My aim in this article is to examine ways of designing a new ‘educational rhetoric’ based on C.S. Peirce's speculative rhetoric, the ‘doctrine of the general conditions of the reference of Symbols and other Signs to the Interpretants which they aim to determine’ (CP 2.93). This analysis is based on a general idea that has been investigated by several educators, teachers and researchers mainly within the context of critical pedagogy and educational semiotics: school life is regulated by what may be (...) called a classical dispositio, which is a certain way of organising speech in the classroom.My analysis of dispositio is based on the ‘rhetorical turn’ that Colapietro sees in Peirce's later semiotics and pragmaticism and defines as an integrated analysis of signs' effects. This ‘rhetorical turn’ offers educators resources that allow them to rethink how students' epistemological activity, understood as a series of semiosic events, leads them to develop new knowledge and modes of conduct. In this paper, I will consider the way such an integrated analysis of signs' effects may support the design of a new educational rhetoric.First, I investigate ‘ordinary’ educational rhetoric (the way semiotic resources are chosen and used) and the dispositio (the way in which speech is organised) that expresses it. More precisely, I question the way teachers ‘arrange’ their own speech, which is not only a technical issue, but also an ethical one. By ‘educational rhetoric’, I am referring to the specific organisation of discourse and speech in educational contexts, in addition to questioning the strategies implemented by teachers and students when they produce speech acts and cultural forms within the classroom.This perspective on classical educational rhetoric leads to the conclusion that a new educational rhetoric should be designed as a way of replacing ‘directive knowledge’ with a ‘dialectical mode of inquiry’. One goal of such self-reflexive rhetoric would be, among others, to develop students' critical skills and reflexivity.In this context, Peirce's rhetorical turn is a fundamental resource. Indeed, Peirce may suggest a radically new conception of teaching by stressing the function of mediation performed by signs and by undermining the dualist conception of cognition; speculative rhetoric is a useful analytical tool when one is trying to instil semiotic consciousness in the classroom, because it makes the relationship between meaning-making and knowledge-making explicit.Finally, I consider ‘Institutional Pedagogy’ to be an instance of this new dispositio, a pragmaticist one, which meets certain conditions, such as the following: the existence in the classroom of particular communication patterns; the use of multimodal semiotic resources; and a set of semiotic tools and functions, which are organised along the lines of a specific structure. I emphasise the part played by such a dispositio in the semiotic life of a classroom on a macro level (organising experience, crisis and inquiry), on a meso level (referring to cultural forms, speech acts and rituals) and on a micro level (concerning the relations between teachers and students). (shrink)
My aim in this paper is to show the relevance of an ‘effective semiotics’; that is, a field study based upon Peirce's semiotics. The general context of this investigation is educational semiotics rather than semiotics of teaching: I am concerned with a general approach of educational processes, not with skills and curricula. My paper is grounded in a field study that I carried out in a school, L'Ecole de la Neuville, implementing Institutional Pedagogy in France. I first investigate the relevance (...) of Peirce's semiotics in such a context. I then propose several definitions for the word ‘institution’, referring to the core concepts of this particular pedagogy, before describing the concept of ‘institution-sign’, which is considered a useful tool for making effective connections between several aspects of semiotics. I finally assert that an institution constitutes a tool that allows teachers to favour semiosis in educational contexts. (shrink)
Clower, Jason: The Unlikely Buddhologist, Tiantai Buddhism in M ou Zongsan’s New Confucianism Content Type Journal Article Pages 1-4 DOI 10.1007/s11712-011-9261-y Authors Sébastien Billioud, Univ Paris Diderot, Sorbonne Paris Cité. UFR LCAO/East Asian Studies Department, Case 7009, 16 rue Marguerite Duras, 75205 Paris Cedex 13 Paris, France Journal Dao Online ISSN 1569-7274 Print ISSN 1540-3009.
