Abstract In his paper ?The compatibility of punishment and moral education?, Hobson (1986) attempts to refute arguments which I had advanced (Marshall, 1984) to the effect that there were incompatibilities between claims to be morally educating children and to be punishing them. I wish to point out in Hobson's paper some questionable interpretations of the punishment literature and a serious flaw in the argument. More importantly, I wish to advance the debate by recourse to historical material and the work (...) of Michel Foucault, as opposed to abstract philosophical argument alone. Foucault argues that the practices of punishment have changed and that the legal notion of punishment (Hobson, 1986) is inappropriate for the description of what he calls disciplinary punishment. This notion best describes what we do to children. Hence claims to be punishing (legal notion) fit uneasily with claims to be developing rational autonomy. (shrink)
Some experiences of the natural world bring a sense of unity, knowledge, self-transcendence, eternity, light, and love. This is the first detailed study of these intriguing phenomena. Paul Marshall explores the circumstances, characteristics, and after-effects of this important but relatively neglected type of mystical experience, and critiques explanations that range from the spiritual and metaphysical to the psychoanalytic, contextual, and neuropsychological. The theorists discussed include R. M. Bucke, Edward Carpenter, W. R. Inge, Evelyn Underhill, Rudolf Otto, Sigmund Freud, Aldous (...) Huxley, R. C. Zaehner, W. T. Stace, Steven Katz, and Robert Forman, as well as contemporary neuroscientists. The book makes a significant contribution to current debates about the nature of mystical experience. (shrink)
This essay is critical of some of the attempts made to solve problems of meaning in religious languages, but remains open-minded about them and accepts the Wittgensteinian invitation to look at their dissolution by way of the experiences of meaning and the aspects of language on which they rely. I have argued that there were and are no lasting problems with religious language per se and that the force and meaning of what is said in using religious language over time (...) and circumstance may vary even to the point of having to retrieve concepts feared lost. We may in addition give ourselves our own personal interpretations by which we want to live and discuss with those in our space of reasons where good conversation is ever an inexhaustible provision on the way to enlightened understanding. Furthermore, we are not merely passive recipients of the meanings and significance of the languages we know. Finally, much of the meaning of religious language comes with the experience of being struck again by what has always been loved and by new aspects of, or different ways of taking, what is presented. (shrink)
Considered the most original thinker in the Italian philosophical tradition, Giambattista Vico has been the object of much scholarly attention but little consensus. In this new interpretation, David L. Marshall examines the entirety of Vico's oeuvre and situates him in the political context of early modern Naples. He demonstrates Vico's significance as a theorist who adapted the discipline of rhetoric to modern conditions. Marshall presents Vico's work as an effort to resolve a contradiction. As a professor of rhetoric (...) at the University of Naples, Vico had a deep investment in the explanatory power of classical rhetorical thought, especially that of Aristotle, Cicero, and Quintilian. Yet as a historian of the failure of Naples as a self-determining political community, he had no illusions about the possibility or worth of democratic and republican systems of government in the post-classical world. As Marshall demonstrates, by jettisoning the assumption that rhetoric only illuminates direct, face-to-face interactions between orator and auditor, Vico reinvented rhetoric for a modern world in which the Greek polis and the Roman res publica are no longer paradigmatic for political thought. (shrink)
Eleven obituaries of recently deceased Fellows of the British Academy: Isaiah Berlin; Christopher Hill; Rodney Hilton; Keith Hopkins; Peter Laslett; Geoffrey Marshall; John Roskell; Isaac Schapera; Ben Segal; John Cyril Smith and Richard Wollheim.
