypothetical science. We argue that (...) the process of peer review can be prone to bias towards ideas that affirm the prior convictions of reviewers and against innovation and radical new ideas. Innovative hypotheses are thus highly vulnerable to being “filtered out” or made to accord with conventional wisdom by the peer review process. Consequently, having introduced peer review, the Elsevier journal Medical Hypotheses may be unable to continue its tradition as a radical journal allowing discussion of improbable or unconventional ideas. Hence we conclude by asking the publisher to consider re-introducing the system of editorial review to Medical Hypotheses. (shrink)
The Discourses are a key source for ancient Stoicism, one of the richest and most influential schools of thought in Western philosophy. They not only represent the Stoicism of Epictetus' own time, but also reflect the teachings of such early Stoics as Zeno and Chrysippus, whose writings are largely lost. The first of the four books of the Discourses is philosophically the richest: it focuses primarily on ethics and moral psychology, but also touches on issues of logic, epistemology, science, and (...) rhetoric. Other notable schools of ancient thought, including Epicureanism, the Sceptics, and the Cynics, are discussed. -/- Robert Dobbin presents a new translation into clear modern English of this important work, together with the first commentary on the work since the eighteenth century. Each of the thirty discourses that make up Book 1 is introduced and summarized; then the arguments are examined in detail. The general introduction gives background information about Epictetus' life, the intellectual context of the work, the style of the discourses, and the history of the text. A bibliography surveys the literature. The volume serves as a guide to Epictetus' thought as a whole. -/- Clarendon Later Ancient Philosophers General Editors: Jonathan Barnes and A. A. Long -/- This series is designed to encourage philosophers and students of philosophy to explore the fertile terrain of later ancient philosophy. The texts will range in date from the first century BC to the fifth century AD, and they will cover all the parts and all the schools of philosophy. Each volume contains a substantial introduction, an English translation, and a critical commentary on the philosophical claims and arguments of the text. The translations aim primarily at accuracy and fidelity, but also at readability; they are accompanied by notes on textual problems that affect the philosophical interpretation. No knowledge of Greek or Latin is assumed. (shrink)
This work is the latest contribution to the Clarendon Later Ancient Philosophers series edited by Jonathan Barnes and A. A. Long. As with the earlier volumes (John Dillon's Alcinous, The Handbook of Platonism , R. J. Hankinson's Galen, On the Therapeutic Method Books I and II, Richard Bett's Sextus Empiricus, Against the Ethicists, and D. L. Blank's Sextus Empiricus, Against the Grammarians), D(obbin) provides an introduction, an English translation, and a critical commentary predominantly focused on the philosophical content of (...) the text of an author from the period ranging from the first century BC to the fifth century AD. A bibliography of a dozen earlier editions of E(pictetus), a painstaking bibliography of secondary literature, an index nominum, a generous index locorum, and a brief subject index are also included. Overall this edition maintains the high standards characteristic of the CLAP series. (shrink)
Acceptance of the quantization of the elementary electrical charge (e) was preceded by a bitter dispute between Robert Millikan (1868–1953) and Felix Ehrenhaft (1879–1952), which lasted for many years (1910–25). Both Millikan and Ehrenhaft obtained very similar experimental results and yet Millikan was led to formulate the elementary electrical charge (electron) and Ehrenhaft to fractional charges (subelectron). There have been four major attempts to reconstruct the historical events that led to the controversy: Holton (); Franklin (); Barnes et (...) al. (); Goodstein (). So we have the controversy not only among the original protagonists but also among those who have interpreted the experiment. The objective of this study is a critical appraisal of the four interpretations and an attempt to provide closure to the controversy. It is plausible to suggest that Ehrenhaft's methodology approximated the traditional scientific method, which did not allow him to discard anomalous data. Millikan, on the other hand, in his publications espoused the scientific method but in private (handwritten notebooks) was fully aware of the dilemma faced and was forced to select data to uphold his presuppositions. A closure to the controversy is possible if we recognize that Millikan's data selection procedure depended primarily on his commitment to his presuppositions (existence of e). Franklin's () finding that the selection of the drops did not change the value of e but only its statistical error carries little weight as Millikan did not perform Franklin-style analyses that could have justified the exclusion of drops. It is plausible to suggest that had Millikan performed such analyses, he would have included them in his publication in order to provide support for his data selection procedures. In the absence of his presuppositions, Millikan could not tell which was the ‘expected correct’ value of e and the degree of statistical error. Finally, if we try to understand Millikan's handling of data with no reference to his presuppositions, then some degree of ‘misconduct’ can be perceived. Introduction An appraisal of Holton's interpretation An appraisal of Franklin's interpretation An appraisal of Barnes, Bloor and Henry's interpretation An appraisal of Goodstein's interpretation A crucial test: the second drop (reading) of 15 March 1912 Conclusion: Is closure possible? (shrink)
This symposium provides five case studies of the ways that John Dewey's philosophy and practice were influenced by women or "weirdoes" (our choices include F. M. Alexander, Albert Barnes, Helen Bradford Thompson, Elsie Ripley Clapp, and Jane Addams) and presents some conclusions about the value of dialoging across difference for philosophers and other scholars.