The 16th and 17th centuries marked a period of transition from the vitalistic ontology that had dominated Renaissance natural philosophy to the Early Modern mechanistic paradigm endorsed by, among others, the Cartesians and Newtonians. This paper focuses on how the tensions between vitalism and mechanism played themselves out in the context of 16th and 17th century chemistry and chemical philosophy. The paper argues that, within the fields of chemistry and chemical philosophy, the significant transition that culminated in the 18th century (...) Chemical Revolution was not a transition from vitalism to full-blown mechanism. Rather, chemical philosophy shifted from a vitalistic theory of matter and spirits to a naturalistic, physicalistic, and corpuscularian conception of chemical properties and reactions. Despite being naturalistic, physicalistic, and corpuscularian, however, this theory was not fully mechanistic. Special attention is paid to the contributions made by Paracelsus, Sebastien Basso, Jan Baptista van Helmont, and Robert Boyle to this ontological transition. (shrink)
Russell's philosophy is rightly described as a programme of reduction of mathematics to logic. Now the theory of geometry developed in 1903 does not fit this picture well, since it is deeply rooted in the purely synthetic projective approach, which conflicts with all the endeavours to reduce geometry to analytical geometry. The first goal of this paper is to present an overview of this conception. The second aim is more far-reaching. The fact that such a theory of geometry was sustained (...) by Russell compels us to question the meaning of logicism: how is it possible to reconcile Russell's global reductionist standpoint with his local defence of the specificities of geometry? * This paper was first presented at the conference ‘Qu'est ce que la géométrie aux époques modernes et contemporaines?’ (16–20 April 2007), organized by the Universität Köln and the Archives Poincaré. I would like to thank Philippe Nabonnand for having enlightened me about the issues relative to projective geometry. I would like also to thank Nicholas Griffin, Brice Halimi, Bernard Linsky, Marco Panza, Ivahn Smadja for their helpful discussions. Many thanks also to the two anonymous referees for their useful suggestions. CiteULike Connotea Del.icio.us What's this? (shrink)
Gottfried Leibniz is well known for his claim to have “rehabilitated” the substantial forms of scholastic philosophy, forging a reconciliation of the New Philosophy of Descartes, Mersenne and Gassendi with Aristotelian metaphysics (in his so-called Discourse on Metaphysics, 1686). Much less celebrated is the fact that fifty years earlier (in his Hypomnemata Physica, 1636) the Bratislavan physician and natural philosopher Daniel Sennert had already argued for the indispensability to atomism of (suitably re-interpreted) Aristotelian forms, in explicit opposition to the rejection (...) of substantial forms by his fellow atomist Sébastien Basson.1.. (shrink)
In a recent paper, Potochnik (Biol Philos 24(2):183–197, 2009) analyses some uses of optimality modelling in light of the anti-adaptationism criticism. She distinguishes two broad classes of such uses (weak and strong) on the basis of assumptions held by biologists about the role and the importance of natural selection. This is an interesting proposal that could help in the epistemological characterisation of some biological practices. However, Potochnik’s distinction also rests on the assumption that all optimality modelling represent the selection dynamic (...) involved in the system of phenomena being considered. Since this assumption does not hold for models belonging to optimal foraging theory (OFT)—one of behavioural ecology’s important modelling traditions—Potochnik’s proposal has to be critically reappraised. In this paper, we briefly discuss what is optimality modelling and what it means for a model to represent a dynamic of selection or of evolution. Then, we demonstrate that OFT modelling is unable to represent either past or contemporary selection dynamics. In order to make this point, we carefully delineate the theory’s rationale. This allows us to identify and analyse the assumptions on which the theory is built, and to circumscribe precisely the role that natural selection plays in it. Next, we show that the distinction of weak and strong uses of optimality modelling is seriously weakened when OFT modelling is taken into account. More precisely, the distinction is either irrelevant (if the assumption that selection dynamics are represented in all optimality modelling is held) or of a modest utility (if the assumption is dropped). However, we suggest that Potochnik’s original proposal could be saved, and that it even constitutes a tool to appraise the marks left in the literature by the evolution of optimality modelling practices in the last four decades, provided that it is made into a tripartite distinction. (shrink)
This article aims first at showing that Russell's general doctrine according to which all mathematics is deducible 'by logical principles from logical principles' does not require a preliminary reduction of all mathematics to arithmetic. In the Principles, mechanics (part VII), geometry (part VI), analysis (part IV-V) and magnitude theory (part III) are to be all directly derived from the theory of relations, without being first reduced to arithmetic (part II). The epistemological importance of this point cannot be overestimated: Russell's logicism (...) does not only contain the claim that mathematics is no more than logic, it also contains the claim that the differences between the various mathematical sciences can be logically justified?and thus, that, contrary to the arithmetization stance, analysis, geometry and mechanics are not merely outgrowths of arithmetic. The second aim of this article is to set out the neglected Russellian theory of quantity. The topic is obviously linked with the first, since the mere existence of a doctrine of magnitude, in a work dated from 1903, is a sign of a distrust vis-à-vis the arithmetization programme. After having shown that, despite the works of Cantor, Dedekind and Weierstrass, many mathematicians at the end of the 19th Century elaborated various axiomatic theories of the magnitude, I will try to define the peculiarity of the Russellian approach. I will lay stress on the continuity of the logicist's thought on this point: Whitehead, in the Principia, deepens and generalizes the first Russellian 1903 theory. (shrink)