The severe shortage of organs for transplantation and the continual reluctance of the public to voluntarily donate has prompted consideration of alternative strategies for organ procurement. This paper explores the development of market approaches for procuring human organs for transplantation and considers the social and moral implications of organ donation as both a gift of life and a commodity exchange. The problematic and paradoxical articulation of individual autonomy in relation to property rights and marketing human body parts is addressed. We (...) argue that beliefs about proprietorship over human body parts and the capacity to provide consent for organ donation are culturally constructed. We contend that the political and economic framework of biomedicine, in western and non-western nations, influences access to transplantation technology and shapes the form and development of specific market approaches. Finally, we suggest that marketing approaches for organ procurement are and will be negotiated within cultural parameters constrained by several factors: beliefs about the physical body and personhood, religious traditions, economic conditions, and the availability of technological resources. (shrink)
We describe some of the signs and symptoms of left visuo-spatial neglect. This common, severe and often long-lasting impairment is the most striking consequence of right hemisphere brain damage. Patients seem to (over-)attend to the right with subsequent inability to respond to stimuli in contralesional space. We draw particular attention to how patients themselves experience neglect. Furthermore, we show that the neglect patient's loss of awareness of left space is crucial to an understanding of the condition. Even after left space (...) has been brought into the patient's consciousness (either by local cueing on the left or by an emphasis on global properties of the scene as a whole), this awareness of left space rapidly declines. We suggest that much of the symptomology of left neglect can be interpreted as a disconnection between brain mechanisms that are relatively specialized for local (detail) visual processing and global (panoramic) processing. This failure of communication between functional (subpersonal) mechanisms then has consequences for how perceptual and representational content enters into awareness. Failure of the local contents of left space to be consciously accessed is, in turn, an important aspect of why left neglect is so difficult to remediate. Patients can ''know'' that they have neglect but are cut off from the perceptual awareness that would enable them to overcome their attentional bias to the right. (shrink)
In their paper “Defining ‘Intrinsic’” Rae Langton and David Lewis propose a definition of intrinsicality in terms of modality and naturalness. Their key idea, drawing on earlier work by Jaegwon Kim, was that an intrinsic property is one that is independent of accompaniment, which is to say that P is intrinsic iff the following four conditions are all met: 1. It is possible for a lonely object to have P. 2. It is possible for an accompanied object to have P.
Drawing on William F. Ogburn's cultural lag thesis, an inherent conflict is proposed between the rapid speed of modern technological advances and the slower speed by which ethical guidelines for utilization of new technologies are developed. Ogburn's cultural lag thesis proposes that material culture advances more rapidly than non-material culture. Technology is viewed as part of material culture and ethical guidelines for technology utilization are viewed as an adaptive aspect of non-material culture. Cultural lag is seen as a critical ethical (...) issue because failure to develop broad social consensus on appropriate applications of modern technology may lead to breakdowns in social solidarity and the rise of social conflict. Reasons for cultural lag between technology and ethics include the social structural and market conditions under which each are developed. The thesis is illustrated by reviews of technological trends involving computer-telecommunications electronics and bio- genetic engineering, and the implications of these and other technologies for privacy rights, electronic commerce, control of essential resources and social definitions of life are discussed. (shrink)
How best to introduce philosophical ideas? Is the best and only way by studying the history of philosophy and its rational arguments and discussions? But can literature, usually hived off from philosophy, be used instead and can this be as effective as rational argument? This paper explores these questions. First it considers a text which introduces philosophy through the analysis of literature, in particular James Joyce's 'Araby', arguing that the traditional analytic approach employed by the text, by concentrating on epistemology, (...) obscures other philosophical insights offered by Joyce. It then turns to French philosophy and literature and suggests that Sartre, Beauvoir and Camus by 'blurring' the analytic distinction between philosophy and literature have much to offer to the grasping and understanding of philosophical ideas and principles. (shrink)
We contrast person-centered categories with objective categories related to physics: consciousness vs. mechanism, observer vs. observed, agency vs. event causation. semantics vs. syntax, beliefs and desires vs. dispositions. How are these two sets of categories related? This talk will discuss just one such dichotomy: consciousness vs. mechanism. Two extreme views are dualism and reductionism. An intermediate view is emergence. Here, consciousness is part of the natural order (as against dualism), but consciousness is not definable only in terms of physical mass, (...) length, and time (as against reductionism). There are several detailed theories of emergence. One is based on the Great Chain of Being and on organic evolutionary hierarchy. The theory here is based instead on the concept of relational holism in quantum mechanics. The resulting brain model has two interacting systems: a computational system and a quantum system (a Bose-Einstein condensate), perhaps interacting via EEG waves. Thus, we need both person-centered and matter-centered categories to describe human beings. Some possible experimental tests are discussed. (shrink)