Although much has been written about the vigorous debates over science and religion in the Victorian era, little attention has been paid to their continuing importance in early twentieth-century Britain. Reconciling Science and Religion provides a comprehensive survey of the interplay between British science and religion from the late nineteenth century to World War II. Peter J. Bowler argues that unlike the United States, where a strong fundamentalist opposition to evolutionism developed in the 1920s (most famously expressed in the Scopes (...) "monkey trial" of 1925), in Britain there was a concerted effort to reconcile science and religion. Intellectually conservative scientists championed the reconciliation and were supported by liberal theologians in the Free Churches and the Church of England, especially the Anglican "Modernists." Popular writers such as Julian Huxley and George Bernard Shaw sought to create a non-Christian religion similar in some respects to the Modernist position. Younger scientists and secularists—including Rationalists such as H. G. Wells and the Marxists—tended to oppose these efforts, as did conservative Christians, who saw the liberal position as a betrayal of the true spirit of their religion. With the increased social tensions of the 1930s, as the churches moved toward a neo-orthodoxy unfriendly to natural theology and biologists adopted the "Modern Synthesis" of genetics and evolutionary theory, the proposed reconciliation fell apart. Because the tensions between science and religion—and efforts at reconciling the two—are still very much with us today, Bowler's book will be important for everyone interested in these issues. Contents: Illustrations Preface Introduction: A Legacy of Conflict? Confrontation, Cooperation, or Coexistence? Victorian Background Science and Religion in the New Century Part One: The Sciences and Religion 1. The Religion of Scientists Changing Patterns of Belief Scientists and Christianity Scientists and Theism Method and Meaning Science and Values 2. Scientists against Superstition Science and Rationalism Religion without Revelation Marxists and Other Radicals Science, Religion, and the History of Science 3. Physics and Cosmology Ether and Spirit The New Physics The Earth and the Universe 4. Evolution and the New Natural Theology Science and Creation Evolution and Progress The Role of Lamarckism Darwinism Revived 5. Matter, Life, and Mind The Origin of Life Vitalism and Organicism Mind and Body Psychology and Religion Part Two: The Churches and Science 6. The Churches in the New Century The Challenge of the New The Churches’ Response 7. The New Theology in the Free Churches Precursors of the New Theology Campbell and the New Theology Modernism in the Free Churches 8. Anglican Modernism Modernism and the New Natural Theology Charles F. D’Arcy E. W. Barnes W. R. Inge Charles Raven 9. The Reaction against Modernism Evangelicals against Evolution Liberal Catholicism The Menace of the New Psychology Science and Modern Life Theology in the Thirties Roman Catholicism Part Three: The Wider Debate 10. Science and Secularism Against Idealism Popular Rationalism The Social Reformers 11. Religion’s Defenders From Idealism to Spiritualism Creative and Emergent Evolution Evolution and the Human Spirit Progress through Struggle The Christian Response Epilogue Biographical Appendix Bibliography Index. (shrink)
It is often held that according to Aristotle the city is a natural organism. One major reason for this organic interpretation is no doubt that Aristotle describes the relationship between the individual and the city as a part-whole relationship, seemingly the same relationship that holds between the parts of a natural organism and the organism itself. Moreover, some scholars (most notably Jonathan Barnes) believe this view of the city led Aristotle to accept an implicit totalitarianism. I argue, however, that (...) an investigation of the various ways Aristotle describes parts and wholes reveals that for Aristotle the city has a unity (and thus a nature) quite different from that of a natural organism. (shrink)
Existentialism, 2/e, offers an exceptional and accessible introduction to the richness and diversity of existentialist thought. Retaining the focus of the highly successful first edition, the second edition provides extensive material on the "big four" existentialists--Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre--while also including selections from twenty-four other authors. Giving readers a sense of the variety of existentialist thought around the world, this edition also adds new readings by such figures as Luis Borges, Viktor Frankl, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Keiji Nishitani, and Rainer (...) Maria Rilke. Existentialism, 2/e, also features: New translations of Kierkegaard, Heidegger, and Buber More extensive selections from Kierkegaard, Nietzsche, Heidegger, and Sartre New selections by Hazel E. Barnes, Miguel de Unamuno, Joseph Heller, Philip Roth, and Colin Wilson The Grand Inquisitor (from Dostoevsky's The Brothers Karamazov) Ideal for undergraduate courses in existentialism and Continental philosophy, Existentialism, 2/e, is fascinating reading for anyone interested in the subject. (shrink)