The reflection on science seems to be linked today with the concept of hypermodernity which refers to a society of excesses without any global alternative model. In this article, my aim is to show how the modernisation of our societies was connected with scientific development, and what place science may be expected to occupy in hypermodern societies—societies built around the notion of risk. After presenting the concept of hypermodernity, I propose an analysis of the inherent risks involved by the development (...) of technology in our societies, and what limits may be desirable in order to prevent an excessive or partial valorisation of a “society of knowledge,” a notion itself not without its problems. Finally, I remind of the possible contribution humanities and social sciences can make to maintain balance in what is today called a knowledge economy. (shrink)
Pasch est généralement considéré comme le premier à avoir proposé une axiomatisation de la géométrie. Mais ses Vorlesungen über neure Geometrie (1882) contiennent plusieurs éléments étrangers au paradigme hilbertien. Pasch soutient ainsi que la « géométrie élémentaire », dont il propose une axiomatisation complète, est une théorie empiriquement vraie. Les commentateurs considèrent généralement les différences entre la méthode de Pasch et celle qui deviendra standard après Hilbert comme autant de défauts affectant une pensée encore inaboutie. Notre but consiste au contraire (...) à reconstruire la cohérence et l’originalité de l’approche de Pasch. Nous donnerons d’abord un aperçu du contexte historique dans lequel les Vorlesungen s’inscrivent, pour tenter ensuite de réconcilier l’effort d’axiomatisation et l’empirisme de Pasch. Nous insisterons notamment sur les remarquables procédures logiques que Pasch met sur pied afin d’adapter sa pratique mathématique aux contraintes dictées par sa réflexion philosophique.Pasch is usually credited with having presented the first axiomatization of a geometrical theory, but the Vorlesungen über neuere Geometrie (1882) contains many features which do not fit the Hilbertian paradigm. Thus Pasch, while axiomatizing his “elementary geometry,” claims that it is an empirically true theory. Scholars usually regard the discrepancies between Pasch and the post-Hilbertian standard method as mere inconsistencies of Pasch’s theory. On the contrary, this article aims at reconstructing the coherence and originality of the Vorlesungen. We will first display the historical background of this work and then try to reconcile Pasch’s logical axiomatic claim with his empiricist stance. More importantly, we will insist on the remarkable logical procedures worked out by Pasch in order to adapt his mathematical development to the strictures of his broad philosophical position. (shrink)
As corporations are going global, they are increasingly confronted with human rights challenges. As such, new ways to deal with human rights challenges in corporate operations must be developed as traditional governance mechanisms are not always able to tackle them. This article presents five different views on innovative solutions for the relationships between business and human rights that all build on empowerment, dialogue and constructive engagement. The different approaches highlight an emerging trend toward a more active role for corporations in (...) the protection of human rights. The first examines the need for enhanced dialogue between corporations and their stakeholders. The next three each examine a different facet of empowerment, a critical factor for the respect and protection of human rights: empowerment of the poor, of communities, and of consumers. The final one presents a case study of constructive corporate engagement in Myanmar (Burma). Altogether, these research projects provide insight into the complex relationships between corporate operations and human rights, by highlighting the importance of stakeholder dialogue and empowerment. All the five projects were presented during the Second Swiss Master Class in Corporate Social Responsibility, held in Lausanne, Switzerland on December 12, 2008. The audience for this conference, which examined business and human rights, was composed of researchers, governmental representatives, and business and non-governmental organization practitioners. (shrink)
This paper investigates how specific notions of gender and ethnicity are integrated into diversity discourses presented on 241 top European company websites. Large European companies increasingly disclose equality and diversity policies in statements on websites. Such statements may be used to promote an ethical image of the company in terms of how well it manages diversity and guards against discrimination. In this paper, we argue that diversity statement discourses are important as they play a key part in socially constructing how (...) diversity should be regarded in the company by minority and majority groups, as well as indicating corporate values to external stakeholders (investors, government, community, press etc.). Sometimes, the notions of gender or ethnic diversity are positioned as a liability in need of protection, whilst in others, as a source of competitive advantage. We find evidence of use of discursive tools such as problematisation, rationalisation, fixation, reframing and naturalisation of the notions of gender and ethnic diversity, reinforced by use of symbols, such as statistics, photographs, membership badges and awards. Few statements directly associate gender and ethnic diversity with enhanced corporate performance. We found that diversity statements sometimes appear to reinforce existing business stereotypes of women and people from ethnic minorities, and in a few discourses, create new ones, particularly evident in photographs illustrating the diversity web pages. (shrink)