A new model of ritual based on Durkheim's ( 1995) theory is developed. It is argued that ritual practices generate belief and belonging in participants by activating multiple social-psychological mechanisms that interactively create the characteristic outcomes of ritual. Specifically, the distinctive elements of ritual practice are shown to induce altered subjective states and effortful and/or anomalous behaviors, which are subsequently misattributed in such a way that belief and belonging are created or maintained around the focus of ritual attention. These processes (...) are traced in detail, and the resulting model is shown to be empirically credible, comprehensive, and theoretically fertile. (shrink)
This article looks at the ethical quandaries, and their social and political context, which emerge as a result of international nuclear waste substitution. In particular it addresses the dilemmas inherent within the proposed return of nuclear waste owned by Japanese nuclear companies and currently stored in the United Kingdom. The UK company responsible for this waste, British Nuclear Fuels Limited (BNFL), wish to substitute this high volume intermediate-level Japanese-owned radioactive waste for a much lower volume of much more highly radioactive (...) waste. Special focus is given to ethical problems that they, and the UK government, have not wished to address as they move forward with waste substitution. The conclusion is that waste substitution can only be considered an ethical practice if a set of moderating conditions are observed by all parties. These conditions are listed and, as of yet, they are not being observed. (shrink)
Most writing on informed consent in Africa highlights different cultural and social attributes that influence informed consent practices, especially in research settings. This review presents a composite picture of informed consent in Nigeria using empirical studies and legal and regulatory prescriptions, as well as clinical experience. It shows that Nigeria, like most other nations in Africa, is a mixture of sociocultural entities, and, notwithstanding the multitude of factors affecting it, informed consent is evolving along a purely Western model. Empirical studies (...) show that 70–95% of Nigerian patients report giving consent for their surgical treatments. Regulatory prescriptions and adjudicated cases in Nigeria follow the Western model of informed consent. However, adversarial legal proceedings, for a multiplicity of reasons, do not play significant roles in enforcing good medical practice in Nigeria. Gender prejudices are evident, but not a norm. Individual autonomy is recognized even when decisions are made within the family. Consent practices are influenced by the level of education, extended family system, urbanization, religious practices, and health care financing options available. All limitations notwithstanding, consent discussions improved with increasing level of education of the patients, suggesting that improved physician's knowledge and increasing awareness and education of patients can override other influences. Nigerian medical schools should restructure their teaching of medical ethics to improve the knowledge and practices of physicians. More research is needed on the preferences of the Nigerian people regarding informed consent so as to adequately train physicians and positively influence physicians' behaviors. (shrink)
This paper gives an overview of the placebo effect in popular culture, especially as it pertains to the work of authors Patrick O’Brian and Sinclair Lewis. The beloved physician as placebo, and the clinician scientist as villain are themes that respectively inform the novels, The Hundred Days and Arrowsmith. Excerpts from the novels, and from film show how the placebo effect, and the randomized clinical trial, have emerged into popular culture, and evolved over time.
In the field of bioethics, scholars have begun to consider carefully the impact of structural issues on global population health, including socioeconomic and political factors influencing the disproportionate burden of disease throughout the world. Human rights and social justice are key considerations for both population health and biomedical research. In this paper, I will briefly explore approaches to human rights in bioethics and review guidelines for ethical conduct in international health research, focusing specifically on health research conducted in resource-poor settings. (...) I will demonstrate the potential for addressing human rights considerations in international health research with special attention to the importance of collaborative partnerships, capacity building, and respect for cultural traditions. Strengthening professional knowledge about international research ethics increases awareness of ethical concerns associated with study design and informed consent among researchers working in resource-poor settings. But this is not enough. Technological and financial resources are also necessary to build capacity for local communities to ensure that research results are integrated into existing health systems. Problematic issues surrounding the application of ethical guidelines in resource-poor settings are embedded in social history, cultural context, and the global political economy. Resolving the moral complexities requires a commitment to engaged dialogue and action among investigators, funding agencies, policy makers, governmental institutions, and private industry. (shrink)
Demographic differences among consumer groups have become increasingly important to the development of marketing strategies. Marketers depend heavily on the sales force to implement strategies at the consumer level and, not surprisingly, different groups may view the salesperson’s role differently. Unfortunately, unethical sales practices targeted at various consumer groups, and especially at seniors, have been utilized as well. The purpose of this study is to provide initial empirical evidence of the ethical ideological make-up of four age segments outlined by Strauss (...) and Howe (1991, Generations: The History of America’s Future 1584–2069, Morrow, New York) and to examine the propensity for these groups (seniors, in particular) to respond differentially to potentially unethical sales tactics. Data were collected from 179 respondents representing the four generational age groups. MANOVA revealed that the seniors in this study were distinct with respect to ethical ideology and less accepting of unethical sales tactics. Managerial implications are discussed for sales organizations to maximize their effectiveness across consumer groups. (shrink)