Since Krebs and Davies’s (1978) landmark publication, it is acknowledged that behavioural ecology owes much to the ethological tradition in the study of animal behaviour. Although this assumption seems to be right—many of the first behavioural ecologists were trained in departments where ethology developed and matured—it still to be properly assessed. In this paper, I undertake to identify the approaches used by ethologists that contributed to behavioural ecology’s constitution as a field of inquiry. It is my contention that the current (...) practices in behavioural biology owe ethology something much subtler than the simple transposition of Tinbergen’s Four Problems for heuristic purposes. Demonstrating what ethology inherited from the long naturalist tradition shows the tensions that strained the field and that later led to the loss of both its unity and its specificity. It also allows for a precise delineating of what behavioural ecology picked up from the ethological practice, and it helps to cast some light on the introduction of economical thinking in behavioural sciences. (shrink)
This essay introduces the work of Andre Comte-Sponville to an English audience by explaining his ethical position. Comte-Sponville calls this position “cynicism,” and intends it as a correction of the excesses of both relativism and dogmatism. The distinction critical for understanding cynicism is that between value and truth, which are here used to explain all three: cynicism, dogmatism, and relativism.
In his target article, Pulvermüller addresses the issue of word localization in the brain. It is not clear, however, how cell assemblies are localized in the case of sensory deprivation. Pulvermüller's claim is that words learned via other modalities (i.e., sign languages) should be localized differently. It is argued, however, based on experimental and theoretical ground, that they should be found in a similar place.
Vocal imitation in songbirds exhibits interesting parallels to infant speech development and is currently the model system of choice for exploring the behavioural, molecular and electrophysiological substrates of vocal learning. Among songbirds, the Zebra Finch ( Taeniopygia guttata ) is currently used as the `flying mouse' of birdsong research. Only males sing and they develop their song primarily during a short sensitive period in early life. They learn their speciesspecific song patterns by memorizing and imitating the songs of conspecifics, mainly (...) adults. Since Immelmann's pioneering work, thousands of zebra finches have been raised in strictly controlled auditory environments to examine how their experience affected their songs. In this article, I review the different experimental procedures that have been used in the laboratory to study the social influences on song learning in the Zebra Finch. Poor song learning was observed using passive playback of taped songs, whereas self-eliciting exposure using operant tutoring techniques induced significant learning, but with a high interindividual variability. The success of the training paradigm is often measured by the quality of imitation of the songs to which the young bird is exposed. Using empirical evidence from the field and the laboratory, I will also discuss this issue, by summarizing possible advantages and disadvantages of producing a perfect imitation. So far, the best method to get a close copy of a song model in the Zebra Finch is to place a single young bird with an adult male. This situation, which is rather unnatural, does not meet the criteria for precise control necessary in experimental conditions. Optimizing the methods used to train a zebra finch to learn a song, in order to be able to predict the imitation success, will improve our understanding of the dynamics of vocal production learning. It would also consolidate this species as a research model of relevance to human speech development and disorders. Keywords: Zebra Finch; birdsong; learning; development; memory; social influences. (shrink)
Over the past several years, the human rights implications of climate change have become more evident. While extreme weather events and slow onset changes caused by climate change affect the exercise of human rights, the implementation of climate change policies - in relation to both mitigation and adaptation - may also lead to the infringement of the rights of indigenous peoples and local communities. Despite this recognition by the UN Human Rights Council and other bodies, the international climate change regime (...) has failed to address these implications, recognizing only in 2010 the importance for parties to respect human rights in the implementation of the Framework Convention. The adoption of the Durban Platform for Enhanced Action (ADP), together with the reform of existing mechanisms and the operationalization of new institutions, offers several opportunities to ensure the adequate fulfillment of human rights obligations under the Convention. In this commentary, we highlight four concrete options available to the parties in the upcoming negotiations to guarantee the respect of substantial and procedural rights of all the stakeholders and to offer a redress mechanism in the case of loss and damages caused by climate change. (shrink)
We tested whether the E-Z Reader model can be generalised to the French language. The simulation showed that the model can account for the frequency effect. The predictability effect is moreover accurate for word skipping, but not for fixation times. We think that this model is psychologically plausible for certain aspects of reading and we have used it to evaluate the performance of dyslexic readers.
This book explores a pivotal dimension of Mou Zongsan’s philosophy—that is, his project of reconstructing a moral metaphysics based largely on a dialogue between reinterpreted Chinese thought and Kantism—and thoroughly analyzes a ...
Contre Regis Débray qui ne voit en Tocqueville qu’une figure emblématique de la démocratie et non un républicain, cet article cherche à réhabiliter le républicanisme tocquevillien. Cela implique d’emblée de comprendre, il est vrai, I’importance réelle accordée par Tocqueville à I’analyse de la démocratie, mais ceci non pas dans le but de l’encenser mais parce que tout indique - et même la Providence divine - qu’elle est amenée à s’imposer en Europe tout comme elle I‘a fait prioritairement aux États-Unis. Après (...) avoir étudié en détail cette analyse de la démocratie, nous montrerons que Tocqueville cherche aussi bien à en vanter les merites qu’à en relever les défauts, qu’il ne dissimule guère. Il s’agira dès lors pour lui de faire triompher I’esprit républicain sur I’esprit égalitariste, ce qui nous amènera à mettre en valeur son attachement réel aux valeurs républicaines, attachement qui, bien qu’exigeant et profond, ne pourra néanmoins transcender les bornes idéologiques de son siècle.In this paper I argue, against Regis Debray who sees in Tocqueville someone who is merely representative of democracy, that Tocqueville was indeed a true republican. This presupposes an adequate understanding of Tocqueville’s analysis of democracy; indeed democracy is important for Tocqueville not so much because it is the best regime but one which is destined to impose itself across Europeas it had already done in the United States. After examining Tocqueville’s analysis of democracy, I will show that he is as keen to point out its merits as to underscore its faults. It will be a matter for him to show the superiority of republicanism over egalitarianism. We will thus see that Tocqueville’s attachment to republican ideals is sincere even though it cannot transcend the ideological limits of his time. (shrink)
What would be the result of reading Derrida from the standpoint of material phenomenology? And what would be the result of reading material phenomenology on the basis of the requirements of Derridean thought? These are the questions that this article endeavours to tackle by focusing on the two philosophers’ readings of Husserl’s Lectures on the Consciousness of Internal Time. At first strangely similar, these two readings soon display marked differences. Whereas Derrida, in his approach, is keen to demonstrate that there (...) is never any pure presence, Michel Henry brings out an “Archi-presence” which he attempts to safeguard from any deconstruction. So perhaps material phenomenology functions as “quasi-deconstruction”, having the same relationship with Derridean thought as “negative theology” has with deconstruction. (shrink)
This article reports a study carried out in order to measure how semantic factors affect reductions in the difficulty of the Chinese Ring Puzzle (CRP) that involves removing five objects according to a recursive rule. We hypothesised that semantics would guide inferences about action decision making. The study involved a comparison of problem solving for two semantic isomorphic variants of the CRP ( fish and fleas ) with problem solving for the puzzle's classic variant (the Balls and Boxes problem; Kotovsky (...) learning involves generalising the relations within a coherent, interconnected whole that makes up the puzzle's rules. It seems that semantics make it easier for the puzzle's elements to be grouped together within coherent, meaningful wholes, which reduces relational complexity and facilitates problem solving. (shrink)