The paper explains and differentiates the concept of `fact' in the legal setting. Fact and evidence, fact/falsity distinguished; fact and law considered -- a real difference or a pragmatic device? Questions of fact and degree considered, in themselves and in the context of jury trial and of appeals. Primary fact, factual inferences from primary fact, questions of classification of fact are considered. Whether inference is supported by evidence, and whether classification is correct may be questions of law. Issues of fact (...) and opinion, fact and comment, relative to freedom of speech, defamation etc: no clear distinction available. Legal problems concerning absence of workable distinctions. (shrink)
This study examines Australian tax agents' perceptions of the ethical environment in which they practice, within the context of an income tax system based on self-assessment principles. The research identifies and ranks an inventory of ethical issues in terms of perceived frequency of occurrence and importance to Western Australian tax agents. In addition, the extent and influence of ethical concerns in the profession are evaluated.The study has determined that the most frequently cited ethical issue is the failure to make reasonable (...) enquiries where information or documentation provided by a client appears to be inaccurate or incomplete. The most important ethical problem is a failure to ensure confidentiality with regard to privileged client information. When the frequency of occurrence and importance means are compared, inadequate technical competence, failure to make reasonable enquiries/conduct research, continuing to act for a client where there is incorrect information, and conflicts in distinguishing between tax planning and tax avoidance emerge as the high frequency/high importance issues. Although acknowledging the potential for unethical actions in tax practice, Western Australian tax agents consider that they carry out their professional activities within an ethical environment. (shrink)
While there is considerable interest in the topic of business ethics, much of the research moves towards measuring components with a view to predicting ethical behaviour. To date there has not been a satisfactory definition of business ethics, nor has there been any real attempt to understand the components of a situation that may influence an individual's assessment of that situation as ethical or otherwise. Using Jones's (1991) construct of moral intensity as a basis for investigation, this paper presents some (...) exploratory analysis on the context within which ethical decisions are assessed. The findings reveal that individuals differ in their assessments of the same situation and often use a number of complex reasons to explain whether a situation poses an ethical problem for them. These findings are discussed within a framework of measurement issues and future directions for research. (shrink)
Postmodernism was not launched by the development of Warholesque pop art in the 1960s, nor was it initiated by the explosive destruction of the Pruitt-Igoe modern housing project of St Louis, Missouri in 1972, or by the commissioning of Jean-Francois Lyotard's work on knowledge in advanced societies by the Quebec government in the late 1970s. Postmodernism began with the publication of a paper entitled `The individualistic concept of plant the association' in 1926 by the plant ecologist Henry Gleason. If we (...) dare to characterize postmodernism, emphases on ideas such as heterogeneity, ephemerality, anti-foundationalism, pluralism, fragmentation, indeterminacy, schizophrenia, chaos, antiformalism, discontinuity, absence, playfulness, irony, localism, anarchy and ontological meaninglessness are the ones that tend to abound. The Gleasonian theory of plant associations can be said to reflect such ideas in the ecological arena. Certainly there is room for, and an expanding professional commitment to, a fully-fledged neo-Gleasonian postmodern approach to natural history in which ecological phenomena are examined using non-determinist, pluralist and local perspectives that reject the foundationalism and unifying approach of modernist science and which posits a view of the Earth's biota highlighting fragmentation, anarchism and non-interaction. Community ecology, as opposed to the unifying and totalizing tendencies of ecosystems ecology, might rightly claim to be the intellectual site of such a postmodern natural history. Often, postmodern studies not only attempt to describe a postmodern phenomenon but act to forge new varieties of postmodernism. It is in this vein that this paper seeks to present a non-anthropocentric form of postmodernism; not by dissolving the dualistic barrier that separates humanity from nature (as many environmentalisms would advocate) but by dissolving humanity and nature. (shrink)
Large-scale genetic databases are being developed in several countries around the world. However, these databases depend on public participation and acquiescence. In the past, information campaigns have been waged and little attention has been paid to dialogue. Nowadays, it is important to include the public in the development of scientific research and to encourage a free, open and useful dialogue among those involved. This paper is a review of community consultation strategies as part of four proposed large-scale genetic databases in (...) Iceland, Estonia, United Kingdom and Quebec. The Iceland Health Sector Database and Estonian Genome Project have followed a “communication approach” in order to address public concerns, whereas, UK Biobank and Quebec CARTaGENE have chosen a “partnership approach” to involve the public in decision-making processes. (shrink)
The idea that there are some things which we should not talk about is most commonly dealt with in the context of debates about rights to free speech, and other contexts in which the value of talking is typically understood in instrumental terms. This paper explores ways of grounding that idea which do not depend upon instrumental values, in particular in the context of self-revelatory and confessional talk.
In this paper, we first briefly describe neuroimaging technology, our reasons for studying magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) technology, and then provide a discussion of what we have identified as priority issues for paediatric MRI research. We examine the issues of respectful involvement of children in the consent process as well as privacy and confidentiality for this group of MRI research participants. In addition, we explore the implications of unexpected findings for paediatric MRI research participants. Finally, we explore the ethical issues (...) concerning advances in functional MRI. This paper aims to provide a clear description of priority paediatric MRI research ethics issues to make some preliminary recommendations regarding next steps. (shrink)