The transactional interpretation of quantum mechanics, following the time-symmetric formulation of electrodynamics, uses retarded and advanced solutions of the Schrödinger equation and its complex conjugate to understand quantum phenomena by means of transactions. A transaction occurs between an emitter and a specific absorber when the emitter has received advanced waves from all possible absorbers. Advanced causation always raises the specter of paradoxes, and it must be addressed carefully. In particular, different devices involving contingent absorbers or various types of interaction-free measurements (...) have been proposed as threatening the original version of the transactional interpretation. These proposals will be analyzed by examining in each case the configuration of absorbers and, in the special case of the so-called quantum liar experiment, by carefully following the development of retarded and advanced waves through the Mach-Zehnder interferometer. We will show that there is no need to resort to the hierarchy of transactions that some have proposed, and will argue that the transactional interpretation is consistent with the block-universe picture of time. (shrink)
Dans cet article, nous nous efforçons de présenter synthétiquement la philosophie d’Andre Comte-Sponville. Pour ce faire, nous nous intéressons d’abord à la distinction capitale qu’il effectue entre valeur et vérité. Refusant à la fois le dogmatisme (oú la vérité vaut) et la sophistique (oú la valeur est vraie), André Comte-Sponville prône une position cynique pour laquelle la vérité est sans valeur et les valeurs sont sans vérité. Ensuite, délaissant la théorie pour la pratique, nous évoquons une autre distinction, tout aussi (...) importante, qui oppose l’ethique et la morale. L’etude conjointe de ces deux distinctions, théorique et pratique, nous permet alors de montrer que la philosophie de Comte-Sponville ne saurait se réduire à ce que Luc Ferry appelle de la “moraline”, à savoir du moralisme médiatique, mais qu’elle exige au contraire une vertu exigeante et austère, loin des bons sentiments dont on l’affuble trop souvent en France.This article will seek to present synthetically Andre Comte-Sponville’s philosophy. It will first consider the capital distinction he establishes between value and truth. Refusing both dogmatism (where truth is valued) and sophistry (where value is truth), Andre Comte-Sponville advocates a cynical position for which truth has no value, and values are without truth. Then, moving from theory to practice, we will bring up another distinction - just as important - which opposes ethics and morals. The combined study of both these distinctions, theoretical and practical, allows to show that Comte-Sponville’s philosophy cannot be reduced to what Luc Ferry calls “moraline”, that is, media moralism, but that it requires on the contrary a demanding and austere virtue, far from the good sentiments that are too often attributed to it in France. (shrink)
Philippe Charru | Résumé : Christoph Theobald travaille depuis de longues années en tant que théologien sur l’oeuvre de Jean-Sébastien Bach, en collaboration avec un musicien. On tente de faire entendre ici comment sa « manière de faire de la théologie », soucieuse de respecter l’autonomie des arts, le rend attentif à la réalité sensible des oeuvres musicales et à une conception génétique de leur forme où se profile « l’opération même du style », selon le mot de Merleau-Ponty. (...) On montre comment l’émergence de cette notion du style dans le champ esthétique, l’a conduit à « penser le mystère chrétien comme “style en relation avec d’autres styles” impliquant un rapport absolument spécifique au beau ». |: Christoph Theobald has spent many years studying the oeuvre of Johann Sebastian Bach from the perspective of a theologian, in collaboration with a musician. This article attempts to demonstrate how his “way of doing theology,” remaining ever respectful of the autonomy of the arts, makes him attentive to the sensible reality of musical works and to a genetic conception of their form from which it is possible to discern their “operation of style” as this idea is outlined by Merleau-Ponty. The author shows how the emergence of the notion of style in the field of aesthetics led him to “conceive the Christian mystery as ‘a style in relation with other styles’ that engenders a relation to beauty altogether specific and unique.”. (shrink)
Nous proposons une traduction inédite du fameux dialogue de Max Black intitulé « L’identité des indiscernables », paru en 1952 (Mind, vol. 61, no 242, avril 1952, 153-164) et aujourd’hui considéré comme un classique de la philosophie contemporaine. Cette traduction est précédée d’une présentation rapide du texte et du problème philosophique qu’il soulève.